Elements & Principles of design Maddi Andrews


COLOUR: refers to specific complexions and has 3 properties, Chroma, Intensity and Value. The "colour wheel" is a way of showing the chromatic scale in a circle using all the colours made with the primary triangle. Complimentary pairs can produce dull and neutral colour. Black and white can be added to produce tints (add white), shades (add black) and tones (add gray).

LINE: mark on a surface that describes a shape or outline. It can create texture and can be thick and thin. Types of line can include actual, implied, vertical, horizontal, diagonal and contour lines.

SHAPE: 2-dimensional line with no form or thickness. Shapes are flat and can be grouped into two categories, geometric and organic.

VALUE: is the degree of light and dark in a design. It is the contrast between black and white and all the tones in between. Value can be used with colour as well as black and white. Contrast is the extreme changes between values.

FORM: is a 3-dimensional object having volume and thickness. It is the illusion of a 3-D effect that can be implied with the use of light and shading techniques. Form can be viewed from many angles.

TEXTURE: is about surface quality either physical or visual. Texture can be real or implied by different uses of media. It is the degree of roughness or smoothness in objects.

SPACE: refers to variations in the perspective, and proportions of objects, lines or shapes. There is a variation of sizes in space of objects either real or imagined.


BALANCE: is a feeling of visual equality in shape, form, value, colour, etc. Balance can be symmetrical or evenly balanced or asymmetrical and un-evenly balanced. Objects, values, colors, textures, shapes, forms, etc., can be used in creating a balance in a composition.

ALIGNMENT: allows us to create order and organisation. Aligning elements allows them to create a visual connection with each other. It has to do with placing items so that they line up.

EMPHASIS: creates a focal point in a design; it is how you bring attention to what is most important. Emphasis is what catches the eye and makes the viewer stop and look at the image. Emphasis can be created by contrast.

PROPORTION: relationship of two or more elements in a design and how they compare with one another. Proportion is said to be harmonious when a correct or desirable relationship exists between the elements with respect to size, color, quantity, degree, or setting. Good proportion adds harmony, symmetry, or balance among the parts of a design.

MOVEMENT: use of lines, colours, values, textures, forms and space to carry or direct the eye of the viewer from one part of the design or picture to other. Movement is generally created by the arrangement of shapes.

PATTERN: uses the art elements in planned or random repetitions to enhance surfaces of paintings or sculptures. Patterns often occur in nature, and artists use similar repeated motifs to create pattern in their work.

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

UNITY: result of how all element and principles work together. All parts must have some relation to each other. They must fit together to create the over all message and effect.

Created By
maddi andrews


Created with images by AlejandroAndres - "Colores" • Robson# - "Colour wheel" • Kent Schimke - "Frozen Banana" • S.A. Street Photographer - "Copano Bay Bridge" • SheilaTostes - "lines" • ~MVI~ (warped) - "Mabitac, Laguna" • Kris Mouser-Brown - "Going nowhere" • pedrosimoes7 - "Hagamatana II (1967) - Frank Stella (1936)" • quapan - "black square sun hypeЯReally eclipsed through layers of social housing blocks" • NemesisDesign - "Es Vedrà between Night and Day" • mLu.fotos - "Lightnings over Koblenz" • flickrPrince - "moments near Sunset" • Brett Jordan - "Statue of Liberty" • Newtown grafitti - "Sculptures by the Sea, XXX" • James St. John - "Triplofusus giganteus (Florida horse conch) 2" • Tim Gillin - "sculpture by the sea 2014 - dawn" • JacekKrasodomski - "texture" • on1stsite. - "Blue ribbon" • Simon Matzinger - "Angle affects undertone." • Silverblade22 - "A Single Leaf" • katerha - "Without negative space how would we appreciate the positive in our art and in our lives? ~Dylan Law" • Harry Thomas Photography - "Astrophotography..." • Trevor King 66 - "Negative space" • cogdogblog - "Negative Space" • emmakarlsmarkelfstrand - "Marionettes, 2014" • visually_conscious - "Straight Ahead..." • Karen Roe - "BT Artbox - Talk to Me MBK6" • ADTeasdale - "Central Arcade" • 80magazine - "braun ad" • familymwr - "Army Photography Contest - 2007 - FMWRC - Arts and Crafts - Eye of the Holder" • quapan - "shiny star leaf fringed weirdly in tarry moongate" • Thomas Leth-Olsen - "Focal point" • See-ming Lee 李思明 SML - "“冬夜萬物寧 金輝獨詠春” / 寧 Serenity / SML.20130208.7D.21344" • kevin dooley - "Scale" • Mahin Fayaz - "scale" • !!!! scogle - "Think Typography Poster" • bayasaa - "Fireworks" • Heliophiliac, sentimental, nostalgic. - "Rain" • DeusXFlorida (10,211,658 views) - thanks guys! - "White fence of White House at night." • H o l l y. - "Forest Blues." • Bushtography - "Pattern" • turrido50 - "Jung_Mandala" • joshtabti - "aztec weave" • creyesk - "Caleidoscopic eyes" • Leshaines123 - "Beach shot Adelaide #dailyshoot #leshainesimages" • Leshaines123 - "Torrevieja Moon #Spain #leshainesimages" • NASA Goddard Photo and Video - "Barcelona, Spain" • Lensicle - "Red and Orange Aztec Pattern" • mimabahor - "MANDALA COLOR-1 (11)"

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