Weight in your composition

I have an interesting thing for you today.

See this photo?

two chemicals

two chemicals

That is a two part epoxy glue that I use all the time. You are supposed to squirt out a small puddle of liquid from Part A which is clear, and then squirt out the same amount of Part B (on the right), which is amber colored.

So, notice how the levels are not the same? It is because of an illusion.

I squirt out small puddles of this stuff all the time. I do my best to make sure the puddles are the same size. You can see the difference in the levels which shows I am not equal at all.

This is why. The amber colored liquid looks heavier because of the darker color, so my mind adjusts, and pours a smaller puddle of amber. The darker liquid holds more weight in my mind. When I try to pour two exact same sized puddles, I always will unconsciously pour a smaller puddle of the darker liquid.

This is a great concept for your artwork, or film composition. A darker color on one side of your photo image, or artwork can be balanced with more light color on the opposite side. A white square on one side of your painting is not going to balance out a black square. If you are trying to balance your composition, you have to take in to account that darker colors weigh more in our minds. A larger volume of lighter color will be needed to balance out the darker color.

I also notice this effect when I am mixing blue putty with light yellow putty. I always use more light yellow even though I try to mix them equally.

Go ahead, make some art, have some fun.

One response to “Weight in your composition

  1. The real problem is that one of them is thicker than the other and the thinner one spreads to a larger puddle even when you’ve dispensed a lesser amount.


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