Elements and principles of design - part 1

Elements and principles are the tools you use to build your composition. Successfully combining the two will result in unity and good design.

Elements of design:

Line ~ Leonardo DaVinci believed that "...the organic complexity of living nature, right down to its minutest nuances of mobile form, is founded upon the inexhaustibly rich interplay of geometrical motifs in the context of natural law." ie; everything you see is composed of circles, triangles, squares, lines, curves or dots.

Lines can be thick or thin, straight, curved, fast, slow, agitated, jagged, lyrical, decorative, symbolic, structural, descriptive. Line brings energy to a design. Intersecting lines can create a focal point. 

Shape ~ The actual shape of an object is a positive space. The background or spaces between positive shapes are negative spaces

In many cultures shapes are symbols. For example:

Circle = unity, sun, moon, spirituality

Triangle = trinity, connection, home, desires

Square = stability, earth, solidity, reality

Rectangle = grounding, foundation, rationality, solidarity

Spiral = growth, cosmic motion, spirit, evoloution


Value ~ the range between light and dark

high-key ~ light values suggest an upbeat mood                        


low-key ~ dark values project a moody, introspective feeling

The other elements of design are colour, size, pattern and movement.... see post "Elements and principles of design - part 2"

No comments: