Elements of Composition in Painting

Composition has always been an important aspect of oil painting. It is defined as the selective arrangement of the different elements that make up an oil painting. The aim of good composition is to help guide the eyes of an onlooker in a certain oil painting and keep up his or her interest in the subject matter. 

The main aim is to create a certain arrangement through preparatory planning and sketching in order to create a balance between the different oil painting elements and come out pleasing and interesting to the eye.

Composition is more than just a simple arrangement of a bowl of fruit or adjusting to a certain position to see a subject at a better light. There are other elements to consider when it comes to achieving ideal composition for an oil painting. Here are some of them:

Space

This is an important element in formulating an ideal composition for an oil painting. It can be done in several ways.  A painter can make use of different perspectives that can better show a subject in an interesting light. A painter may plan on using space in a two dimensional where the subject of the painting can be seen as if being deformed to blend with the flat surface of the canvas.

Space can also be used in a primitive form where objects are randomly distributed and seemingly without any controlling feature. Space can also be utilized in an illusionist aspect which can be created with linear perspective or in a way where distant objects appear to be smaller, lose contrast and detail or even obscured by nearer objects.

Line

Lines can be used in a number of ways to help come up with an ideal composition for a certain painting. They can enclose forms or mark the bounding contours of an object. Lines can help create movement, define a painting’s texture or integrate the other elements an oil painting.

Tone

Employing a good composition for an oil painting also requires the creative use of tone. Tone can help create the mood, drama or emphasis on oils paintings.

Hue

The specific wavelength for a certain color, a hue can be used as a primary means of creating certain psychological effects and provide emotional impact to an oil painting.

Texture

Objects can be visually patterned in order to create a pleasing diversity to an oil painting composition.  It is an element that may be of help, especially in trying to instill some focus or even arrange some sort of unity on the painting. It is texture that may help (for example) make smooth silk appear different from satin on an oil painting.

Color Purity

In composition, this element refers to the intensity or brightness of a hue. Pure colors are those that come from a single wavelength and have more dazzling clarity. Pure colors can be quite unreal and should be used with the greatest caution. F

or a better effect on composition, pure colors are usually used together with the other elements such as hue and tone in order to make an oil painting come out.

 
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