- Rearrange shapes cut out of paper, and try to find the point at which the figure disappears into the ground.
- Cut out a series of shapes from black paper – squares, rectangles, circles and random shapes – in a variety of sizes, from small to large.
- Working with a square piece of white paper, place shapes of different sizes into the white space; place them on the white one at a time and move them around.
- Try to find the point where the distinction between figure and ground becomes unclear. Does it depend on which shape dominates the space: black or white? Is it about the position of the shape within the space? Think about how important figure-ground relationships are within composition and design.
- Write down your findings, and remember to take pictures of your progress. Submit these pictures and your write-up on your WordPress blog.
I started out with one shape at a time and played with the placement. Then I started using bigger ones to see if the size affected how I perceived the shape. Then I played with shapes of different sizes together and placed them differently throughout the whole page. The last experiment I did was to mix all the shapes together and see what happened. You can see my experimentation in the pdf document bellow!
What I found out was that the nearer the edge the figure was the more difficult it was to tell the difference between figure and ground. I guess that is the reason why margins are so important! In addition to that, size was also an important factor. The bigger the black shape, the more difficult it was to tell figure from ground. When I used several shapes the same happened, when I grouped them all together and placed them towards the middle of the paper, it was easier to see the difference between figure and ground, but when I spread them out it was hard to tell, specially when I put all on the edge of the paper.