In this lesson, you will learn about the Space element and its relationship to Form in the visual design process.

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Source: Image of War Memorial, Creative Commons http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/293268

Video Transcription

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Hi everyone, my name is Mario. And I'd like to welcome you to today's lesson, which is going to be on space. So we're going to talk about the space element and then show you a few examples of it in practice. So as always, feel free to pause, fast forward, and rewind as you see fit. And when you're ready to go, then let's get started.

So let's begin today's lesson by defining space. And space surrounds form and any other positive elements. So space is typically understood by negative spaces, for example. We have the shape here, which is a silhouette of a statue. And we're going to use black and white to note the negative and positive space.

So all the black surrounding the white space is a negative space. And of course the white silhouette there is a positive element or form. And space isn't just necessarily empty or secondary area, it's just in the background. And can be considered a format by which we frame a design.

So again, it's used in framing, which are the edges of a visual design work. And this variable lays the foundation of the designers composition. So here's an example of what I mean by that. You can see framing changes the space, which directly affects the design as a whole. And quite drastically, actually. So space and spatial relationships are very important in design.

And just as important as the figure ground relationship. So the figure ground consists of two layers; form in the foreground and space in the background. And this allows the viewer to perceive depth. And space is considered the ground in this relationship, so the figure is either the form, or the positive element in design.

So for the same example, our literal figure is both. There's a minor sense of depth here because there's nothing going on with a negative space. But as you can see as we fade in to our example of full value, there's still very clear separation between the figure and the ground elements. So there's no question here what is the positive space and the negative space.

Well, that ends our lesson for today. We'll end with our key terms, which is space, framing, and figure ground. My name is Martin and I hope you've enjoyed this lesson with me today. I will see you next lesson.

  • Space

    Surrounds form and any other positive elements.

  • Framing

    Edges of a visual design work. This invariably lays the foundation of the designer's composition.

  • Figure/Ground

    Consists of two layers. Form in the foreground and space in the background. This allows the viewer to see perceived depth.