The most active area in a composition is called a "focal point" or entry point. Active and passive areas help to establish visual hierarchies: where the eye…
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a red and black poster with the word taxi in it's uppercases
Alan Kitching's A–Z of Letterpress is 26 Lovely Letters—But Not Much Else
"Alan Kitching's A–Z of Letterpress" is 26 Lovely Letters—But Not Much Else | AIGA Eye on Design
the front page of a magazine with an image of a woman smiling and surrounded by flowers
Magazine Page Anatomy / week 1
Hey, I'm Jesslyn.: Magazine Page Anatomy / week 1
an image of the webpage layouts in different colors and sizes, including one for each
Designer of the Week: Balraj Chana
Carefully crafted interfaces in which exist a clear hierarchy in terms of visual navigation; where the viewer goes first, second and so on. The idea of hierarchy is all about something being very active vs. everything else being comparatively passive.
an advertisement for metro with different types of items in the circle and on the front
Posada video YouTube HD
Hierarchy refers to the relative importance (or activeness) of one thing versus the relative lack of importance (or passiveness) of another thing or group of things. By adjusting proportions involving color contrast, primary and secondary entry points get established whose main function is to guide the user into this proposed interface promoting an exhibition of the Mexican artist Guadalupe Posada at selected Los Angeles Metro stations. Posada video YouTube HD.
a man is looking at his reflection in a mirror on the side of a horse drawn carriage
The most active area in this composition is the framed head in the lower left corner. It becomes a focal point. The baggage area at the top is out of focus and does not contain the same level of contrast contained by the framed head. This renders the baggage area relatively passive except when compared with the area in the lower right corner. Ferdinando Scianna(1943- ), Macedonia, Skopije: daily life.
blurry photograph of street lights and cars on the road at night with raindrops
Active/Passive relationships occur on 3 levels in this painting by Samantha Fields. Headlights produce the primary zone of visual entry. The muted rain drops are passive in comparison, yet remain relatively active when compared to the black stillness. A contrast of scale exists between the smallish display of bright headlights and the background/foreground of the surrounding space.
a painting of two women in an artist's studio
Comin Soon | Truely
Johannes Vermeer 1632-1675, The Art of Painting. Vermeer uses single-point perspective to guide the viewer from foreground to background. The studio area in the center and right express the most active area in the composition. The curtain's foot is the most passive area. If the curtain's foot were any brighter and thus more active, the entry into the composition would be far more challenging.
the words are written in different languages on a piece of paper that has been cut into smaller letters
Sushi Design Studio | Studio di progettazione a Venezia.
Very active red and green type becomes a focal point especially when compared to the relatively passive white, hand cut text and in turn compared to the active white panel behind it. Massimo Vignelli, designer.
an abstract painting with black, white and grey squares on the bottom half of it
The red line, the blue rectangle and blue lines are quite active compared to the yellowish square, tinted blue rectangles and lines throughout. Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, artist.
an old newspaper with black and white art work on the front page, including torn paper
Derivative or not
The bold strokes are powerful and highly active made even more so by spontaneous angularities. The newspaper text is relatively passive yet offers a rational counterpoint and an orderly texture. Kurt Schwitters, artist.
an advertisement for the museum of contemporary art
The most active area in this composition is the green and blue structure. After that, the adjacent type on the left, the red logo and the museum name above it that are both located at the bottom, and then the repeated gray line on the left and light green type near the top are regressively intensive and relatively passive. Howard Schneider, designer.
an old piece of paper that has been altered to look like some type of art
agendita | encuadres 04
Very active zone where the large letter forms are situated (the focal point). Gradually passive zones as the viewer transitions next to the dots and letters to the right, eventually leading to the relatively less active areas of the white rectangle (an accent area) and the mildly contrasting red lines, followed by the shapes above it and the most passive element, the subtle tonal overlaps of the stained background. Juan Casini, artist.