Design Element - Space


Space

Usually, you think of space as being empty.  It seems to be the air around and between the things you see.  Artists think about it as a two-dimensional flat area or as a three-dimensional volume.

Artists refer to shapes and forms as positive, occupied by something, or negative, the surrounding area.  They see them as open or as closed, as filled or empty.  They think about actual volume, which can be measured in some way, and implied shapes, which is the illusion on a flat surface.  It can also be defined by its orientation - vertical or horizontal, and scale - huge and endless, or small and confined.

Savoy House by Le Corbusier

Poissy sur Seine, France

maison-savoy-space

Architects are sensitive to the way interior and exterior volumes relate to each other in buildings.  Sculptors and architects are concerned with openness and enclosures.  Graphic designers are concerned with the spacing of elements, such as blocks of type and borders on pages.  They notice the gaps between lines of sentences, between words and between the letters within words.

In television and filmmaking, ideas of location, time, and motion can be mixed together.  Dramatic events happen in an actual place.  But the film can be edited so, that you seem to be in several places at one time.  Comic strips are presented in a series of frames that show different events over a period of time.

Architects are sensitive to the way interior and exterior volumes relate to each other in buildings.  Sculptors and architects are concerned with openness and enclosures.  Graphic designers are concerned with the spacing of elements, such as blocks of type and borders on pages.  They notice the gaps between lines of sentences, between words and between the letters within words. In television and filmmaking, ideas of location, time, and motion can be mixed together.  Dramatic events happen in an actual place.  But the film can be edited so, that you seem to be in several places at one time.  Comic strips are presented in a series of frames that show different events over a period of time. In two-dimensional art, spatial illusion and distance can be created in many ways.  Renaissance artists developed techniques called systems of perspective making things on flat surfaces look like they are close up or far away.