8 – 1 Text as Texture


  • Explore the principals of rhythm, movement and contrast
  • Explore the element of texture (implied)
  • Learn to attract and lead the eye rhythmically across and through a designed image
  • Use text in such a way that it loses its identity as words and presents, instead, a textural image that also displays rhythm, movement, and contrast
  • How do your eyes “travel” through an image? What “traffic signals” create the direction/path for your eyes to travel on? (Use images of paintings (color) for discussion purposes)
  • What if there was no color to help mark the way? What methods could an artist use to guide the movement of your eyes? (Use images without color for discussion)
  • Now we will take it a step further. In advertising, words are used to create the paths our eyes follow. What if we can’t read the words?
  • Can you create an image that creates movement and rhythm using black and white text as texture?


Collage: An artistic composition created by gluing various materials/images together

Rhythm: Repetition of a chosen visual theme within a composition. Recurring shapes, lines, colors and values create rhythmic linkage.

In design there are five kinds of repetition:

1. Simple regularity—like shapes and intervals, as is seen in a picket fence.

2. Alternation—repetition of two different elements, such as circle-rectangle, dark-light, big-small

3. Inversion—repetition in which position of the unit is reversed or turned upside down

4. Irregular recurrence—a chosen shape or motif reappears at unexpected or irregular intervals and perhaps varying sizes

5. Radiation—units fan out from a central point in symmetrical or asymmetrical manner.


Consciously placed images and objects in a composition to provide visual cues for the viewers’ eyes to travel across the surface.

Devices for in leading the eye along a 2-dimensional path include:

1. Line

2. Color

3. Rhythm (repetition)

4. Slight successive changes in position recording a path or flow of movement

5. Perspective

6. Sequential images (comic strip)

7. Actual movement

Contrast: A large difference between two things. Here there will be a contrast of values and textures