line indexpage

an element of art


1. a mark or stroke long in proportion to its breadth, made with a pen, pencil, tool, etc., on a surface: a line down the middle of the page.
8. a straight or curved geometric element that is generated by a moving point and that has extension only along the path of the point Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 22 Oct. 2010. <>.

LINE is an element of art, a crucial visual component. Lines can create shapes, direct the eye, and create value, texture and form. Line can connect elements in an art work, define space and distance, and add interest. Line is the basis for drawing and is the first drawing element a small child produces.

Celtic designs utlize a wide variety of line as decoration and symbolism (see below). In the 20th century, Op Art used line to create optical illusions; many artists such as Paul Klee, Piet Mondrian and Wasily Kandinsky used line extensively in their wrok.

Buckle, 2nd century B.C.; European Iron Age; Celto-Iberian; Spain; Leaded bronze, silver, iron; "Buckle [Celto-Iberian; Spain]" (1990.62ab) In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History . New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. (October 2006)

Line Poster

Click on poster above for a larger, printable version.

Some sites about Line:
Student Art Guide: Line Drawing
Nancy Doyle Fine Art: Contour Drawing
Foundations in Art (Univ of Delaware): Cross-hatching
Exploring Perspective (a fun interactive site!)
Brunelleschi's Peepshow & the Origins of Perspective

Some great videos about Line:
Drawing with Anna: Blind Contour part one
Drawing with Anne: Blind Contour part two
How to Draw in One Point Perspective Drawing - Option 1How to Draw in One Point Perspective - Option 2

Here is a series of You Tube videos about perspective drawings:
Drawing Sidewalks in One Point Perspective
Drawing Lines in Two Point Perspective
Drawing the Middle Section in Two Point Perspective
Shaping a Box in Three Point Perspective

Some artists who used line in their work:
Paul Klee
Vasily Kandinsky
Piet Mondrian
Bridget Riley

Some contemporary artists who use LINE prominently in their work are:
Rocio Rodriquez
Liz Zlot Summerfield
Shlomo Felberbaum
Jane Park Wells
Rana Begum