Note: To protect the privacy of our members, e-mail addresses have been removed from the archived messages. As a result, some links may be broken.

Lesson Plans


Re: positive/negative space

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
sidnie miller (sidmill)
Sat, 19 Apr 97 16:38:56 PDT


Dear Andrew--Use photography--neg. space is so important there. Get
a photo magazine and show photos and point out the positive and
negative spaces. It's a good way to see why the negative space
is important--since it's often half of the picture and clever use of
neg. space makes such a great dramatic picture.
I usually grab an empty picture frame and put it over me and then
explain that I am the positive thing and the air spaces around me
are negative space. Without some kind of frame to stop the air
spaces, kids get confused. You can also have them cut a small
rectangle out of a piece of paper and use as a view finder ie frame..
Start with a subject--ie a still life set up which is stools or long branches
of a tree or something where most the the space is going to be
negative. Have them use the viewfinder to draw the negatives--
not the positives. I think that one of the reasons that pos/neg is
so confusing is that there are so many synonyms that they use
in school--such as negative numbers in math and negative attitudes
and behaviors etc. I also have them take 2 small pieces of
colored paper and hold them together and cut into one side--cutting
around just randomly or with half of some design in mind--they must
come out that same side. Then they open it up and the thing in
the middle becomes the subject or positive whether it is something
recognizable or not but(say the colored paper is red and black) on
one side it will be a red positive thing with a black background or
negative space and on the other side it will be a black positive with
a red negative and it always makes a great design--even if it's
really simple. There used to be a Levi Button your Fly T-shirt that
was a great example of using positive and negative in a design but
it's pretty old and dated now. Sid