About: Design, Scene, And Elements And Principles

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TheFantaSim's avatar

This is one of our "About" Lessons; a series of  journals about Photomanipulation, about Art, and about being an Artist.  These journals exist to help you, the Photomanipulator, be a better artist.  After all, we are artist who use Photomanipulation as our media, but to create great art, we must know what we're doing.  Also, I want our group members to be educated in using the appropriate language.

This "About" Lesson covers the definitions of terms you should be familiar with as an artist: Design, Scene, and the Elements and Principles of Design with examples. 

Over the years I have found that many people join deviant art to participate as a Photomanipulator, but do not know difference between a "design" and a "scene".  Knowing the difference is an important one, not only for the group, but for you as an artist.  There have been time when I've asked for a "design" challenge entry that some members will misinterpret and create a "scene" instead; and,  when I've asked for a scene, some members will create a design.

This tutorial covers the difference between design and scene as far as  our group is concerned through definitions and examples.

If you have any questions, or something to add to this tutorial, please don't hesitate to add a comment to this blog.

Definitions--Applied Arts, Graphic Design, Fine Arts, Scene

I no longer have my art books on fine arts and design so I relied on Wikipedia to help me with the following "formal" definitions. I did do some editing to make the definitions clearer.  

The word "design" is connected to many disciplines including Applied Arts and Graphic Arts.

:bulletgreen: Applied Arts: The application of design and aesthetics to objects of function and everyday use.

:bulletgreen: Graphic Design: A creative process undertaken in order to convey a specific message (or messages) to a targeted audience. Common uses of graphic design includes identity (logos and branding), web sites, publications (magazines, newspapers, and books), advertisements and product packaging.

      Bark's ID by TheFantaSim

:bulletgreen: Fine Arts: Fine Arts describes an art form developed primarily for aesthetics and/or concept rather than practical application.

     Death Waits by Cynnalia

:bulletgreen: Scene: In art, the environment, or atmosphere, for which objects are place.  Another word for scene is background.

  Wait for me by robhas1left

For our purpose, a Design is a deviation that is generally 2-Dimensional (objects exist in a flat environment) and is very decorative in nature. It may or may not contain words, symbols, etc., but it shouldn't look like something that exist in the real world.

   The Mummy Rises From The Tomb by DrBlyss   Uncharted Sea. by rustymermaid

A Scene is an environment that contains a background that is not flat, or can be considered as decor (no words should be in a scene--words will turn it into a design). It should look more like something that might and can exist in the real world.

Concourswhitesurwhite by roserika     Golden Fae Of The Lake by TheFantaSim   

The Elements And Principals Of Design

The "Elements and Principals of Design" are the set rules or guidelines when considering the impact of a piece of artwork. They can exist in both designs  and scenes. The difference depends on how they are put together.

Elements are the parts of a design, and the Principles are ways to use the parts.

All art is comprised of  theElements being arranged following the rules set by the Principles. Knowing the Elements and Principles can help you create more dynamic images. You must know and understand the rules that the Principles are based on before you can break away from them.

Let's Now Look At Each Element And Principle Of Design Individually

The Elements.

:bulletgreen: Color is light reflected off of objects. The three characteristics of Color are hue, value and intensity.

Fireball Over Earth by TheFantaSim 

Light is needed to see color. Grey tones are a result of the little light on an object. The less light, the darker the grey. Therefore, black is the absence of all light.

color wheel by milkpoo

Above is a typical Color Wheel showing the Hue, Value and Intensity of  the 12 basic Colors. This one also shows three Tints (see below) for each color.

Hue refers to the name of the individual colors. The Primary Colors are red, blue, and yellow. When combined they create the Secondary Colors, violet (purple), green, and orange. The Colors that sit between the Primary and Secondary colors are the Tertiary Colors,i.e., red-violet, blue-violet, blue-green, yellow-green, yellow-orange, and red-orange.

Colors that are opposite from one another on the Color Wheel are called Complementary Colors, such as blue and orange, yellow and violet, and green and red.

Value refers to the lightness or darkness of a color. Adding white to a color will make a Tint of that color. The more white the lighter the Tint.

Value_Color Wheel and  Hue Bar by LoserLunatic

Adding black to a color will make a Shade of that color. The more black you add the darker the Shade

Intensity refers to the brightness or dullness of a color.

:bulletgreen: Line is a stroke from one point to another. Lines are straight, curved, or wavy. They can be broken or continuous. They can go in a horizontal, diagonal or vertical direction. They can be long, short, thick or thin.

Line brushes by caotiicah      Dashed Line Brushes by Aless1984

:bulletgreen: Shape is a line that has been closed. There are Geometric Shapes, Abstract Shapes, and Organic Shapes. Shapes can be made with thick or thin outlines, or have color within the outline, but they are always flat.

Shape Brushes by rabidbribri         shape tag brushes by chokingonstatic   

:bulletgreen: Form is a 3-Dimensional Shape. Forms have length, width and depth. Boxes, spheres, and cylinders are examples of Forms.

3d box model by ooooak    3D Box Tutorial by Czgtsrm    STOCK PNG snail by MaureenOlder 

:bulletgreen: Space has two definitions.  It is the area between and around objects. It also refers to the illusion of Depth

The Space around objects are called Negative Space while the object itself is Positive Space.

Remembering Brian by TheFantaSim        First Fruit by TheFantaSim 

Depth, in a 2-Dimensional surface, can create the illusion that there is distance in the image.  This is created by using techniques of Atmospheric Perspective and Linear Perspective.

Field Of Yellow Flowers by TheFantaSim   Premade Train Station by EKeziahP

:bulletgreen: Texture is how a surface feels when touched, or how it looks like it should feel if touched. Smooth, rough, soft, hard, bumpy are all examples of Textures.

Texture Pack 30 by Sirius-sdz    Chaos - Abstract PS Brush Set by ex-astris1701

The Principles.

:bulletgreen: Balance is the way the Elements are distributed on the picture plane. Balance is determined when making decisions about the composition.

Symmetrical Balance: The Elements are equal on both sides from the center.

  Altered Reality by asaph70      Portrait by Blair-W

Asymmetrical Balance:The Elements are different from one side to the other.  This is the most dynamic of all of the balances.

Lightning Original by Stock-by-Kai   MH Classroom Base 2 by Shadow-People

Radial Balance is when the Elements are arranged around the central point.

Flower :STOCK: by sourcow  Cancer by TheFantaSim    Sienna by TheFantaSim

:bulletgreen:Emphasis is the part of the design that catches the viewer’s attention.

Usually Emphasis is created by doing something different with one of the Elements in contrast with the other Elements, such as making a Shape darker or making it lighter,  a Color brighter or duller, or placing a large Form in the center.

Little Friend by MissGrib 

:bulletgreen:Movement is a path through a design that is created with one or more of the Elements. The viewer's eye will catch that particular Element in a variety of places and move in the direction that it takes them. This is a good way to lead the viewer's eye through the artwork.

View From The Balcony by TheFantaSim

:bulletgreen: Repetition is repeating an Element at least one time.

Faith by TheFantaSim     The Goldfish Suite by TheFantaSim

:bulletgreen:Pattern happens when the Repetition of one or more of the Elements are done exactly the same over and over.

Doorway To My World by TheFantaSim

:bulletgreen:Proportion deals with the relationship between parts of a design and how they are related.

For example, when drawing the human figure, Proportion can refer to the size of the head compared to the rest of the body.

Heart Gallery by TheFantaSim

:bulletgreen:Rhythm is created when one or more Elements of design are used repeatedly through the design to create a feeling of organized movement.

Lucy In The Sky by TheFantaSim

:bulletgreen:Variety is doing something different to hold the viewer's attention.  More than likely, what is different is also the Emphasis.

:bulletgreen:Unity is the compilation of the Principles to create the feeling of harmony between all parts of the design. It also gives a sense of togetherness.

Using The Elements And Principles Of Design Together And Finding Unity In A Single PhotoManipulation

Doll In The Attic by TheFantaSim

In this last section I want to cover how the Principles are used together to create Unity in the Photomanipulation above.

:bulletgreen: The left and right background walls are establishing Symmetrical balance, while the mannequins, the drapes, and the blue painting on the right hand side in the background are creating Asymmetrical balance.

:bulletgreen: Since the "doll" is in the center of the back wall, and the color of her skin is brighter than the wall behind her, she becomes the Emphasis.

:bulletgreen: The lighter tones of the doll house, hat, tea cups, the tea pot, and the chandelier help create Movement because the eye follows them towards the back of the image.  

:bulletgreen: The Repetition of the Colors (the browns, oranges, and golds) help maintain the togetherness feeling of the image.

:bulletgreen: There is Pattern in the wallpaper.

:bulletgreen: The two mannequins and the similar colors establish a strong sense of Rhythm by moving the eye around the art work.

:bulletgreen: Even though there is blue in both the painting on the right wall and the tea pot, the blue in the painting is brighter, and therefore adds a little touch of Variety.

That's all. I hope this will help you be more aware of what you're doing when you're planning a Photomanipulation. Using the Elements purposefully while following the rules as define in the Principles should give you more exciting and interesting looking images.

If you have anything to add to this tutorial, have questions, or just want to make a statement about what  you just read, I welcome them in the comments with this blog.

Good luck, and have fun creating art!

Some definitions are adapted from KIDSPACE ART.new.4-hcurriculum.org/projects…

Don't Forget To Look For Many Great "How-T0" Tutorials In Our Favorites Gallery:

 If you have a topic that you like for me to cover, just make a comment under this blog.  :)

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Mandelblute's avatar
This is very helpful, I found things that I have never learn before
Thank you so very much :hug: