An arabesque, also known as the "line of continuity," collects, organizes, and relates different elements in a composition. An arabesque can be used to tie in the background with the foreground or connect specific components together in a design to create a sense of unity. A well-designed arabesque will allow the viewer's eyes to move fluidly (without hesitation) through a composition in a drawing, painting, or photograph. The example below, from the Myron Barnstone drawing DVD series, demonstrates the arabesque in a Francisco Zúñiga drawing.
Additional Examples of the Arabesque in Composition
Image above, “Birth of Venus” by Botticelli, demonstrating the use of the arabesque
Image above, “The Rape of Europa” by Paolo Veronese, demonstrating the use of the arabesque
Image above by George Frederic Watts demonstrating the arabesque in a composition. Notice how the arabesque is complemented by the strong use of straight and diagonal lines. To learn more about the use of lines in a work of art, I recommend chapter three of the book Classical Drawing Atelier by Juliette Aristides.
For Sale! Leica M7 0.72 Film Camera Body (Used) Click here to learn more.
Dynamic Symmetry Art is a non-commercial, comprehensive skill-based art learning resource for the serious artist, photographer, and graphic designer that wants to learn the art of composition and improve their visual literacy skills. Unlike so many other art and photography websites that offer the same tips, tricks, and rules, dynamicsymmetryart.com is about separating fact from fiction, revealing the painter's secret geometry, and providing easy-to-apply design techniques for anyone that has a strong desire to create masterful work.
Dynamic Symmetry Art will not take any future questions about any of the information on this website. However, all of the material on this website will be available for free for a limited time. Additionally, all the information provided on this website is strictly intended to teach the artist and photographer more about the art of composition and should never be used for any commercial purpose.
This website does not take donations or have any commercial affiliations with any other company.