Balance, emphasis, etc

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  • Balance: The distribution of visual weight within a composition
  • With balance, we expect a vertical axis with equal distribution…BUTThere can be a place for purposeful imbalance…can raise uneasiness within the viewer.
  • Vertical imbalance…the city overpowers the sky. The city appears to fill the entire composition…seems looming.
  • Symmetrical Balance: repeated elements on both sides of the axis…also called Bilateral Symmetry…MIRROR IMAGE. -Static balance -Formal balance -Feeling of permanence, strength, stability -Order -Present in government buildings, churches
  • Symmetrical Balance is rare in photography and painting, unlike architecture.Symmetrical Compositions  Immediate creation and emphasis of a focal point.
  • Approximate Symmetry…slight differences on either side of the axis
  • Radial Balance…mirror image on all axes
  • Spirograph! String art! Doily!
  • Asymmetrical Balance: Balance is achieved with dissimilar objects that have equal visual weight or equal eye attraction.Informal balance: More casual approach; appears less planned (though is untrue)… -Involves more complex considerations and more subtle factors.
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Value: Dissimilar value areas are equally interesting to the eye -A darker, smaller element is visually equal to a lighter, larger one.
  • -A darker, smaller element is visually equal to a lighter, larger one.
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Color: A smaller amount of one color can balance a larger area of another color
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Color: A smaller amount of one color can balance a larger area of another color
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Color: A smaller amount of one color can balance a larger area of another color
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Shape…a small, complicated shape is balanced by a larger, more stable shape.
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Shape…a small, complicated shape is balanced by a larger, more stable shape.The curvilinear shape of the chair is balanced by the many rectilinear shapes of the window sills.
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Texture/Pattern…Large areas of pattern are balanced by smaller areas of flat, smooth texture.
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Texture/Pattern…Large areas with no pattern are balanced by smaller areas of decorative pattern.
  • Asymmetrical Balance by Texture/Pattern…Large areas with no pattern are balanced by smaller areas of decorative pattern.
  • Asymmetry by Position & Eye Direction: A large shape placed near the middle of a design can be balanced by a smaller shape placed toward the outer edge.
  • Asymmetry by Position & Eye Direction: A large shape placed near the middle of a design can be balanced by a smaller shape placed toward the outer edge.
  • Asymmetry by Position & Eye Direction: A large shape placed near the middle of a design can be balanced by a smaller shape placed toward the outer edge.
  • Asymmetry by Position & Eye Direction: A large shape placed near the middle of a design can be balanced by a smaller shape placed toward the outer edge…connected by eye direction between Mary and Gabriel
  • Focal point: A point of emphasis that can attract attention and encourage the viewer to look closer. -Here the turtle is emphasized by the contrast of color and size, as well as its isolation…actual and implied lines also direct us to it. -Several focal points can turn the design into a “3-ring circus”, leaving the viewer in confusion…WHERE EVERYTHING IS EMPHASIZED, NOTHING IS EMPHASIZED.
  • Emphasis by Contrast: as a rule, focal point results when one element differs from the others. Whatever interrupts an overall feeling or pattern automatically attracts the eye by this difference. -Here, composition is dominated by distorted, expressionistic faces. His realistic self-portrait differs in its execution
  • Emphasis by Isolation: Simply by being set off by itself, it grabs our attention. This is contrast, of course, by it is contrast by placement, not form. -The doctor and the foreground figures contrast by value from the background figures, but their isolation in the composition’s corner gives extra emphasis to the doctor.
  • Emphasis by Placement: If many elements point to one direction, our eye will be directed there. -A focal point, however strong, should remain related to and a part of the overall design.
  • Scale: Size…however, size is relative.Proportion: Refers to relative size…measured against other elements or against some mental norm or standard.
  • Scale and proportion are closely tied to emphasis and focal point.Hieratic Scaling: Visual scale was often related to thematic importance
  • Power of Unusual Scale
  • 25’ 7” wide fresco in San Marco, Florence.Piece relies on balance, geometry and order…figures are small in relation to the overall size of the fresco…….FEELING OF QUIET CALM AND ORDER.
  • 2’ x 3.5’Figures are crammed together, overlap in a constricting manner…feels CLAUSTROPHOBIC AND CROWDED.Focuses on the intense emotions of the event.
  • Unexpected or Exaggerated Scale:Some artists use scale changes intentionally to intrigue or mystify rather than to clarify the focal point. -Adult figures reduced in scale, children are closer to actual scale.
  • Proportion linked to ratioThe Greeks sought to discover ideal proportions, especially in mathematical ratios. The Golden Rectangle influenced art and design throughout centuries…found in growth patterns in nature. -Ratio of the Golden Rectangle called The Golden Mean (w:1 as 1:1 +w) -Found in the Fibonacci sequence
  • Rhythm: Based on repetition…involves a clear repetition of elements that are the same or only slightly modified.
  • Legato (connecting & flowing) vs. Stacatto (abrupt)
  • Balance, emphasis, etc

    1. 1. Balance, Emphasis, etc.
    2. 2. Henri Riviere. Funeral UnderUmbrellas. 1895.
    3. 3. Wayne Thiebaud
    4. 4. Wayne Thiebaud
    5. 5. Rose Window. Cathedral of St. John the Divine
    6. 6. Christo. Running FenceDrawing. 1973
    7. 7. Edvard Munch
    8. 8. RichardDiebenkorn.Ocean Park No.29.1970
    9. 9. Lucian Freud
    10. 10. Rachel Whiteread
    11. 11. Alice Neel.Lonliness1970
    12. 12. Egon Scheile. Portraitof the Painter AntonPeschka, 1909
    13. 13. Edouard Vuillard
    14. 14. Paula Rego.The Family1988
    15. 15. Andrew Wyeth. Christina’s World. 1948
    16. 16. David Hockney.Yves-Marie Asleep.1976
    17. 17. Fra Angelico.The Annunciation.1442.
    18. 18. Henri Matisse. Bathers with a Turtle.
    19. 19. James Ensor.Self-Portrait Surrounded byMasks.1899.
    20. 20. Thomas Eakins. The Agnew Clinic. 1889
    21. 21. David Hockney.A Bigger Splash.1967
    22. 22. Richard Roth. Untitled.1983
    23. 23. Fra Filippo Lippi.Saint LawrenceEnthroned with Saintsand Donors.c. Late 1440s
    24. 24. Kent Twitchell. LA Marathon Mural. 405 Freeway.
    25. 25. Changes in scale within a design change the general effect.
    26. 26. Domenico Ghirlandaio. Last Supper. c. 1480
    27. 27. Emil Nolde. The Last Supper. 1909.
    28. 28. Charles Ray. Family Romance. 1993.
    29. 29. Notions of the Ideal
    30. 30. Bridget Riley.Arrest 2.1965
    31. 31. Beatriz Milhazes

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