Testing and response, does the arcing circular form suggest greater accessibility?
“I’m soft, touch me — more.”
Curves: more human, more lovable?
There’s a proposition (noted below) that the Asian populace relates more positively to curve on curvilinear design languages — the radiant (and radiused) curvature of the newly-formed Starbucks siren. And better so, than the hardened linearity of us Westerners.
The idea of curvaceous rendering — the humanism of the curve — and identity is an interesting take. Asian people like things “softened” — I might offer that the real take is the sense of added visible clarity. Would a curve articulate context of concept more readily? Curves are open. Straight lines are certainty.
Working on strategic design conjunctions between ideograms of Chinese language and abstracted renderings of “mother concepts” and icons for the Chinese Ministry of Health, earlier in this decade, we noted that the best testing results — from rural villagers to Shanghai sophisticates — testing even higher than in-country design programs for icons — was the most simple and direct (albeit not only with curves, but as well, angled conjunctions and interplay.)
Curves are friendlier. Sharp can hurt. “That design is too sharp, it might kill someone” — an earlier EGD and signing/ wayfinding concern that we used to consider, designing things that would get people from one place to another.
Judge for yourself, in this testing overview from the FastCo., team. Are you a curvy person — or a hardliner? Me, I mix the strokes. A nice curve can turn to a hard finish.
Tim Girvin | Salisbury, North Carolina
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