What holds a work of art together is either conceptual or formal.
Elements of Art:
Principles of organization: The purpose is to develop visual unity in a composition from the use of the above elements and the following principles.
- Harmony - pleasing relationship between different sections of a composition. This occurs when there are elements that have characteristics in common or if they are treated in the same way. The principles bring the various elements together in a cohesive design.
Repetition - This is the main principle of creating harmony. I doesn't have to be exact to
but similar in likeness. It can direct the eye around and emphasize similar and dissimilar
areas in the composition.
Rhythm - Is a part of repetition and can achieve continuance and movement. Depending on the
combinations of repetition and rhythm, these elements can induce interest, excitement, and
harmony. I creates a beat as in music where the pauses between beats are as important as the
Pattern - Another part of repetition, pattern is a series of elements that create a design. If a
smaller pattern is repeat many times it is called a motif or allover pattern as in a wallpaper
Closure (visual grouping) - Gestalt principle that studies how the viewer sees form, pattern, or
shape as a whole and not the individual parts. In using closure, harmony can be further
supported by texture, color, shapes, surface, direction, and linear alignment. Other gestalt
factors of influence are similarity and proximity.
Visual linking - Other ways to create closure and visual unification are:
Shared edges - Contacting, touching, or butting together create unification by
helping the eye to draw these images together within the same visual plane. This
creates a new shape.
Overlapping - More complicated than shared edges because images actually share
the same space. This can produce unification if they also incorporate shared
elements, such as colors, values, and textures.
Transparency - Creates layers of space that are shared by both images. This can limit
visual depth while still achieving harmony.
Interpenetration - Images share same space and intersect each other. The space pulls the
images into visual harmony.
Linking through extensions - These are implied visual lines that can create movement around
the composition by connecting images that are dissimilar. When extending the edge of a shape
across the composition it visually includes other images that are in other areas thus harmonizing
the entire composition.
- Variety - This is the opposing side of the harmony<----------->variety (or contrast) scale.The viewer looses interest if there is too much harmony or too much contrast. Most compositions are created in the middle.
each other creates visual interest, emphasis, or dominance in a composition. This makes the
images or objects apparent.
Elaboration - The enhancement of the surface with visual details that call attention to differences
that create drama, meaning, and excitement.
- Balance - Gravitational equilibrium of elements. The visual weight is the amount of attention an area draws. The moments of force, as these areas are called, dictate how the eye travels over the composition. Position, size, proportion, character, and direction all contribute to balance.
confrontational, exact balance or pure symmetry.
Approximate symmetry - The images are slightly different on either side of the axis in color,
number, size, etc. Both sides must still balance and are more interesting for the viewer.
Radial - Can create both pure and approximate symmetry. For visual balance, the elements are
distributed around a central point. This creates circular movement and adds more interest.
Asymmetrical (informal) - This creates a feeling of balance instead of visual balance and
includes the entire composition. Balance is achieved in all directions.
- Proportion - The ratio of individual parts to one another and to the whole. If the ratios are logically proportioned, then the composition is harmonious. If they are disproportionate, then they create contrast. The scale or size of objects is judged by a relational "norm", as in the human figure. The Greeks favored the "golden mean".