I’ve decided to do my formal analysis on an original painting done by Slava Ilyayev titled, “Passage to Spring”. I ran across this beautiful work of art at Fascination St. Fine Art north of Cherry Creek in Denver. UNITY: As you take a look at this piece, you can notice unity right away. The artist uses color, texture, and line to interweave this beautiful work of art together. Bright, analogous warm colors are unified throughout the piece including the reflection on the pathway and the green field on the horizontal plane. Texture was another element used by the artist to tie this piece together. Take a look at the texture created in the leaves, the thick paint is lifting off the surface of the canvas. This same texture is used throughout the landscape and the reflection on the pathway. Line was also used to tie the piece into one. The first noticeable lines are from the horizontal reflections on the pathway, which leads to the vertical lines from the thick tree trunk. Those lines are then extended in the branches which fold inward onto the picture plane. This creates an “O” which helps bring the piece together. VARIETY: I have stood in front of this piece more than any other piece in the gallery. How did the artist achieve this? Ilyayev’s work consists of a variety of bright colors and shapes that help sustain one’s interests. The colors are analogous throughout the work, but the colors are transformed as the color reflects off the wet path. Colors such as purple, blue, and maroon start to emerge from the lower portion of the piece in the reflection area. Variations of other colors create diversity as well such as the subtle greens in the distance created through the atmospheric perspective captured by the artist. The variations of shapes also helps keep the viewer interested in the piece. The overlapped rounded shapes in the leaves of the trees create a variety of organic shapes which resemble a healthy, plush tree. BALANCE: Despite being in the middle of the walkway, this piece is asymmetrically balanced. The two trees on each side of the path help the piece seem visually balanced. The colors in the trees are also balanced as the reds appear to be closer to the edges and the colors tend to turn into a lighter green as it moves towards the center of the plane on both sides. Take a look at the two trees on either sides of the path with the thick trunks that appears to be closest to the viewers. What makes them seem visually balanced even though the left tree looks more empowering over the one on the right? The artist used a heavier amount of red on the right tree to balance the size of the tree on the left. EMPHASIS: The intense colors used in the trees are the focal point. The rich reds and uplifting textures of the leaves scream for attention. The size of the trees hovering the subtle light path is so empowering and somewhat overwhelming and takes up a lot of space. Usually artist will place the emphasis in the middle of the picture plane, and in this case the human figures tend to be in that area. But the size of the trees, the texture of the leaves, and colors of the trees call for the center of attention. The vertical lines of the tree trunks were also used as a visual path that guides your eyes to the colorful leaves. SUBORDINATION: The human figures are subordinated even though they appear to be in the middle of the picture plane. The colors used for the figures are rather dull and blends in with the foreground. These figures are also subordinated by their shape. Their shape is similar to the trees in the distance. For example, the legs of the figures look visually similar to the trunk of a tree. The upper torso of the figures looks like the top of the tree. This makes the figures blend into the trees making the emphasis fall back into the bright leaves of a tree. Texture also contributes to the subordination of these figures on the path. The textures...
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