Balance is the equal feeling of weight in perception. Balance in an art form may not really have actual or physical balance, but rather an illusion of balance, which is referred to as optical balance or visual balance.
This image has symmetrical balance because it contains objects of the same weight and size on each side. One side of the woman in the picture is mirrored on the other side. This picture is also an example of contrast.
In this image the balance is being applied by the constraint of the cyber green colour and balancing with white colour.
Rhythm is the repetition of visual movement - colours, shapes or lines.
Variety is essential to keep rhythms exciting and active, and to avoid monotony.
Movement and rhythm work together to create the visual equivalent of a musical beat.
Movement can also be achieved by repetition and action. Repetition of similar elements will create movement or a path that the eye travels and if the repetition leads the eye through a periodical or alteration regularity and irregularity flowing path or in staccato movement, then it will create a rhythm
This painting was done by Duchamp to show the rhythmic movement of a figure coming down the stairs. The effect is like stop-action or strobe-light photography, because the repeated shapes and angles of the abstracted figure move diagonally across the canvas.
Emphasis is the intended focusing or highlighting of a particular characteristic of the design, which has the purpose of creating a focal point or point of interest. This emphasis can be on over-sized objects, fruits, cars or any other unique feature that stands out for one reason or another from physical objects, a picture or an image. It could be the most complex area or simply a sudden change in line direction, size or shape.
The over-sized rock is emphasizing the theme of a tree that “grows on the rock”
Another example of emphasis in a piece of art. The white stripe down the middle stands out among the commotion of blue in the background. This emphasis is aided by another principle, contrast.
Unity is the hallmark of good design. All elements and components should be composed with integrity, in a consistent manner, and successfully applied with the principles of design in mind. Unity will give a sense of visual pleasure if all the elements and components are arranged in harmony, complementary to each other, and with an appealing focal point, instead of competing for attention. When unity is achieved, the thematic message will be more clearly communicated.
In this image of several members of an orchestra shows unity because all of the players connect into each other, creating coherence and harmony. The consistent shape of the players creates a pattern, and the colour is the same throughout, which are important attributes of unity.
These faces shows unity as they also emphasize colour, contrast and rhythm.
Unity is shown by the connection of holding hands.
Line is a mark made by a pointed tool - brush, pencil, stick, pen, etc. - and is often defined as a moving dot.
It has length and width, but its width is very thin compared to its length.
A line is created by the movement of a tool and pigment, and often suggests movement in a drawing or painting.
This poster shows how just a few strokes of line can be used to effectively illustrate a swan. While the lines do not adhere to the anatomy of a swan, the image is unmistakable, and the simplicity and grace of the lines convey a feeling of tranquillity.
Lines are being used from a ceiling making different shapes and intersects on the middle of the ceiling.
Tobey's painting is all line. He actually drew with his brush, then repeated lines creating a complex pattern. Tobey's lines are the subject of the painting and are not used to outline shapes or objects.
Value is an element of art that refers to the relationship between light and dark on a surface or object and also helps with Form. It gives objects depth and perception. Value is also referred to as tone.
This menu is designed using all warm tones. Warm tones consist of any colour on the warm side of the spectrum: yellows, reds, oranges and purples. The effect is great for a menu because it communicates a comfortable feeling and a compatibility with food.
This painting emphasizes the colour and richness of the vegetables and fruits. It is basically a cool colour with warm accents. Colour is also being used to show depth and volume in painting.
Texture refers to the surface quality, both simulated and actual, of artwork.
Techniques used in painting serve to show texture.
For example, the dry brush technique produces rough simulated quality and heavy application of pigment with brush or other implement produces a rough actual texture.
In art, there are two types of texture: tactile and implied. Tactile texture (real texture) is the way the surface of an object actually feels. Examples of this include sandpaper, cotton balls, tree bark, puppy fur, etc. Implied texture is the way the surface of an object looks like it feels. The texture may look rough, fizzy, gritty, but cannot actually be felt. This type of texture is used by artists when drawing or painting.
Different types of textures sewed with cotton on a cloth
This painting is done in oil paint with heavy textures. The painting technique that emphasizes actual texture is called impasto. Such textures can be applied with a stiff brush or spread on the canvas with a painting knife.
Actual space is a three-dimensional volume that can be empty or filled with objects. It has height, width, and depth.
Space that appears three-dimensional in a painting is an illusion that creates a feeling of actual depth.
Various techniques can be used to show such visual depth or space.
Space can also be the area provided for a particular purpose. It may have two dimensions (length and width), such as a floor, or it may have three dimensions (length, width, and height). Space includes the background, foreground and middle ground. Space refers to the distances or areas around, between or within components of a piece. There are two types of space: positive and negative space. Positive space refers to the space of a shape representing the subject matter. Negative space refers to the space around and between the subject matter.
An artist painted this snow scene in New York City with careful attention to the feeling of space. The artist uses several basic techniques to show space: perspective, values, overlapping, and size of shapes.