creating a focal point

How do you create a focal point
to attract viewers into your painting?

what is a focal point in art?

  • The focal point is the main attraction for the viewer.

It's the what and why of the painting. Why was the painting done? What did the artist want to say?

It attracts the viewers, then their eyes move on to other areas of the painting.

does every painting have a focal point?

  • It is up to the artist whether they want one or not.

If a painting is basically a display of patterns, there may not be a specific area of attraction.

Some paintings may have more than one focal area.

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how do you create a focal point?

There are a number of different tools the artist can use to attract the eye of the viewer.

Accomplished artists use one or more of the following methods to make attractive paintings.


value contrast

  • The easiest and the most valuable tool for the artist is value contrast.

Value is the contrast between light and dark. The eye is automatically drawn to contrast.

Artists use light against dark in many areas of the painting. But the strongest value contrast should be used in the focal point or the focal area.


single objects

  • The lone egret attracts attention.

Viewers are more comfortable when objects are placed together or near other objects.

Solitary items will automatically attract attention.


people, animals and vehicles

People, animals or vehicles become the star of the show when they are in a painting.

Just be sure and give them adequate space in front of their face looking into the painting.

  • Do not place people or animals close to the edge of the painting, looking out of the painting.

Their view will carry the viewer's eye out of the painting.


detail

  • Use more detail in the focal areas compared to other areas of the painting.

There is more detail on the chicken's face and on her feathers compared to the background which is somewhat out of focus.


Detail draws attention to the focal area.The Details On "Lacey"
Attract Attention

soft and hard edges

  • Soft edges are easier to look at. Hard edges attract more attention.

Notice the hard edges on Lacey compared to the soft edges in the rest of the painting.


color

  • Brighter, more saturated colors attract attention.

The red comb and wattles on the chicken are the brightest red in the painting.


complimentary colors

  • Complimentary colors vibrate when they are placed next to each other. They are great for attracting the viewer's attention to the focal area.

You will find complimentary colors directly across from each other on the color wheel.

  • Blue and orange
  • Red and green
  • Yellow and violet

When you select colors for your paintings, complimentary colors are the ideal choice.

warm verses cool colors

  • Placing warm colors against cool colors is another great tool for the artist to use in the focal point of their paintings.

The warm colors, red, orange and yellow automatically attract attention.

When we place them against cool colors, they really sparkle.

How to mix warm colors and cool colors.

Complimentary colors are a good way to attract attention to the focal area of a painting.Complimentary and Warm vs Cool Colors

conclusion

  • Use any or all of these tools to create a focal point in your paintings.

Your paintings will be sure to attract the viewer's attention.

happy painting!


art books for your interest ---


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