In painting, painting composition is very important. Another way to explain painting composition is to say the arrangement of the painting. How the artist arranges the subject and other elements is what decides on whether or not the painting is pleasing. An artist should put some thought into how his or her painting is going to look. It would be completely wrong to stick the subject in the middle of the painting if it would look right to one side. The artist must see the painting in his or her mind’s eye. Painting composition is all about balance. If it doesn’t have the proper balance it will look clumsy. A painting is the expression and creation of the artist but it is also to be appreciated by others.
When it comes to painting composition it is true that some people just do have a good sense of what works. However, most of us have to practice and experiment before we get it right. There are also painters who make a sketch before they paint. The first thing to plan is the focal point. This is your main subject. All other elements in the painting should coax the eye to the focal point. This could be achieved by an obvious means like a pathway or in an inconspicuous way like a color that is recurring.
There are some basic rules to follow when it comes to painting composition. It is best to have elements that make up an odd rather than an even number. Neither should your elements be neat and orderly. When portrait or landscape painting, if you compare a cultivated hedge with a wild bush it becomes obvious. The cultivated and clipped hedge is very neat and precise and very boring. The wild bush has varying lengths of foliage and an unusual shape. The wild bush looks a lot more interesting than the cultivated hedge. You want your portrait and landscape paintings to look and be interesting.
If you discover that you do a specific subject well and it’s well received do not keep on using it. You and everyone else will get tired of it. When it comes to painting there should be variety. Others do not want to look at your paintings and immediately figure out your plan. They don’t want to feel they are being manipulated. Your painting must always appear to be spontaneous. A painting should never look rigid. It should draw the viewer in naturally. This should happen even if you spent a great deal of time planning your painting.
Lastly, another word on painting composition. Keep the elements in your painting away from each other. You must not allow the elements to overlap. Overlapping stops the viewer from taking in the painting as a whole. The eye gets sidetracked from the complete picture. This is exactly what you don’t want. It is the complete painting composition that speaks to the viewer. It is possible for the viewer to get a completely different meaning to what you intended. This happens less frequently in portrait and landscape paintings and more frequently if you do an abstract painting. However, there are paintings that are easily recognized such as flowers or animals. The more you paint the more quickly you will be able to decide and implement your painting
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