"Our eye responds to assemblages of
lines, colors, shapes, masses.
Real objects may be seen abstractly;
abstract elements may be seen as reality."
Straight Lines - straight lines can be horizontal, vertical or diagonal.
Horizontal lines often dominate a room and there is sometimes a need to mix it up a bit, but horizontal lines are important in design. They give a room the feeling of repose and restfulness. horizontals are often thought to be masculine in nature, giving solidity to the composition. They also increase the casual feel in a room.
Vertical lines tend to give a room the feeling of height and dignity; they are strong and direct.Diagonal lines can be tricky because they not only attract attention, but also lead the eye. The question is where is the eye being led to.
Exercise to develop design concept regarding diagonal lines: Draw a diagonal line on paper. Your reaction can range from the feeling it is unstable and upsetting to finding it stimulating. There is more tension in the diagonal or oblique direction than in any other direction. Now draw a vertical line in the center of a piece of paper. On a third piece of paper, draw a horizontal line. Try to see these lines in the forms around you. Take a few minutes to see oblique, vertical, and horizontal lines.
Curved Lines - curves can be drawn either with mathematical precision or freehand, the mathematical drawn with a compass is thought to be harder, lacking the grace and subtlety of the freehand. Curves suggest feminity.
All forms comprise three basic shapes - the square, the circle and the equilateral triangle; and they are all unique in character.
Going back to artist Irving Kriesberg's quote ("Our eye responds to assemblages of lines, colors, shapes, masses. Real objects may be seen abstractly; abstract elements may be seen as reality,") we can, by examining the lines of objects, grow more knowledgeable about what elements constitute a form and how central lines are to everything we see. When we see better we are more able to appreciate what forms, being abstract or reality, etc., are beautiful to us.
This article is one in a series of Design Concepts, to go to the entire list, click here.