The Elements & Principles of Design BRITANY nINYETTE

Colour: Color is the element of art that is produced when light, striking an object, is reflected back to the eye. There are three properties to color. The first is hue, which simply means the name we give to a color (red, yellow, blue, green, etc.). The second property is intensity, which refers to the vividness of the color.

Line: An element of art defined by a point moving in space. Line. may be two-or three-dimensional, descriptive, implied, or abstract. Shape An element of art that is two-dimensional, flat, or limited to height and width. Form.

Shape: A shape is defined as a two or more dimensional area that stands out from the space next to or around it due to a defined or implied boundary, or because of differences of value, color, or texture. All objects are composed of shapes and all other 'Elements of Design' are shapes in some way.

Value: also sometimes referred to as tone, is the relative lightness and darkness of an object. It has nothing to do with the price of the design! As soon as you place an object on your blank canvas (whether for print or web) that element has value.

Form: Form and shape are areas or masses which define objects in space. Form and shape imply space; indeed they cannot exist without space. There are various ways to categorize form and shape. Form and shape can be thought of as either two dimensional or three dimensional. Two dimensional form has width and height.

Space: It refers to the area that a shape or form occupies. Space can be defined as positive or negative. Positive space is the filled space, the object(s) or element(s) in the design. Negative space is the empty space, or the open space between design elements or objects, such as a background.

Texture: Texture refers to the surface quality in a work of art. We associate textures with the way that things look or feel. Everything has some type of texture. We describe things as being rough, smooth, silky, shiny, fuzzy and so on. Some things feel just as they appear; this is called real or actual texture.


Balance: 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.

Alignment: Alignment is an extension of proximity. It has to do with placing items so that they line up. Alignment is a concept that produces both grouping and organizes information to create order.

Proportion: Proportion refers to the relative size and scale of the various elements in a design. The issue is the relationship between objects, or parts, of a whole. This means that it is necessary to discuss proportion in terms of the context or standard used to determine proportions.

Movement: Definition of Movement: is the path the viewer's eye takes through the artwork, often to a focal area. It can be directed along lines, edges, shapes and color. Movement is closely tied to rhythm.

Pattern: Repeating visual elements such as line, color, shape, texture, value or image tends to unify the total effect of a work of art as well as create rhythm.

Contrast: refers to the arrangement of opposite elements (light vs. dark colors, rough vs. smooth textures, large vs. small shapes, etc.) in a piece so as to create visual interest, excitement and drama.

Unity: Unity creates an integrated image in which all the elements are working together to support the design as a whole. A unified design is greater than the sum of its parts; the design is seen as a whole first, before the individual elements are noticed . Unity can be compared to harmony, integrity or wholeness.

Created By
Britany Ninyette


Created with images by |Chris| - "Day 50" • Jorge Lascar - "Massive corbel-vaulted ceiling of the Red Pyramid's Main burial chamber" • L'Orso Sul Monociclo - "Every Path Leads to You" • Dimitry B - "Geometric Tiles, Mosque of Moulay Idriss, Morocco" • quapan - "look downstairs into stairwell whirl" • vidalia_11 - "Untitled" • OKViydo - "Gradient" • texaus1 - "Rainbow beach" • Simon Matzinger - "Neck of the moon." • familymwr - "Photographers expand horizons in 2010 Army Digital Photography Contest 110311" • Crunchy Footsteps - "Monument Fire Recovery- a "century plant" in Brown Canyon, Arizona, USA" • Lorenzo Tlacaelel - "Negative Space" • stuad70 - "Negative Space" • Trevor King 66 - "Negative space" • Nicholas Eckhart - "texture" • *nacnud* - "Map of the world" • ♡ dare to share beauty - "Stairway to Annihilation" • Archbob - "Balanced Rock" • ejmc - "Balanced" • _jostro_ - "Balance" • Gunn Shots (Mark Gunn) - "Humpback" • NASA Goddard Photo and Video - "The Rose" • Paul Ebbo - "Movement" • Luke Peterson Photography - ""Power" (Explored #327)" • Thomas Rousing Photography - "Movias moving" • The Knowles Gallery - "Poplar trees reflection" • paweesit - "birds on top of fort at Cartagena Colombia" • kevin dooley - "Music versus photography"

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