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any human putting their mark on something, to announce their existence in the world; to make a mark indicates higher brain function


The literal shape and mass of an object or figure. The materials used to make a work of art (line, light, color)


the meaning of an image beyond its subject matter


how the work was created, the media used (paint, pastel, clay, bronze, paper)


any materials used to create a work of art (media- plural form)


height by width; a flat surface


height by width by depth; it can be viewed from every angle and walked around

subject matter

the subject of an artwork- what the work is about


more than subject matter; narrative is the story of what you see in an artwork


the organization or arrangement of the formal elements in a work of art

formal elements

the visual tools an artist uses to create a work of art- include the elements of art and the principles of design

formal analysis

analyzing the form of the art work; how are all of the components are implemented to create meaning


the use of symbols to represent the invisible, intangible, or abstract (god, death, birth, spirit, good/bad)


the images and symbols conventionally associated with given subject. The study of significance and interpretation of the subject matter

picture plane

the flat, two-dimensional surface of a work of art "the window"

pictorial depth

the aspect of composition on a 2D plan in which a 3D space is depicted


the quality or state of being the "truth"


the quality that makes a work of art appear close to or resemble the natural world- it looks "real"

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