Best Art Advice: Handling Edges And Transitions In Paintings
I've been on a quest to learn everything I can about art for most of my life. Not only do I want to learn to be the best artist I can be, but I have an endless curiosity about all things art related. Since I'm mainly a painter of 2D art, I spend a lot of time thinking about picture composition. Lately, the importance of edges and transitions in paintings has been on my mind a lot. There's not a whole lot out there about edges and transitions, so here's my take on some of the greatest artist's tools:
Edges and transitions can make or break a great painting.
The rhythm and flow of edges and transitions between shapes gives strength, definition, and cohesiveness to a painting. This is achieved by varying the edges and saving the sharpest edges and greatest contrasts for the focal point.
I’ve found this works for all styles of painting, from the most traditional realistic to the wildest abstraction. Even minimalist and color-field paintings have edges and transitions, and most paintings have a focal point of some kind.
It works because all paintings, no matter the style, need a path for your eyes to follow. Along this path, we want to find a variety of interesting areas where our eyes are encouraged to linger and return to, as well as gentle places for our eyes to rest. This path is what keeps us looking at a painting and is one of the most powerful tools an artist has.
The edges make the path and the path leads your eyes around the painting.
How an artist treats the edges and transitions between shapes is what defines the eye path. If all the edges and transitions are exactly alike, either all hard lines or all soft and faded, there is no path to follow. Our eyes are either brought to a jarring stop, or left to wander right on out of the painting.
So, in order to make paintings with the greatest visual impact that will keep the viewer’s attention longer, include a variety of edges and transitions while saving the sharpest edges and greatest contrasts for the focal point.
This is a part of a continuing series of memes and blog posts about the Best Art Advice I've found so far. Please feel free to like, comment, and share this post. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this subject. Also, you can sign up for my Insider's List to get occasional updates and to see my latest rock music inspired paintings
I obsessively make bold and vibrant abstract paintings. I can't help myself. It's just what I have to do. But I am passionate about art of all kinds, and I love to think, talk, and write about it, then share it with you. Please sign up for my Insider's List so we can keep in touch.