Posted on June 13, 2012
It’s been said time and again that first impressions are everything, and while this understandably applies to meeting new people, it can apply to artistic endeavors as well. In these cases, first impressions are made through design. For example, a website with an unattractive design or a confusing layout will turn visitors off no matter what kind of content it may have, and a painting or drawing with poor design may turn people off almost immediately no matter how brilliant certain elements may be. Design isn’t everything in art, but it is quite possibly the most important thing. Just like a poor design can turn someone away from a work of art, a truly great design can captivate audiences.
There is no “right” way to produce great art, but there are a few design elements that all great artists should keep in mind. First of all, you should be careful that your design isn’t too cluttered. Even an image that doesn’t have a lot of elements can look chaotic if those elements are placed incorrectly. Make sure you space things out, but try not to have too much empty space. Try to draw the viewer’s eye to certain elements if you can. Second of all, be mindful of the colors you are using. Bright colors may make an image look vibrant, but it can also make it look garish and off-putting. Mix the bright colors with muted and more relaxing colors. Darker colors such as shades of blue and purple work well here, as do darker shades of red or orange. Finally, make sure that your design doesn’t “hide” what you are trying to show. This goes hand-in-hand with not being too cluttered. If the central idea of your painting, website or room design is surrounded by things that draw attention from it, it’s no longer your central idea. Try to design around it and remember that it’s the most important part of what you are doing.
As we said above, great art is subjective, and there are few “wrong” ways to come up with a design as long as you keep these tips in mind. Remember this advice, and always find your own voice whenever you create something new.