Hierarchy helps people know what to read when they look at a design – a simple concept that can often be forgotten or underinvested in. Creating stunning page designs can be easily done if you’ve invested your effort into a strong visual hierarchy.
I found an article from Smashing Magazine that sums up all the foundational aspects of visual hierarchy nicely, with plenty of examples. I’ve put two notable examples below that I believe have very interesting and well done visual hierarchies.
We cannot ignore the Western convention of reading from left to right and top to bottom and, in particular, the Western viewer’s instinctive response to return to the left edge; these can be extremely valuable tendencies. However, carefully selected textures and tones should be the overriding influences on hierarchy.