Positive and Negative Space in Art

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Artist: Zahari Hamidon Title: Nature #3 Medium: Watercolour Year: 2012

Do you know? To produce an excellent composition, one of the main components you need to consider is negative (background ) and positive (foreground) space.

A skilled artist always thinks that space encircles an object such as shape and mass can play its roles to establish the form itself, while negative space defines a subject that creates a sense of stability to the composition.

Plan for your composition before you paint is vital. Proper planning, along with your creativity will produce a better visual impact on our audience. In the negative composition space is everything that surrounds the object. Positive space is anything that appears in front. Sometimes we tend to term positive space as foreground and negative space as a background. You have to control the positive and negative space so that its well balanced. If white (negative) space dominate the black (positive) space, it will create tensions and contrast. As a consequence will lead to the effects of ‘unused’ space.


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