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TEST COLOUR,

COMPOSITION &
SPACE

Primary colours
RED, YELLOW,
BLUE
Most pure
(saturated)
colours
Cannot be
mixed using
other colours
You can mix all

Secondary colours
ORANGE,
GREEN, PURPLE
Obtained by
mixing 2 primary
colours together
in equal
amounts

Colour contrasts
Contrast = difference
warm-cool contrast
colour-against colour
contrast
complementary contrast

Cool & warm colours

Cool & warm colours

Colour

cool-warm
contrast

Mondriaan, The red tree, 1908

Colours can have an effect on how you feel. Some colours feel
cool and
peaceful, others feel warm and exciting. We call this colour
temperature.
The colours that tend to feel cool are blue, green and purple.
Those that tend to feel warm are red, orange and yellow. Blue gets
warmer as it moves along the colour wheel towards red; red gets
cooler as it moves towards blue.
Warm and cool colours next to each other form a contrast a coolwarm contrast. This contrast is often used by artists to create
the impression of distance in a painting. Cool colours tend to

Colour

cool-warm
contrast

A cool-warm
contrast can
create depth in a
painting
Warm colours
move forward
Cool colours
recede

Leonardo da Vinci, Mona Lisa, 1503-07, oil on


canvas

Colour

Colou
rcontr against-co
ast
lour
We call a strong difference between saturated
colours a colour-against-colour contrast.
The contrast is the strongest between the
primary colours (red, yellow, blue) and
becomes weaker as the colours become less
saturated.
Matisse: the colour-against-colour contrast
he uses gives his painting a bright and lively
character.

Henri Matisse, Blue table, 1947, oil on canvas

Niki de Saint Phaille, Murten

A colourful and lively


sculpture

Complementary colours

GREEN & RED

Complementary colours

BLUE & ORANGE

Complementary colours

YELLOW & PURPLE

Colour

comp
le
contr mentary
as t

VincentvanGogh,Cafterrasbijavond,1888

Colours that are the most different to each other


those opposite each other on the colour wheel
make each other look brighter when placed next to
each other.

Colour

comp
le
contr mentary
as t

Red next to green


seems brighter than it
does next to orange.
So do blue & orange
and purple & yellow.

VincentvanGogh,Cafterrasbijavond,1888

We call this a complementary contrast.


Artists use this contrast to make things stand
out, to
emphasize them or to strengthen the effect.

Colour

comp
le
contr mentary
as t

Strongest contrast
Colours opposite each other on the colour
wheel
VincentvanGogh,Cafterrasbijavond,1888
Complementary colours = one primary +
one secondary colour
red (primary) + green (secondary)
blue (primary) + orange (secondary)
yellow (primary) + purple (secondary)

Colour

saturated
colours

Most pure, intense


colours
Not mixed with black or
white
Bright and expressive

CarelAppel

All the colours on the colour wheel are saturated


PabloPicasso,Weepingwoman,1937

Colour

unsaturated
or
muted colou
rs

Mixed with white, black or other


colours
Not as intense as saturated
colours
Muted = soft, gedempt

A colour mixed with white is a tint


A colour mixed with black is a shade
Tints and shades are known as tones

Colour
saturated or muted?

Matisse uses
many bright,
saturated
colours
The effect is
happy and bold

Matisse, Muziek, 1939

Colour
saturated or muted?

Here you see a


broad scale of
light and dark
tones in almost
one colour

Murillo. De jonge
bedelaar

Colour
saturated or muted?
The colours
here get darker
and more
muted as they
approach the
edge of the
painting.

Paul Klee, Ancient Sound, Abstract on Black,

Saturated or muted?

ClaudeMonet,Waterlilies,1907

Saturated or muted?

KarelAppel

Colour
h

armonious
colours

Harmonious colours
look peaceful
together, match
well together
They are similar to
each other
Colours next to each
other on the colour
wheel are
harmonious Monet,Waterlillies

Harmonious colours

Comp

ositio
n

The way in which


forms, lines and
colours are placed in
certain directions in
an artwork
Always in relationship
to the picture frame
(kader) = border of
the picture plane
(beeldvlak)

Karin Schipper, Turtle,


2005
Mondriaan, atelier

Kouros, 540 v. Chr.,


Griekenland

Pantheon, 118 - 25 n. Chr., Rome

Bernini, Charity with 4 children, 162728

There is no mirroring
with an asymmetrical
composition.
This has a dynamic
effect.

Symmetrical & Asymmetrical composition

A symmetrical
composition has an
axis.
Both sides are more or
less the same
(although
mirrored).
This axis may be
horizontal, vertical or
diagonal.
The effect is peaceful
and static (still).

El Greco, Laocoon, 1608-14

Central
composition

Geertgen tot Sint Jans, Worshipping


Holy Mary, ca. 1490-95

Marc Chagall, the Storm, 1914

Kenneth Noland, Bell, 1959

In a central composition the most important element is situated in


the middle

Horizontal composition

Vincent van Gogh, Wheat field with crows, 1890

Paul Klee, Fire in the Evening, 1929

Vertical
composition

n
o
i
t
i

Agasias of Ephesus, BorgheseGladiator,


100 v. Chr.

g
a
i
D

n
o

l
a

s
A
diagonal
o
p composition
m
co is dynamic; it gives
the
impression of
movement.

Caravaggio, Deposition

Kandinsky, Composition IX,


1936

Triang
u
lar
comp
ositio
n

Rembrandt van Rijn, self portrait,


1658

Menelaos and Patroklos,


Florence

Theo van Doesburg, the card


players, 1916

This composition is in the form of a triangle.


The most important elements are situated within this triangle
The effect is stately and dignified.
In 3-dimensional (3-d) artworks we call this a pyramidal
composition

Overall
compositio
n

Ren Magritte, Golconde, 1953

The pattern could


go
on endlessly
(outside
the frame)

Andy Warhol, 100 blikken, 1962

Guido Geelen, Untitled, 1992


Jackson Pollock, Lavendel mist, 1950

In an overall
composition
every element is
spread evenly
throughout the
artwork

There is no specific
focal point
(direction
to look in) with this
sort of composition

LESSON ACTIVITY
COMPOSITION

Draw a picture frame in your sketchbook and divide it into 8 rectangles

central

horizontal

vertical

diagonal

overall

triangular

symmetrical

asymmetrical

Suggestio
n o f S p a ce

overlapping

overlapping

overlapping

cropping

Space

Inka Essenhigh, Subway, 2005

Diminution

Objects that are further away, seem smaller


If you make things in the background of a
drawing or a painting smaller, then you can
create the impression of distance and depth

Repous

Vincent van Gogh, De bloeiende puimenboom,


1887

Caspar David Friedrich, Wandelaar boven de nevelen, 1818

e
Spasc
oir

Johannes Verneer, De kunst van het schilderen, 1666-73

REPOUSSOIR is a technique whereby a large, dark object is


placed in the
foreground of a painting or drawing, to increase the impression of
depth
and space.
This object covers part of the picture and is generally cropped by
the
picture frame.
The viewer is drawn into the picture, because the object looks like
its also

Gustave Caillebotte, La Place de l'Europe, temps de pluie, 1877

Repoussoir

Repoussoir

William,Turner, Keelman haven in


Coals bij maanlicht, 1835

Spahcere
tive
ic perspec
Atmosp

As objects in a landscape move


towards the distance, they become
lighter, cooler in colour (bluer) and
more fuzzy.
We call this atmospheric
perspective
Forms become vaguer, less
detailed
Colours become lighter and
cooler (more blue)
Jan van Goye, 17de eeuw

Spahcere
tive
ic perspec
Atmosp

Spahcere
tive
ic perspec
Atmosp

Spahcere
tive
ic perspec
Atmosp

Spahcere
tive
ic perspec
Atmosp

Spahcere
tive
ic perspec
Atmosp

Spahcere
tive
ic perspec
Atmosp