2d Design Shape Assignment Definition

2D Design Portfolio 

A variety of works demonstrating your understanding of the principles of design. The principles of design (unity/variety, balance, emphasis, contrast, rhythm, repetition, proportion/scale, and figure/ground relationship) can be articulated through the visual elements (line, shape, color, value, texture, space). Any 2D process may be submitted, including graphic design, digital imaging, photography, collage, fabric design, weaving, fashion design, illustration, painting, printmaking, etc. 


You will create three works of art using this Kaleidoscope process all using the principles of design BALANCE & REPETITION. First follow the step-by-step instructions to create a hexagon-Kaleidoscope with a flat colored background (it doesn't have to be white). 
For the third step, you will need at least 3 colored prints of your Kaleidoscope on index paper. You will cut out different shapes and layer the on top of each other to create a sculptural piece.

Printing on top of a Photograph

Styrofoam Cups Drawing

Arrange at least 8 styrofoam cups to draw from observation. Spend one class period sketching them in relationship to one another. Proportions need to be accurate and the arrangement needs to be photographed before the end of class. Once the drawing is accurate cross-contour and weighted contour lines should be added to depict form and value. In the end this drawing will be reinterpreted into a relief print. This artwork should emphasize the design principle of proportion/scale.

Cereal Box Construction

This artwork should emphasize the design principle of unity/variety.

Figure-Ground Relationship

Figure-Ground Relationship relates to the positive & negative space in an image playing an equal role. Rather than the negative space just being a background, it is just as important to the artwork as the positive space. This works best with silhouettes since it is the surrounding area, the negative space, that defines the silhouette shape in the positive space. This work of art should exemplify figure/ground relationships, contrast and emphasis.

Handmade Paper

Create a piece of handmade paper and either cut shapes out, collage your own paper back on top or create an embossed design in the paper exemplifying RHYTHM & REPETITION.


Find an object from nature, lay it over a white surface and coat the surface with spray paint (with the object on the surface). Repeat with another object creating two of these. Then fill in the positive space on one of them and the negative space on another with text exemplifying FIGURE/GROUND RELATIONSHIP, BALANCE & CONTRAST. 


Create a stencil out of mylar or acetate and prepare a background by either tea-staining paper or adding watercolor. Lay your stencil on top and add modeling paste exemplifying TEXTURE, SHAPE & SPACE. 



Use a wadded up piece of paper, a brown paper sack or a piece of popcorn. Start with a contour drawing, then a shaded version and end with a black and white paper-cut version. Don't forget about the negative space!!!

Lyrical Poster

Select words from your favorite song, poem or book. Compose that text into a "lyrical poster" using a variety of text directions, fonts, sizes and colors. The principles utilized in this assignment are variety and emphasis. Be sure to acknowledge the author somewhere in your design, even if it is small.

To begin you can try copying text into Wordle (link below) to see what design emerges. You can use that idea to make your final piece, but the Wordle IS NOT THE FINAL PIECE. This can be a cut paper design (meaning the letters will be cut out and glued down to paper), a print, or a computer generated image. 

Examples from Alice Taylor

This artwork should exemplify balance, rhythm and repetition.


Create an artwork inspired by the theme of hands. Open media.

Inside and Out

Create a work of art that illustrates the idea of inside and outside being equally important.

Text in Art

Experiment with using text in a composition using any medium or a combination of mediums that we have used in class. You can create contour drawings on top of a surface (text, maps, etc.), experiment with combining painting and drawing together, draw or paint back into a watercolor,etc. Use the Art Idea Generator for a theme if you do not have any ideas.

Paper-Cut Still-Life

Arrange a simple still-life and draw it out. Use 3-4 different values in colors to represent the shapes in the still-life. You can draw back on top 

Symbolic Hair

This artwork should exemplify emphasis.

 Pattern and Rhythm

Repetition refers to one object or shape repeated; pattern is a combination of elements or shapes repeated in a recurring and regular arrangement; rhythm–is a combination of elements repeated, but with variations.” –Lucy Lamp

The use of pattern creates a kind of visual rhythm that, if used judiciously, can change the mood of a painting. I’ve added a couple of pictures to the right to explain.

Gustav Klimt was fond of pattern and used it to great effect and remarked often that the quilts in his home as a child influenced his use of pattern. The first image is a famous painting of Edith Bloch-Bauer and you can see the heavy heavy use of pattern to flatten out the body of Edith, drawing your eye to her face and hands as the “reality” of the painting and the golden, jewel-encrusted patterns that surround her act as a kind of “dress” and as a separate, imaginary space that isn’t connected to her at all.

In the image just below that is one that I drew up pretty quickly in Photoshop just so you can see the difference. Is your response any different to the patternless image?

You may prefera painting that has fewer patterns, but what’s important here is that you understand how pattern changes your response.

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