The Forgotten Element of Art

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The Critique

What is in every work of art that we see, but seldom comment on? The design of the work. “What gorgeous color!” & “How cute is she?”, are a couple comments I heard the other day at a critique session. The design of the pieces was overlooked. There were pieces that drew no response although they too had great colors and tons of detail. They drew a little positive reaction from those viewing the pieces. The better the design of the pieces shown the more in awe the viewers were of elements represented within.
    Design is so important in painting – in all art. Understanding the abstract in art leads to great designs and expresses the poet and creator of the piece. No matter what style of art, what medium, the power of the poet in us comes out through the design. Design is not simply placing objects around a canvas or sheet of paper, it is the use of color and draftsmanship with composition and a personal concept. As individuals, we place these elements of design in our own order of importance. Some put more value on drawing while others place color as the key ingredient to great art. It’s that choice of importance and choice of subjects that give art it’s interest and excitement. It is not simply about picture making it is sharing who we are as individuals. The girl with orange hair is expressing herself and the boy about to lose his trousers is expressing himself.
    Every week at our critique I get to see artists expressing themselves, and seeing if the poet in them came through to the audience in the way they hoped. Sometimes there is confusion, other times enlightenment. Ideas burst out from all, and everyone walks away with a bit of the others that were there. Design plays an important part in our art and sharing with others is part of that design.

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