The basic elements of design are line, shape, form, texture and color. None of these building blocks can be applied successfully in isolation. It is the interaction between these elements that makes the process of designing so creative and individual. While we initially differentiate between five distinct elements of design it is by putting them all together, weighing their importance and considering them in our work that strong art pieces are created. These may be set in a realistic or abstract realm.
Let us begin with the element of line: Line has unlimited variations. It is important as it leads to describe shape, and it aids in recognizing objects. We use line in many different ways:
Implied line connects a series of dots …………. —————–
The suggestive line is not a real or tangible line. It could be the image of a hand pointing towards a specific point in the image, making our eye move across.
Line direction is an important tool to make the eye move and even set a specific mood: For example, horizontal lines imply rest or a lack of motion. When analyzing landscapes watch for these horizontal qualities. Diagonal and vertical lines suggest movement and action.
Line quality is described as thick, thin, rough or smooth and relates closely to line value. Using line in quilting is an important element: When outlining the contour of a shape, attention is drawn to this area.
Explicit line provides sharp contrasts, often very important in abstract works of art.
This concludes my short introduction to line. To find more information check out the web, browse through the art and design section of your local library, or visit your favorite second hand bookstore. Art and design books, no matter what the publication date, offer an array of information and examples in images. I have included photographs with a strong focus on line in today’s slide show. Enjoy! Check back Sunday when I touch on the design element of shape.