HOW TO CREATE POWERFULL PAINTINGS
Consider music without a distinct melody... A picture with no distinct values or colours is a close analogy in art. Value and colour drive us through a painting in the same way as the notes and rhythms of a tune do in a musical performance.
In representational painting, value plays the role of describing three important characteristics of the subject. Value describes whether the item has volume or is flat and where the light source is located. If we get the value right, the colour can be off and the painting will still work.
Why is values so important, what exactly are the roles of these two indispensable elements? Let’s start off by taking a look at value.
The role of values in a painting
Value is a term we use to refer to lights and darks in a painting and this is the most important of all the visual elements. The value helps us to describe the depth and intensity of the painting. If we get the value right, the color can be off and the painting will still work.
In representational painting, value plays the role of describing three important characteristics of the subject.
Value describes whether the item has volume or is flat and where the light source is located. How dull or bright it is.
Without clear values in a painting, objects will appear flat, lifeless, and uninteresting.
Notan makes it easier to see how the dark and light follow and link to one another throughout the painting. It helps to determine the strength of the structure. Value helps us to follow a path through the painting and that can only be determined by using a grey scale value
What is Notan?
Notan is a Japanese term which literally means “light dark harmony”. Artists use “notan studies” to explore different arrangements of light and dark elements in a painting, without having the distraction of other elements like color, texture and finer details.
“Notan is the underlying abstract framework, or pattern, upon which the value structure of a painting is created. A harmonious arrangement of darks, lights, and grays creates an impression of beauty, regardless of either the colors used, or of the subject matter. It derives from the words Nong( 浓 ) meaning thick, strong, concentrated, and Dan (淡) means weak, watery. So ‘Notan’ literally means concentrated/weak. ”
Barry John Raybould
What is Notan design?
Notan design is the way in which you arrange the darks, lights and grays in a painting. If you create a good notan design in your painting, it does not matter so much which colors you actually use – you painting will still have a strong effect. It is the underlying value structure of your painting in its simplest form.
What Is The Difference Between Notan and Value Study?
A Notan study and a value study are two very different things. A notan is not the value structure of the painting—it is the framework for that value structure, a subtle point that many beginners get wrong.
A Notan study helps you plan a painting from an abstract design point of view, that is completely independent of the subject matter. Thus the values in a notan study do not represent the actual values you see in a scene.
A value study, on the other hand, helps you plan a painting from a realism point of view, that is entirely dependent on the subject matter. The values in a value study need to be accurate to the actual values you see in the scene.
So one helps you plan the abstract design of the painting. The other helps you make the painting look realistic.
ART CLASSES IN DURBANVILLE WITH LEONIE
Actual Painting Classes. Learn to Paint ART CLASSES - From Beginner to Professional Artist
Our personal one-on one art classes for adults are designed to help you unleash your inner artist. With professional artist and instructors, Leonie.e.Brown, you’ll be able to learn new techniques and create beautiful artwork that you can be proud of.
From drawing to portraits to scumbling and lovely thick sticky paint, every student gets tough on an individual basis. Come join us for a FREE preview class today!
ONLINE COURSES FOR BEGINNER TO PROFESSIONAL
Online Painting Courses. Learn everything you need to know to succeed as an artist.
Have you dreamt of becoming an artist? Have you tried painting but got discouraged because of your lack of knowledge? You can fulfil your dreams and become exactly the artist you always dreamt of being. All in the comfort of your own home.
These step-by-step, easy-to-follow Online Art Courses will give you amazing instant results.