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Design to Thrive by Tharon Howard

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Symbols and codes

Belonging can also be expressed through visual elements in a design. Oftentimes these are tacit and they're not expressed verbally, but we experience a sense of belonging when we encounter visual symbols or audio leitmotifs. Music can often function as a symbol, oftentimes just as powerfully. The kind of leitmotifs that you hear in a movie immediately jump out at you. Think about Jaws, for example, the music right before the shark attack still sends chills up the spine. The opening music of Star Wars or the music of the beginning of Star Trek immediately compels certain emotional responses from fans. Visual symbols have the same kind of impact and generate the same sense of belonging in a community.

Consider the Red Hat Society ...

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