Shading Techniques in Art

Shading is the technique of showing tones or values on an object through gradual gradations for it to look ‘solid’ and have a three dimensional effect. Shading techniques allow you to weave layer upon layer of pencil marks to add a convincing form to your line drawing. Shading adds a sense of substance to your subject and produces a convincing tonal relationship. Drawings take on a three dimensional form when shaded properly.

To render shades correctly on drawn objects, the artist must carefully observe the source of light that is striking various values of tones or shades on the drawn objects. After realizing the source of light, the artist must study closely the reflections of the light on areas of the objects to know the lightest and darkest sections. After establishing the endpoints or extremes thus the lightest valued areas as well as the darkest valued areas, the remaining area with a mid-half tone between the two extremes is the middle value.

The tones are adjusted as many times to make it look realistic. It is advised that artists step back periodically to look at the drawing and the subject in a distance to view and adjust the tones accordingly. This would make the values depicted on the drawn objects more realistic. In the rendition of cast shadow, the artist must take note of the light source and the striking or reflection of the light on the objects. If the light is far above, the shorter the shadow is (try checking out your shadow at noon – 12:00PM) whereas the lower the light, the longer the cast shadow will become. The rule is that the darker the shadow, the brighter the light source. As the shadow is drawn further from the object, the lighter it becomes. The shadow takes on the shape of the item it comes from. Notice that to make the shadow, all you have to do is create a triangular shape from the top of the object to the ground and back to the base of the object. According to the light source, make your shadow fit accordingly.

There are various ways of rendering shades on a drawn object. Some of these are:

1. Hatching: This is a shading technique that employs one set of line either vertical, curved or horizontal lines in rendering shades on a drawn object. These lines are drawn beside one another to give the illusion of a value. Depending on the hatching shading effect one want to achieve, the artist may decide to make the individual lines in hatching sets far apart or close together.

2. Cross-hatching: This is a shading technique made by the use of lines that crosses each other at an angle in rendering shades on an object. In cross-hatching, one set of line crosses over (overlaps) another set of line to create a shade on a drawn object.

3. Stippling/Dottilism/Pointillism: This is a shading technique that employs dots or series of points in rendering the shades on an object.

4. Circularism/Squirkling/Scribbling: This is the use of circles, squirkles and scribbles in rendering a shade on an object. When squirkle sets have noticeable spaces between the lines, they work beautifully for shading various textures, such as fuzzy fabrics and curly hair. Squirkles can look like a solid tone when the lines are drawn closely together, and are great for shading lots of different aspects of people, including skin tones.

5. Tonal gradation/smudging: This is the rendering of soft tones on a drawn object and blending the tones together with the thumb, a piece of paper or a soft cloth.

Rendering shades on objects using any marking or drawing tool is an interesting practical exercise in art. However, to achieve successes, artists must learn the rudiments in shading so as to render shade on drawn objects based on the accepted rubrics of art.

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Source by Dickson Adom

The Importance of Titles in Art – An Overview

The importance of Titles in Art is immense, as it gives a meaning and a purpose to the artwork. In fact, the Title of an artwork is one of its most artistic and important things. The meaning of the Title usually is interwoven throughout a piece of art and is often times hard to understand. If the Title of an artwork is not mentioned, it becomes the observer’s challenge to interpret it. All this goes on to emphasize the importance of Titles in art.

Framing an Art Title depends on the type of artistic image you are working on. Make sure that your Art Title is in harmony with the theme of your artwork. The connoisseurs will be able to appreciate an artwork better if they have clarity about what they are looking at. The following are some key importance of Titles in art:

o Art Titles are very convenient handles for analyzing, reviewing, and addressing art.

o Most Art Titles are axiomatic, yet perceptive, inducing one to look a bit deeper.

o Most Art Titles have an intentional play of words that make them interesting.

o Sometimes the Art Titles are needed to convey what a viewer thinks of an image.

o The Art Titles are important as they help people remember the particular piece of art they are attached to.

To arrive at an appropriate Title for an artwork, one should primarily consider its purpose. Artists should seek answers to the following questions in order to frame an apt Title for their artwork:

o Is it a piece of a project with a name?

o Is it just a single shot, or an art form that has caught your attention?

Usually, an artwork should have one or two sets of Titles. The first Title should be a ‘Working Title’ in combination with a File Number. The second Title is derived from the fragments of what you were thinking while making or processing the piece.

Framing a relevant Art Title is as responsible a job as it is important. A wrongly Titled Art can be quite damaging to the perception of artwork. It can lessen the impact of an image, especially when excessively cute Titles are used to depict the image art. In addition, some abstract Art Titles hamper the imagination of a viewer, when it tends to delineate too much or tries to lead in a direction that the art is not supportive of.

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Source by Annette Labedzki

In Native American Rock Art, "Rock" Is More Than Just an Adjective

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When looking at the sentence “In Native American rock art, “rock” is more than just an adjective,” I immediately begin to consider why the “rock” in “rock art” might have more meaning to Native Americans. When thinking about the “rock” as only an adjective, I would only see that the type of art is done on rock. The word “rock” allows me to picture the art more clearly in my mind but it is a very limited way of viewing this Native American art form.

Looking beyond “rock” as an adjective, we can find a deeper meaning. First we must ask ourselves “If rock is not just an adjective, what else could it be?”. I think that rock is something important to Native American art because it is the surface upon which they can tell stories and create and preserve images. It is very significant because without the rock, there can be no art. It is the place where the art is done. Rock can be a setting.

Since the rock is essential to the art, I believe it is also essential to the Native Americans who produced the art. The rock is needed for them to tell their stories and express themselves and their culture. Rock is a necessity for cultural expression. Because of its function, I believe that the rock can have an artistic and spiritual value. The Native Americans who selected the specific part of rock on which to do art, made a decision about their composition and the presentation of the art. So the rock that they chose to do art on contains an artistic value.

The rock might also have spiritual value based on what is being depicted and its importance to the Native peoples. Many times, the art being done on the rocks serves more than a purely artistic purpose. It is to tell a story or explain an important idea. I believe that many times, the story or idea is connected to Native religion and spirituality. So creating an image related to Native spiritual beliefs may mean that rock also has some sort of spiritual value.

So besides acting as a descriptor of the type of art being created, the word “rock” in “rock art” can also imply a certain artistic and spiritual meaning related to Native American beliefs. It can also be seen as essential to cultural and artistic expression in Native American culture as well as a setting or canvas for art.

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Source by Shirley H Lee