illustration of heart icon
Not this image, but the heart icon in general.

The Most Random Shape Ever Chosen?

This only one artist’s opinion, but have you ever noticed how relevant this icon has become in our lives? It’s a symbol used across all social media platforms to interact, walk down the street and see it on the clothing or jewelry, see it on commercial advertisements, etc.

Relevance ISN’T what that makes it the greatest illustration ever made. What’s fascinating is how this shape was created.

How is it that an image that looks nothing like our actual hearts, symbolizes it? The shape is almost a random figuration, isn’t it? The principal of illustration is to take away the details of an image, but too much abstraction and it won’t make sense at all…

Isn’t this the case? Don’t our actual hearts look far different? Yet, we have embraced this random ‘heart’ shape in our everyday lives. This illustration would be more accurate:

It’s more than a heart illustration. It’s a symbol that represents love and therefore should give the feeling of love.

The Most Accurate Representation Possible?

Let’s do a little experiment, which heart feels like it has more of love feeling associated. Take a quick look at the image below, A or B:

Most would say that Image B would give a more welcoming feeling. Something about its roundness compared to the sharper feel of Image A. One other characteristic about Image B is that its shape is closer to what I’d like to introduce as The Golden Ratio.

What is the Golden Ratio?

The golden ratio can used in various applications to enhance visual appearance, especially used in logo design, but, let’s first understand what it is. As you can see, it’s a rectangle at a 5/8 width 3/8 height ratio. Within this rectangle, perfectly fits another of the same ratio placed on it’s side, then another and another, into infinity.

Here’s an example of how Twitter designed their logo using this:

Colours refract from light into Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Violet, and then blends back to Red. Musical notes refract from its origin into Do Re Mi Fa Sol La Ti and then back to Do.

As humans, we gravitate to towards pleasing sounds and pleasing colours. The same goes to pleasing ratios. One thing they have in common is their property of going into infinity. Subliminally this Golden Ratio resonates within us.


The Heart Icon is a symbol of Love. It symbolizes two things. Which then poses the question, what came first?

We are made of love. At the very least,

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Posted October 15th 2017 – 4:47 PM