Here are 7 basic considerations to take into account when designing your composition for a drawing or painting, all having to do somewhat with the importance of shapes.
Be aware of
static shapes; for example, the completely dark, opened doorway or window into
a building can create static shapes that immediately become "visual traps."
Varying the static shapes with graduated tones, can add interest and take away
the static hole created
composition that has too many equal shapes, horizontally or vertically, can
lead to a static composition as well. Be alert for horizontal or vertical lines that
unintentionally slice a painting in half or break it up into equal shapes.
|Storm at Sea by Robert Reynolds.
Be alert that
placing interesting shapes or elements on the edge of your composition could
steal interest from the center of interest in your composition.
When learning how to paint strong compositions, be aware that creating
perfectly shaped triangles in the corners of your composition can draw the
viewer's attention away from the center of interest. If triangles are
unavoidable, soften the edges or stagger the forms.
design into too many similar shapes is apt to produce an uninteresting
composition. Likewise, be sure that the negative spaces between shapes are not
all the same width or height. There is a case to be made that the occasional
repeated shapes in a composition will also hold it together. For every rule, there is always an
||Long Shadows / Irish Hills by Robert Reynolds.
Unless it is your intention, be careful
not to include so many tension-creating shapes that the composition becomes busy
learned the hard way, regarding all the problem areas of designed compositions.
Being a professor of art for a good many years, provided me the experience of
reviewing thousands of painting compositions. From that experience, the
abstract components of a painting became a very important consideration. I have
always stated, that a representational painting is only as strong as its
abstract components, so when you are evaluating your works be sure to look at your compositions with an "abstract" eye.
--Am I perfect at following all these guidelines? Not by long shot, but learning never stops, so enjoy the process.