Weight…

Weight.. could we talk about weight? No, no, no- not that kind of weight. And, could we talk about Balance? Okay, weight and balance aren’t just for those amazing Health and Wellness folks. Still. Weight brings Balance to your Visual Designs, especially in 2 dimensional designs such as we find in advertising, on our blogs, in other social media- in other words Photography Graphic Design is 2 dimensional and flat.

On a recent trip to New Orleans, I was having a Ball posing next to a rather weighty Urn.. it occurred to me that weight in graphic design brings Balance and Interest which you cannot achieve any other way. Then… as if to reinforce my thought process, I saw a vintage scale in the French Market. Scale is another one of those words in Design that relate to Balance. Though this scale was for weighing things! So… I jotted down 7 Ways to use Weight in Visual Design.

  1. Use contrasting color. (Apples anyone?)
  2. Move the ‘important object’ away from the other elements in your photos.
  3. Be careful with Font Shapes, Size and Form- especially for Quotes. *Folks are 3 times more likely to pause and read a well done quote- so it’s important to create them well.
  4. Use a singular object. Negative Space does add ‘weight’.
  5. Add a human being- yes, even if she’s faded standing next to a big iron urn!
  6. Use distinct or complex imagery. (Fill up the frame.)
  7. Increase the size of your image. (The first image is a good example)

Here’s the thing, Weight adds emphasis, importance and interest to your visual designs. Weight balance an otherwise same scale photography. Photo after Photo on an Instagram feed for example which are all the same- may look balanced yet not as interesting. Or you may use several photographs on a blog post, yet if you shift the ‘weight’ as listed above in your photographs, they tend to be more eye catching. The same goes for Store Displays. Adding things of different weights or sizes to your displays make them more interesting.

Weight also signals that there might be something interesting or important in the message you’re sending to your reader. *A warning here… Weight can be overdone and perceived as ‘shouting’. Even type fonts can be a little too bold or scary!

Have a wonderful week, folks. You’ve just gotten a message to ‘Add Weight.’ Couldn’t resist that one!

Love y’all, Brenda

The July Planning Guide is almost ready! July is a pivotal month in the Retail Calendar. This one will be different than the others to reflect the upcoming Fall/Winter Season. If you’d like to receive it- send me an email at brenda@brenda-wyatt.com

Waiting in the Wings…

Have you ever felt like you’re ‘Waiting in the Wings’ ? At every age and stage, even when starting something new…there’s that Waiting in the Wings state of mind. Cambridge Dictionary describes it like this:’ If someone is waiting in the wings, they are not yet active or important, but are ready or likely to be soon..’

You may have practiced and prepared. You may have the perfect costume or background for your performance and yet there’s that waiting time.

You may have the prettiest or the most photogenic scene set up and yet, you mind tells you that there’s always someone better than you are. Did you know there’s a physical reaction to waiting in the wings? There is. When you’re in that area where activity on the stage can be observed yet the audience cannot see you- a place where performers stand just before it’s time to enter the stage to perform… we might call this physical reaction- Butterflies. A sensation which is a blend of anxiety, anticipation and excitement all bundled together.

You may be standing ready to undertake a new role. make an entrance or be brought to public attention. Yet, those butterflies are creating fear, they might make you want to give up…

Hang up Your Dancing Shoes altogether.

How do I know this? Because I’ve had those feelings before, okay- many times before. You have butterflies because you are afraid. You have butterflies because you’ve got a bad case of comparisonitis. You have butterflies because you Care.

When you start something new, even if you don’t have all the answers, you aren’t ‘perfect’ or you think someone is better than you are. Am I right? Well, here’s the key- lean on your preparation and your experience. Then trust your Instincts and Believe that you will Rise to the Occasion.

What you have to give is You, and that’s a very special Gift. There’s no one else exactly like You. When the Director of Life give you the cue… Come on out onto the Stage. You’ll be Unforgettable.

I’m thankful for so many who generously Take to the Stage. Ready to be available. Waiting to help. Prepared to do Something. Willing to share their Gifts. We need you.

Love y’all, Brenda

Repetition…

‘Whether it’s the sound of drums, a pan of fresh baked cookies or a tray filled with with seedlings…an arbor of roses, a staircase winding or not, a row of rounded boxwoods or clothes pins on a line. Repetition is the Strength, the Unity, the Structure, the very Heartbeat of Good Design.’    B.W.

One of my 9 Principles of Design is ‘Shape and Form’. Yet, without the strength and unity of repetition- shape and form of any creative endeavor might fail to impress. Think about it. Repetitive shapes or sounds form the basis of Art of the finest order.

img_1045Drummers are uniformed, let one of them miss a beat and the melody of the other instruments could fall apart. And… We all love songs with the repetition of a chorus, right? Seedlings are charming alone, even more so in a group. An arbor of roses is pleasing to the eye as much for the repetition of the arches as for the profusion of bloom. A Checker Board is a classic example of Repetitive Design. A cooling rack filled with cookies, even if they aren’t the exact same size, still the eye sees repetition.

img_5050A winding staircase works simply because the treads are spaced at a repetitive shape, form and space. An historic staircase is beautiful – even more so because of the repetition of woodwork, including spindles and dare I add? the Color.

img_1039We’ve found rounded boxwoods tend to look good year round because of the consistent shape and form. Even clothespins on an empty line are unified in type and shape, even if they aren’t lined up. Why? Repetition of course.

img_4592We love consistency. When a design is unified it gives a sense of order and peace. Repetition could be compared to the skeleton or structure on which any or all of the elements are layered on. Alone, it might be overdone. Just remember, that repetition, whether in color, shape or form is very important in design.

img_1037Whether it’s the sound of drums, a pan of fresh baked cookies or a tray of seedlings..  An arbor of roses, a staircase winding or not, a row of boxwoods or clothespins on a line.. Repetition is good in writing, marketing- making a point in different ways over and over. Repetition is the strength, the unity, the structure, the very heartbeat of Good Design.

Love y’all, Brenda

I’ve been working on a little project which includes the 9 Principles of Design… stay tuned!

Resilience…

Resilience

Resilience. The struggle to survive. I’ve learned more about the struggles of life in a garden than almost anywhere else. Observing plants teaches me about the will to live in the most unlikely places. Plants teach us about adaptation, self confidence and seizing opportunities where we can find them. What might have worked before, doesn’t always show up. The support you always had, isn’t there, the truth may be, they’re struggling too. That’s a chance to follow survival instincts. Plants know this.

Some seek Light to grow and bloom. Others flourish in dappled and damp shade and manage to be Pretty in the process. Some simply find a way. Often in the worst of conditions, a plant will sprout leaf and bloom- up through an iron railing, a cracked sidewalk or graveled garden path; a fallen log, a scorching sandy beach- even the mighty oak learns to soar above the forest floor.

Exuberance, enthusiasm, even enjoyment of living is right underfoot. Being forced in a jar or peeking through a picket fence. Or drawing life out of itself like those sweet muscari bulbs, why? Because sometimes- you just have to draw strength from within yourself- right? It’s that inexplicable urge to survive, maybe a zest for living- a joy just to be alive… spoken without words. Look close and you’ll hear these things and more.

No matter how small, it seems to me, there’s not just a the will to live despite circumstances or even survival techniques… there’s some inner workings I don’t quite understand. I only know these little survivors speak to me of purposeful filled living. Add in the will to live.

A fern sprout, a cluster of mushrooms, tiny bulbs in a jar- a dandelion or two. Wood violets, beach flowers, a crazy Iris craning her neck through a picket fence turning her face to the sun.

Even a leafy weed and most springing up from a rocky place- oh yes… they teach me so many lessons and more…

Resilience is what keeps us going. Finding light or enlightenment. Absorbing moisture, putting down deeper roots or pulling from your inner strength. A willingness to grow. Nature is where we find beauty, strength, nourishment and salve. After the year we’ve had, I hope your Resilience has shown up. Here’s to a zest for living, getting going and growing again!

Love y’all, Brenda

  • The June Planning Guide will be ready soon and no, it’s not too early! If you’d like to be on the list- just send me an email at brenda@brenda-wyatt.com
  • And follow us on Instagram, we’re posting often! Find us @brendawyatt_

Collections and Gift Guides…

Spring Gift Guides

Collections… we all have a collections of some sort. Whether it’s Stamps, Spices (yes, when we travel I bring back spices) Vintage Luggage? I had a small collection once that served as a portable office. Some collect oddities  such as watch parts. And, I’ll admit to having a collection of garden pots. Old Garden Tools- yes, the quirkier the better. Silver Serving Pieces? Books? Heirloom Seeds… oh yes, that’s a very nice collection to have. 

Though, you might be surprised to find out I also collect. Now, bear with me and I’ll tell you. After 30+ years in Retail, I tend to collect- very interesting Advertisement Openers. Why? Because I want to know what makes folks open an email, promotion or an ad. I do this so you don’t have to 🙂 …

Last week, I sent out email reminders to Create a Gift Guide for their Mother’s Day promotions. Yes, Gift Guides are one of the most helpful and effective ways to promote your products. Why? Because gift givers want you to give them ideas. And, you may just have what we shoppers think a loved one wants- especially if your gift guides offers different price ranges- and yes, this is regardless of what you offer.

I follow the best and brightest advertisers. They are using Gift Guides or announcing a New Collection. I personally love the announcement of New Collections no matter what it is. Whether you’re a shopper or seller- those two categories- Gift Guides and Collections. Count on it. Why? Inquiring Minds want to know:

1) Because these advertisements are genuinely helpful.

2.) A Collection is a peek into the upcoming season. A Gift Guide helps you make current buying decisions.

If you’re eyes are starting to glaze over by now, you’re either not a shopper or a seller. For years, my daughters made up their own gift guides, then sent them to me! I completely adored it. Why? Because it was a Guide for me to get them exactly what they wanted! They did the work so I didn’t have to!

So! I’ll cut to the chase- Collections. Gift Guides. Tell me what you offer. Help me make a decision. I’ve already sent out yet another guide to help sellers work in Batches. To save Time creating Content. It contains a few ideas of how the Big Brands are getting ahead of the Spring Gifting Season. Their gift guides will help those customers they serve, get good ideas and save time too!

If you’d like to get your copy of Gift Guides and Collections for Spring, just drop me a line at brenda@brenda-wyatt.com I’ll be happy to send it to your inbox!

As always, thank you for dropping by! Love y’all, Brenda