Notebook, 1993-


Articulated System

Some Basic Feature of The Figures and Objects that we Classify as Skeletal Types:

1. A skeletal object, unlike an object of mass, consists of a limb or series of limbs whose surfaces are sparse and attenuated as they ^extend linearly into space.

2. In the case of a multilimbed object the connections may be jointed in what might be called an "articulated system," or bifurcated in a free-flowing "continuous system."

3. The linearism of the object defines the occupied space with great clarity through the extension of its limbs. Consequently, form and space are in a positive complementary relationship in the skeletal object, for we perceive the figure in order to comprehend the space, and perceive the space in order to comprehend the figure.

4. An object with a skeletal structure can be initially analyzed through drawing, using an X-ray-like system of lines to represent proportionate lengths, changes of direction, type of movement, and the manner of their joining.

5. Complete regularity in the skeletal form tends to produce a static and mechanical-looking structure. On the other hand, when the parts possess enough diversity to tilt the balance a lively and organic structure, which holds the interest of eye and mind and arouses feeling, results.

6. We recognize a structural unity to the form when we realize that each individual limb is totally part of the whole; when we are not aware of an alien element in matters of proportionate rhythms, directional movements, or joining systems; when the object has apparently grown that way, rather than having been contrived artificially from a series of parts.

Structure - Skeletal or Linear Qualities/Collier, Graham. Form, Space & Vision, An Introduction to Drawing and Design. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1985. pgs. 109-118]



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