When asked the question – Why complicate things using a grid or graph paper for drawing a logo, and what purpose does it serve, especially as you have a computer ?
At first I was stumped, as the words; proportion, balance and standards automatically came to my mind. I wasn’t exactly sure what I meant by that, my reply was more impulsive than anything else. So It was for that reason I decided to take it upon myself and recap on the fundamentals and importance of the almost forgotten use of the grid in design.
To start with, designs exist in their completed state without the grid being visible, where the grid is the underlying frame on which elements are positioned and shapes are formed, as in the case of say, the pages of a magazine or a logo. In short, the grid aids in the structuring and conceiving of shapes, proportion, balance and symmetry.
Grid systems have been in use by architechs and artist alike since pre-Christian times. The term ‘grid’ derives from the Latin word for rake, rastrum, which is also the name given to a five-pointed writing instrument, a little like a fountain pen with five nibs. This was used for producing the 5 lines of a musical stave or staff. The meaning was born out of the fact that when these lines are drawn both horizontally and vertically over each other, they form a unit of squares.
So, what makes this grid thing so important ? Well, any professional designer who has worked in the industry where designs are produced for mass consumption will tell you of the importance of standards and consistency. Take for instance the typical 3-pin plug, which is designed in such a way that it will fit any power socket it was intended for, wherever in the world you are. Each pin is purposely positioned a given distance apart that allows the plug to be easily inserted into a wall socket. Underlying its structure is a grid , which determines the exact relationship between each pin.
A good example of the grid in action can be experienced with the building kit – LEGO ®, which irrespective of the elaborate constructions that can be made from these simple pieces, note how each component will readily fit any adjoining piece.
There are even special grids or graph paper that have been scaled to match LEGO ® elements, these special sheets of graph paper enables individuals to plan their own original LEGO ® models.
The grid may look complicated, but in actual fact it simplifies things. Its use is as an aid to creating designs that consider proportion, symmetry and consistency.
Recommended Site: The Grid System