Job and his daughters By William Blake courtesy of artrenewal.com.
The last several posts have been about design. I suppose that is what I am most qualified to write about. I have written many posts on the subject, but I am going to open another series of posts on that. I want to talk some about design systems.
There are a number of mathematical and geometrical systems to design and I will explore a few of those in the coming days. I don't use them, but I do know something about them. Perhaps they will be useful to you.
However tonight I want to talk about the just a little about the approach I favor. There are many posts on design in the archives, and if you are interested in exploring them you can click on design in the sidebar and more will appear than anyone has any reasonable use for. Here are some of the ideas that are the underpinnings of how I work as opposed to more mechanical systems. They are philosophical ideas.
- The root of design is simplification. The first and most important idea in design is seizing on the essential and eliminating the extraneous. Just purging a painting of the inessential makes the artist break from meticulously copying nature and begin to arrange his art.
- The second theme is eye control, that is how the viewer is lead through the painting. This continues the idea of arranging rather than "finding" or recording his arrangements.
- The next large ideas is presenting varied shapes. Ideally every shape in a painting would be as different as possible from every other shape. This maximizes the variety of shapes, and makes a painting more interesting. It takes longer to perceive. Good shapes must be installed in a painting rather than observed.They are synthetic.
- Rhythm is an important element of design. Here is a sample post on that. There are many more.
- There are a number of authors who have written about these ideas and I will begin tomorrow to list a few. But this is all a leadup to the mathematical and geometric systems which constitute the other means of approaching this problem. More tomorrow on this.