Continuing the conversation about space as an art element. We discussed 2-D and 3-D space, positive and negative space. In this commentary we will cover the different techniques artists can use to achieve the illusion of space in their drawings/paintings. 


There are six different ways an artist can create this illusion of space on a 2-dimensional surface. How exactly do we achieve these techniques to give space illusion? 1) Overlap – occurs when objects that are closer to the viewer prevent the full view of objects that are behind them. Example, one person in front of another and the viewpoint only allows a partial view of the person behind. 2) Placement on the surface – objects placed higher on the picture plane will appear further away. If it is the same object that is lower on the picture plane, that second object should also be slightly smaller depending on how far back it is from the front. 3) Size – objects that are smaller will appear further back from the viewer. This may be the actual size of the objects or where they are placed on the surface as in example #2. 4) Detail – objects that are further away should have less detail than objects that are closer to the viewer. 5) Color and Value – Objects that are further away are cooler in color temperature, while objects that are closer are warmer. Objects that are further away are lighter in value, while objects that are closer are typically darker in value. 6) Perspective – Linear perspective is a drawing method that uses lines to create the illusion of space on a flat surface. 


There are three types of linear perspective: 1) One point perspective uses one vanishing point to accomplish this illusion. 2) Two-point perspective uses two vanishing points to create the illusion of space. 3) Three-point perspective where three points are used to create the illusion of depth and space in a 2-D image. I hope these tips will help you understand the element of space in art.

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