changingminds.org

How we change what others think, feel, believe and do

| Menu | Quick | Books | Share | Search | Settings |

Area

 

Explanations > Perception > Area

Description | Example | Discussion | So what?

 

Description

When two figures overlap, the smaller of the two is usually perceived as the foreground figure, while the larger figure is perceived as the background.

When the smaller figure is particularly small and the larger figure has dominant features or hues, then the larger figure may be seen as the main figure and the smaller figure is ignored (but is not seen as being the background).

Example

With a building seen against a sky, the building is the foreground figure and the sky is the background.

A person standing in front of a building is seen as the foreground figure and the building is the background.

Discussion

When we are working out the difference between figure and ground (foreground and background), a smaller object behind a larger object would not be seen, while in front of it it is visible. We like to focus our attention into a small area, which is perhaps why we assume the smaller item is the best item for our attention.

This does not mean that the larger item is always the background and we still evaluate the whole scene, though the principle of focusing on the smaller item means evaluation of the background may happen later. Backgrounds that demand our attention include things that seem large or close and which hence may pose a threat.

So what?

When presenting an image, make the figure smaller against a larger background. You can also create the tension of confusion by making this figure-ground less obvious, for example by having a figure and ground of similar size.

See also

Figure/Ground, Attention

 

Site Menu

| Home | Top | Quick Links | Settings |

Main sections: | Disciplines | Techniques | Principles | Explanations | Theories |

Other sections: | Blog! | Quotes | Guest articles | Analysis | Books | Help |

More pages: | Contact | Caveat | About | Students | Webmasters | Awards | Guestbook | Feedback | Sitemap | Changes |

Settings: | Computer layout | Mobile layout | Small font | Medium font | Large font | Translate |

 

 

Please help and share:

 

Quick links

Disciplines

* Argument
* Brand management
* Change Management
* Coaching
* Communication
* Counseling
* Game Design
* Human Resources
* Job-finding
* Leadership
* Marketing
* Politics
* Propaganda
* Rhetoric
* Negotiation
* Psychoanalysis
* Sales
* Sociology
* Storytelling
* Teaching
* Warfare
* Workplace design

Techniques

* Assertiveness
* Body language
* Change techniques
* Closing techniques
* Conversation
* Confidence tricks
* Conversion
* Creative techniques
* General techniques
* Happiness
* Hypnotism
* Interrogation
* Language
* Listening
* Negotiation tactics
* Objection handling
* Propaganda
* Problem-solving
* Public speaking
* Questioning
* Using repetition
* Resisting persuasion
* Self-development
* Sequential requests
* Storytelling
* Stress Management
* Tipping
* Using humor
* Willpower

Principles

+ Principles

Explanations

* Behaviors
* Beliefs
* Brain stuff
* Conditioning
* Coping Mechanisms
* Critical Theory
* Culture
* Decisions
* Emotions
* Evolution
* Gender
* Games
* Groups
* Habit
* Identity
* Learning
* Meaning
* Memory
* Motivation
* Models
* Needs
* Personality
* Power
* Preferences
* Research
* Relationships
* SIFT Model
* Social Research
* Stress
* Trust
* Values

Theories

* Alphabetic list
* Theory types

And

About
Guest Articles
Blog!
Books
Changes
Contact
Guestbook
Quotes
Students
Webmasters

 

| Home | Top | Menu | Quick Links |

© Changing Works 2002-
Massive Content — Maximum Speed