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Art Appreciation Study guide 1

Exam 1 Study Guide
Visual Elements - 9
 Line– the pathway of a moving point. Simplest, most basic, most complex.
Qualities of a Line
1. Vertical – creates tension, anxiety, confusion, confinement.
2. Horizontal – implies relaxation, calm, quiet, peace.
3. Diagonal – suggests slight amount of movement. Unstable. Similar to a line in
4. Curve – suggests movement and direction. Represents chaos and is based on
human body. More agitated than diagonal line.
5. Hard – rigid, defined, clear beginning & clear end, made in one single stroke.
Male line and confident.
6. Soft – feathery and broken. Female line and hesitant.
Types of a Line
1. Actual – actually exists, line is actually there.
2. Implied – suggested it is there, imaginary. (i.e. wall and doorway)
Functions of a Line
1. Outline & Contour
a. Outline – delineates the figure, done with an actual line & not much
b. Contour – implied line. Defines edges.
2. Shading & Modeling
a. Shading & modeling – illusion of 3-D. created through light and
b. Techniques for Shading and Modeling
i. Hatching – semi parallel lines (vertical, diagonal, horizontal, etc.)
to give a sense of 3-dimensionality
ii. Cross hatching – cross lines together
3. Texture
a. Texture – has a tactile quality
4. Direction & Movement
a. Direction and movement – describes and shows a movement.
 Shape – two dimensional area (flat surface) with identifiable boundaries
Kinds of Shapes
1. Geometric shape – must have angles, man made
2. Organic shape – based on human body, (curves), nature
Types of Shapes
1. Actual shape – actual shape that is there
2. Implied shape – shape that is not actually there.
 Figure ground relationship – figure needs a place to leave. Can have just a
o Figure – actual geometric shape
o Ground – negative space around figure
 Figure ground reversal – figures will interchange
 Mass – refers to a 3 dimensional object that exists in space
Kinds of Mass
1. Open form – can be looked through, distractions, open spaces MUST HAVE
OPENING (ex. Human body), pieces are projected outward
2. Closed form – solid, compact, self-sufficient, hard, no distractions.
 Light – reveals , sets atmosphere/tone, creates status, can also guide.
Kinds of Light
1. Natural light – most important, affects emotions, ancient cultures
2. Artificial light – artificial
Value – relative lightness or darkness of a color or neutral.
Neutrals – gray, black, brown, white.
Relative value – transition of colors to neutrals
Highlight – lightest area on a whole composition
Darkest value – darkest
Shade – Color + Black
Tone – Color + Gray
Tint – Color + White
Gradation of value – in between darkest and highlight
 Chiaroscuro – makes us believe what we are looking at had volume and mass.
It is the gradual shifting from light to dark through gradations of values.
 Color – theories created by Isaac Newton
Color Theories
1. Color = Light
a. There is no color in the absence of light
b. Objects absorb all colors but reflects the one that you see
c. White reflects all colors
d. Black absorbs all colors
2. Colors affect us physically and psychologically
a. Orange = hungry, red = duality b/w love and anger, blue = sad
3. Temperature
a. Warm colors – red, orange, yellow. Warm colors appear closer.
b. Cool colors – blue, green, violet. Cool colors appear to recede.
4. Color wheel
a. Primary colors – red, yellow, blue. Colors already exist
b. Secondary colors – Orange, violet, green.
c. Tertiary colors – Primary + Secondary
d. Color Schemes
i. Monochromatic – 1 color
ii. Complementary – colors that show unity, full intensity, and are
5. After image theory
a. Eyes replace a color with complementary colors after viewing it for too
6. Optical Color Mixture
a. Put two colors next to each other and look far away. Your brain creates
a mixture of the colors.
i. Pointillism – with points
Properties of Color
1. Hue – means color. Only colors on color wheel.
2. Value – relative lightness or darkness of a color
a. High key value – light values of color
b. Low key value – dark values of a color
3. Intensity – purity and brilliance of a color
 Palete – colors used on palete and transferred to painting
 Texture – refers to the tactile qualities of surfaces
Types of Texture
1. Visual texture – don’t need to touch. Can read through eyes.
2. Actual texture – can actually touch it. It exists. Includes all 3-D objects.
a. Impasto – heavy application of paint. Only situation when actual
texture occurs in a 2-D painting. Only happens in acrylic and oil.
 Space – all around us
 Picture plane – Where 2-D painting goes
Techniques of Space
1. Overlapping – object in front covers partially the one in the back
2. Diminishing size – objects far away in distance look small. Distance will be in
background. Foreground + Background.
3. Vertical placement – no background/foreground. Divide picture in half
through top and bottom. Bottom will be closer, top will be farther.
4. Linear perspective – way to create 3-D logical space in a 2-D logical surface. It
is systematic, methodic, and consistent.
a. Vanishing point + horizon line – only works with geometric shapes.
Lines curve at vanishing point.
b. Mathematical diminishing size – geometric shapes.
5. Atmospheric perspective – how light reflects on surface of the atmosphere.
Blurry, pale, grayish, greenish, bluish.
Time and Movement
Art movement – consists of several artists following the same principles, ideas,
and rules
Types of Motion
1. Kinetic movement – actual movement
2. Implied motion – creates with curves and diagonals. Repetition of shape or
image over and over again in different positions.
Mobiles – Alexander Calder invented them.
Futurism – interested by how fast life is moving. Speed, energy, movement.
OP art – creates optical illusions of movement
Implied time – suggests passage of time like a narrative.
Principles of Design – 4
 Design – natural perception. Organizing the visual elements to create good
compositions using the Principles of Design.
Unity and Variety
 Unity – wholeness achieved by repetition of shape or form. Too much is
 Variety – something that creates diversity, difference, and interest. Too much
can create chaos.
 Balance – gives a sense of equilibrium by the distribution of elements.
Types of Balance
1. Formal symmetry – refers to exact correspondence of compositional elements
on either side of an imaginary dividing line. Mirror image. Found in
architecture and sculptures. Calm, order, peace.
2. Symmetrical balance – resembles formal symmetry but does not match
perfectly on both sides.
3. Asymmetrical balance – overall sense of equilibrium. Sides don’t need to
4. No balance
 Emphasis – draws attention to an area of the composition.
 Focal point – specific spot of figure the artist wants the viewer to see.
 Directional forces – guides us to focal point. Implied lines, pointing gestures,
light, vibrant colors, faces.
Scale and Proportion
 Scale – refers to size. Relative size of an object compared with others of its
kind. The expectation of normal.
 Hierarchical scale – indicate relative importance of individuals in a
composition. Found in Egyptian culture.
 Proportion – relationship of parts to the whole. Expectations of normal.
o Egyptian – palm of hand is unit of measurement. Count at hairline with
18 palms of hand.
o Greek cannon of proportion – whole head unit of measurement. 7½
heads for normal human. 8 for heroes and gods.