Principles and Elements of Design http://www.candcsigns.com/blog/elements-and-principles-design
Line The path of a moving point at the edge of a flat shape or outline of a solid object is a line. It is a mark that spans a distance between two points. Lines are most often used to define shape in two-dimensional work. They can also define contours and outlines and sometimes also suggest mass and volume. A line is longer than it is wider. The ratio between a line's width and length is called its measure. Types of lines Outlines– Lines made by the edge of an object or its silhouette. Contour Lines – Lines that describe the shape of an object and the interior detail. Gesture Lines – Lines that are energetic and catches the movement and gestures of an active figure. Sketch Lines – Lines that captures the appearance of an object or impression in place. Calligraphic Lines – Greek word meaning “beautiful writing”. Precise, elegant handwriting or lettering done by hand. Also, artwork that has flowing lines like elegant handwriting. Implied Lines – Lines that are not actually drawn but created by a group of objects seen from a distance. The direction an object is pointing to or the direction a person is looking at. Implied line is the path that the viewer's eye takes as it follows shapes, colors, and form along a path, but it may not be continuous or physically connected. Different lines have different meanings and uses. Horizontal lines imply tranquility and rest, whereas vertical lines imply power and strength. Oblique lines imply movement, action and change. Curved lines or S shaped lines imply quiet, calm and sensual feelings. Lines that converge imply depth, scale and distance - a fence or roadway converges into the distance provides the illusion that a flat two-dimensional image has three-dimensional depth. A line is an effective element of design because it can lead the viewer's eye.
Value is the range of lightness and darkness within a picture. These range from white to black with numerous shades of gray in between. Value is directly related to contrast. It is created by a light source that shines on an object creating highlights and shadows. It also illuminates the local or actual color of the subject. Value has the ability to create depth by making objects look three-dimensional or highlighting lighter, foreground aspects and receding as it hits the background.
Color • Color is: A property of light • Visible when light is emitted or reflected • Determined by the wavelength of light • Additive color is created from emitted light • Subtractive color is created from light reflecting off a pigmented surface. • The three properties of color are hue, value and saturation.
Color Wheel P S S T T T T T P T P S
Properties of Color • Hue refers to the pure state of a color; it is the name we give a color, such as red or blue. • Value refers to the lightness or darkness of a color. • Saturation, also referred to as intensity or chroma, refers to the brightness or dullness of a color.
Space, in two-dimensional design, is essentially flat; it has height and width, but no depth. There are certain visual cues, however, that can create the illusion of space in the mind of the viewer. By using those cues, artists and designers can create images that are interpreted as three-dimensional.
Size is one of the easiest ways to create the illusion of space. A larger image will appear closer than a smaller one because we observed (very early in life) that objects appear to become smaller as they get farther away.
Overlapping is another easy way to suggest depth in an image. The viewer perceives the one that is covering parts of the other to be in front and the one that is covered to be in the back.
Compositional location refers to where a form is positioned vertically in the image. The bottom is seen as the foreground; the higher an object is placed in the image, the farther back it is perceived to be.
Atmospheric perspective uses value, contrast and color to give the illusion of space. Atmospheric perspective is based on the fact that the farther something is away from us, the more the atmospheric haze may obscure our view of it. Increasing the bluish cast of an image also creates a sense of depth because cool colors recede and warm colors come forward.
Linear perspective is based on the visual phenomenon that as parallel lines (such as railroad tracks) recede into space, they appear to converge at a distant point, creating depth; it also creates a strong focal point at the place where the lines converge.
Shape • A shape is defined as an area that stands out from the space next to or around it due to a defined or implied boundary, or because of differences of value, color, or texture.[ All objects are composed of shapes and all other 'Elements of Design' are shapes in some way
Geometric Shapes • Can be described using mathematical terms • They are very regular or precise • They are more often found in man-made things because they are easier to reproduce and make things with • Examples of geometric shapes are: squares, rectangles, triangles, circles, oval, pentagons and so on.
Free-form or Organic Shapes • are difficult to describe using definitions • are irregular or uneven • are more often found in nature • examples could include the shape of clouds, puddles, trees, leaves, rocks and so on.
Positive and Negative Shapes • In most forms of art shapes may be considered positive or negative depending on how they are used. Positive shapes are usually those which are the subject matter within a work of art. Negative shapes (or space) are those in the background or around the positive shapes. By viewing images as silhouettes, it is easier to understand what the positive shapes and the negative shapes are. See if you can identify the positive and negative shapes (space) in the silhouette images below
Texture • Means the way a surface feels or is perceived to feel. Texture can be added to attract or repel interest to an element, depending on the pleasantness of the texture
Tactile texture is the actual three-dimension feel of a surface that can be touched. Painter can use impasto to build peaks and create texture. • * in English, the borrowed Italian word impasto most commonly refers to a technique used in painting, where paint is laid on an area of the surface (or the entire canvas) very thickly, usually thickly enough that the brush or painting-knife strokes are visible. Paint can also be mixed right on the canvas. When dry, impasto provides texture, the paint appears to be coming out of the canvas.
Visual textureis the illusion of the surfaces peaks and valleys, like the tree pictured. Any texture shown in a photo is a visual texture, meaning the paper is smooth no matter how rough the image perceives it to be. • Most textures have a natural feel but still seem to repeat a motif in some way. Regularly repeating a motif will result in a texture appearing as a pattern.