Non-functional biomimicry : utilising natural patterns to provoke attention responses

Young, Bryan G. and Wodehouse, Andrew (2017) Non-functional biomimicry : utilising natural patterns to provoke attention responses. International Journal of Design Creativity and Innovation, 6 (1-2). pp. 36-51. ISSN 2165-0349 (

[thumbnail of Young-Wodehouse-HF-2016-non-functional-biomimicry]
Text. Filename: Young_Wodehouse_HF_2016_non_functional_biomimicry.pdf
Accepted Author Manuscript

Download (910kB)| Preview


Natural reoccurring patterns arise from chaos and are prevalent throughout nature. The formation of these patterns is controlled by, or produces, underlying geometrical structures. Biomimicry is the study of nature’s structure, processes and systems, as models and solutions for design challenges and is being widely utilized in order to address many issues of contemporary engineering. Many academics now believe that aesthetics stem from pattern recognition, consequently, aesthetic preference may be a result of individuals recognising, and interacting with, natural patterns. The goal of this research was to investigate the impact of specific naturally occurring pattern types (spiral, branching, and fractal patterns) on user behaviour; investigating the potential of such patterns to control and influence how individuals interact with their surrounding environment. The results showed that the underlying geometry of natural patterns has the potential to induce attention responses to a statistically significant level.