English for Art and Design: Focal Point / Emphasis (1996 / 2012)

Creative Business & Entrepreneurship

| 24 June 2012
Page 2 of 2


2D: Focal point / emphasis in Thomas Eakins’s The Concert Singer.

Thomas Eakins The Concert Singer
Thomas Eakins. The Concert Singer, (1890-92). Oil on canvas, 75 1/8 x 54 1/4 inches (190.8 x 137.8 cm). Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Most important part: __________________________

Which method helps create the focal point in this work? Put an X next to your answer. Explain with some details.

Parts

Methods to create emphasis / the focal point
1
2
3
Direction of lines
Gestures by depicted objects / persons
Position in composition (Where is it?)
Uses the lightest / darkest color / value in the work
Manipulation of light
Isolation
By contrast. (This can mean light against dark, big against small, textured against smooth, or color against gray).
Use of subject matter / content. (In general, shocking scenes, human figures. For the human figure, it is usually the face.

Now look at the painting again. Do you see three more points of emphasis? How did Thomas Eakins make these?

2E: Focal point / emphasis in Caravaggio’s Calling of St. Matthew.

caravaggio calling of st matthew
Caravaggio. Calling of St. Matthew, (1599-1602). Oil of canvas, 322 cm × 340 cm (127 in × 130 in). San Luigi dei Francesi, Rome.

Most important part: __________________________

Which methods help create the focal point in Caravaggio’s work? Put an X next to your answer. Explain with some details.

Parts

Methods to create emphasis / the focal point
1
2
3
Direction of lines
Gestures by depicted objects / persons
Position in composition (Where is it?)
Uses the lightest / darkest color / value in the work
Manipulation of light
Isolation
By contrast. (This can mean light against dark, big against small, textured against smooth, or color against gray).
Use of subject matter / content. (In general, shocking scenes, human figures. For the human figure, it is usually the face.

Now look at the painting again. Do you see two more points of emphasis? How did Caravaggio make these?

Exercise 3: Focus on Writing

Select one picture from Exercise 2. Write a paragraph describing the focal point(s) in the work.


Exercise 4: Speaking exercise

Andy Warhol 100 soup cans
Andy Warhol. 100 Soup Cans, (1962). Oil on canvas, 72 x 52 inches (182.9 x 132.1 cm). Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo.

You are now Andy Warhol’s art teacher. Poor Andy, he did the assignment incorrectly. You wanted him to create a strong focal point. Instead, he created no focal point and no emphasis.

A. Give Andy instructions on how to create one strong focal point using 100 soup cans in a painting. Make a list of four or more methods and give details.

B. Give Andy instructions on how to create three strong focal points using 100 soup cans in a painting. Make a list of four or more methods and give details.