Elements & Principles of Design

Design Elements:

1.  Line          Horizontal, vertical, dotted, zig-zag, curved, straight, bold or find.  These show direction and lead the eye.

2.  Shape       Such as circle, square, triangle and freeform.  Objects can be one shape or a combination of shapes.

3.  Color         Hue, value and intensity.  This refers to the color, the lightness/darkness and the brightness/dullness respectively. 

4.  Texture    The surface quality of an item.  how it feels or would feel if touched.  (Smooth, slick, shiny, rough, raised,  bumpy, fuzzy, grainy, soft, hard)

5.  Space       This refers to the area that a shape/form occupies and the background in which we see it.  Positive space is made of the shapes and forms.  Negative space is the background.


Art Principles

1.  Rhythm       How the eye moves from one design point to another.  (i.e. Repeating color, shape, texture, line or space.  Varying size of objects, shapes, lines.  Using progression of colors from tints to shades.)

2.  Proportion   The relationship between one part of a design and another part of the whole design.  It is a comparison of sizes, shapes and quantities.

3.  Emphasis      The accent or point of interest.  Created by using a contrasting color, using a different or an usual line, making shapes very large or very small, using a different shape, using a plain background.

4.  Balance         Gives a feeling of stability.  3 Types:  Symmetrical - the same on both sides; Radial - has a center point like a tire, a pizza  or a daisy; Asymmetrical - creates a feeling of equal weight even though the sides do not look the same.

5.  Unity               A feeling that all parts belong together or look right together.

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