The Philosophy Of Art, Design, Color, & Shape In Greek Culture

Archeologists have categorized Ancient Greece into three distinct periods: the Prepalatial period (2600 to 1900 BC) Protopalatial Period (1900-1700 BC), and the Neopalatial Period (1450 to 1100 BC). For several centuries, the Minoan art and culture of Greece symbolized joy, art, logical order, and a deep respect for nature. The Minoan civilization arose from Crete from 2700 to 1450 BC.

Prepalatial Design Period

Most of the artifacts found during this period were prehistoric looking figurines called Cycladic statuettes. The statuettes were interpreted as female figures that symbolize the deceased, servants, and concubines. Some scholars interpret them as symbols of goddesses of fertility and rebirth, but their primary use was for shrines. Female fertility and divinities were also common theme throughout ancient Greece, as the figurines often depicted pregnant women.

Other scholars suggested that the statuettes had a more practical purpose, explaining that the figurines were used as toys for children.

Protopalatial Design Period

During the Protopalatial Period, the Minoan culture introduced a rudimentary form of a potter’s wheel that allowed artists to produce thin-walled vessels in symmetrical shapes and sizes. The surfaces were also decorated with scenes that celebrated the Minoans’ love for nature and life. The sweeping curves and bold lines across the surface of Minoan pottery also show the contrast between dark and light values.

greek design art 300x225 The Philosophy Of Art, Design, Color, & Shape In Greek Culture

Neopalatial Design Period

The Neopalatial Period characterized the height of Minoan art, and the scenes painted on the walls of Grecian palaces suggested that the Greeks were closely connected to nature, as many of the walls and pots during the time depicted the nature, including, plants, animals, birds, and marine life. The Greeks were also a seafaring civilization, and the artifacts from archeological digs show proof that the people of the time also had a passion for the sea. Some of the mural paintings (called frescoes) of the Neopalatial Period depicted images of flying fish.

Images of bulls accompanied by human figures also adorn the walls of temples and palaces throughout Crete. Historians and archaeologists also claim that the frescoes depict scenes where humans jump over the bull’s back. The bull imagery is prominent among the ancient Greek cultures, but so far, the experts can only speculate about their significance in the Minoan art world.

Several of the artifacts that have survived today offer and insight into the Minoan culture that lasted for several centuries in Greece. These discoveries seem to provide proof that the art of the Minoans exemplifies a happy society of happy people who were in touch with their environment, and very much of the natural world that surrounded them.

Some of the unearthed archaeological artifacts also indicate that the Minoans thrived with a high degree of self respect, coupled with a keen ability to adapt to their cultural environment.

In general, Minoan art is characterized by naturalness combined with formalism. As with most ancient art, the paintings lack perspective, giving them a flat effect. On the other hand, humans, beasts, plants are painted with great detail and formal patterns on murals and frescoes. The animals are shown in amazingly accurate and natural poses, swallows are shown in flight, and the antelopes show grace and movement across the terrain.In general, Minoan art is characterized by naturalness combined with formalism. As with most ancient art, the paintings lack perspective, giving them a flat effect. On the other hand, humans, beasts, plants are painted with great detail and formal patterns on murals and frescoes. The animals are shown in amazingly accurate and natural poses, swallows are shown in flight, and the antelopes show grace and movement across the terrain.

Check back for more history of design and other design tips.

Design Through Time: The Impact That Egyptian Art & Design Has Today

Ancient Egypt is a civilization of wealth and structure that flourished along the Nile River in northeastern Africa from about 3300 B.C to 30 B.C, as the area continues to draw tourists and curious archeologists to Egypt like a magnet. Surprisingly, many of the art forms, pyramids, and temples can still be seen today.

Approximately 2,000 years later, it’s difficult to imagine what life would be like today without the impact of this highly civilized society.

Historians say that the Egyptian way of life has significantly impacted nearly every aspect of our American culture, including literature, art, architecture, and film.

The shapes, lines, and design of Egyptian architecture are prevalent throughout many design eras, and painting of Egyptian life and death are displayed in famous museums throughout the world.

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Walk Like an Egyptian

In the 20th century, archeologists uncovered several royal tombs. The most notable discovery during the time was King Tut’s tomb. Much to their surprise, explorers were able to discover several pieces of pieces of jewelry, wooden furniture, and other artifacts.

Howard Carter’s discovery of the tomb gave rise to a new wave of “Egyptomanania,” that popularized Egyptian art and design. Famous psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud was a big admirer or Egyptian artifacts, and his desk was covered with small army of Egyptian figurines.

After Carter’s discovery of the tomb of Tutankamun in 1922, a new wave of “Egyptomania” spread across New York City, and several great examples of Art Deco architecture made their way to New York—several of which found inspiration from ancient Egypt.

Prior to the Great Depression, Art Deco (characterized by geometric shapes and simplistic design) gained wide popularity in terms of visual art, architecture, and interior design.

In terms of film, many of us are still remember the famous movie, Cleopatra, starring Richard and Elizabeth Taylor. Produced by Walter Wagner, the film marked its 50th Anniversary in 2013. Film producers speculated that Cleopatra was a huge gamble, but when it was finally filmed, it turned out to be one of the most remarkable films of the 1960s.

Over the years, Egyptian art has adorned modern homes through various mediums. For example, ancient designs on papyrus (a form of paper used for Egyptian art) can be found on walls of homes, offices, and state buildings even today. Art Deco also adopted the Egyptian motif in its room furnishings, as well as accent pieces in architecture.

Paintings of Egyptian life, death, and geometric shapes are displayed in art galleries and stores throughout the world, and the impact of ancient Egyptian art and architecture is still alive and well today.

Design Through Time: The Greco-Roman Egypt Period (323 BC TO 30 BC)

The Greco-Roman Period (also referred to as the Hellenistic Period) marks a time of Greek/Roman takeover in Egypt. During the time, the Greek culture promulgated through Europe, Asia, and Africa, and Egypt, as enormous buildings, vistas, and innovative design were all signs of the time.

The Greeks undoubtedly has some influence on the formation of art, architecture, and design in Egypt, but the people of the area were steeped in tradition and religion, and they continued to build temples in homage to the gods. Built in 237 BC, the temple of Edfu is the most well-preserved structure from this particular period. Today, Edfu is an agricultural trade center located on the Nile River. Even today, the walls of the temple of Edfu are adorned with Reliefs. The temple was dedicated to a falcon god named Horus. A large statue of Horus still stands prominently at the entrance to the temple.

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Hellenistic Paintings

As a mainstay of the Egyptian art of culture, the Egyptians were obsessed with death, the afterlife, and immortality. As a result, colorful tomb paintings often depicted groups of elegantly dressed women and servants celebrating a funerary banquet. The women are typically dressed in wigs, gold earrings, jeweled collars, bracelets, and pleated dresses. Their heads were scented with animal fat that released a perfume-like fragrance.

Art and Sculpture

The art community in Hellenistic Egypt flourished, as artists and sculptors discovered innovative ways to characterize human emotion and individual experiences with vivid detail.

The Hellenist Period was a time of wealth, and the capital city of Alexandria was decorated with streets lined in gold, and the enormous architecture was dramatic, towering with large pillars and sculptures in order to worship Egyptian and Greek gods. Religious temples and buildings evoked feelings of awe among onlookers, and even today, the ancient architecture of Egyptian appeals to the spiritual emotions of tourists, historians, and archaeologists alike.

Sculptors created masterpieces that depicted swirling draperies and and female nudes. Their works also incorporated the space around it—as opposed to the stealth-like figures that were seen only from the front. Overall, the sculpture was much more dramatic, and it eventually evolved into more dramatic pieces that could be viewed from all sides.

Coinciding with developments in sculpture and architecture, Hellenistic pottery transformed into more colorful, ornate and life-like pieces. Other clay vessels made of and precious metals and gold tableware adorned the tables of royal families and other imperial members of society, as the Hellenistic era of Egypt was characterized by wealth and opulence for years ahead.

Design Through Time: Ancient Egyptian Art & Architecture In The Late Period (664 BC to 323 BC)

As the richest and most civilized continent in the ancient world, the people of Egypt had the capacity to create amazing art and architecture that is still available even today. Considering the primitive tools these people had to work with, artists, historians, and architects in the modern world still wonder how these amazing achievements came to life over 2,000 years ago.

During the Late Period, Egypt was dominated by Persian rule (also called the 27th Dynasty), and lasted for nearly a century. No doubt, the Persians had some influence on the design of the time, but the Egyptians were deeply religious, and their belief in life after death was an extremely strong aspect of their culture.

The Egyptians believed in immortality, and as such they believed that a dead person’s body needed to be mummified or preserved (along with that person’s individual belongings) in order to survive in the afterlife. Elaborate paintings and sculptures adorned the tombs in order to be used in spirit world. Interestingly, the elaborate pictures and paintings found in tombs were designed as helpers for the deceased in the afterlife.

The Egyptians’ obsession with death—combined with the desire to pay homage to their kings and kings—provided strong motivation for these people to craft elaborate tombs and coffins for those who were in power at the time. If you have an opportunity to witness some of the Egyptian today, it looks strange to the average onlooker, but during the time, it was the artist’s intent to capture a particular moment in time as accurately and vividly as possible. Historians also claim that artists were required to adhere to very strict rules and everything they created came strictly from memory. The images always reflected these strict requirements for over 2,000 years.

Egyptian designers also created many sculptures that were characterized by elongated skulls. Historians say that the Egyptians practiced a form of cranial deformation were a young child’s head was bound with rope and flat boards in order to reshape the skull.

egpytian design sarcophagus 300x200 Design Through Time: Ancient Egyptian Art & Architecture In The Late Period (664 BC to 323 BC)

Characteristics Of Egyptian Art & Design

The images of the Late Egyptian Period were characterized by property, good health, and youth. Egyptian paintings and sculptures showed the subject’s face to the side. The legs were turned to the same side as the head, with one foot placed in front of the other. Although the stance and rigidness of the bodies are severe, the faces still remain calm and serene.

The common theme of Egyptian art and design before and during the Late Period is characterized by an astute observation of nature, life, and immortality; and this theme remained essentially the same for thousands of years to come.

Design Through Time: Egypt In Third Intermediate Period

The civilization of ancient Egypt from 1070 to 664 BC marks a time filled with amazing art, architecture, technology, and engineering.

It’s been said many times that the ancient Egyptians were ahead of their time, and if you’ve ever visited Egypt, you can experience some of technologically-advanced art and architecture created thousands of years ago. Even today, people gaze with awe as they experience the amazing architecture and design of yester-year.

Located on the banks of the Nile River, some of the great buildings and pyramids of the Third Intermediate Period still stand, as people from all around the world flock to Egypt to witness the ancient culture that everyone’s been talking about.

The Third Intermediate Period was characterized as a time of changes in leadership and politics, and as such, Egypt ushered ushered in a new renaissance period for ancient Egypt, and the Pharaohs continued to build temples and monuments throughout the Nile valley. A new creation of and innovative bronze and precious metals adorned temples as homage to Egyptian rulers and kings.

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The ancient Egyptians were obsessed with death, and as such, the theme of an afterlife promulgated throughout deity tombs, temples, and coffins. The Egyptians went to great lengths to preserve human bodies through mummification, but they also created extremely ornate and detailed burial coffins for Pharaohs and high-ranking individuals.

The people believed in immortality, and that that rulers would actually take their possessions with them. As such, the design themes were expressed in a series of relief-decorated vessels, and smaller objects made of precious metals as a dedication to the rulers of that period.

The whole idea behind elaborate coffins and tombs was that the Egyptians wanted their rulers to live a prosperous afterlife by taking some of their worldly treasures with them. When it comes to art and design, the Egyptians were motivated by their belief system. In other words, most of the art and design of the time was design was centered on the theme of death and dying.

Their rulers were considered immortal; the common people worshiped their rulers with elaborate designs in the form of masks adorned with jewels, precious metals, and beautiful carvings. The elaborate mask of King Tut is a prime example of the type of design the Egyptians created in homage to their king.

It has often been said that art imitates life, and ancient Egyptian culture during the Third Intermediate Period is no exception to the rule, mainly because the art and architecture of the time was clearly an extension of the rulers and dynasty during that period.

Design Through Time: A Brief Look At The New Kingdom Era In Egypt

Ancient Egyptian art and design dates back over five thousand years, however it really began taking shape around 1600 to 1540 BC. If you could travel in a time machine back to ancient Egypt in 1600 BC, you’d see plenty of fascinating sites, statues, and works of art, many of which have outlasted the test of time, and you can still witness many of them today.

When it comes to ancient design, one of the most significant ancient design periods took place between 1560 BC and 1070 BC, the first of which was dubbed the New Kingdom Era of Egypt. Other significant design periods included: the Third Intermediate Period (1070 BC to 664 BC), Late Period (664 BC to 323 BC; the Persians), and the Greco-Roman Egypt Period (323 BC TO 30 BC).

The three later periods are covered in subsequent “Design Through Time” articles.

The New Kingdom Era

The New Kingdom Era in Egypt (1560 – 1070 BC) was characterized by a time of prosperity, which allowed for the design and construction of some really beautiful architecture. During this time, the Egyptian constructed the Luxor Temple. Located on the east bank of the Nile River, the temple is famous for its use of symbolism and illusionism. If you’ve ever visited to Las Vegas, the Luxor Hotel offers an interesting replica of the famous temple.

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As with many other temples that were built during this golden age period, the Luxor Temple was decorated with relief art (a type of art that uses images that protrude from a flat background). As you can imagine, the New Kingdom flourished with ancient Egyptian art, painting, and sculpture.

Sculptures and Paintings

As an integral part of the Egyptian tradition, all of the Egyptian reliefs were painted using mineral pigments in colors of red, black, gold and green. Remarkably, many of these paintings have survived the elements of nature, and for the most part, the Egyptian paintings depicted scenes of a pleasant afterlife for the deceased. The art of the time was also characterized by a sense of movement and activity.

The statues of the time were built in homage to Egyptian pharaohs, who they considered Gods. Located outside of Abu Simbel, the four repeating colossal statues of Ramses II showed amazing detail, and the art, sculpture, and paintings of the New Kingdom Era set the stage for Egyptian culture for hundreds of years ahead.

It’s been said that the Egyptians were far ahead of their time, the ingenious art created during the New Kingdom still lives today. Thank you for reading and look forward to our next blog installment of “design through time”.

A Brief History Of Web Design

In the 1960’s, the Internet was dubbed the “Information Highway,” mainly because people used it solely for research, and that was about it. Today, in the twenty-first century, the Internet has developed into something much bigger and more useful. Although people still use the Internet to search for information, more importantly, it’s used to market and sell products and services—which is the main reason why websites have become an essential tool for business people and Internet users alike.

Whether you’re a web designer, car dealer, or clothing retailer, the Internet offers the best place on earth to advertise your business. Visibility is everything, regardless of the type of business you’re in, and the Internet puts you in front of a world-wide audience, and as a result, the Internet was more appropriately named the World Wide Web.

The advent of the World Wide Web gave rise to newer and more innovative concepts of web design, and the first website was published in August 1981. From there, the Internet grew at a rapid pace, and websites became an integral part of business.

The following shows a chronological development of website design from 1990 to 2014.

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First Generation of Websites

In the early 1990’s, a web browser called Mosaic was introduced to the public as the first commercial online web browser. Web developers used a simple version of Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) to develop some very simple and rudimentary websites.

As you might expect, the first websites that ran on Mosaic were plain and simple, containing mostly text, linear layouts, and a few simple graphics. For example, the Yahoo Home page didn’t have the sleek, interactive design that everyone knows today.

Second Generation Websites

From 1992 to 1995, web designers were able to use a more sophisticated form of code (called HTML 2), and as such, they were able to implement more colorful graphics and text. Web pages were more attractive, and web pages were able to load much faster and more efficiently than before.

Third Generation Websites

During the third generation of website development in 1993, developers started using HTML 3, giving them the ability to create attractive tables and style sheets. During this time, developers began creating websites with much the same look and feel that they have today. In addition, third generation websites incorporated colorful backgrounds, and animated graphics.

Fourth Generation Websites of Today

Today’s websites incorporate the use of some very sophisticated web development tools, including JavaScript, Flash, XML, and CSS. HTML 5 is currently the language of the Internet, and it allows developers to use several different types of multimedia content, including Java Scripts, audio, video, and other sophisticated plug-ins.

The websites of today are very interactive, where users can view video clips, listen to music, and even play video games. With the advent of Smartphone technology, mobile web use is also growing at a rapid pace.

Did You Lock The Door When You Left Home Today?

As web designers in Utah very day when we leave our residence or our office we make sure that the door is locked and usually we check to make sure that we do no not lock ourselves out. Over the years there have been several gadgets and devices invented to remedy the situation. We used the spare key in the garage trick just in case we locked the door on our self accidentally.

However there definitely has been those times in our life where we’ve locked the door on ourselves and had to call a locksmith, break a window, etc. To avoid this we usually carry our heavy and uncomfortable key chain wherever we go. It’s clunky, takes up space and ultimately it’s had its time.

web design keys 300x199 Did You Lock The Door When You Left Home Today?

Finally the problem is solved. A device called GOJI has created a mobile app that enables you to lock or unlock your door from any place in the world. You can unlock you door automatically when approaching it or send access with supported smartphones to any friend or family at any time. And if you lost your phone you can use someone else’s phone to log into your account to gain access to unlock the door. And a real nice bonus is that if any intruders get close to your door at your house then you’re the alarm feature takes a picture and automatically sends it to your mobile. Check it out:

Be The Purple Elephant & Get More Business With Your Signs

Have you ever shown attention to some of the shopping center billboards when you’re in your car driving? Some are small store signs and are very hard to read.

business signs design 1024x768 Be The Purple Elephant & Get More Business With Your Signs

Almost everyone passes those stores and shopping centers on the way to work but you may not stop by and buy something if you never knew this type of store was on your way or in your neighborhood. One of the reasons is this that their signs are not catching your eyes or they are so small and full of details that they are hard to read with the speed which you are driving.

Thousands of cars are passing by small and big shopping centers every day. To get people’s attention and stay in their mind and perhaps convert them to a customer is the key for any successful business. Here are a couple tips to get more attention to your signs:

  • If your store is located in the shopping center and you are able to put a small sign on the common sign board by the street. Then you need to remember to make sure the color you chose is different than the other signs and that it will stand out and get the most attention.
  • Also that the store name is as big as possible and readable because with the speed that cars are passing some of the small and crowded signs cannot be seen and read.

Design For Comfort Or Just Profit?

One of the greatest things we’ve been proud of for the past few decades in the United States is comfort. Ideally we like keeping safety, security, and convenience in mind when designing any consumer products. However recently we found a recent article very interesting:

A company is trying to design a commercial plane that forces passengers to stand up while flying. Since there will be no chairs to sit down they can save space on the plane and will ultimately make more profit. What an interesting concept. Are our lives beginning to get to a point where profit really does matter over anything else? Some interesting thoughts arise when you take a look at comfort in your life and perhaps envision those simple little luxuries being no more.

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Would you fly with this airline or no?

Things are changing and we are getting less to choose from. Just a few days ago a European airline company was trying to get into the U.S. marketplace, however I don’t believe they are going to get in.

Is profit more important than healthy competition & growth as a society?