Recently, I have had a conversation with a local business person on what I learned at BealArt as a student called the visual vocabulary also used in "elements of design" and "principles of design". It is how artists and designers describe their work with terms like space, either positive or negative, balance, contrast, proximity, colour, and rhythm/movement and many more.
What I explained is that whether a person is an artist, graphic designer, architect, interior designer, fashion designer and the like, they all use the same vocabulary, just in different forms. Good design is just that, proper use of the visual vocabulary. Then there are the occasional break from the rules that actually work and make people think. You can only break the rules once you know exactly what they are in the first place.
A few months ago I was admiring a piece of artwork at the Arts Centre at Westmount Shopping Centre. The gentleman beside me who was also looking at the same painting commented, "you know when you look at a piece of art and know it is good but you can't explain why?". I looked at him and started to use the visual vocabulary including composition, contract, linework and colour to explain why it was a wonderful composition. Of course there are tangible reasons why art works well visually.
The visual vocabulary is a starting point to many aspects on how artists and designers express their ideas. Whether you are an artist or want to understand how various elements work together, it is a language worth investigating.
This blog is to showcase my ongoing work.