DESIGN CONCEPTSUsed in “Black Squares” and “Nursery Rhyme” Problem
DESIGN CONCEPTS•Framing•Balance•Touching•Overlapping and cropping of forms•Illusory space•Contrast of elements•Negative and positive
FRAMINGThink of the outside edge of a picture as aframe. Framing is the position of an objectwithin the boundary of the image. Whenyou crop a picture to a smaller size, you’rechanging the relationship to the frame.When you make a composition fromscratch your elements can be within theframe, touching the frame, or appear toextend beyond the frame, like looking outa window and seeing objects partiallyhidden by the wall around the window.
BALANCE As you make a composition from scratch your elements need to be arranged so they appear balanced. This is like balancing objects on a See- Saw (a flat plank on a triangular fulcrum); if you put a large object on one end and a small one on the other you must change the position of the fulcrum or add more small objects to balance the big one.
TOUCHING Distinct elements within a composition don’t have to be separate; they can just touch at a corner or along part or all of one edge. The way things touch can tell you about their relationship to each other.
OVERLAPPING Distinct elements within a composition can overlap each other or be cropped by the frame of the image. When combined with changes in relative size this can imply position in illusory space.
ILLUSORY SPACESince images on paper are flat (2D) you can onlycreate an illusion of 3D space by the positionand relative size of the objects within thecomposition.Since we usually can’t see through objects weassume that when one overlaps another, theone in front is closer. As things get closer to theeye they appear larger, so if two things looksimilar but one is larger it’s probably closer. In acomposition this is called relative size. By usingdifferent sizes and overlapping you can create aplausible illusion of position in 3D space.
CONTRAST You can create or suggest many different meanings just by the contrast of elements in terms of size, direction, space, and position. • Size (larger or smaller) • Direction (rotation of objects, or groups of objects • Space (separating objects) • Position (of elements, relative to each other and the image frame)
NEGATIVE+POSITIVE 01 If you put a single element onto a page, say a large black letter “A” on a white background, you’d say that the “A” is in the foreground. We’re used to thinking about the recognizable, foreground object as being more important; in art and design it’s called positive. Everything else, the white space around it and the white triangular hole in it is said to be negative.
NEGATIVE+POSITIVE 02 Design tends to treat positive and negative elements as having equal value, as interlocking parts of a whole like a yin- yang symbol. Negative can even become positive, and vice versa. In a good composition there is a dynamic relationship between positive elements and negative space (dynamic in this sense means moving or changing).