Friday, December 2, 2022

Let's Talk Composition on Off the Wall Friday

 So it's that time of year again...time to buy my new Art Page-A-Day Gallery Calendar.  I've had one sitting on my desk for the last 10 years.  In fact, every day when I sit down to work, the first thing do is change the page so I can see what the "Art-of-the-Day" will be.  Throughout the day, I will glance back at the calendar noticing new things each time.  It's fun.  At the end of the year, I always go through picking out the days I want to save for inspiration.  

This year, however, I thought I would put some to use to talk about types of composition.  There are two things I look at when I first see a painting...#1 What type of composition does it use....#2 Where is the focal point.  Then usually I try to notice how the painter uses value and then hue to achieve both. 

Composition?!?  There are different types of composition?!?  As a matter of fact, there are!  Whether you're an art quilter or a traditional quilter, learning the types of composition will make your life easier when trying to come up with an original piece.

I pulled some days out of the year for some clear examples.

TRIANGLE - Psamanthe, Frederic Leighton, 1879 - (April 29th)

Circular - Autumn in America, Oneida County, New York, Albert Bierstadt (this isn't the best example but I liked this painting because I'm from Oneida County) (Sept 26)

Cross or Cruciform - Fleurs dans un Vase, Pierre Auguste Renoir, 1896 (Sept 9)

Balance Scales - A Winter's Day, Konstantin Ivan Gorbatov, 1934 (Jan 2/3)

Diagonal - The Voyage of Life: Old Age, Thomas Cole, 1842 (Aug 27/28)

See basic shapes lead to basic compositions which leads to great art.  All in a basic calendar for under 20 bucks.  I guess this falls under the category of's the little things.

So What Have You Been Up to Creatively?

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Jocelyn is Canadian Needle Nana said...

Love this post! Thank you for sharing these examples of composition. I found it really interesting.

Chris said...

Fascinating! I guess that is why I do not consider myself an artist. I did not see the compositions until you pointed them out. Well, maybe the balance one. I am so right brain that everything has to balance. Equally. On all sides. that is why I like sampler quilts. At least the simple ones.

Margaret said...

Hmmm...Where's "asymetrical"? The 'diagonal' comes closest. Just wondering!

Gwyned Trefethen said...

What a fabulous use of a page a day calendar. Your examples of some composition styles were clear and a great reminder to not to neglect composition when I launch into the next project.

Nina Marie said...

Hi Margaret - These aren't the only types of composition. I plan to do another post like this highlighting other ones - like asymmetrical - soon. Honestly, I try to keep my posts to a five minute read because that's how long I like to read a post - grin!