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The three techniques for composing a painting

The three painters composition techniques are all implemented using the three rules of composition that must be known beforehand.

These three techniques are:

1 - The looks of the characters

The system of lines from the eyes was probably installed by the painters and philosophers of ancient Greece.

It was then greatly enriched during the Renaissance.

Looks "speak" thanks to the 2nd rule of preferential angles. the eyes are lines for installing a kind of dialogue, a speech on the theme of the work. Even if it is only a portrait, lines stretched from the eyes "speak" of the character.


Click on the titles:




Les regards



The looks


Why these lines of sight are not detectable on paintings

Painters used to be discreet with their lines.

On the other hand, it is necessary to know beforehand the 1st and 2 rules and a learning time

to see these lines of sight.

An example


la ligne de regard passant par les yeux pointe l'index droit

2 - The harmonic grids

Certain harmonic grids are already known, such as that of third parties. But to discover them all and read them, you should know that it is with the 1st rule of composition that they were used for the first gestures of composition in the format of the painter's work.





The composition grids are only posterior projections

If we do not know that the grids served as a support to place the points of the 1st rule; an eye, index, thumb, heel, ...

it is possible to miss the indisputable use of this technique.

The earth square

(in green)

conditions the fingers and eyes of the Fornarina

3 - Perspective and narrative perspective

The well-known technique of perspective is not really an element of composition. But it fully participates in the composition when it becomes "narrative".

This chapter challenges many of the misconceptions about perspective techniques. The narrative perspective is an essential aspect of the composition which, however, has escaped many researchers for lack of rigor.












Before perspective rules, painters were just awkward

In fact, the narrative perspective was invented before the perspective technique and it persisted thereafter.

Its interest lies in the fact of being able to deliver a message.

An example


Travail protégé par un copyright ©guymauchamp U79J1B9 et un dépôt à la SGDL Paris.

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