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Art Glossary

A
Abstract Art : Art which does not represent reality as we see it. This kind of work is characterized by a strong dependence on what appears to be accident and chance. It is believed that the spontaneity of the artist’s approach to their work draws inspiration from and releases the creativity of their unconscious minds.
Acrylic Paint : Synthetic paint with pigment dispersed in a synthetic vehicle . Acrylic paints dry quickly.
Arrangement : An order or composition of items used for a still life painting or drawing.
Art Appreciation : The introduction of basic principles of visual literacy - to general audiences for the purpose of
enhancing their enjoyment of works of art.
Art Buyer :
The person who is a link between an agency and freelance artists ; buys work for the agency.
Art Conservation : Preservation from loss, damage, or neglect.
Art Critic : A person who analyses, evaluates or expresses judgments of the merits, faults and value of artworks.
Artist : One who makes art.
Art Buyer : The person who is a link between an agency and freelance artists ; buys work for the agency.

 
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Art Conservation : Preservation from loss, damage, or neglect. Art Critic : A person who analyses, evaluates or expresses judgments of the merits, faults and value of artworks.
Artist : One who makes art.
Asymmetry : The parts of a design organized so that one side differs from the other without destroying the overall harmony.The parts of a design organized so that one side differs from the other without destroying the overall harmony.

B
Background : The part of a picture or scene that appears to be farthest away from the viewer, usually nearest the horizon.
Base : A podium on which a sculpture is exhibited, or the portion of a sculpture on which its weight rests.
Batik : A method of dyeing cloth which involves the use of removable wax to repel the dye on parts of the design, where dye is not desired. Batik originated in Indonesia.
Binary Colours : Colours made by the mixing of two hues. Examples are orange, green and purple.
Binder : The ingredient in the vehicle of a paint which adheres the pigment particles to one another, and to the ground.
Blend : In art work, to merge colours applied to a surface, whether with a brush, crayon, coloured pencil or other medium.
Body Colour : An opaque paint. Transparent colours are often made opaque by mixing them with some gouache or some opaque white.
Bond Paper : A good quality paper used for drawing and sketching.
Browse Image : In digital imaging, a small image, usually derived from a larger one. Often called thumbnail images.
Brush : A tool used to apply paints and inks to a surface, consisting of hairs, or bristles held in place and attached to a handle.
Brush Cleaner : A compound used to clean oil, acrylic etc from artist’s brushes.
Brushstroke : The result of a brush loaded with paint or ink leaving some of that paint on a surface.
Brushwork : The particular manner in which an artist applies paint with a brush.
Buckle : Waves or bulges that appear in pages and canvas, generally from too much moisture and uneven drying
Bust : A Portrait sculpture or a painting representing a person’s head, neck, shoulders and upper chest, and perhaps the upper arms.
Butcher’s Tray : A white enameled tray used as a palette for watercolour or acrylic paints.

C
Calendar Painting : Painting having pleasing subject matter but rarely having lasting value as art.
Canvas : Commonly used as a support for oil or acrylic painting.
Cast : To form (molten metal or liquid plaster) into a 3D shape, by pouring into a mold.
Chalk : Pigments mixed with gum and pressed into a stick form, for use as crayons.
Charcoal : Compressed burned wood used for drawing.
Collaboration : Two or more artists working together in a joint effort to produce artworks.
Colour / Color : Produced when light strikes an object and then reflects back to your eyes.
ColourScheme : The colours an artist uses and the way they are combined in an artwork.
ColourWheel : A radial diagram of colours in which primary and secondary, and sometimes intermediate colours are displayed.
Commission : The act of hiring someone to execute a certain work or set of works.
Complementary Colours :Colours that are directly opposite each other on the colour wheel, such as red and green, blue and orange, and violet and yellow.
Compose : To create, put together, or arrange the elements of art in a work, usually according to the principles of design.
Composition : The plan, placement or arrangement of the elements of art in a work, usually according to the principles of design.
Computer Graphics : Picture made with the assistance of computers.
Construction : A term referring to a sculpture made by joining together various components of various materials or of the same substance.
Contemporary : Current, belonging to the same period of time. Usually referring to our present time.
Content : What a work of art is about.
Contour : The outline and other visible edges of a mass, figure or object.
Contour Drawing : Drawing in which contour lines are used to represent subject matter. A contour drawing has a three-dimensional quality, indicating the thickness as well as height and width of the forms it describes.
Contour Lines : Lines that surround and define the edges of a subject, giving it shape and volume.
Copy : An intentional imitation, replica, reproduction, or duplication of an original work of art, usually produced in the same medium.
Craft : Technical skill, considered apart from the fine arts, or from the expressive or aesthetic aspect of them.
Crayon : Traditionally, any drawing material, made in stick form, including chalk, crayon, charcoal. To children, the term invariably refers to sticks of colour, usually in a paper wrapper and sold under various trade names.
Crop : To trim one or more of a picture’s edges, or to place one or more of the edges of an image so that only part of a subject can be seen within the image.

D
Depth : The apparent distance from front to back or near to far in an art work. Techniques of perspective are used to create the illusion of depth in paintings or drawings.
Drawing : Depiction of shapes and forms on a surface, chiefly by means of lines. Colour and shading may be included. Drawing is the basis of all pictorial representation, and an early step in most art activities.

E
Earth Colours : Pigments such as yellow, ochre and umber, that are obtained by mixing.
Easel : An upright frame for the stable display or support of a painter’s canvas or panel.
Emulsifier : A Catalyst combining oil, water and varnish into media for painting.
Enamel : A vitreous, usually opaque, protective or decorative coating.
Exhibit and Exhibition : A public showing of a piece or a collection of objects.

F
Fake : Having a deliberately false or misleading appearance ; not genuine.
Figurative : Describes artwork representing the form of a human, an animal or a thing.
Figure : The form of a human, an animal or a thing, most often referring to an entire human form.
Folk Art : Art made by people who have had little or no formal schooling in art. Folk artists usually make works of art with traditional techniques and content, in styles handed down through many generations, and often of a particular region.
Foreground : The area of a picture or field of vision, often at the bottom, that appears to be closest to the viewer.
Form : Form refers to an element of art that is three-dimensional (height, width and depth) and encloses volume.

G
Gallery : A room, building or institution where paintings and other artworks are exhibited; and often where they are also sold.
Gouache : A heavy, opaque watercolour paint, sometimes called body colour, producing a less wet appearing and more strongly coloured picture than ordinary watercolour.
Ground : A surface to which paint is applied, or the material used to create that surface.
Gif : Graphic image file format. A widely supported image storage format that has gained widespread use on on-line services and the Internet.
Graphic : Any image made by or for a computer process.

H
Hindu Art : Cultural practice native to and predominant in India.
Hue : The name of any colour as found in its pure state in the spectrum, or that aspect of any colour.

I
Installation : Art made for a specific space, more often indoors than out. Installations may be temporary or permanent.
Intensity : The brightness or dullness of a colour.
Intermediate Colour : Also known as tertiary colours, they are produced by mixing unequal amounts of two primary colours. Intermediate colours are located between the primary and secondary colours on a colour wheel.

L
Landscape : A painting, photograph or other work of art which depicts scenery such as mountains, valleys, trees, rivers, and forests.
Life Drawing : Drawing the human figure from live model.
Limited Edition : An edition or set of prints of a known number of impressions, usually fewer than 200, numbered and signed.
Linear : A painting technique in which importance is placed on outlines.
Linear Perspective : A system of drawing or painting in which the artist attempts to create the illusion of depth on a flat surface.
Linen : A cloth especially desirable as a support for painting. It is one of the several textiles that may be called canvas.
Linseed Oil : A drying oil used in paints.
Lithography : A method of printing from a prepared flat stone or metal or plastic plate. A drawing is made on the stone or plate with a greasy crayon, and then washed with water. When ink is applied it sticks to the greasy drawing, but runs off the wet surface allowing a print – a lithograph - to be made of the drawing. The plate is then covered with a sheet of paper and run through a press under light pressure. For colour lithography separate drawings are made for each colour.
Loaded : In painting, a loaded brush is one that is filled with paint to its capacity.
Luminous Paint : A paint which actually glows in the dark.

M
Mask : Any two or three-dimensional representation of a face.
Media : The plural form of medium.
Medium : The material or technique used by an artist to produce a work of art. It may also refer to the solvent with which powdered pigments are mixed to make paint of the proper consistency. The plural form is media.
Miniature : A work of art made on a greatly reduced scale. Often refers to a portrait painted on paper, ivory or porcelain.
Modern : Refers to recent times or the present.
Monochrome : A painting, drawing or print in one colour, including that colour’s shades and tints.
Mural : A large design or picture, generally created on the wall of a public building.
Mythology : A body or collection of myths belonging to people and addressing their origin, history, deities, ancestors and heroes.

N
Narrative Art : Art which represents elements of a story. While history painting depicts famous events, genre painting depict events of a more everyday sort.
Nature : The material world and its beauties, especially those parts remaining in a primitive, untouched state, unchanged by humans.
Nonobjective Art / Non- representational Art : Art works having no recognizable subject matter such as houses, trees or people.

O
Oil Paint : Show drying paint made when pigments are mixed with an oil, linseed oil being most traditional. Oil Paints are usually opaque and traditionally used on canvas.
Original : Any work considered to be an authentic example of the works of an artist, rather than a reproduction or imitation.

P
Paint : Pigment which is dispersed into a liquid. Types of paint include tempera, watercolour, oil paint, gouache, enamel.
Painting : Works of art made with paint on a surface.
Palette : A slab of wood, metal, marble ceramic, plastic, glass, or paper, sometimes with a hole for the thumb, which an artist can hold while painting and on which the artist mixes paint.
Pastel : Pigments mixed with gum and pressed into a stick for use as crayons. Work of art done with such pigments are referred to as pastels.
Plaster of Paris : Also known as Plaster, it can be mixed with water, hardening to a smooth solid which does not shrink or lose volume, because it hardens before all the water can evaporate. A common building material as well as a versatile medium in sculpture.
Portrait : A work of art that represents a specific person, a group of people or an animal.
Pottery : Objects, and especially vessels, which are made from fired clay.
Primary Colour : The colours yellow, red and blue from which it is possible to mix all the other colours of the spectrum.

R
Replica : A copy.
Reproduction : The act of copying ; especially when it is significantly faithful in its resemblance to the form and elements of the original.
Retouch : To make correction on artwork.
Retrospective : An exhibit that shows a large number of works done over a period of time by a living artist.

S
Sculptor : One who produces sculptures.
Sculpture : A three-dimensional work of art
Seascape : A picture of a scene at sea or a scene prominently including a portion of the sea.
Self Portrait : A portrait an artist makes using himself or herself as its subject.
Sketch : A quick drawing that loosely captures the appearance or action of a place or situation.
Still Life : A picture of inanimate objects.
Studio : A place where an artist or craftsman works.
Style : An artist’s characteristic manner of expression.
Subject : That which is represented in a work of art.

T
Technique : Any method of working with art materials to create an art object.
Tempera : A paint involving an emulsion of oil and water. It was in use before the invention of oil paints.
Three-Dimensional : Having or appearing to have, height, width, and depth.
Two-Dimensional : Having height and width, but no depth.

V
Vehicle : The liquid, usually water or oil, that is mixed with pigments to make paints, dyes, and inks.

W
Watercolours : Watercolour is any paint that uses water as a medium. Paintings done with this medium are known as watercolours