Ship Painting Balance (Day 17 of 365 Days of ART)




Hello Readers- the 365 days of art is unfolding as I go.  

I am not only going to focus on visual art, but it will definitely be a core focus.   

Please note that one of my goals here is to keep it simple (otherwise it will feel like work).  

And so for today, I am just noting that the above painting imbues a sense of balance through the artist’s use of space.  I know there is a lot more to discuss, but for a “splash of daily art” – this is all I want to note – so I am not trying to give a comprehensive analysis in any way – ok?

Also, I have also decided that on some posts I will include the Elements of Art (EOA) and Principles of Design (POD) because some readers might be interested in using these to further develop their art criticism.  I know you artists out there know this info well – but for those still learning, we teach students to look for the EOA and POD when assessing a work.  So instead of saying, “I like that painting” the student can get more specific and say, “I like the way the artist used color, cool colors of blue and green, to give the painting a quiet feel.”

Okay – that is all for today…. 

thanks for dropping by.  



Seven Elements of Art

  1. Line, which starts with a dot that goes for a walk, is a mark that has more length than width. Lines can be vertical, horizontal, diagonal, curly, straight, spiral, curved, thick, thin, dashed, etc.
  2. Color has three main characteristics: hue (the name of the color, such as red, yellow, blue, etc.), value (how light or dark it is), and intensity (how bright or dim it is). Primary colors are referred to as true colors (red, blue, and yellow) because all other 
colors are from primary colors. 
Secondary colors are made from mixing two primary colors (red + blue = violet; yellow + red = orange; blue + yellow = green). Intermediate colors, or tertiary colors, are a blend of primary and secondary colors, which form colors like yellow-green, red-orange, and blue-violet. 
 Complementary colors are extreme opposites offering contrast because the colors share no common colors. Complementary pairs are red and green, blue and orange, and yellow and purple.
  3. Shape refers to closed lines. Two-dimensional geometric shapes can be closed curves (circle, elliptical) and polygons (triangles, squares, pentagons, and quadrilaterals). Organic shapes are free form or more natural and imperfect figures, as seen in the outline of a puddle or one celled organism.
  4. Space is the area between and around objects. The space around objects is called negative space (which has shape) and the subject is referred to as the positive space. Space can also refer to the feeling of depth and in art space is the illusion of depth.
  5. Texture refers to the ‘perceived surface quality’ in a work of art, which can be rough, smooth, soft, hard, etc. Textures sometimes can have tactile qualities, but often a work does not feel the way it looks; for example, a drawing of a rose stem may show a prickly thorn, but the paper is still smooth. 

  6. Form refers to objects that are 3-dimensional showing length, width, height, and depth. Cones, cylinders, boxes, and pyramids are geometric forms, and irregular globs and structures are organic forms.
  7. Value refers to lightness or darkness of a color or a tone. The lightest value is seen in white and the darkest value is expressed with black.


Eleven Principles of Design

  1. Balance refers to the feeling of stability or equilibrium in a work. A work with symmetrical balance has elements has both sides similar whereas with asymmetrical balance, both sides are different, yet but appear balanced. A piece with radial balance has elements arranged around a central point
  2. Emphasis, or contrast, refers to the combining of elements to show differences and to draw attention between the elements used.
  3. Pattern refers repeating elements within a work of art.
  4. Repetition refers to using elements with unity within the work of art. Repetition works with pattern to make the work of art feel active.
  5. Proportion is the sense of unity and relationship of sizes, amounts, and numbers within an art piece.
  6. Gradation refers to combining elements to show a gradual sense of change, for example, small shapes into larger ones, or a lighter color into an increasingly darker one.
  7. Harmony refers to using elements to show similarities, which can be done with repeating elements or showing gradual changes.
  8. Movement refers to how the elements show action in a work of art. Movement can be directed with shapes, lines, color, and edges.
  9. Rhythm refers to elements used to create the feeling of a beat or tempo. Elements are repeated to create a sense of organized movement.
  10. Variety refers to using elements to show contrast and diversity, which can be achieved with differing shapes, sizes, colors, etc. Variety in design can hold attention and guide the viewer’s eye through and around the work of art, but it can also feel busy and lack harmony if perceived as overdone.
  11. Unity is the feeling of harmony between all parts of the work of art, which creates a sense of completeness.









18 thoughts on “Ship Painting Balance (Day 17 of 365 Days of ART)

    1. well are you “ready” to learn – just a joke – trying to do a play on words with your “readilearn” 🙂
      oh boy – time for me to get some sleep…
      have a great night.. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for your play on words. It means the title is memorable, and exactly what I wanted it to mean. Yes – I’m always ready to learn!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! And I made s little PDF last week – to go along with some of the art – I jus had not had the time to upload it – and also winging it a bit…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You do a fantastic job with your site. We are learning that blogging is a labor of love. We certainly can understand and appreciate the time factor. Isn’t it great though that we can share our thoughts through this media.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. It really is great, and I feel like I am on my fifth – or sixth – “phase” of blogging. I like to take long breaks sometimes, but then other times it is fun to indulge.

          Liked by 1 person

  1. Wow that’s a whole of information! Will take some time to digest but I will definitely come out richer – if I manage to grasp the concepts that is 😉 I do like the picture but I couldnt say why. If pushed to it, it is the sense of anticipation, of a journey hopes and aspirations – smooth sailing and the little boat is a reminder that even those who dont have the ‘real’ thing can still enjoy and make the most of what they have at hand. But I think you meant more to do with the ‘art’ part of it?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi DawD
      Well the reflection is not more or less –
      Just different things to consider, right?
      And I find it really interesting that you mentioned anticipation ….
      And the journey that lies ahead.
      Also – some of your social encouragement side and optimism might be reflected in your view of the little boat as making the most of what your hey have at hand.
      That is rich (pun intended) –
      And it is such a great way to size things up.
      Also – keep in mind that even with using the EOA and POD, there is subjectiveness.

      Oh – and don’t try and take it all in….
      I will list the EOA again and again – for today – skim them and then just look at the bolded items. JUst observe without trying to store anything ….

      I am still processing the piece a little – I took the photo of it just yesterday (with another painting that had different balance weight ((and will share that later)) –
      But it also had this similar “cool” palette.

      But I think some folks would note hat the inclusion of the small boat brings life into the piece. The inclusion (albeit simple) brings a sense of energy to a static scene that has no figures anywhere else.
      That has more layers too- but
      Then The oars –
      They are striking because each oar is lifted in more of an art manner (a dash for each oar with both rowers holding same height) but it is not in a realistic way they would be rowing in tandem. (?)
      Also, to me- they seem to be scurrying out of the scene – maybe suggesting that this classic larger vessel is on display (maybe in S modern town town) and the artist’s inclusion of the people show how town life “makes way” for such display – or even works around “what is” for a historical port –
      It has such a quiet energy to me.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That is also something to consider – the little boat giving way to the larger one. i also thought the oars werent in tandem, more antagonistic to each other but then I am no expert at boats and stuff so desisted from raising the point. But I feel the larger boat is also in motion, the sails are blown out, indicating wind and so probably moving away from the town?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Hm – good point
          But I also feel a bit stationary – like the wind is blowing – in a playful way with some of the wavy lines –
          I will look at it again later to see it with new eyes after reading what you wrote
          And hey
          This kind of sharing is similar to your story club breakdowns

          Liked by 1 person

      2. And I keep forgetting that different perspectives are allowed. Funny while studying science I got into trouble for having a different perspective and now where it’s ‘allowed’ I get hassled on my own!

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  2. I hope it’s ok for me to copy down the EOA and POD, Yvette. Very educational.
    I don’t think the big boat is moving based on how the water looks. For me, the people on the boat are very interesting to look at. What’s their mood? 😉


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