Week 28 (part 3) – Analysing the Use of Design Fundamentals

Learning Activity

Analysing the Use of Design Fundamentals

Choose any one of the illustrations from the lesson “Design Drawing” and answer the following questions (when submitting your feedback – also provide the illustration you chose).
I chose this Tahier Variawa’s illustration to be analyzed and answered the questions under.
  • What fundamentals are used successfully? Describe in detail what you think is the most successful aspect of the illustration (remember to focus on the fundamentals).

This illustration is based on the very famous portrait of Che Guevara and poster of Che Guevara created by Jim Fitzpatrick. It’s made using small, same sized dots or circles used in symmetric lines filling the entirely poster. It creates a pixelated feeling to the poster. Different tint and shades of red, yellow and green has been used as the colours of the dots. That creates the shades of the portrait and separates the portrait from the background. It also creates dimensions to the character.


  • What style from the past is being used in a new way in this illustration? If no previous style is clearly apparent, does it use some form of pastiche? Why do you think this specific style or pastiche was used? Describe in detail whether you think it was used successfully or not.

I see Andy Warhol,  I think in the colors and in the use of dots, here. Or Roy Lichtenstein’s limited color pallet and use of dots. I would say this illustration is inspired by pop art.
I think it creates much more softer look for Che Guevara than in the original picture and I’m not sure does it describe him that well any more but the idea using only dots is well achieved. The portrait is still well recognizable.

  • Read again what Mondrian said about the expression of beauty or self. Which do you think played the dominant role in the execution of this illustration? Explain your thoughts.

Mondrian said, “throughout the history of culture, art has demonstrated that universal beauty does not arise from the particular character of the form, but from the dynamic rhythm of its inherent relationships, or – in a composition – from the mutual relations to forms. Art has shown that it is a question of determining the relations.”

I think that the relationship of the colors played the dominant role in the execution of this illustration. It’s the colors that forms the shape and the recognizable image with it’s shades and lighter spots.

  • If you had to create this illustration, before starting the actual execution, what would your initial thoughts be on:
  • Colour (what would your approach to colour be?)

It depends on in what purpose I would be creating the poster for or to whom I would design it to. I think I would have chosen more dynamic and maybe darker colors even though these colors “hippie and rasta” colors.

  • Line (what would you like to portray with the use of line?)

In this portrait I feel the use of line is harder to determine. Use of line can be seen where the dots are forming horizontal and vertical lines but it’s not lines, it’s more the same sized dots keeping the same rhythm. If the rhythm would be destroyed, the portrait wouldn’t work as well.

  • Composition (what would you wish to instil in the viewer by the use of composition alone?)

The composition is made up by the portrait. Che Guevara’s face and upper body fills the entire frame. The red color in his hat and eyes draws attention and I feel that without it the portrait wouldn’t work. It also has contrast with the green in the lower part of the poster. I feel that the portrait is just a good size to be recognized using dots. If it would be closer portrait, the image wouldn’t be so clear and from further it wouldn’t be so affective. The size of the dots are also thought through. They are well recognized as dots but not too big to get the necessary contrast to the image.

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