Every visual element that you include in your design can be interpreted differently, seen with another meaning or representation. This shows that shapes have to mean something. A jagged line is a different thing from a smooth curve, similar to the squares which are different from the circles. It is crucial for us to know what these shapes communicate. Otherwise, your audience can pick up things subconsciously from your design that you never intended. Choosing the right shape is like making the perfect sentence for the thing that you want to say. So that your designs, rather than sending conflicting messages to mesh together smoothly.

The shapes are grouped in three different segments: geometric, natural, and abstract shapes.

The most basic shapes are geometric. These shapes don’t need much explanation, because of their simple appeal. Here are the circles, squares, triangles, arrows and similar. When you ask people to imagine a shape, usually these are the ones that they see first. This is due to their basic nature, or the fundamental smallest part from which everything is built upon. Using these shapes in your design can help strengthen structure, organization and efficiency. Many say that they can be slightly uninspiring, but there are many Graphic Design waves that use the simple shapes as their main objective, for example the Swiss design patterns, or the Swedish minimalism.

Natural and organic shapes, on the other hand aren’t regularly shaped. They lack symmetry unlike geometric shapes and often have uneven shapes as well as a lot of curves. 

They can be very calming in that they’re find in nature, the rocks, leaves, trees etc. Pictures are usually the medium through which these shapes are shown and give a spontaneous feeling. The use of too many of these shapes can give a cluttered feeling.

The last segment is the abstract forms. We often recognize them in combination with typographical signs and other figures, created by the free imagination and need.

When using the shapes you must be extremely precocious because they can mean different things in some corner of the world. But some shapes appear to be quite universal, simply down to the way a shape flows.

Circles are seen with no endings, in many cultures they are interpreted as signs for endlessness. They also represent freedom of movement and for these reasons, they can be associated with community, perfection and completeness.

Rectangles and squares are more stable shapes. They can’t be moved easily, and security can be associated with these shapes. Sometimes, considering a light tilt can bring more energy to these elements. The rectangles are very common online. They are everywhere, forming the borders around areas, the shapes of buttons and even the dimensions of our screens.

Triangles can represent stability, and also instability when flipped. They can imply directions as they are arrows at their most basic, and therefore can also indicate movement. In the western societies the number three is very liked, and because of that they are often associated with religion, mystic, and other spiritual concepts.

The shapes can either be positive or negative, as in they can be foreground and background. You should pay special attention to what shapes you use in your negative space. Though the users might not actually be consciously aware of them, that doesn’t make them less important. In fact, in many ways, it makes them more so as they can come under the radar. 

Shapes can be used broadly to show your vision and message. The most important thing is that we must use them in the right way. In recent years there have been a strong movement away from an over-busy background, and for that reason it’s better not to use too many shapes.

If you’re trying to organize the working process so that users are more likely to engage with them, it might be best to use shapes sparingly to draw the eye towards the right spot than to distract them. In that way, you can imbue certain aspects of your design with a strength or significance that the user isn’t even aware of consciously, but that will still influence how they perceive that element as they consume it.

Please feel free to write your points of view in the section below. 

Till the next time, squareONE