The Basic Elements + Principles of Design: Segment #2

The Basic Elements + Principles of Design: Segment #2


In this segment of my ongoing class I am going to talk about the first two elements of design – Space and Line.

Space is the area in which you have to work. This area can be visually made to look larger or smaller, but the physical size is not altered. This is sometimes very obvious yet very frustrating. You may want to have a dining table that can accommodate 12 people, but if the size of the space will not allow this size, there is no point in trying to cram it in.

Lines are either straight or curved. Straight lines are considered to be more masculine. Vertical lines Suggest formality and dignity and emphasize height. Horizontal lines are more restful, relaxed and emphasizes width. Curved lines add interest and relief and are considered to be softer, therefore more feminine.

Now let’s revisit the photos of our two dining rooms. As far as space goes both of these room are large enough to house a fairly large table. In Photo number one with the round table there is definitely room to add a leaf or 2 into the table without crowding the space. This table could be oval or oblong. As far as “line” goes there are some distinct differences between the two rooms. There are many curved elements in the first photo – the round table with the shapely pedestal, the curved back chairs. The wood grills on the mirrored cabinet, the curved glass light fixture and the glass vases. Even the brick on the wall have an irregular shape.

By contrast the second photo shows a rectangular table and chairs with vertical slats on the back. The area carpet has a pattern with straight lines. The beam on either side of the cabinet and the windows and even the rectangular shaped brick all creates a consistent visual line. The First photo definitely looks more feminine and the second is more masculine.

Beautifully decorated dining room Gorgeous dining room