The element of Shape builds upon lines.

Shapes are planes with edges. A plane is a flat surface extending infinitely in width and height. A plane can be parallel to the format containing space, or it can recede or protrude in space to create depth. Shapes have composition with boundaries which separate the space they enclose from what surrounds them.

Shapes have their own distinctive quality.

Geometric shapes are mathematically measured and possess straight edges and precise curves. Stylistically they have mechanical and somewhat unnatural appearance.

There are three basic geometric shapes: the square, triangle, and circle. These shapes have corresponding volumetric forms: the cube, pyramid, and sphere.

Geometric Shapes

Additionally, there are more complex geometric shapes such as parallelograms, trapezoids, octagons, equilateral, isosceles, and right triangles. Other volumetric forms include the cylinder, cone, or prism.

Organic shapes are derived from nature (plants and animals). Stylistically they are curvilinear, as straight lines are rare in nature, and suggest growth and movement.

Rectilinear shapes are bound by straight lines which are not mathematically related.

Curvilinear shapes appear to have no straight lines or edges.

Irregular shapes posses both straight and curved lines which are not mathematically related. This may include shapes accidentally or artistically created.

Works Cited

Brigham Young University of Idaho. “Design and Color”. Notes from lectures and course materials, 2010.

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