This week, I recreated Wassily Kandinsky’s Transverse Lines, 1923 in Adobe Photoshop. This proved to be pretty difficult, as I mostly use Photoshop to edit photography and primarily use other apps in the creative suite such as Illustrator to create paintings. For this painting, I used the “paint” tool to create a similar background to add some texture to the piece. I then used the different shape tools to create shapes in a separate layer. I began with pentagons, then moved to triangles, circles, squares and then finally onto lines. I wanted there to be varying colors, sizes and shading to help create the depth that Kandinsky has in his piece. Some things that I couldn’t recreate but wanted to were the more complex shapes and the curved lines. This was a challenge for me, but I liked having a painting to inspire me and I got to work on my Photoshop skills.
The original painting by Kandinsky can be seen here:
Kandinsky utilizes a lot of shapes, lines and color that I wanted to mimic with my piece. This art has a lot of layering and dimensions to it. When artists use shapes, they have to think about the shape’s relationship to the canvas. In Kandinsky’s painting, he uses a mixture of smaller and larger shapes to create a playful relationship with the canvas. He used much more complicated colors and shapes, but as a beginner I still wanted to capture the light and fun tone of the painting using more basic colors, shapes and lines. I used varied shapes such as circles and polygons that were different sizes and at different angles to try and recreate this.
Another element of Kandinsky’s painting that I wanted to capture was the depth perception. He uses a lot of superposition to show the depth of it. I layered a lot of the shapes on top of each other to give the illusion that certain things were in front of each other. He also uses the curvature of lines to show depth that way as well, and as much as I tried, I just couldn’t get it right on my recreation.
Kandinsky uses white space to help balance out the crazy colors and shapes that make up his painting. I tried to mimic that. White space helps a painting “feel right”. It is the space between elements in a piece. I think here, it helps calm the painting down so that it doesn’t seem too overwhelming or cramped. If there less white space, it might be hard to focus on a single element or appreciate certain things in the piece. In mine, I tried to create a similar amount of white space to balance everything out.
I was drawn to this piece because of the uniqueness. It is both chaotic and visually pleasing. He has many different shapes that appear to balance each other out in size and color. Any talented artist can take something as basic as circles, squares and lines and make it a masterpiece.
“Basic Shapes and Relationships.” Form, printingcode.runemadsen.com/lecture-form/.
Boulton, Mark, et al. “Whitespace.” A List Apart, 9 Jan. 2007, alistapart.com/article/whitespace/.