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Thread: Composition

  1. #1
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    Mar 2008
    Buffalo, NY
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    This may sound like a weird question to you guys, but when is a good time to learn composition in drawing? Is it when you've learned line, form, shape, and tone, or is there more to learn before moving on? Also, are there any good places to learn composition?

    Note: I have posted this in the Fine Arts forum, but I doubt it went through. If it did I apologize for the double-post.

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  3. #2
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    May 2011
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    Phil Straub Composition Tutorial

    We use composition to direct the viewers eye through an image, making the elements we want them to see the focus. Learning where detail is important, and when it detracts attention from our intended focus.

    Also check out this post by Jesper Ejsing
    Last edited by Shaggnasty; April 8th, 2012 at 01:42 AM.

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  5. #3
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    Nov 2004
    Methuen, Ma
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    Composition is about perception and will have a wide perspective in theory. I would start with a reputable source like Rudolf Arnhem if you want a metaphysical explanation but maybe this is too much. For me I like to get to the bottom an work my way up.

    Read this first

    then this second.
    - Kinjark

  6. #4
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    Nov 2007
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    When just starting out I'd just simply focus on where the eye goes. Follow the direction of the shapes and see where they end up. If it leads you off the page it's usually not a good thing. You want people to travel the piece gathering all the info you want them to. Draw them in.

    There's all sorts of ways to lead the eye, with shapes, subject matter like someone pointing or shouting at someone, color and contrast, all sorts of fun stuff.

    Composition is one of the few things I say just have fun with personally instead of trying to get bogged down with some sort of rules you have to follow strictly. Just keep practicing and think when your doing it how the shapes are leading the eye and what you should add or change to shift that flow.

    Comics is a good way to get into composition. That's all about leading the viewer through the pages, with text, panel layout everything. Not just the drawing.

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  8. #5
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    May 2003
    Hudson River valley, NY
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tan-Sau View Post
    This may sound like a weird question to you guys, but when is a good time to learn composition in drawing?.
    Right now.

    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron

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  10. #6
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    Jan 2006
    Boise, ID
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    Composition should never not be a part of what you are doing. If you get in the habit early of composing pictures rather than simply drawing things you will it will become a natural part of your picture making rather than something you try to force your picture into in the end.

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  12. #7
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    Dec 2006
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    Composition is not seperate from the making of any image, be it a study of a hand, a portrait, a boat, a landscape or a battle between a handful of warriors and a thousand Orcs.
    Last edited by Chris Bennett; April 9th, 2012 at 06:08 AM.
    From Gegarin's point of view

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  14. #8
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    WA State
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    I gotta get that book!

    (Thanks! I was thinking about it recently, but couldn't remember the author).

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  16. #9
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    May 2008
    Alberta, Canada
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    You've got to put your lines, forms, shapes and tones somewhere. Why wait until later to start thinking about where you're putting 'em?
    *** Sketchbook * Landscapes * Portfolio * Store***

    "There are two kinds of students: the self-taught and the hopeless."
    - Dr. Piotr Rudnicki

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  18. #10
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    Composition is arranging elements in a piece of work..
    just like making a design of a house for living..

    There is a best place for everything...
    and if you know composition,
    you don't have to compose consciously..

    Everything falls into the place where it should be..
    according to your taste, of course.

  19. #11
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    Thank you, Mr Necromancer...

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