The composition of a painting is the way in which it organizes the flat space of the painting's surface. In analyzing composition, it can help to imagine the painting as consisting of various zones: left, right, centre, bottom, edges, and to ask whether the painting is structured according to dominant lines or shapes. In this unit we will consider various aspects of composition.
In section a we shall begin by discussing the roles played by dominant lines and force lines.
In section b we then go on to consider the notions of open and closed composition.
In section c we then examine balance and symmetry.
Finally, in section d the notions of rhythm and movement are discussed.
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© Matthew Treherne, School of Languages, Cultures and Societies, University of Leeds, LS2 9JT.
This resource was created with the help of a University of Leeds Faculty of Arts Enterprise Knowledge Transfer Grant.