CHAOS – A state of things in which chance is supreme; the confused unorganized state of primordial matter before the creation of distinct forms.
CHIAROSCURO – An Italian word, literally “light – dark”, a term applied to extravagantly contrasted light and shade effects of late Renaissance painting.
CHROMATIC GRAYS – Subtle colors that result from considerably lowering the saturation level of prismatic colors (pure hues).
Chromatic grays weakly exhibit the distinguishing quality of the hue family to which they belong. (Not to be confused with achromatic grays that are created by mixing black and white).
COLLAGE – A pictorial technique whereby the artist creates the image, or a portion of it, by adhering real materials, initially designed for another purpose to the picture plane surface, often combining them with painted or drawn passages.
COLOR – A property of light; objects have no color of their own but merely reflect certain rays of white light, which contain all the colors.*
COMPLEMENTARY COLORS – Colors that lie directly opposite each other on the color wheel. When juxtaposed, complementary colors create contrast, when mixed, complementary colors neutralize each other, creating a variety of browns.
COMPOSITION – The overall arrangement and organization of formal elements on the two-dimensional surface.*
COMPRESSED SPACE – Points or lines packed together creating Visual Depth and the illusion of receding Volume through Value Gradation. Works best along Expanded Space.
CONTENT – The emotional and/or intellectual meaning or message of an artwork. May include your emotional, intellectual, symbolic, spiritual, and/or narrative intentions. One of the Components of Art along with Subject Matter and Form (some authors also include Context.)*
CONTEXT – Historical, Religious, Cultural, Social, Political, Ethnical, Geographic, Gender, influences that inform and influence the artist, the artwork and the viewer of the artwork. Considered one of the Components of Art along with Subject Matter, Form and Content.*
CONTINUANCE – A movement contained within a shape…or created by its outline…is picked up somewhere in the field (in proximity) and carries on the same flow. As a result, your eye keeps moving smoothly in one “flow” even though the objects that are carrying the “flow” change.
CONTINUATION – A line or edge that continues from one form or shape to another, allowing the eye to move smoothly through a composition this line can be actual or implied.*
CONTRAST – The juxtaposition of opposing elements (color or value, size, position, etc.); allows us to emphasize or highlight key elements by breaking or disrupting an established order or system. Degree of difference between compositional parts or between one image and another. High contrast tends to be eye-catching and is often used by graphic designer to create dynamic, highly readable images.*
COOL COLORS – blues, greens and purples.
CLOSURE – The mind’s inclination to connect fragmentary information to produce a completed form.*
CRAFTSMANSHIP – Care in construction and finishing; demonstration of skill and knowledge of processes; attention to detail The quality of design and work shown in something that is made by hand.*
CREATIVE BRAINSTORMING – Specific techniques for generating many ideas and possibilities either individually or collectively. Creative brainstorming encourages a non-judgmental attitude, rapid generation of ideas, record-keeping, and a willingness to push to the edges for strange and unexpected possibilities within a limited time-frame.*
CRITIQUE – Any means by which the strengths and weaknesses of designs are analyzed. Common strategies include comparisons, description, formal analysis and inventing alternatives.*
CURVILINEAR – A shape which is dominated by curves and flowing lines.