Mark Making Research

Mark making is the term used to define when a line or various lines are put together to form textures and patterns on any surface.

Mark Making is present in our everyday lives, starting with the most obvious being writing with a pen or pencil. Each style of writing is different based on how a person manipulates their pen or pencil, hence some are more curvaceous whereas some are more linear. Hence some people may find some handwriting more pleasing to read then others.

These lines have certain qualities that ‘persuade’ us to feel in a certain way.

An example of which can be found in Wassily Kandinsky’s “Composition VII”

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Wassily Kandinsky is well known for his interpretations of various music pieces. “Composition VII” makes use of contrasting lines that clash and overlap each other. The various directions, and individual shapes each lines takes seem to compete with the others, which creates chaos and/or confusion.

In the case of paintings, brushes have the ability to shape a line into various shapes. However we also make tools with various tips to create a unique stroke.

Creating your tools, or having tools with tips of various shapes and sizes can in various patterns despite being used in a similar manner.

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As seen by the above, the rougher material results in a spindly, almost scratchy effect. When used in sharp swift movements the lines are thinner,  that could resemble irritation or confusion. The second tool creates rounder lines, that seem more uniform than the first. The last imitates a dry brush resulting in segregated segments of ink within each stroke.

Colour too plays a part in mark marking, creating weight and shadows, which gives emphasis to certain part of the image.

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Darker segments tend to be more eye catching, as it creates weight to the image. However, negative spaces within dark contrasting areas act as an accent, which draws attention beyond the dark spaces, like a pathway to other parts of the painting.