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The Principles of Art

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Dennis Brickell


Morgan County, Eva School


This podcast describes and illustrates the Principles of Art, also known as The Principles of Design, using examples from art history and illustrations created to help explain them.

Length: 3:07

Content Areas: The Arts

Alabama Course of Study Alignments and/or Professional Development Standard Alignments:

AED (3) Visual Arts
6. Compare works of art in terms of complementary color schemes, value, contrast, and asymmetrical balance.
Example: comparing elements of art and principles of design used to depict water in Winslow Homer's Gulf Stream and Katsushika Hokusai's The Great Wave
AED (4) Visual Arts
4. Describe how the elements of art and principles of design, including rhythm, movement, and emphasis, are used in a specific work of art.
Examples: movement as depicted in the use of line and painting techniques in Wassily Kandinsky's abstract works, emphasis as depicted in Giorgio de Chirico's The Nostalgia of the Infinite, rhythm as depicted in Jackson Pollock's Autumn Rhythm, movement in Glenna Goodacre's sculpture Puddle Jumpers
  • Critiquing works of art orally or in writing, using the elements of art and principles of design
  • Example: reflecting upon the creative process and success of personal works of art in an electronic portfolio
    AED (5) Visual Arts
    1. Utilize the elements of art and principles of design and the structures and functions of art to communicate personal ideas.
    Example: creating a painting, drawing, or sculpture in reaction to world events, drug awareness, or medical issues
  • Creating works of art utilizing a variety of traditional found and recyclable objects
  • Example: using Samuel "Sambo" Mockbee's architectural structures as motivation to produce recycled structures
  • Producing one-point perspective drawings
  • Example: drawing cubes using a vanishing point
    AED (5) Visual Arts
    3. Explain the elements of art and principles of design, including variety and unity in a work of art.
    variety--shapes and lines in Joan Miró's Composition,
    unity--black lines in Henri Matisse's Purple Robe and Anemones
  • Applying appropriate vocabulary in discussing a work of art
    AED (7-12) Visual Arts: Level I
    10. Utilize specialized terminology from art history, aesthetics, criticism, and production in discussions of works of art.
  • Defining visual arts terminology to include the elements of art and principles of design
  • Describing the intrinsic qualities of a work of art
  • Example: divisionist color in Camille Pissaro's Impressionist paintings
    AED (7-12) Visual Arts: Level II
    7. Use appropriate visual arts terminology in response to works of art, including the elements of art and principles of design.


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