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Open and closed areas. Positive and negative.


Simple outlines of objects and are flat.


Have an extra dimension and create realism in design.


Weight, density, or relative solidity of a form.


Connection between two points and can separate or unify space.


Smoothness or roughness of a surface.


Arrangements of motifs in a repetitive order; a small pattern may be read as texture.


Affects the appearance of all other elements. Natural and artificial.


Hues that may vary from light to dark and from intense to dull and can be mixed with one other and combined in color schemes.


Overall size, such as the largeness or smallness of a room, object, or pattern. This should related to the space they occupy to be visually pleasing.


Size relationship, or ratio of parts to the whole.


Equilibrium achieved by arranging components symmetrically, asymmetrically, or radially.

Symmetrical Balance

Create a mirror image of a placement.

Asymmetrical Balance

(Informal) Dissimilar objects can be placed at varying distances from the center point. Objects of dissimilar visual weight or form may be balanced.

Radial Balance

State of equilibrium based on the circle.


Flow of elements, usually organized by one of five schemes. Occurs when an element of design forms an organized pattern.


Enhancement that produces a point of interest or focal point in a design.


Compatibility of elements to create a pleasing whole, achieved through unity and variety.


Suggests oneness and uniformity or an identity that suggest a master plan.


The absence of monotony or sameness, brings interest and diversity.


The specific name of a color.


The brightness or dullness of a color.


The color opposite another color on the color wheel.


The lightness or darkness of a color.


The hue that is lighter than its normal value (add white).


A color that is darker than its normal value (add black).

Primary Colors

Colors that cannot be made by mixing other colors: Red, yellow, and blue.

Secondary Colors

Colors that can be made by mixing equal amounts of primary colors: Orange, green, and purple.

Tertiary Colors

Colors made from mixing primary and secondary colors.

Warm Colors

Red, orange, yellow = active, exciting, aggressive.

Cool Colors

Blue, violet, green = calming, restful, passive.

Color Schemes

A combination of colors selected for a room design in order to create a mood or set a tone.


A color scheme using colors that are next to each other on the color wheel.


A color scheme that uses tints and shades of one color on the color wheel.


A color scheme using only pure, true colors from the color wheel.

Split Complimentary

A color scheme that uses 3 colors. It combines one color with the 2 colors on each side of its compliment.


A color scheme that uses any 3 hues that are equal distance apart on the color wheel.


A color scheme that uses 2 colors directly opposite of each other on the color wheel.


Black, white, grey, beige, brown, off-white.

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