Principle of Design Balance

In art and design, as well as in business, there is a concept known as balance. The aim of balance is to make opposing elements appear harmonious. As used in art and design, the principle of design balance began centuries ago; but its concepts can still apply to modern-day designs and art forms.

Many of the designs we see daily are the result of a meticulous understanding of visual balance. Many of us have internalized the importance of balancing elements in composition from thousands of years of living art or books and websites such as this one.

You probably came here because you want to learn more about this principle. You came in search of balance, and that is exactly what we will provide.  This blog is about balance in design.  Today we are going to talk about the principle of design Balance. 

What is Balance in Design?

Understanding the principle of design balance will help you create designs that appear more natural, professional, and authoritative. Let’s start with defining balance in terms of its meaning in design.

Among the design principles, balance is a measure of the proportion between elements in an artwork or design. Our eyes automatically seek order and stability whenever we look at an image. In addition to this, symmetrical faces and objects are also more attractive to people for psychological reasons. 

It is also pleasing to the eye when there is a sense of balance or symmetry. A designer can create a product that produces stability and balance by putting weight on the elements of a design. It is important to know two terms: balance and harmony when it comes to design. 

  • A design element’s perceived weight is its visual weight. That is determined by the amount of attention it receives. 
  • When a design element appears to be moving in a certain direction, it is known as the visual direction. 

A common type of balance that many people are familiar with is symmetry. An image or element must appear on both sides of the design to achieve symmetrical balance. Yet symmetry is not the only element involved in achieving balance.

Why is Balance in Design Important? 

The composition of a design feels right in balance. If the composition of the design were unbalanced, it would have a lack of aesthetic appeal. One of the ways to create focal points in the design is to balance it out with a few other elements. But they will never take your attention away from the rest of the design if you allow them to do so.

It is important for designers to create balance in their designs to avoid having positive and negative elements in conflict. The final result should be cohesive and complement each other. As such, the parts together make up the whole but do not attempt to become the whole on their own. 

There can be a lot of friction in a design without balance. Element dominance can also lead to attention-seeking, which can result in conflict. Therefore, the final composition is inferior to the sum of its parts because of the subtraction of the elements. Occasionally, some designs may be intentionally unbalanced. This could be due to the special message they convey. However, the majority of people prefer designs that have a good balance. 

Types of Balance 

Principle of Design Balance

One of the most basic principles of design is balance. Balance can help you create a more pleasing and harmonious visual appeal for your website, advertisement, logo, or home decor.

A design can achieve balance in several different ways. There are several types of balance in design. The two most basic and widely used are symmetry and asymmetry. However, there are more interesting types of balance we would like to discuss today and how designers can use them.

Symmetrical Balance 

There are many types of balance within a design, but this is the most common. Each element within this design will have evenly distributed visual weight. The weight on both sides of a line must balance equally on either side of it if it is drawn vertically or horizontally. Such a composition is well-balanced. This is the reason why it appeals to the eye. 

Although it is appealing, Symmetrical balance does not always represent the most attractive form of balance in a design composition. It could become dull since the viewer does not have a specific focus. Additionally, it is intriguing to note that a small adjustment, such as changing the colors, can cause the design’s balance. Furthermore, it appears that the layout is not symmetrically equally distributed anymore. 

Asymmetrical Balance 

The use of this kind of balance creates movement or tension in a design or photograph. In this case, there is not as much balance between the focal points or the different elements as when it is symmetrical. 

While there will be a sense of balance and appeal with an asymmetric design, even though one side is visually heavier. As simple as we can describe asymmetrical balance, we can state that multiple small elements on one side balance one big element on the other. Our eyes think it is perfectly balanced even though it isn’t. It also creates more interest than a simple symmetrical balance because the creativity is more unpredictable. 

Radial Balance 

Visuall elements will radiate outwards in this kind of balance from a central point. Sunshine rays radiating from the sun are a good example. Nature is a great example of radial balance. Radial balance appears in ripples in water, whirlpools, tree rings, and flower petal arrangements. 

In terms of design, spirals are probably the most common method of achieving radial balance. Radial balance commonly appears on sales flyers and event posters. The circular shape of their borders and frames help to direct the reader’s attention to the most significant details – typically the time and date of the event.  

A close-up photo of a flower or plant shows examples of radial balance in photography. Such images are pleasing to the eye and are pleasing to the eye as a result. Some illustrators take the principle of radial balance and incorporate it into the form, creating optical illusions that produce a hypnotic effect.

Discordant or Off-balance 

Designers can bring balance to a whole new level if they’re really good at what they do. The off-balance effect appears when an image or design is visually appealing without balancing. Many of these seeming contradictions create a feeling of motion and action. The design has a distinctive feeling that something is not quite right. This may make the viewer uncomfortable. 

Meanwhile, they are also attracted to the design due to its uniqueness and unusualness. Their goal is not just to create eye-catching designs but also designs that stimulate the human imagination.

It is important to note that this is a challenging design task. An attractive design is very difficult to differentiate from one that looks bad. An off-balance photograph can also appeal to the eye even though it is entirely off-balance.

Ways to Achieve Balance in Design 

In addition to the concepts mentioned above, other methods of achieving the principle of design balance in a design exist.

Balance From Color 

By mixing small areas of bright colors with a larger area of a darker color, designers can create balance. It’s important, however, to understand color psychology and the way different colors work together to create an eye-catching picture. Choosing colors for designs should also be done by a designer who knows the do’s and don’ts. You should consider all of this, along with your brand colors and style guide.

Balance From Texture 

A design’s balance can also rely on texture. Texture follows the same rules as shapes. Designers can create a balance by combining an area that is flat and has no texture with a small area that features texture.

Balance From Position 

By positioning each element in the design just right, you can also create a balanced design. In the design, there are numerous little ornamental elements in the design that balance out one very large element on the opposite side. This is a prime example of asymmetrical balance.

Balance From Value 

Visual weight can also change by value. Adding or removing balance to a design will thereby be impacted. As an example, a lighter shade will have less visual weight than a darker shade. Additionally, a darker shade will increase its visual weight. 

Balance From size 

Increasing or decreasing the size of design elements is another way to achieve balance. Larger elements will have a heavier visual impact. 

Balance From lines

Balance can also influence by the lines used in a design. Lines with more visual weight generally feel heavier than lines with fewer lines. In order to achieve a perfect balance in a design, the right mix of thick and thin lines will need to be calculated carefully by a designer. 

How to Include Balance in Web Designs

Typically, balance is incorporated into web design through the layout. As well as balancing elements across the page, you can also position them using the float style property. Centering the text or other elements on a page is a simple way to balance a layout symmetrically.

It is common for web pages to be built on grids, which creates a sense of balance right away. Even if there are no lines visible, customers will still see the grid. As a result of the square nature of web shapes, grid designs are well suited to web pages.

Balance in Graphic Design

Is there something about a piece of art that seems off, or incomplete, even though it’s nice? Young or inexperienced artists often make this mistake subconsciously and react to the imbalance in the composition. An important principle of design is balance, which refers to the way visual elements are arranged. This will give the composition and appearance of properly distributed elements and will harmonize their visual weight with the rest of the design.

We should also discuss visual weight in this context. Visual weight refers to the amount of attention an object draws in composition rather than how much weight it has. A bright blue square will attract more attention than a light gray square of equal size. A large circle will attract more attention than a small circle. It is a mark of good graphic design to know where to place these elements so as not to overtake the composition on one side or the other.


Which are two design principle of balance?

Asymmetrical balance and symmetrical balance are two types of balance. The symmetry of a design involves equal weights for each of its components on either side of an imaginary center line. Asymmetrical designs employ elements of varying weights that are arranged in relation to a line that does not run through the heart of the design.

Why is balance important in design elements?

It is also pleasing to the eye when there is a sense of balance or symmetry. If a designer determines the visual weights of elements in a design, they will be able to create a final product that is stable and balanced.

What is the meaning of design principles?

As a product’s compass, design principles act as a set of values to guide the creation process. They’re the guideposts that keep your team on course during the design process. These principles should be actionable, specific, and nuanced.

What are the 7 principles of design?

To create an effective and appealing composition, designers must follow design principles. In design, there are 7 fundamental principles: Balance, Emphasis, Repetition, Contrast, Movement, Proportion, and Space.

Final Words

The principle of balance is expressed in multiple forms. The more we understand design and the way the mind works, the easier it will be to create effective designs. It is important to know what’s considered balanced and what we are used to seeing. The more we are aware of these things, the more we can control our designs. It will help us create new designs that stand out because they work in opposition to the norm. This concept is best understood by looking at examples of each type of balance. 

Having the principle of design balance in your design composition is one of the most important skills you can acquire as a designer. It’s not something that you can learn overnight, but with practice and understanding of how it works, you will achieve some excellent results.

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