Elements of Art


, Shape/Form

, Color

, Texture

, Space, and Value

Line: an element of art refers to the continuous mark made on some surface by a moving point.

Shape: an enclosed space defined by the description of its length and width (2-D).

Form: an enclosed space defined by the description of its length, width, and depth (3-D) enclosing volume and mass.

Color: an element of art which has three properties; 1) Hue: the name of the color, e.g. red, yellow, etc.; 2) Saturation or the purity and strength of the color such as brightness or dullness; and 3) Value, or the relative lightness or darkness of the color.

Texture: the surface quality or “feel” of an object, such as roughness, smoothness, or softness. Actual texture can be felt while Simulated/Implied textures are implied by the way the artist renders areas of the picture.

Space: the distance or area between, around, above or within things.

Value :the relative lightness or darkness of a subject. Value is needed to express Volume and Mass.

Principles of Art


, Balance

, Harmony, 





, and Unity

Emphasis in a composition refers to developing points of interest to pull the viewer’s eye to important parts of the body of the work.

Balance is a sense of stability in the body of work.

Harmony is achieved in a body of work by using similar elements throughout the work. Harmony gives an uncomplicated look to your work.

Variety refers to the differences in the work. Variety can be achieved by using different shapes, textures, colors and values in your work.

Movement adds excitement to your work by showing action and directing the eye throughout the picture plane.

Rhythm is a type of movement in drawing and painting. It is seen in repeating of shapes and colors. Alternating lights and darks also give a sense of rhythm.

Proportion or scale refers to the relationships of the size of objects in a body of work.

Unity is seen in a painting or drawing when all the parts equal a whole.