… the Golden Section that is. If you have never encountered this concept in the past, you have certainly seen it in action. The Golden Section is a ratio (specifically 1 : 1.61803398874989) that has deep roots in math [the Fibonacci sequence], art and nature. It is a naturally recurring pattern – nearly everywhere. From the chambers in a chambered nautilus to the pattern of seeds on the head of a sunflower to the way that corn forms on a corn cob, or the way a pine cone grows. It is also called the Divine Proportion. DaVinci used it on the Last Supper, le Corbusier used it as the basic proportion for many of his most famous buildings, the Parthenon and the Great Pyramids use the ratio to attain balance and pleasing, stable structure.
Since very early in the history of human thought and language, the golden section has been used to create designs that are balanced and naturally pleasing to the human eye. You have seen these patterns … but may not have known about the underlying structure that informs the design. The ratio creates a spiral pattern when mapped over itself – and this spiral is common in nature. So what does this have to do with web design? Though it may seem counterintuitive, using a natural ratio as the foundation for a web grid structure makes good sense. (more…)