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Art Viewing Guide
When viewing art, the following items should be considered. Each art piece may not have all of the following elements, in those cases it is important to determine if their absence is relevant.
- Perspective is the way in which artists create an illusion of depth on a flat surface. For hundreds of years painters have tried to represent accurately a scene that exists in three dimensions on a two-dimensional canvas. One of the ways to create this illusion is to make the objects that are far away smaller than those that are closer to the viewer.
- Just as stage designers use lighting to spotlight a performer, painters will often highlight important elements in paintings.
- Use of different colors provide emphasis, emotion, etc. Often colors highlight parts of an image to draw specific attention to it.
- By using light and shadows, artists give volume to their subjects. One way one can give figures three-dimensional form is to reflect light off their bodies and paint shadows cast by them.
- Depicting motion is a technique painters use to keep our attention focused on the picture.
- Proportion usually refers to the way different elements in a painting relate to each other in terms of size.
- Many artists include items that symbolize other items, emotions, beliefs, ideas, etc.