Elements and Principles of Design

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The Elements and Principles of Design
Definition:

The principles of design describe the ways that artists use the elements of art in a work of art. Balance is the distribution of the visual weight of objects, colors, texture, and space. If the design was a scale, these elements should be balanced to make a design feel stable.
Elements:
Line: A continuous mark made on a surface by a moving point; it may be flat or three-dimensional. Line may be explicit - a line painted along the edge of the road - or implied by the edge of a shape or form. Lines are used to outline create shading and show form, decorate, express emotion, and direct the viewer's eye. Lines can be categorized as horizontal, vertical, diagonal, curved, and zigzag.

Shape: An enclosed space defined by a line or by contrast to its surroundings. Shapes are two-dimensional (flat): circle, square, triangle, organic blob, etc.

Form: A three-dimensional object: a defined volume of space.

Color: The visible spectrum of radiation reflected from an object. Three properties of color are:

Hue – The name of the color (red, green, etc.)
Intensity or Saturation – The purity (brightness or dullness) of the color. Pure red is bright; red mixed with a little green becomes less intense, more neutral.
Value or Brightness – The lightness or darkness of a color. How much white or black shows through or is mixed in. Can be used to depict light and shadow on a color and help show volume/form.
Other terms used to talk about color include tint, shade, tone, temperature (warm, cool, neutral), and various color harmonies or schemes, such as monochromatic, analogous and complementary.

Texture: The tactile sensation or feel of a surface (rough, smooth, spiky, etc.) or how something appears to feel.

Space: The distance or area around or between elements of an artwork. The illusion of depth created on a flat surface through the use of perspective, overlapping elements, size, and level of detail, color and value.

Value:

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