allansart header

Allansart Banner

 

Watercolour Composition Techniques and Tips


Tips on Painting Composition

Strong composition in a painting can be very intangible, but these painting tips will help you get to grips with it. If the composition in a painting is done well you don't notice it initially, you just know that the painting has something about it that's particularly appealing. And when a painting's composition is done badly (such as when the subject is slap bang in the center, or squeezed into a corner) the painting just feels awkward. Initially you'll have to deliberately work at implementing these painting tips in a painting's composition, but with practice it'll become instinctive.

Painting Composition Tip 1:

Where's the Focal Point? The focal point should draw the viewer's eye to it. Place the focal point (the thing that's the main subject of the painting) on one of the 'intersection spots' from the Rule of Thirds, then check the other elements in the painting, which should lead they eye towards this point. It doesn't have to be an overt 'path', such as a road leading to a house; it can be subtle, such as a colour repeated in flowers. (Also, don't try to include too much in one painting.)

Painting Composition Tip 2:

Did You Use a Viewfinder? Isolate the key elements in a scene and check their placement by using a viewfinder.

Painting Composition Tip 3:

 Are the Values Varied? Do a thumbnail sketch of your painting's composition in just three values: white (light), black (dark), and grey (mid-tone). Now check how much of each value its got. For a strong composition, you want them to be in quite different amounts, not similar. Try this rule to start: "two thirds, one third, and a little bit." For example, two thirds dark in tone, one

third light in tone, and a small area or object that's mid-tone.

Painting Composition Tip 4:

How Many Elements are There? Have an odd number of elements in the painting rather than even.

Painting Composition Tip 5:

 How Are the Elements Spaced? It's rare to find neat and orderly arrangements of elements in nature. Just think of the difference between a natural forest, where the trees grow any which way, and a plantation, where the trees are planted in evenly spaced rows. Varying the space between the elements in your composition, the angles they lie at, and their sizes makes a painting more interesting.

Painting Composition Tip 6:

Are Any Elements Kissing? Kissing, in this context, means just touching. Elements must either be definitely apart or definitely overlapped. No kissing please, as this creates a weak, connected shape which will distract the viewer's eye, causing a momentary pause as they puzzle it out.

Painting Composition Tip 7:

 Do Warm or Cool Colours Dominate? It doesn't matter whether the overall feeling of the colour in a painting is warm or cool, it just shouldn't try to be both.

Painting Composition Tip 8:

 Is There Unity? Do the elements in the painting's composition feel they belong together, or are they separate bits that just happen to be in the same painting? Help create unity by glazing over the whole painting with a single colour; you can always touch up the highlights again if necessary.

Painting Composition Tip 9:

Is the Underlying Composition Obvious? The painting isn't finished yet if the first thoughts of someone seeing your painting is going to be analytical: "There's the focal point, with a spot of yellow to highlight it, that line there leads my eye in, that object was placed there for balance, etc".

Painting Composition Tip 10:

Is There Varity? Don't get stuck in a rut and use the same composition all the time, no matter how successful it is. Vary where you put the horizon line, where you put the focal point, swap between portrait (vertical) and landscape (horizontal) shaped canvases.

watercolour painting of the Tower of London, watercolor paintings, original art, original watercolour paintings, original watercolor paintings, watercolour painting, watercolor painting, watercolour paintings for sale, watercolours, watercolour, watercolors, watercolor, original, art, arts, galleries, gallery, artwork, artworks, painting, pictures, art galleries, commissions, online ordering
Tower of London PT145
watercolour painting of Venetian Gondola, watercolor paintings, original art, original watercolour paintings, original watercolor paintings, watercolour painting, watercolor painting, watercolour paintings for sale, watercolours, watercolour, watercolors, watercolor, original, art, arts, galleries, gallery, artwork, artworks, painting, pictures, art galleries, commissions, online ordering
Venetian Gondola  PT146
watercolour painting of a band stand and Townhall clock in Rochdale, watercolor paintings, original art, original watercolour paintings, original watercolor paintings, watercolour painting, watercolor painting, watercolour paintings for sale, watercolours, watercolour, watercolors, watercolor, original, art, arts, galleries, gallery, artwork, artworks, painting, pictures, art galleries, commissions, online ordering
Broadfield Park PT147

A view of Rochdale townhall
 
Rochdale Townhall PT148

Parish Church in Rochdale
Parish Church  PT149

View of Hollingworth Lake Littleborough Rochdale
Hollingworth Lake  PT150
View of the Vatican domes in Rome and beyond
Rome I PT151
Daytime view of the Vatican and bridge over the river Tiber  in Rome
Rome II   PT152
Night time view of the Vatican and bridge in Rome
Rome III   PT153


Notre Dame from the Seine

 
Notre Dame Paris PT154 
Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty from the Seine Paris
Eiffel Tower  Paris I PT155 


Sacre Coeur Paris

 
Sacre Coeur Paris  PT156
The Arc de Triomphe in Paris
The Arc De Triomphe PT157
The Louvre form the Seine in Paris
The Louvre Paris  PT158
Eiffel Tower and Boat on the Seine in Paris
Eiffel Tower Paris II  PT159
Distant lakeland view
Distant View PT160
Spring Moring on the Lake
Spring Morning PT161
Autumn Mist rolling down the hills in to the lake
Autumn Mist PT162

Original Watercolour Pages   No1 | No2 | No3 | No4 | No5 | No6 | No7 | No8 | No9 | No10 | No11 | No12 |

HOME PAGE


Please use the Google search facility 

Hit Counter

Images © 2004 http://www.allansart.co.uk

 
eXTReMe Tracker

Arts and Crafts - Handmade hand painted watercolour Christmas cards with a hand cut pattern edged internal page and your very own verse or message printed inside.ged internal page and your very own verse or message printed inside. Original Art and Crafts including watercolour paintings or choose from a selection of handmade woodcrafts.