Element 1: Line

Exploring the Elements of ART & Design

When you think of lines you probably think of something like a piece of paper or the bounds that keep you from driving off the road. Line in artwork though takes on a whole new meaning, and is one of the Elements of Art and Design. Typically, lines are seen as solid and continuous, but did you know that there are many different types of line within the arts?

1. Actual Line: Are lines that you can physically see, these are the lines that you can draw.

2. Implied Line: Are lines that are physically there, but are completed with your mind.

3. Directional Line: Horizontal, Vertical, and Diagonal lines.


It may seem very basic, but using line can go a long way to help you create an interesting composition/design. Thinking about line can help you problem solve if you are stuck as well, giving you a new way to approach your work. You can also use linework when you shade as well, like cross hatching and building up to get the desired darkness. This can be a powerful tool to learn how to use, and the more you know as an artist, the more creative you will get!

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