Principles of Design

Principles of Design
Principles of Design are the ways the
Elements of Art are used in your work.
Principles of Design
 Balance
 Harmony
 Variety
Proportion & Scale
Balance - An image
in which each 1/2 is
about the same
 Asymmetrical
Balance - One side
has more visual
weight than the
Radial Balance
Radial Balance is demonstrated when
parts of the work revolve around a
central point.
Make your subject
more important by
emphasizing it by
color, placement,
light, lines leading to
it, subject contrast
or any other method
to make it more
Emphasis & Subordination
One part of the image is emphasized
and the other parts are subordinate
(less important).
Repetition & Pattern
Any repeated shape becomes a pattern
Proportion & Scale
Proportion is the
relationship of parts of
the same object, or the
relationship between
different objects in the
same group
Scale refers to the
relative size of an object
in relation to other
Rhythm & Movement
Definition of Rhythm: a
movement in which some
elements recurs regularly.
Like a dance it will have a flow
of objects that will seem to be
like the beat of music.
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.
 With movement, give it space
in the image for the
Unity & Unity with Harmony
Definition of Unity: occurs when all of the elements of a piece combine to
make a balanced, harmonious, complete whole. Unity is another of those
hard-to-describe art terms but, when it's present, your eye and brain are
pleased to see it.
Unity with Harmony: Brings together a composition with similar units. If
your composition was using wavy lines and organic shapes you would
stay with those types of lines and not put in just one geometric shape.
(Notice how similar Harmony is to Unity)
Unity with Variety
A piece can have unity while
still having great variety.
Some elements may repeat
throughout the piece but a
great deal of variety still exists.
Contrasting differing elements
such as color, value, size,
light/dark etc.