The repeating of a visual element of the design to relate the parts to one another. It is one way to add Unity to a piece of artwork. By repeating an object within a composition your can create a sense of whole to the overall piece. In the pattern to the right created by Chisaki H., you can see the overall pattern creates a sense of wholeness or unity.
You can also see this in the architectural pieces by Katia D. By overlaying multiple repeated patterns onto a photograph of a building in New York City, she has created a visually exciting image that makes your eye constantly move around.
. Repetition makes us perceive not just a series of objects, but a trend of development, a line of motion, or a sequence of transformation. Repetition implies a “line” along which the repeated objects are positioned. This line may strongly interact or sometimes clash with the rest of the image.
. This “line” directs the eye throughout the image.
. The “line of sight” can be either one directional or multi-directional.
. You can animate or bring to life otherwise dead material.
. In the photograph of boats to the right, you can see how the repeated boat pattern makes your eye move from the lower to upper portion of the photo with a zig-zag motion. And finally resting on the center of interest, the boat being constructed.
. Repetition can reinforce your message, provides consistency, and creates familiarity.
. Repeating an visual element in the exact same way can create a very monotonous image like the one in the upper right. Changing the color, texture, opacity and size of the element can create interest and variety. The small hexagon shapes in the photo to the right my Kelly B. could become monotonous were it not for the beautiful variation in colors in each tile.
Pattern, Chisaki H., 2007
Architectural Studies, Katia D., 2008
Katia completed a body of work that overlaid architectural photographs with geometric patterns. By repeating the overall patterns, she creates a sense of unity in the work.
Boats in Morocco, Julia M., 2008
Alcatraz , Julia M., 2008