What is (and is not) "Negative Space"? (And how do you use it.)

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
lilBuddha Veteran Member • Posts: 4,376
Re: Samples:

Barry Twycross wrote:

lilBuddha wrote:

New Day Rising wrote:

Donald B wrote:

MediaArchivist wrote:

Over in the challenges section of this site, there is a challenge specifically for negative space. The entries can give you an idea of how other people think of it, and use it.


most have no idea what negative space is in that challenge.


I have to agree. Many are just using space around the main subject, but then filling it with stuff. I went through all of them and 20-25% are what I would call negative space.

I just went through all of the submissions and if you think many or most don't use negative space, then I disagree with your definitions.

I think there are several that do not qualify at all and a couple that are subjective, but most use negative space.

This is why I asked the question. When does background become negative space.

Background can either be the part of the scene that was behind the subject in real life or the parts of the image that are not the subject. background becomes negative space when it is viewed as a whole, rather than its parts. Exactly when the happens is going to be a little subjective.

How much can be in negative space before it becomes background. As I said, their ideas are in a lot of cases not mine.

Does a blurred background qualify? How blurred?

Bluured, yes. How blurred is going to vary by case and viewer.

Does a background with texture qualify? How textured?

The negative space can be sharp and textured, but if it competes with the subject, it is not negative space. Simple examples are easy to illustrate. Complex examples need to be discussed on their own. It really is no different to mist concepts in art in this.

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