Designing With Materials By: Charlie Devine

Elements Cut Project

Original Sketches
Planning where the pieces will go
Continuing to plan where the pieces will go
Gluing on the pieces
cutting out the pieces
Continuing to glue on the pieces
Final Product


My piece was asymmetrical, because their was a lack of the same size and shape in the shapes. It lacked the idea of the same things on both sides. The majority of the shapes on my project are organic. However, the vocal point is not only a change of color, but it's also a geometric shape, which contrasts the rest of the shapes. I didn't use a lot of balance in my piece and put the pieces wherever they fit the best. My emphasis was a bright green square in the right corner of my piece, and really made you look at that area of the project. This emphasis contrasted the rest of the work, because of the color change and the geometric shape. Their was really no rhythm in the piece and no real movement or pattern. However some pieces that seemed to kind of fit into another piece were put near each other to create some unity. The overall craftsmanship of the project was pretty good, except for some not rounded edges. The hardest part for me was cutting the rounded edges with scissors. I used the rule of thirds, when I put the colored emphasis closer to the top right corner and away from the middle. I chose light green, because it's not a dull color and will brighten up the project. It really drew you to that area of the piece and not the overall project.

Elements Cut Vocabulary

Asymmetry: A lack of equality or equivalence between parts or aspects of something.

Balance: The way in which the elements in visual arts are arranged to create a feeling of equilibrium in an artwork. The three types of balance are symmetry, asymmetry, and radial.

Collage: An artistic composition made of various materials (e.g., paper, cloth, or wood) glued on a surface.

Composition: The overall placement and organization of elements in a work of art, as well as the interrelationships between individual elements.

Elements of Design: Sensory components used to create and talk about works of art: Line, color, shape/form, texture, value, space.

Geometric Shape: Any shape or form having more mathematic than organic design. Geometric designs are typically made with straight lines or shapes from geometry.

Line: An element of art that refers to the continuous marks made on a surface by a moving point. In visual art, a delineation or fracturing of space in color or black and white. Line qualities can vary in width, length, gesture, color, direction, etc.

Negative Space: Shapes or spaces that are or represent the area unoccupied by objects.

Positive Space: Shapes or spaces in an image that represent solid objects or forms.

Principles of Design: A design concept describing the ways in which the elements of an image are arranged (ie. balance, contrast, dominance, emphasis, movement, repetition, rhythm, variation, unity)

Shape: A two-dimensional area or plane that may be open or closed, free form or geometric. It can be found in nature or created by humans.

Space: The area between, around, above, below, or contained within objects. Spaces are areas defined by the shapes and forms around them and within them, just as shapes and forms are defined by the space around and within them.

Symmetry: A balance of parts on opposite sides of a perceived midline, giving the appearance of equal visual weight.


Before Baking
After Baking


My composition was a an asymmetrical work because their was no real pattern that I had planned, and just put the pieces, in the spaces that look good.


Description: Description is identifying the literal qualities or realistic presentation of subject matter, along with the elements of art found. It demands only the facts of what can be seen, often in one or more works of art; and partly two or more works can be described by comparing them to each other.

Design: A plan, or to plan. The organization or composition of a work; the skilled arrangement of its parts. An effective design is one in which the elements of art and principles of design have been combined to achieve an overall sense of unity.

Dominance: The part of a composition that is emphasized, has the greatest visual weight, the most important, powerful, or has the most influence. A certain color can be dominant, and so can an object,line, shape, or texture.

Form: The element of art that refers to an object with three-dimensions (height, width, and depth) and encloses volume.

Hue: The colors name. Example: red

Proportion: The relation of one thing to another with respect to size and placement.

Variety: The combination of elements or art, such as line, shape, or color, in an artwork. Variety is a principle of design.

Lino Cut


Contour - The outline of a shape.

Cross-hatching - A method of showing value by using parallel lines at different angles that get darker as they are drawn closer together.

Focal Point - The area in a work of art that an artist emphasizes.

Horizon Line - In an artwork, the line where the ground and sky appear to meet.

Monochromatic - A color scheme using only tints and shades of a single color.

Monoprint - A print made from a plate that can be used only once.

Neutrals - A word used for black, white, and tints and shades of gray. (Some artists use tints and shades of brown as neutrals.)

Plate - In printmaking, a piece of flat material, such as wood or metal, with a design on the surface. The plate is used to print the design.

Print - An artwork created by making an impression of a design.

Print making - The transference of an image from one surface (plate or block) to another (usually paper) with ink. The process of making one or more prints.

Relief Printing - A print made by covering a printing block with ink or paint and pressing paper onto the block. The areas or lines gouged out do not print. (Examples: woodcut, block print, linocut, styrofoam plate, etc.

Design While Cutting
First Print
cutting out 2nd print
Print 1
print 2
print 3
print 4


The idea of doing the fish came from doodling on the practice sheet, and eventually the doodle started looking like a fish. The lines on the top looked like the fins on a Marlin. No artist influenced my design, it just came from my mind, and what a Marlin looked like. It was original in that I made the Marlin swimming above the coral on a reef below. I knew what colors the fish was, and I chose blue because I thought that it would like better then green on the color of paper I chose. The color of purple and orange looked good with the blue. I wouldn't change any colors on my piece, unless I could use a third color. I prefer the color reduction technique, because it is more simpler.

Mixed Media


Step 1 (left) - We taped the areas that we wanted to stay white. This was called resisting. We then went on to color them with watercolors which was step 2 (right)
Step 3 (right) - We did a print of a certain design. I chose to do the fish in purple to keep a color that doesn't completely contrast the other colors. Step 4 (left) We zentangled the rest of the piece to bring it all together.


I really enjoyed creating my Mixed Media piece. I thought it was very interesting to go through all of the techniques and different layers. My background is mostly just the base colors I used on the first layer. The middle ground is the fish and the acrylic painting. The foreground is the zentangling and the string painting. The hardest part for me was the string gelling and acrylic painting. The string gelling was hard because it started to run and was hard to control the gel. The acrylic was hard because it did not come off very well. I learned that it is not to important to have a definitive back, middle, and fore ground. I wish that I knew how to control the acrylic and string gelling and not have it run down the paper, or not show up at all. If I had done this project over again I'd probably take away the amount of white, and other one colored places.


Abstract - A style of art that is not realistic. Unusual lines, colors, and shapes make the subject look unrealistic. It is often characterized by the use of geometric lines and shapes and bold, bright colors.

Acrylics - Quick drying, plastic polymer pigment used with water.

Additives - The process of adding or joining parts and/or visual elements together to create a painting, collage or sculpture (as opposed to subtractive).

Background - The part of the picture plane that seems to be farthest from the viewer.

Foreground - Part of a two-dimensional artwork that appears to be nearer the viewer or in the “front” of the image. Middle ground and background are the parts of the picture that appear to be farther and farthest away.

Intensity - Also called chroma or saturation; refers to the brightness of a color (a color is full in intensity only when in its pure form and unmixed). Color intensity can be changed by adding black, white, gray or an opposite color on the color wheel.

Middle Ground - Area of a two-dimensional work of art between the foreground (closest to the front) and background (furthest receded).

Mixed Media - An artwork in which more than one type of art material is used.

Nonobjective - Having no recognizable object or subject; also, nonrepresentational.

Watercolor - A transparent pigment used with water. Paintings done with this medium are known as watercolors.

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