SCHOOL OF ART

VOCABULARY

BASIC 2D VOCABULARY

LINE
: a point in motion, 2. a series of adjacent points, 3. a connection between points, 4. an implied connection between points. Lines can divide, connect and define a composition.

-calligraphic line: derived from the Greek words for beautiful and writing; an expressive line, highly personal line. Calligraphic lines are often produced with brush and ink and generally vary in thickness.

outline: a line that simply defines the outer edges of a form. no suggestion of three-dimensionality.

-contour line: a line that defines the inner and outer edges of a form and suggests three-dimensionally.

cross contour: multiple, curving, parallel lines running over the surface of an object horizontally and/or vertically which describe its surface topographically. A cross-contour drawing is much like wire framing in three-dimensional computer modeling.

crosshatching: a technique used in drawing and printmaking to shade an object using two or more networks of parallel lines. Darker values are created as the number of linear networks increases.

SHAPE: a flat, enclosed area created when 1. a line connects to enclose an area, 2. an area of color or texture is defined by a clear boundary, 3. an area is surrounded by other shapes.

definition
: 1. the degree to a shape is distinguished from both the ground area and from other shapes within the design. Clearly defined shapes tend to advance while blurred shapes tend to recede. 2. the degree of resolution or focus of an entire image.

-figure: the primary or positive shape in a design; a shape which is noticeably separated from the surrounding ground or negative shape. The figure is the dominant, advancing shape in a figure-ground relationship.

-figure/ground reversal: an arrangement in which positive and negative shapes alternatively command attention. Also known as positive and negative interchange.

-geometric shape: a shape derived from or suggestive of mathematics. Geometric shapes are characterized by crisp, precise edges and mathematically consistent curves.

-negative shape: 1. any clearly defined area around a positive shape. 2. the receding shape in a figure-ground relationship. 3. a shape created through the absence of an object rather than through the presence of an object.

-non-objective shapes: circles, squares and other shapes which are not based on a specific perceptual source.

-organic shape: a shape based on forms from the natural world or suggestive of living organisms. also know as biomorphic shape.

-positive shape: the principal or foreground shape in a design and the dominant shape or figure in a figure-ground relationship

-rectilinear shape: a shape whose edges are created by straight lines and angular corners.

TEXTURE: the surface quality of a two dimensional shape or a three dimensional volume.

characteristic texture: the inherent or familiar texture of a material, such as the gritty texture of sand versus the bumpy texture of burlap.

-contradictory texture: the unfamiliar use of a texture or the addition of an unusual texture to the surface of an object.

-actual texture: texture that can be felt physically

-visual texture: 1. a surface treatment that simulates an actual physical texture, 2. any covering of a surface with multiple marks.

VALUE:
1. the lightness or darkness of a color, 2. the relative lightness or darkness of a surface.

-gradation: any gradual transition from one color to another or from one shape or volume to another. In drawing, shading created through the gradation of grays can be used to suggest three-dimensional form.

-lighting: the deliberate manipulation of light to increase emotional or visual impact through value.

-shading: in drawing, a continuous series a grays which are used to suggest three-dimensionality and to create the illusion of light.

value scale
: a range of grays which are presented in a consistent sequence.

-value contrast: the relationship between areas of light and dark. General contrast values between joined areas are termed "low-value", "mid-value", and "high-value". Theoretically, between white and black there could be an almost unlimited number of values. When value contrast is minimized, the range of values creates a subtle effect. When the value contrast is high, the effect is more "high-contrast" or dynamic.

- value pattern:
this is the arrangement and the amount of variation in light and dark areas. By adjusting the number of values, contrasts, and patterns, will affect the emotional feel of a painting or design.

COLOR

-accent color: a color that stands out from its surroundings. Often used to attract attention to a specific part of a design.

-additive color: color created by combining projected beams of light. The additive color primaries are red, green and blue and the secondary colors are cyan, magenta, and yellow.

analogous color
: a color scheme based on hues that are adjacent on a color wheel, such as red, red-orange, orange and yellow-orange.

-chromatic gray: a gray made from a mixture of colors rather than using black and white.

-chromatic value - every color in itself has a value. Pure yellow is very light in value, while pure purple is dark in value. Mixing white, black, gray, or other colors to create a new value can create further values. Value and color are related.

-complementary colors: Hues which oppose one another on a color wheel. When juxtaposed, complementary colors create wonderful contrast; when mixed, complementary colors create a range of browns.

-color key: a color that dominates an image and provides an overall visual or emotional effect.

-hue:  name of a color, as determined by its wavelength. Red, blue, green, yellow, and so forth are all hues.

intensity
: the purity, saturation, or chroma of a color. For example, fire engine red is a high intensity color, while brick red is a low intensity color.

-monochromatic color system
: a color system based on variations in a single hue. For example, a light, pastel blue, a medium navy blue and a dark blue-black may be used in a monochromatic color scheme.

-primary colors: The additive primaries (colors created directly using light) are red, green and blue. The subtractive (or pigment) color primaries are yellow, magenta red and cyan blue

push/pull: Pictorial space is like a balloon. When we "push" on one side, the other side appears to bulge outward. Through our color choices, we can cause various areas in a composition to expand or contract visually. In most cases, cool, low-intensity colors tend to recede while warm, high-intensity colors tend to advance.

secondary colors
: hues mixed from adjacent primaries. In paint, the secondary colors are violet, green and orange.

-shade: a hue that has been mixed with black

-simultaneous contrast: the optical alteration of a color by a surrounding color. For example, when a square of blue is placed on a yellow background, the blue appears dark and cool. The same blue will much lighter when it is placed on a black background.

-split complementary: a complementary color plus the two colors on either side of its complement on the color wheel.

-subtractive color: color created when light is selectively reflected off a pigmented or dyed surface. For example, when an object is painted red, the molecular makeup of the red pigment absorbs (subtracts) all of the spectral light except the red wavelength, which is reflected back to the viewer's eyes. The subtractive primaries are yellow, magenta red and cyan blue.

-symbolic color: a color which has been assigned a particular meaning by the members of a society. For example, in the United States, the white color of a wedding gown symbolizes purity, while in Borneo, while symbolizes death.

-temperature: the psychological heat generated by a color

-tertiary color: a hue that is mixed from a primary color and an adjacent secondary color.

-tint: a hue that has been mixed with white

tone: a hue that has been mixed with black and white

-triadic harmony: a color scheme using three colors which are equidistant on a color wheel.

BALANCE: equilibrium among interacting and/or opposing forces in a visual composition.

-asymmetrical balance: equilibrium among visual elements which differ in size, number, weight, color, or texture. Asymmetrical balance is generally dramatic and dynamic.

-module: a standardized unit or compositional component

-system: a group of interrelated elements of parts forming a collective entity. The system is the way you place your modules next to each other. One may start in a corner and work across and down, or one may start in the center and work in a growing spiral outward.

-symmetrical balance: a form of balance that is created when shapes are mirrored on either side of an axis, as in a composition that is vertically divided down the center.

-radial symmetry: a form of balance that is created when shapes or volumes are mirrored both vertically and horizontally, with the center of the composition acting as a focal point.

-visual weight: 1. the inclination of shapes to float or sink based on their  solidity and compositional location. 2. the relative importance of a visual element within a design.

EMPHASIS: special attention given to some aspect of a composition, which gives it prominence.

-accent: a line, shape, or color that has been emphasized. Using an accent, a designer can bring attention to a specific part of a composition, shift visual balance, and increase the rhythmic variety within a pattern.

-anomaly:  an obvious break from norm in a design. Often used to create an accent or to emphasize an idea.

-contrast: the degree of difference between compositional parts or between one image and another. High contrast tends to be eye catching, and is often used to create dynamic, highly readable images.

ILLUSION OF SPACE:

-amplified perspective: the exaggerated use of linear perspective to achieve a dramatic and engaging presentation of the subject. Amplified perspective is often created using a unusual viewing position, such as a bird's eye view, an accelerated convergence, or some form of distortion.

-atmospheric perspective: a visual phenomenon in which the atmospheric density progressively increases, hazing over the perceived world as distance increases. Overall definition lessens, details fade, contrasts become muted and in a landscape, an blue mist descends.

one-point perspective: a form of linear perspective in which the lines receding into space converge at a single vanishing point of the eye line (also called the horizon line).

-two-point perspective: a form of linear perspective in which the lines receding into space converge at a two vanishing points of the eye line (or horizon line), on to the left of the object being drawn and one to the right of the object being drawn. Used when the object being drawn is placed at an angle to the picture plane.

Basic 3D Vocabulary

abstract (verb): 1. to simplify, emphasize or distort qualities of perceptual reality. 2. (noun) the reduction of an image or object to an essential aspect of its form or concept.

accent: an area of particular interest or importance.

activated space: the area controlled by a physical object, including its physical volume or mass and the surrounding or enclosed space.

additive sculpture: a physical object constructed from separate parts which have been connected using glues, joints, stitching, welds and so on.

armature: a linear skeleton which provides support for other materials.

assemblage: an additive method in which the artist or designer constructs the artwork using objects and images which were originally created for another purpose. Essentially, assemblage can be defined as three-dimensional collage.

asymmetrical balance: an equilibrium among visual elements which differ in size, number, weight, color, or texture. Asymmetrical balance is generally non-axial and very dynamic.

balance:
a visual or physical equilibrium among interacting and/or opposing forces in a composition.

base: a horizontal support for a physical object, such as a marble block for mounting a bronze sculpture.

boundary: the dividing line between objects, images, or experiences.

characteristic texture: the inherent or familiar texture of a material. The gleaming reflective surface of a steel teapot, the transparent and reflective qualities of glass, and the gritty texture of clay are all characteristic textures.

compression: the forcing or crushing of material into a smaller, denser condition and its visual dynamics and implied psychological effects.

connection: 1. a unifying relationship in a composition. 2. a physical joining, through joints, welds, stitching, and so forth.

content: the ideas embodied in an artwork

context: the situation in which an artwork is seen.

contradictory texture: the unfamiliar use of a texture or the addition of an unusual texture to the surface of an object. Meret Oppenheim's "Object, " a cup, plate and spoon covered with fur gains its impact from its textural contradiction.

contrast: the degree of difference between objects, shapes, colors and so forth.

dominant: (or dominance) the most prominent visual element

earthwork: an artwork that has been created through the transformation of natural sites into an aesthetic statement.

emphasis: special attention given to some aspect of a composition, which gives it prominence.

form: 1. the physical manifestation of a design as opposed to the content, or the idea behind a design. 2. the organization or arrangement of visual elements to create a unified artwork. 3. a three dimensional object: for example, a square is a shape, a cube is a form.

formal elements:
the components of a basic visual language. The formal elements for 3D design are point, line, plane, volume, mass, space, texture, color and time.

freestanding sculpture: sculpture which is self-supporting and is designed to be viewed from all sides.

function: the purpose of a design or the objective which motivates the designer. For an industrial designer, the primary purpose of a design is often utilitarian. For example, he or she may be required to design a more fuel-efficient automobile. For a sculptor, the primary purpose of a design is aesthetic: he or she seeks to create an artwork that engages the viewer emotionally and philosophically. However, a sculpture, like an automobile, must be physically well-constructed, and a car, like a sculpture, must have aesthetic appeal.

gesture: the underlying sense of movement or the overall expressive qualities of an object.

gradation: any gradual transition from one color to another or from form to another.

harmony: a pleasing or soothing relationship among colors, shapes, or other design elements.

implied lines: lines that are suggested by the positions of shapes or objects within a design. With an implied line, the viewer mentally connects the points.

intensity: the purity, saturation, or chroma of a color. For example, fire engine red is a high intensity color, while brick red is a low intensity color.

installation: an artwork or a design which presents an ensemble of images and objects within a three-dimensional environment.

in the round: a three dimensional object which is self-supporting and is designed to be viewed from all sides, as in free-standing sculpture.

junction
: 1. the place at which objects or events meet. 2. a physical intersection between elements or parts in a three-dimensional object.

juxtaposition: adjacent placement of visual elements

Kinetic art: works designed to move or change through time.

line: 1. a point in motion, 2. a series of adjacent points, 3. a connection between points, 4. an implied connection between points. Line is one of the basic elements of design.

maquette: a small scale model, usually developed as an aid in planning.

mass: a solid three-dimensional form. A massive object can be as dense and heavy as a bar of gold or as light and porous as a sponge.

module: a small unit which can be repeated to create a larger piece.

modeling: an additive sculptural process by which a plastic material is formed into an artwork or design.

negative space: 1. any clearly defined area around a positive form.  2. a space created through the absence of an object rather than through the presence of an object.

non-objective
or non-representational: designs and artworks that  are strictly formal and have no external subject.

orthographic projection: a drawing system widely used by artists and designers to delineate the top, bottom and four side views of a three-dimensional object. Orthographic means "true picture." Unlike perspective drawing, which is designed to create the illusion of space, an orthographic projection is constructed using parallel lines which accurately delineate the object.

participatory sculpture: a three-dimensional artwork which is designed to physically engage the viewer.

pedestal:  a vertical support for a sculptural object. Also know as a plinth.

performance art:
a live presentation, often including the artist, usually combining elements from a variety of art forms, such a film, video, theater and dance.

plane:
in three-dimensional design, an area with measurable width and height. Shapes that have been combined to create three-dimensional structures are called planes.

ready-made: a functional manufactured object that is displayed as a work of art.

primary contour: the outer edges of a physical object, such as the extremities of a carved sculpture.

proportion: a comparative relationship between the parts to a whole. For example, in figure drawing, the model's head is often compared to the overall height of the body.

proximity:  the distance between the parts of a structure or between an object and the audience.

radial symmetry: a form of balance that is created when shapes or volumes are mirrored both vertically and horizontally, with the center of the composition acting as a focal point.

relief: sculpture in which forms project out from a flat surface. The degree of projection ranges from low to high relief.

repetition: the use of the same visual element or visual effect a number of times in the same composition. Can be used to increase unity in a composition, produce a rhythmic movement, or emphasize the importance of a visual idea.

rhythm: the repetition of multiple parts in a composition to create a pattern of sound and silence, positive and negative, or other contrasting forces.

scale: a size relationship between two separate objects, such as the relationship between the size of the Statue of Liberty and a human visitor to the monument.

secondary contour: the inner edges of a physical object, such as the internal design and detailing of a carved sculpture.

section: in orthographic projection, a slice of an object or architectural structure which reveals with internal structure and detail.

site specific sculpture: an artwork expressly design for and installed in a specific location.

space: the area within, between, or around an area of substance.

spatial orientation: relationship of an object to the ground plane and other objects.

subtractive sculpture: any process by which an artist or designer removes materials from a larger mass, gradually revealing the form within

symbol: a form which represents something beyond its immediate meaning.

symmetrical balance: a form of balance that is created when shapes are mirrored on either side of an axis, as in a composition that is vertically divided down the center.

tangibility: the substantiality of an object or the degree to which an object or a force can be felt.

tension
: the extension of an object through stretching or bending.

texture
: the surface quality of a two dimensional shape or a three dimensional volume. Texture can be created visually, using multiple marks, physically, through surface variation, or through the inherent property of a specific material such as sand as opposed to polished glass.

torsion: the distortion of an object through a twisting movement

transition: the process of changing from one state or form to another. For example, the surface of a metal sculpture as it shifts from a smooth to a rough surface or the manner in which a computer drawing morphs from one form to another.

unity:  the oneness or wholeness in a design which occurs when all parts work together to create a cohesive whole.

volume: In three-dimensional design, a volume is an enclosed area of three dimensional space. In two-dimensional design, basic volumes such as cubes, cones and spheres are created though the illusion of space. In time design, volume is one quality of music.