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Elements of Art and Principles of Design

Elements of Art and Principles of Design
Created by:
Delores Pease

See also: Visual Arts: Elements and Principles of Design | Elements of Design Student Handout

                 Principles of Design


Delores designed this assessment for the staff of her district elementary schools to show them that they know a lot more about art than they may have thought. Since they have no art specialist at the elementary level, teaching art falls to the classroom teachers (Delores is a second grade teacher) and they often lack the confidence to teach art because they don't think they know enough about it. Delores thought this little test might alleviate some of their doubts. Delores hopes it could help more educators realize that they are art literate, or at least put a little smile on their faces. Enjoy taking this little Art Ps and Es test. Art teachers might want to use this as fun "pre-test" to see how much their students know.


Circle the best answer:

COLORDesign Principles

1. Artists use a _________________ to help them remember how to mix and think about colors.

(a) selectometer

(b) color wheel

(c) color square

(d) pneumonic


2. The primary colors are

(a) the colors children learn in primary school.

(b) red, blue and yellow.

(c) red, white and blue.

(d) the eight colors in a box of Crayola crayons.


3. Secondary colors are made by mixing

(a) two primary colors.

(b) lights and darks.

(c) coffee and cream.

(d) oil and water.


4. Cool colors like blue, green and purple might be used to paint

(a) a warm fire or a desert sunset.

(b) a hot fudge sundae.

(c) the garage.

(d) a cool forest or a cold lake.


5. The sun or a fire might be painted with warm colors, including

(a) white, black and gray.

(b) blue, green and purple.

(c) red, orange and yellow.

(d) peachy passion and mango mania.


6. The neutral colors

(a) do not have an opinion.

(b) are made by mixing black, white, and sometimes brown.

(c) look best when you have a good tan.

(d) are boring.


7. Complementary colors

(a) always have nice things to say about each other.

(b) are opposite each other on a color wheel.

(c) have very good manners.

(d) do not get along.



8. Tints are light values of a color. Tints are usually made by

(a) mixing a color with white.

(b) mixing a color with black.

(c) going to your beautician.

(d) wearing colored contacts.


9. Shades are dark values of a color. Shades are usually made by

(a) pulling down the blinds.

(b) mixing a color with black.

(c) wearing sunglasses.

(d) staying in the shadows.



10. Forms are three dimensional. They have height, width and thickness. Some common forms are:

(a) cylinders, cubes, spheres and cones

(b) circles, squares, rectangles and triangles

(c) difficult to draw.

(d) for income taxes purposes.



11. You can find lines everywhere you look. Artists use many different kinds of lines. Some common lines are:

(a) "What’s your sign?"

(b) curved, straight, dotted, and zigzag

(c) red, blue and yellow

(d) for drying clothes


12. By joining lines you can

(a) play Red Rover.

(b) learn to dance.

(c) checkout at Wal-Mart.

(d) make shapes.



13. Shapes are flat. Some shapes are geometric, like:

(a) little, economical cars.

(b) circles, squares, triangles and rectangles.

(c) spheres, pyramids, cones and cylinders.

(d) pancakes, shoe boxes and soup cans.


14. Other shapes are organic and look like

(a) things from nature.

(b) Santa Claus.

(c) a healthy cereal

(d) things from an alternate universe.



15. Space is an empty place or surface in or around a work of art. Space can be

(a) the final frontier.

(b) positive and/or negative.

(c) nice when you have a big family.

(d) personal.



16. Texture is the way something ___________. Artists create the illusion of texture in paintings, drawings and prints.

(a) sounds

(b) smells

(c) tastes

(d) feels



17. Balance describes how artists

(a) keep from tipping their easels over.

(b) juggle work and play.

(c) create visual weight.

(d) make ends meet by working as acrobats.


18. Symmetrical (formal) balance means both sides of an imaginary line are the same. An example of an object with symmetrical balance is

(a) an amoeba

(b) a Valentine heart

(c) your hand

(d) a mud puddle


19. Asymmetrical (informal) balance means each side of an imaginary line are __________

yet equal.

(a) different

(b) invisible

(c) messy

(d) blonde


20. Radial balance means lines or shapes grow from a center point. These are examples of radial balance:

(a) a sunburst and a pizza

(b) Goodyear and Michelin

(c) a Valentine heart and a teeter-totter

(d) a mud puddle and an amoeba



21. Contrast creates excitement and interest in artworks. Two things that are very different have a lot of contrast. In art ______________________ have the greatest contrast.

(a) pickles and ice cream

(b) cats and dogs

(c) men and women

(d) black and white


22. Complementary colors also have high contrast. An artists might paint a red apple on a green table

(a) to create a Christmas card.

(b) because she’s hungry.

(c) to make the apple stand out.

(d) to camouflage the apple.


23. Artists may choose _____________ to create a soft look.

(a) kittens

(b) pillows

(c) cotton balls

(d) low contrast



24. Proportion is the size, location and amount of one thing compared to another. By studying proportions you can create a _____________________.

(a) spatter painting

(b) new dance

(c) realistic portrait

(d) a Belgian waffle



25. Artists use emphasis to make certain parts of their work stand out and grab your attention. The center of interest or _________________ is the place the artist draws your eye to first.

(a) focal point

(b) "Wake up and smell the coffee" point

(c) compass point

(d) pencil point



26. Artists use variety to make you look at certain parts of their work or to make their work more interesting. Variety occurs when an artist creates something that looks different from the rest of the artwork. Which is not an example of variety?

(a) a white cat in a rose bed at breakfast

(b) an orange cat on a blue quilt at noon

(c) a black cat in a coal bin at midnight

(d) a fat cat in a sport coat at Mardi Gras



27. By repeating lines, colors or shapes over and over again in a work of art, an artist can create visual rhythms or patterns that lead your eye through their work. ____________ is an example of repetition.

(a) $#@ $#@ $#@

(b) @#$ %^& *()

(c) <>? /., -!{

(d) Meatloaf

(See patterns that create "ASCII" images)



28. Harmony in visual design means all parts of the artwork relate to and complement each other. Harmony pulls the pieces of a visual image __________.

(a) like taffy

(b) apart

(c) together

(d) over the edge



29. Artists can create the illusion of movement in their artwork by using diagonal lines, by changing the direction or value (lightness or darkness) of an image or by overlapping shapes. An artist might use techniques of movement to show

(a) a bucking horse.

(b) the Statue of Liberty.

(c) a rock.

(d) a sleeping dog



30. Unity is the feeling that everything in the work of art works together and looks like it ________.

(a) costs more than it’s worth

(b) hates to make a mistake

(c) is showing off

(d) fits