What Makes Good Composition in Visual Art


Principles and Elements Of Design

The best designers sometimes disregard the principles of design. When they do so, however, there is usually some compensating merit attained at the cost of the violation. Unless you are certain of doing as well, it is best to abide by the principles (of design).

-William Lidwell

The Elements

The Principles

Basic Composition The Golden Ratio or Rule of Thirds

Hue colour

Tint Any colour with white added

Shade Any colour with black added

Tone A colour that has been

“greyed” down

Value The lightness or darkness of

a colour

Chroma A colour’s purity, intensity,

or saturation

TheColourWheel Primary

Secondary Tiertiary


• Lasquite, Mydee. “What Makes Good Design: Basic Elements and Principles.” Visme, 23 August 2016, visme.co/blog/elements-principles-good-design/

• Bhadauria, Ravi. “Principles of Design.” Slideshare, 3 March 2016, www.slideshare.net/admecinstitute/principles-of-design-59011113

• Joseph, Julianna. “16 Interior Design Elements and Principles Images.” NewDesignfile, 11 September 2012, www.newdesignfile.com/post_interior-design-elements-and-principles_125342/

• Munsell Color System, munsell.com/