Perfectly Paired: Using Symmetry in Web Design

Symmetrical design relies on principles of balance, rhythm, proportion and unity to create a style with mirroring sides. Symmetry happens when the composition of design is distributed evenly around a central point or axis. This symmetry can be horizontal, vertical or radial in form. But symmetrical design is not always identical design. Objects can have approximate symmetry as well. This is more prevalent than you might think and can be a great design tool. Here Carrie Cousins looks at different types of symmetry and how they can be used effectively.

 

Natural symmetry
Symmetry is a naturally-occurring phenomenon that reaches into mathematics and physics, design, architecture and nature. Symmetry is static by design and creates order, unity and form. The look and feel is soothing and can be a good design technique when you are creating a site that tries to capture that mood. The biggest downfall to a symmetrical design scheme is that it can sometimes be difficult to create a sense of dominance or really emphasize a single dominant element. The opposite of symmetry is using asymmetrical techniques – where sides are uneven and break the naturally-occurring balance that comes with symmetrical design.

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