App and Web Design Trends- Parallax

In terms of App Design and user interfaces (UI), Parallax is defined in Wikipedia : Parallax is a displacement or difference in the apparent position of an object viewed along two different lines of sight, and is measured by the angle or semi-angle of inclination between those two lines.  The term is derived from the Greek παράλλαξις (parallaxis), meaning “alteration”. Nearby objects have a larger parallax than more distant objects when observed from different positions, so parallax can be used to determine distances.


Basically, it is the idea that if you move side to side, your viewing angle changes, but also that things in the back ground “move” slower than the things closer to you.  It also gives the effect of 3d by the use of shadows and depth of field.  How does that pertain to app and web design?  Its basically taking the visual elements that are traditionally 2-dimensional and giving the appearance of 3 dimensions.  It’s not a new concept, but from a design perspective it can bring apps and websites to life.

The parallax design effect has been around for years in classic video games, but it became a trend in the web design and app design world relatively recently. This cool effect is now commonly seen as part of the scrolling feature of a web page. It uses multiple backgrounds which seem to move at different speeds to create a sensation of depth (creating a faux-3D effect) and an interesting browsing experience.  Here are some stunning examples of websites using Parallax design successfully, without overdoing it:











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