Thursday, February 27, 2014

Design principles:

Last night I signed up for the Level Up courses on ConceptArt while the half price deal is still in effect. This is going to be the real art school I could never afford to go to, for less than the cost of one class for one semester at a community college! And I love that because it's online I can re-watch the video lectures as many times as I need to really get it, or stop to jot notes without missing anything. I'll be posting my study notes here as I go forward, as well as some of my assignment pieces. Starting at the beginning, with principles of design…

  • Rhythm
  • Emphasis
  • Variety
  • Economy
  • Repetition
  • Balance
  • Continuity
  • Unity

Hah! Mnemonic - REVERB, SEE YOU!

  • Design is the basis of composition
  • Design elements come from nature, we abstract them
  • Choose images for assignments because they demonstrate certain design elements
Rhythm -

  • Placement of objects or shapes within an image OR of symbols within scenes
  • "like music notes"
  • A way to ABSTRACT placement and arrangement of shapes on page
  • 'rhythmic notes'
  • Can suggest - stillness, distance, emotions…

Emphasis -

  • = Focus (focal point or area)
  • "What is the most interesting piece?"
  • Most important idea or part
  • Primary, secondary and tertiary emphases
  • Hierarchy - tell the story in the order it needs to be told
  • Emphasis can be on part of image or part of the story
  • Create emphasis via Contrast - value, color, edge...
  • Opposites
  • can also be achieved via eyeliner - where people in image are looking or pointing etc
  • Contrasting ideas - everybody else is doing something different from main character
  • Focus has falloff in a spherical pattern (3d)
  • Accents etc add visual weight
  • Reduced emphasis in primary area moves stronger emphasis to secondary (death of Caesar)

Variety -

  • Various elements - repeated but different
  • Various sizes, shapes etc..
  • Can be variations in ages of people, hair color, hat shapes, type of clothes etc..
  • "Does it have enough variety?"
  • Variety of materials & surfaces, texture, weight, tension etc..
Economy -

  • Opposite of emphasis in a way, but creates emphasis
  • Simplicity
  • "What you don't (paint, draw, texture, light, emphasize, etc) is just as important as what you do (and draws attention)
  • Suggested rather than explicitly detailed
  • Economy can have a range (hierarchy) - some areas simpler than others (primary, secondary etc)
  • Focal areas might be complex & surrounding areas simple
Repetition -

  • Patterns, shapes, curves, angles etc - textures, rhythms…
Balance -

  • Can be symmetrical or asymmetrical
  • Large and small forms (objects, areas) can balance each other
  • Static or dynamic
  • Can balance side/side, top/bottom, diagonally, corners, quadrants..
  • Visual Weights
  • Subtle changes in balance can have big effects on composition
  • Can be between primary, secondary, tertiary focal areas
Continuity -

  • Suggested movement
  • Implied lines
  • "lines of continuity"
Unity -

  • Sense of completeness - harmony
  • "Do you have all the other principles?" - if so you have unity - you're done

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