While it’s fun to look at unsigs and appreciate them as art, it took some serious thought to find ways to talk about what we see in unsigs. How do we describe the colors, forms, and geometries that we see? In this article we’ll cover the language and conventions used here on unsig.info to describe relative form orientations — how forms appear relative to one another in each unique geometry.
The first thing to know is that the basic forms and orientations are already covered:
There are two categories of forms when it comes to orientations–those that can have two orientations, and those that can have four.
|Number of possible orientations||Forms||Possible orientations|
Single Beam, Triple Beam
Diffuser, Single Bulbs, Triple Bulbs
Hourglass, River, Veins
Ascending, Descending, Upward, Downward
Order of Forms
One of the first questions that had to be answered when talking about geometries was how to talk about which form relative to which other form. In what order does it make sense to discuss them? In some unsigs with the same geometry, one form might appear above or below another form in the order of layers, but that isn’t always reliable. The order forms appear in is specific to each individual piece.
Instead it helps to discuss the forms in the order they appear in the collection. For example, the very first form to appear in the entire collection was the Single Beam. Then the Triple Beam. Third was the Diffuser, and so on, based on their multipliers.
- Single Beam (multiplier: 2)
- Triple Beam (multiplier: 4)
- Diffuser (multipliers: 1/1)
- Hourglass (multipliers: 1/2)
- River (multipliers: 1/4)
- Single Bulbs (multipliers: 2/2)
- Veins (multipliers: 2/4)
- Triple Bulbs (multipliers: 4/4)
Based on this, unsig.info adopted a convention for describing geometries that discusses the forms in order of their appearance in the collection. For example, if a geometry contains a Diffuser and a River, the Diffuser is discussed relative to the River and not the other way around. This has proven a stable convention for discussing relative form orientation.
Now lets get to the specific words used to describe relative form orientation.
The forms are oriented in the same direction.
A Beam can align vertically with an Upward or Downward form, or horizontally with an Ascending or Descending form.
A Diffuser, Single Bulbs or Triple Bulbs can align Ascending with an Upward or Ascending form, or Descending with a Downward or Descending form.
The forms are oriented (mostly) perpendicular to one another. This could be Vertical / Horizontal, Upward / Descending, or Downward / Ascending.
The forms are aligned opposite one another across an axis.
Across the center axis a mirrored relative orientation could be Upward / Downward or Ascending / Descending.
Across the diagonal axis a mirrored relative orientation could be Upward / Ascending, or Downward / Descending.
Windmills, Diamonds, and Spears
You may have noticed above that the examples showing only Hourglasses result in the Windmill, Diamond, and Spear named geometries. The fact is that you can create these relative orientations with any of the four-orientation forms (Hourglasses, Rivers, and Veins).
So you could look at geometry 2F-051 above and say that the River and Veins are in a Windmill orientation. Or 2F-040 has an Hourglass and a Veins in a Diamond orientation. Likewise, 2F-050 has a River and Veins in a Spear orientation.
In fact, all four-orientation forms will always be oriented to one another in one of these three ways.