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alignment and relationship of elements in a pattern or grid

Symmetrical Balance

elements of the design are centered or evenly divided horizontally and vertically on a page

Asymmetrical Balance

off-center alignment created with an odd or mismatched number of elements

Radial Balance

elements radiate from or swirl around in a circular or spiral path.


the use of big and small elements, black and white text, squares, and circles


placing elements near each other to demonstrate their relationship to each other


repeating some aspect of the design throughout the entire layout

White space

negative or empty space between text and/or graphics

Rule of Thirds

visually dividing the page into thirds vertically and/or horizontally and placing the most important elements within those thirds

Five Elements of Design

Line, Shapes, Mass, Texture, Color


used to organize information, simulate movement, lead the eyes, enhance a design


used to enhance a publication and convey meaning


used to define size, space, and create an impact


used to convey a sense of feel


used to evoke emotion and action; adds or detracts attention

Lead the eye

by creating a pattern of dark to light values, even when the objects are equal in shape and size, it leads the eye in the direction of dark to light

Optical Center

the spot that the eye sees when it first encounters a page. It is slightly above and to the right of the mathematical center of the page

Z Pattern

the visual path the eye follows when looking at a printed page

Color Palette

a chart used to choose colors. Can be used to pick colors that will look good together in desktop publishing publications.


colors that look good together to create a more visually appealing publication

Color Matching

the process of matching the colors produced on the computer screen to the colors that can be printed on paper using ink to ensure the printed publication looks as much like the on-screen publication as possible.


A color


A color plus white


A color plus black


The amount of hue used

Calming Colors

cool colors (blue, green and violet)

Exciting Colors

warm colors (red, orange and yellow)

Neutral Colors

beige, ivory, taupe, black, gray, and white

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