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This course has provided an understanding of different types of visual phenomena and illusions and how communication designers can explore to understand their work better and incorporate them into their design. Both perception and design are active processes that go beyond simple conceptual knowledge. As you become more conscious of your reactions, they start to stand out and become easier to recognize as an active component of the awareness you bring to the experiences and objects in your surroundings and, more specifically, to your work as a communication designer. This might help inspire someone to look at design differently.
In this course, we looked at figure-ground segregation and different types of figure-ground illusions. Designing for any medium, such as artwork, photography, textiles, and crafts can incorporate alternating figure-ground interactions. When creating designs using words or letters, such as monograms, logos, posters, or holiday cards, a good technique is to use the negative spaces or the ground in letters as positive spaces or the figure. The figure-ground relation encourages you to explore each space in a lock-and-key pattern, which aids in organizing a cohesive and coherent design.
Next, we explored the illusions that use our perception of edges, lines, and angles. These illusions have varied uses in graphic design, where one can use them to produce fascinating visual effects. Designers and Artists regularly use illusions to enhance their work. Further, we explored how one can use the perception of color, brightness, and lightness in visual design. Explorations in this area are practically limitless as they can lead to varied possibilities for a particular design. We looked at several illusions using the perception of motion and illusory motion. One can use these to create different types of movies, advertisements, flip books, architecture, and other artworks.
We then looked at size distance illusions and depth perception illusions. Advertising professionals and surrealist artists frequently employ unrealistic size relationships. By playing with size connections, you sharpen your awareness of contextual cues. One can use depth cues to make abstract landscapes and gradients, creating robust 3D illusions. Graphic designers and photographers use these size-distance scaling principles all the time.
Finally, we looked at the role perception attention and change plays in visual design. Change blindness and inattentional blindness can have real-life implications in moviemaking. Filmmakers utilize these principles to ensure issues of continuity and meaning-making from an attentional and perceptual basis.
This course has been created with the expectation that visual designers in India will explore more of these phenomena in the future. This will help them to gain from advances in cognitive psychology and make them more reflexive about their work. It is hoped that communication designers will actively use these principles and incorporate them in their design work.