Illustration Training x 3 with Composition Collages

Perhaps some of you remember my older post about training composing your images with the “compo-game”. Well I have to admit it can get boring after a while, so here’s an alternative from which your skills can profit double!

The next time you paint something simply scan it (or take a picture and print it out, if you don’t have access to a scanner). Now open it with any program that can process images and zoom in (you could use a magnifying glass for the printed pic, I guess). Now scroll around and search for interesting parts. If something catches your eye don’t hesitate and copy just what you see on the monitor in that very moment (the zoomed-in part). Gather all parts in a different file and when you feel like there’s nothing more to add start freely moving them around. Your aim is to create a good balance between the parts themselves AND in regard to the negative space.

Here’s an example:

At the end of the day you’ve created a painting, used it as a basis for a second image and you improved your composing skills. WIN! WIN! WIN!

Composition Game

As I promised in an earlier post here’s a simple game in order to train your eye to see if your composition is right:

  1. First of all you need a piece of cardboard (21 x 15 cm / 8 x 6 inch).
  2. Divide it into 4 equal parts.
  3. Additionally cut out at least 4 different shapes in various sizes and if possible colors.
  4. Try placing them on the cardboard in any order you can think of (you can also change the number) and try to portion the empty space the way I showed you to do.
  5. As a variation you can make many more papers, divide each in 4 different parts, lay the figures down and draw only their outlines. Now you can lift them up and get a better overview of the overall arrangement between empty space and occupied space as the different shapes now appear as one single shape vs. the background.

In my opinion it’s a more fun way to start dealing with the topic and it really can help you get an eye for this sort of things. You should definitely try it out and see for yourself ūüôā

Oh, and here’s a quick pic on how my first “compo-game” looked like:

my composition game