Sunday, 6 October 2013


Transition - Towards Stoke Fleming
Ink on Rice Paper
28.5cm x 20cm (11.25" x 8")

Transition is the second principle of composition from chapter 3 of Composition by Arthur Wesley Dow. The first principle is Opposition. Dow defines Transition as a step beyond Opposition.
"Two straight lines meeting in opposing directions give an impression of abruptness, severity or even violence."
"If a third line is added, the opposition is softened and an effect of unity and completeness in produced."
"This combination typifies beauty itself which has been defined as consisting of elements of difference harmonized by elements of unity."

Examples of Transition - copied from Composition 
Ink on Rice Paper
18cm x 9cm (7" x 3.5")

The exercises for Transition include:

  • Copying examples from the text
  • Designing corner ornaments for panels and book covers
  • Drawing examples from nature

Captial - Example of Transition - copied from Composition
Ink on Rice Paper
9cm x 10cm (3.5" x 4")

The drawing at the top of the post is a scene from the South Devon coast. The same view appeared as a tonal sketch on Tonal Studies. This is probably quite a subtle example of transition, because the opposing lines meet off the page, but I couldn't find many better examples in my collection of photographs.

Corner Design with Diagonals
Ink on Rice Paper
14cm x 14cm (5.5" x 5.5")

I am persevering with using Japanese brushes for the exercises, but I struggle to draw pleasing lines with them. This is a good indication I should keep practicing, but it is frustrating because I can draw better lines with a marker pen.

Corner Design with Chequers
Ink on Rice Paper
14cm x 14cm (5.5" x 5.5")

You can find another description of Transition in the post Principles of Composition: Opposition and Transition  on Paul Foxton’s  Learning To See blog.

No comments:

Post a Comment