Design Topics: What do snail shells, hurricanes, the Parthenon, and Mona Lisa have in common?They all follow the Golden Ratio.Here’s the thing — whether you’re a designer or not, research has found your brain is likely hard-wired to prefer nature and artwork that follows the Golden Ratio. In fact, art that follows the Golden Ratio is often considered the most beautiful. So even if you don’t know what it is, you’ve undoubtedly seen it in some of your favorite designs and architecture.Take our free Graphic Design Essentials Course on HubSpot Academy to learn design fundamentals and how to create simple designs.In mathematics (a subject I was never that good at), the Golden Ratio exists when a line is divided into two parts, and the longer part (a) divided by the smaller part (b) is equal to the sum of both parts (a) + (b), divided by (a). It should equal approximately 1.618.Got that? Me, neither. But for our purposes, we’re going to concentrate on the Golden Design as it exists in art — like in Ancient Roman architecture, or Leonardo Da Vinci’s paintings.Image courtesy of Museum of Science. If the Golden Ratio is truly a prerequisite for breathtaking art, it stands to reason you, as someone tackling a design project, should know all about it. Here, we’ll break down examples of the Golden Ratio in nature, design, and even the human face, so you can consider how to incorporate the Golden Ratio into your own marketing projects.What is the Golden Ratio in design?The Golden Ratio, otherwise known as the Golden Section, Golden Mean, or Phi, is a mathematical ratio that can be used to produce some of the most beautiful artwork and architecture, such as the Mona Lisa or the Parthenon. Our brains are hard-wired to prefer visuals that follow the Golden Ratio, which can be found in many elements in nature, and even the human face, and therefore looks pure and organic.Golden Ratio in NatureThe Golden Ratio has made an appearance in many notable and obvious items in nature, including trees, pine cones, and the seeds on a strawberry.However, it’s also seen in largely abstract places, like the point in a black hole where the heat changes from positive to negative. Its consistent presence could signify the Golden Ratio as a fundamental constant of nature — which might explain why our brains seem hard-wired to respond better to visuals that follow the Golden Ratio.Here, we’ll take a look at just a few examples of the Golden Ratio in nature:1. Flower petalsImage courtesy of fractal enlightenment2. HurricanesImage courtesy of Icy Tails3. Spiral GalaxiesImage courtesy of Icy Tails4. Nautilus ShellsImage courtesy of Scinexx.de5. Flower SeedsImage courtesy of Sciencestruck6. Pine ConesImage courtesy of SciencestruckThe Golden Ratio’s Significance for the Human FaceNow that we’ve explored how nature follows the Golden Ratio, let’s take a look at the Golden Ratio as it exists on the human face.Allegedly, the head forms a golden rectangle with the eyes as the midpoint, and the mouth and nose as golden sections of the distance between the eyes and the chin. The Golden Ratio can even be found in our teeth, and profile when we turn our head to the side.Image courtesy of Goldennumber.netResearch has found faces that align closest with the Golden Ratio are considered most beautiful.Dr. Stephen R. Marquardt, who received his doctorate from UCLA and conducts studies on human attractiveness, believes the Golden Ratio is the mathematical formula that describes facial beauty.Golden Ratio Examples”Mona Lisa” by Leonardo Da VinciParthenonSnail shellsHurricanesSeed headsFlower petalsPinecones”The Last Supper” by Leonardo Da VinciTree BranchesHuman faceSpiral galaxy”The Creation of Adam” by MichelangeloDNA molecules”The Sacrament of the Last Supper” by Salvador Dali The following course was designed in conjunction with The Digital Marketing Institute: Don’t forget to share this post! Originally published Nov 5, 2018 6:00:00 AM, updated September 05 2019
OTTAWA — The Canadian automotive industry is anxiously waiting to see if the next round of NAFTA negotiations will provide some clarity on American demands that vehicles must have “substantial” U.S. content to qualify for duty-free movement within North America.Rules of origin — one of the most complicated and contentious issues on the table, particularly when it comes to the auto sector — is on the agenda for the third round which starts Saturday in Ottawa.David MacNaughton, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., acknowledged Friday that the clock is ticking on the talks overall — and that negotiators won’t be able to take a passive approach if they want the best deal possible.“We do have an opportunity to be a real powerhouse in the world, and keep our citizens prosperous and happy, and we can’t do that simply by playing defence,” MacNaughton said following an event in Banff, Alta.“We’ve got to really iron out some of the difficulties that have emerged, or some of the things that weren’t thought of in 1994, but also look forward 10 years and say, ‘Where we want to be there?’“The one thing that I can absolutely assure you of: I am 100 per cent confident, in terms of these discussions, that there will be some drama before they’re over.”But while Canadian officials had been hopeful the U.S. would finally put some flesh on the bones of its auto-sector position over the course of the five-day session, they say it’s now uncertain whether American negotiators are ready to show their hand.Flavio Volpe, president of the Automobile Parts Manufacturers Association, said everyone in government and industry is ready to spring into action the moment the U.S. tables its position but, in the meantime, they’re all “circling the airport.” He suspects they’ll have to continue circling for some weeks yet.As far as Canadian officials are concerned, automobiles — specifically, the exodus of auto industry jobs and investment to low-wage Mexico — are at the root of President Donald Trump’s threat to rip up the North American Free Trade Agreement. And resolving the problem will be the key to the success, or failure, of efforts to rewrite the trilateral trade pact.Hence, the eagerness to find out precisely what is the American bottom line on rules of origin.“We’re waiting with bated breath, I guess, like our Canadian negotiating team and probably the Mexican negotiating team, as to what the U.S. is actually going to propose,” says Mark Nantais, president of the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association.U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer opened the first round of negotiations in Washington last month with the aggressive pronouncement that “rules of origin, particularly on autos and auto parts, must require higher NAFTA content and substantial U.S. content.” Moreover, he said there must be a way to verify that content.The U.S. has not gone into any further detail since then. But it’s bound to be controversial when they do.“Trade negotiations are based on the concept of a balance of concessions and the United States explicitly wants an imbalanced result (that favours the U.S.),” says Ted Alden, senior fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington.“That’s going to be a pretty hard thing for Canada and Mexico to swallow and I’ve never seen a trade negotiation conducted where that was the starting point.”Under the current terms of NAFTA, at least 62.5 per cent of a vehicle’s content must be made in North America to qualify for duty-free access between the U.S., Canada and Mexico — which is already “the highest content requirement of any trade deal we’re aware of,” according to Nantais.Reports in the U.S. suggest the Trump administration wants to raise that to more than 70 per cent and add a requirement that anywhere between 35 and 50 per cent must be made specifically in the United States.Moreover, the U.S. reportedly wants to add steel and electronics, which aren’t currently included, to the list of components whose country of origin must be traced.Automakers on both sides of the border contend the U.S. position would disrupt their fully integrated North American supply chain, add costly red tape and ultimately weaken the North American industry’s competitiveness.And trade experts on both sides of the border are warning that it could backfire.In a paper published Thursday, Scotiabank Economics argues that there is no need to tighten rules of origin for the auto sector; more than 75 per cent of vehicle parts are already made in North America.That could drop, the paper acknowledges, with the rapidly increasing computerization of cars and trucks since the electronic components are primarily produced in China, Japan and Germany. But tightening the NAFTA content requirement wouldn’t necessarily result in those components being made in the U.S.More likely, Scotiabank says automakers would move more production to Mexico or even opt to conduct trade outside NAFTA altogether, preferring to pay the 2.5 per cent tariff on auto imports to the U.S.Dionisio Perez Jacome, Mexico’s ambassador to Canada, warned Friday of precisely such a scenario if the requirement for U.S. content is increased.“We have to look at it very carefully, in order not to have it backfire,” he said.“Certain companies, if we increase it too much, might just opt to import cars directly and pay the 2.5 per cent tariff and we would lose that production. So that is an element that needs to be discussed.”Unifor president Jerry Dias, whose union represents Canadian autoworkers, supports hiking the North American content requirement, but warns it can’t be done in isolation.“Unless you fix the rest of the mess, it’s meaningless,” says Dias, who “absolutely” expects to see more detail on the American position during the next few days.The rest of the mess includes, in his view, more stringent labour standards that would significantly hike wages for Mexican auto and auto parts workers and an increase in the low U.S. and Canadian tariffs on imported vehicles outside of NAFTA.Without those two additional measures, he says more jobs and investment will simply wind up flowing to Mexico or outside North America altogether.— With files from Armina Ligaya in Toronto and Ian Bickis in Banff, Alta.