Visual art grade 10. Elementsofart and Prinicples of design
Topic 3: Visual analysis
Kristie Domenique Beukes
What would be covered in this section?
Formal elements of art
Principles of design
Materials and techniques
Elements of art
Line: it is a continuous mark that creates a shape.
Colour: colour contains three different kinds of properties: hue, value
Texture: this element identifies a surface and how rough or smooth it
Space: Space is either negative which is 2-D or positive which is 3-D.
Shape/Form: Shape is a 2-D object like a geometric shape. Form is a
3-D object that takes up space.
Line can be 2-D or 3-D
Line can be created with any forms of medium used.
Lines can create mood and express emotions like the following image:
There are 5 main kinds of line:
Colour is split into three sections:
Primary colours – cannot be made. E.g. Blue, yellow and red.
Secondary colours – made by mixing two primary colours. E.g.
Tertiary colours - made by mixing a primary colour and secondary
colour together. E.g. Red-orange, Yellow-orange, Blue-green.
Colour value has two categories when looking at colour.
Tint: adding white to a colour.
Shade: adding black to a colour.
Texture refers to the way something feels or looks like if you had to
Texture is seen as 3-D (physical) and 2-D (illusion).
3-D texture is felt where 2-D texture is created.
2-D texture is known as visual texture which is either simulated or
Simulated texture: real-life texture is portrayed.
Invented texture: texture created through lines and shapes and
consists of 2-D patterns.
Space is described as the areas around and within a object.
Space is classified as negative which is the space around the object.
Space can also be classified as positive which is the actual form in the
Linear perspective is used to create depth and an illusion of space.
Shape and form
The easiest way to find a difference between shape and form is:
Shape is 2-D and form is 3-D.
Shapes are usually geometric like a square or circle.
Shapes can also be organic i.e. they are not man-made and have a
Forms have a length, width and height.
Forms can be geometric like a cone or cube.
Forms can also be organic like a monkeys face.
Principles of design
Balance: Everything in the artwork must have the exact same weight
on both sides.
Contrast: This is the difference between the very light and very dark
shades on the artwork.
Emphasis: When an element in the artwork has a special importance
and it is obvious in the artwork.
Proportion: how one object in the artwork is represented as either
further or closer to the eye compared to other objects.
Principles of design continued.
Rhythm/Repetition: When there is a repeating of a certain object or
shape or colour in an artwork.
Movement: This is when motion is created in a artwork. Often an
artwork leads your eye around the work which creates the “motion”
in the artwork.
Unity: This is when the artwork creates a wholeness in the artwork.
Balance is creating a sense of stability .
Everything balances out to create an equal weight on both sides of the
Balance is split into three sections:
Symmetric : both sides look exactly the same.
Asymmetric: both sides do not look the same but they balance out in
Radial: everything starts from a centre point leads the eye out in a
circular way. Radial balance leads the eye to the centre.
A difference that is created when two different elements are placed
together in a work of art.
When looking at contrast the focus is on the light vs the dark areas.
Also focus is on texture and the contrast between rough and smooth.
Contrast is created through large and small shapes as well.
Drawing attention to a certain element in the work.
The emphasis creates the focal point in the work.
Emphasis of an object shows how important that object is.
It catches the viewers eye because of how it stands out.
Emphasis is create through contrast.
Proportion is explained as the ratio of one part of the work to another.
Proportion is referred to the scale and size of objects in a design.
Objects further out in the work is smaller than the objects closer to
Easy way to know everything is in proportion is by using one object
and counting how many times that one object fits into the focal point
Repetition is the repeating of the same shapes and colour in a design.
Rhythm is a combination of elements that are repeated but with
Movement is created when the viewer can see and feel the action in
Movement is also created by how the viewers eye moves through the
Movement in the design comes from the different lines and shapes (2D and 3-D) in the design.
Diagonal lines in a design often create movement.
Unity is known as using a main unit in design and focusing on it.
Unity is also the relationship among all the elements in the design
that function together as one.
Unity helps to organise the design in order to create understanding
Materials and techniques
There are various techniques and materials that can be used in the art
This is a basic introduction to the types of materials and techniques
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Fussell, M. 2013. Texture, The Elements of Art. Available:
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Fussell, M. 2013. Shape, The Elements of Art. Available:
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Swetha, K. 2013. Colours. Available:
http://www.slideshare.net/shwetha_srm/color-24807760?qid=48a8bc8a-7c364476-8655-0fb82d200a92&v=qf1&b=&from_search=1 . Accessed: 7th March
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http://www.slideshare.net/Ishine21/elements-of-art-29572179?qid=a19c7afa27ad-4c5d-ac7f-ee7be77d0a7f&v=qf1&b=&from_search=3 . Accessed: 9th