A lot of design is based on a simple idea: our brains are hard-wired to notice certain things.
Designers use these things as tools to draw your eye — and by doing so control your attention. Well-designed products direct that attention to make things clearer and help you get things done; bad designs send your attention on pointless goose chase.
Here’s a version of how to design something
- Figure out what you need to show and put it onto a page
- Decide what’s important and what’s not
- Emphasize the important stuff and deemphasize the rest
The craft of design — directing your attention to the right places — is accomplished in that last step: emphasis.