Because our world is made up of objects - both natural and human made - it is made up of shapes. But when you look at a painting or a photograph sometimes it is difficult to focus on one shape - one significant shape.

Today we examine different ways shapes in our environment can be manipulated to create art forms.

Look at all the shapes in the image on the left. The composition is composed of multiple configurations. On the right is what happens when all the extraneous shapes are removed. Note it is easier to take in the details of the dominant shape especially the forms of the two people which come into focus.

Look at how different the chimney is if we remove all the surrounding and unimportant shapes in the scene on the left. You notice details, colours, lines, textures.

Take away the sky and surrounding landscape amd you are left with two contrasting shapes.

We can learn a great deal about a shape if we take it out of its location.

However, whilst a scene might have one or two dominant shapes often the surrounding shapes make for a far more interesting image - especially if you apply some of the wonderful effects photo programs now offer.

Look at the first image which is the original by Caroline and then the different effects we have applied to alter the style, the appearance - but the basic shapes in the original image have remained constant.

And again - original photo top left with the effects applied without altering the basic shapes in the image.

A little fun to conclude. We have all played the game where you look for identifiable shapes in the clouds. What can you find in these clouds?

Photo by Caroline© 

Did you find the dog?

Image: Photoshopped

I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way – things I had no words for. – Georgia O’Keeffe