Line, Shape, and the principle of Contrast
In this chapter, we are going to be looking at 2 of the seven elements of art and how artist’s manipulate these elements to create the principle of contrast. Artists are always making decisions when creating a work of art. These decisions are directly related to how the artist wants the finished work to communicate to the viewer. Artists think about the amount of detail, what part of the work do they want the viewer to look at first, where should the viewer look next, and ultimately, what does it all mean. What we are doing is here is very similar to student learning to read a foreign language. Vocabulary first then sentences.
The first element of art addressed here is line. The definition of a line in art is the same as in any discipline, something that connects two points. It can be either real or implied but its function is to get you to look from pt. A to pt. B.
In this image, the artist is using line to create an outline of shape. Created somewhere within a one-thousand-year span, the image is 150’ feet long. Obviously, those who created this were not able to see it from the perspective that we see it from in this image. That makes the symmetry that much more remarkable.
Who do you think the intended audience is for this image? Who were they communicating with. Also, imagine being the first person to fly over it after the invention of the airplane who got to see it like this for the first time!