“What are some guiding principles for content prepared for close-up viewing versus long-distance?”
I came up with a few thoughts of my own and polled some of the designers at Screenfeed to catch their wisdom. Here are some guiding principles we would use:
- “Work with more subtle colors and little-to-no pattern because you’re competing for attention in a smaller space.” – Alyssa Voegele, Senior Designer at Screenfeed
- If you plan to use animations, keep them subtle rather than big canvas sweeping animations that would almost force the audience to turn their heads in order to follow the messaging.
- Font size should be tested “in context” and account for variability based on the max distance of the audience verses the shortest possible distance.
- Depending on the context, say, interactive Digital Signage, it may be appropriate or acceptable to include a lot more copy on the page as an optional selection to read more, whereas that would never be appropriate for long distances.
- “The closer the audience is and the larger the screen size, the more likely the content will be stretched across the screen outside the field of view. Therefore, keep important elements in the middle, and avoid distracting elements on the sides.” – Jeff Gavin, Designer at Screenfeed
- “Content with a white background (and a lot of it showing) could potentially create some too-bright viewing situations for closer viewers. Depending on the screen, brightness settings, etc. up-close, REALLY high contrast could end up being hard on the eyes.” – Pete Erickson, VP of Content at Screenfeed