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Art Basic Guide


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Elements of Art
Line Shape Form Space Color Texture
length, width, direction; path of a point
Implied line
series of interrupted dots or lines that the eye connects to create a line
Freeform/Organic shapes
Positive Space
Objects, shapes and forms in an artwork occupy this space
Negative Space/Ground
Area around the objects, forms or figures
High Relief
Projects boldly from surface
Low Relief
Only slight projection from surface
illusion of depth
visible borders
Aerial/Atmospheric Perspective
takes into account the ways fog, smoke, and airborn particles changes the view of things
Linear Perspective
As lines recede into the distance, they appear to converge and eventually vanish at a point on the horizon
Name of the color
Lightness or darkness of the color
lighter hue from adding white to a color
Darker hue from adding black
Black and white, not hues
Brightness or purity of a color, mixed colors are less intense
Color schemes that imploy colors on opposite sides of the color wheel.
Color scheme that uses only one hue
Hues next to eachother on the color wheel
three primary colors, the three secondary colors, or the of the 6 tertiary colors, generally quite lively
warm colors
red, orange, yellow; advance towards the viewer
cool colors
green, blue, purple;appear to reced from viewer
local color
true color of an object or area as in normal daylight
optical color
effect special lighting has on objects
arbitrary color
emotional or aesthetic color scheme
how it looks like it would feel if touched
visual texture
illusion of textured surface
Principles of composition
rhythm, movement, pattern, balance, contrast, emphasis, variety, proportion, and unity
created by the pattern of the work, makes eye travel to a rhythm
Alternating rhythm
two or three motifs are used, or the spaces between motifs or position of motif is varied
a single element of a pattern
regular pattern
a pattern based on a grid pattern
symmetrical balance
elements of a composition are repeated exactly of both sides of the central axis
approximate symmetry
slight variance on opposite sides of the central axis
asymmetrical balance
organization of unlike objects, two people of unequal weight on a balanced seesaw, lighter closer to fulcrum, detailed small item vs simple large object
contrast, emphasis, and variety
used to create interest
focal point
where the eye tends to rest
relative size of elements in an artwork, dimensional proportion of the parts of a work to the work in entirety
golden mean
ratio of 3:5 in an artwork, ratio of smaller to larger section is the same as larger to work as a whole
placing seperate objects close together in a group
causes eye to move from similar color to similar color, draws eyes from one group to next, creates unity
draw viewers eye on certain path
creates illusion of 3D; hatching is placing lines side by side, crosshatching is placing lines criss-crossed
create different values by using dots instead of lines
not transparent, undiluted ink
diluted ink, at least partially see-through
finely ground materials to make color when powdered, mixed w/ binder and colvent
holds grains of pigment together and adheres to intended surface
water or oil added to pigment to thin (and slow drying time) or thicken (and speed drying time)
pure powdered pigments and water are applied to wet plaster
buon fresco (true fesco)
permanently bound to plaster, wet plaster used
fresco secco
applies pant to dry plaster
water based paint, used b4 oil paints become common in 1400s, cannot be mixed, fastdrying,
thin transparent layers of paint applied over another color to alter it slightly
Impasto surface
oil paints applied thickly or in heavy lumps creates this kind of surface
wax-based paint
water based opaque paint w/ more body and dries slower than normal tempera, bright colors and meticulus details
transparent, to make tints, add more water.
relief printmaking
artist cuts away party of the surface of the plate and remaining parts will stand out in relief. the plate is painted w/ a brayer, then placed on paper, rolled over w/ a burnisher
intaglio printmaking
lines are incised in plate usually by etching or engraving, ink placed inside grooves
wax or varnish placed on plate, then exposed metal burnt away in acid, ink forced into burnt away areas, surface ink is wiped off, inked lines rise above paper
lines cut into plate by cutting tools
image drawn with a waxy pencil or crayon directly on plate, greasy image is harded and the plate is saturated w/ water, ink applied, adheres only to greasy surface
screen printing
image transferred to silk or other material stretched on a frame and ink sqeezed through silk onto paper or fabric beneath
mixed media
several art forms used
various materials mized for texture, color, or other aesthetic property
carving, modeling, casting, or construction
art created when part of original material is removed
additive process
soft workable materical is formed by hand and amounts of these can be added to surface, and surface can be shaped or decorated by hand or with simple tools
cast form
original form is encased in plaster, mold is used to make one or more casts of the original
ceramic, use of natural matierals
liquid clay, used to connected carefully measured pieces of clay
pots created on potter's wheel are called this
heated to drive moisure out of clay to harden permanently
lost wax casting
used to make meta casting
loom, braiding, knitting, or crochet, doesn't have to be woven
soft sculpture
sewing fiber then stuffing the piece
makes glass, made of sand, flint, or quartz
long stone or beam is placed horizontally across upright posts
vaulted construction
colosseum, vault, arch, and dome, greater height and more open space
developed by Romans
skeletal building style
strong buttresses and thin walls with stain glass windows
flying buttresses
external arches that counterbalanced the outward thrust of the high vaulted ceilings
Crystal Palace
glass walls held in place by framework of slim iron rods
environmental art
large in scale, constructed onsite, usually not permanent, made of the environment
the philosophical inquiry into the nature and expression of beauty in art
art criticism
the explanation of current art events to the general public
art history
academic scholarship dedicated to the reconstruction of the social, religious, and economic contexts in which an artwork was created
Old Stone Age (Paleolithic period)
cave art, animals and female figures w/ exaggerated bellies, breasts, and public areas, charcoal and yellow and red orchre
Middle Stone Age (Mesolithic Period)
Moved to rock shelters, drew people in groups and alone, prefered to show people dominating animals
New Stone Age(Neolithic Period)
Rocks set up in rings, Stone Hedge
stepped pyramids
hierchical scale
status of figure determinded the relative sizes within an artwork.
ribbed vaults, flying buttresses
ribbed vaults
framework of thin stone ribes or arches built under the intercection of the vaulted sections of the ceiling
High Renaissance
Leonardo Di Vici, and Michelangelo
use of mellowed colors and blurred outline, Leonardo's Mona Lisa
distortion of certain elements such as perspective or scale, use of acidic colors and twisted positioning of the subjects

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