Twenty percent of every canvas is filled by imagination and the rest is covered by the artist's knowledge about 'how to cover the space', aesthetically. The space is flat, having no volume. The artists want to create a sense of volume in the painting. Certainly there would be need of creating some illusions. The skill of an artist lies in how beautifully he or she can create that illusion of space on a flat and blank canvas. When an artist stands before a canvas, taking one dozen of brushes and a palate full of colours, first of all he has to face the blank space. Here the painter recreates the image roaming in his or her mind.
Creating Sense of Volume
A good painting consists of properly embedded perspective. There would be the lines converging at a vanishing point or points, if there are more than one point. By using all the geometrical means and knowledge at disposal, the artist would be successful in bringing up a sense of volume in the painting. The objects painted would look like three dimensional, receding into space; and painting would look like divided into different planes of space.
How to Use Space of Canvas Artistically
In order to make a painting visually pleasant to the eyes of the viewers, it should be follow the patter that the human eyes are used to follow while looking at any object. The artist has one image in mind. The image is to come out, on the canvas. It needs a process, a technique, a perspective. We can call the process of painting as an effort in translating that mental image on to the canvas through the use of geometry and hues and shades of different colours. However the need of using and creating the feel of space is pivotal for any painting to be branded as a good artwork.
The important factor that creates a sense of space in a painting is the edges of the objects painted. These edges are the parts where the body of an object ends and the blank space or the body of another object starts. By covering the space with meaningful brushstrokes, an artist lets us know how far the objects are lying in the painting. Graded shading and combination of colours create a feel of space in the eyes of the viewers.
How to Paint creating Perspective Illusion
Pere Borrell del Caso (1835 – 1910) was a Spanish painter and a good illustrator. He was also famous for his engraving. But his name came into more light after he painted this painting, Escaping criticism, Escapando de la crítica, 1874.
How to Look at Painting : When an artist looks at an object to paint, he or she would see it form many dimensions, much of them would be arbitrary, too. The artist might see the object in standing position, or sitting or sleeping position. He or she may look at the scene to be painted in strange positions while doing yoga postures, too. But all these looks would generate different types of perspective. The volume of the object also may vary due to looking at from different angel. So when we see a painting, we should consider the angle from which the artist had seen the object.
Importance of the size of painting : In order to use the space effectively, we need to decide the size of the canvas judiciously. The distance from which a viewer looks at a painting is also an important aspect in evaluating the painting or enjoying the same. If the eyes can see the whole painting at a time, it would help in understanding it better. [Image courtesy By Баженов В. А. (1909 - 1986) / Bazhenov Vsevolod Andreevich (1909 - 1986) [null or CC-BY-SA-3.0], from Wikimedia Commons]