Monday, December 20, 2010

The Mob Rules- Back in Black

I just read a great piece on The Design Observer about the famed Black Rule- a tried and true graphic element.  Working with the grid-- used to organize and balance layouts-- the back rule grounds a design and is great for hanging a title.  Really coming to prominence during Massimo Vignelli's 1966 branding of the NY City Subway system, the black rule has been relied upon by designers since.

A quote from the article:
"Another thing about The Black Rule is that it is democratic: though its formality emanates from the power of Black, and its authority emanates from its connection to the grid, it sits just as happily on a piece of non-profit newsprint, or matte-coated paper, or powder-coated steel, or 100 percent rag stationery. No snobbery connects to The Black Rule."
Unfortunately, often copied, the black rule has been known be abused and used simply to fill space. But as a powerful design element, it has seemed to stand the test of time-- it even guest started in the Helevetica movie! Re-watch the movie it and see for yourself. The black rule rules!

Read the piece here- reposted for serious design geeks only- linked it.

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