When light hits an object, it casts a dark shape on the surface or surfaces on the opposite side of the object. The dark shape is called a shadow.
Shadows change depending on the how bright the light is, whether it is near or far away from the object, and the angle at which it strikes the object.
Artists use light and shadow to create definition, focus, drama and mood in their artwork.
You can create your own shadows at home with a flashlight or lamp.
Choose a simple object and a simple background and move the lamp or flashlight around your object.
Notice how even the background changes with different angles of light. You can also move your object closer or farther away from the back wall.
Make at least two drawings showing changing light and shadow.
You can use pencils, crayons, markers, ballpoint pen or any other drawing materials you have available. A crayon or the side of a pencil might be the easiest drawing tool to create large areas of light and dark. You can also use watercolors if you have them at home.
If you would like to share your work with us email firstname.lastname@example.org. We will share your creations on our ‘Studio in your Home’ page.
Photo: Pamela Crimmins