Visual Analysis Paper Guidelines for Students

Visual analysis is a process of examination of a particular piece of art. In the case of visual art, you mostly deal with photography, painting, film, etc. Within the analysis, it is requested to define the artists’ intentions and means of performance.  The paper can be even more complex. You can be assigned to analyze a difficult piece of art never evaluated before. There are many ways to conduct an accurate analysis. Your examination can have numerous sections. You can add a study of the historical significance, the impact on culture, politics, or social life. This particular piece is a formal analysis of a piece of art.

You need to learn how to conduct it properly beforehand. Thus, read the article to learn the best ways to complete your paper by the book. A visual analysis essay is not a typical academic piece. Moreover, not every student faces a familiar assignment. Mostly, students of Art History perform a particular paper regularly. Still, there can be some other specialties where the visual analysis can be a part of a study course. It includes painters, journalists, writers, and photographers. The particular paper is meant to be informative and entertaining in some way.

Visual Analysis Significance

Visual analysis is a great way to investigate something. Moreover, it lets the investigator find the inner motives of the artist, intentions, and means of performance. Since a lot of art pieces have an incredible history, the historical element is also important. It allows defining the historical significance of the piece. Moreover, it brings more information to readers. Students often tend to analyze the most popular art bits. For example, the Transfiguration of Raphael is one of the top masterpieces often studied by students. This impressive image describes one of the Scenes in the Bible. You can find how often the astonishing painting techniques are outlined in the familiar examinations.

Moreover, students often check the symbolism, choice of colors, etc. In fact, once conducting your personal analysis, you need to share fresh ideas. Your essay must be original and enjoyable. In such a case, you will be able to provide a better explanation of a particular piece of art. Thus, the deeper you look into it, the better the visual analysis you can provide. Art History classes also require numerous visual analysis essays to be completed. Almost every studied piece must be analyzed. Besides, many other students need to go through particular studies as well. When you study theater, print media, photos, films, you get some assignments familiar to visual analysis. Thus, once you know how to handle it by the book, you sure benefit a lot with your knowledge and skills.

Top Points of Visual Analysis

When you are assigned to complete a visual analysis essay, it often gets complicated. Mostly, familiar papers must be written due to the provided requirements. Still, it must be a creative writing type. Besides, fresh and interesting ideas are required. There are top points to look at when preparing your essay. Every particular type of art has some specific features. When we deal with paintings, first define the painter’s purpose. Once you complete your historical retrospective, check the purpose of the art piece. You can add some historical details to the explanation as well. In fact, when you analyze a popular masterpiece, it is easy to figure out the needed details.

For instance, popular Michelangelo works were mostly paid for in advance. It means he was hired to write his masterpieces, even the Sistine Chapel. After dealing with purpose, define the audience. History knowledge can also be very useful. The historical context can be crucial for your research. Thus, once conducting your visual analysis, be ready to learn some facts and historical details about the analyzed piece. Your research must be comprehensive. Learn about the exact era the painting was created. Check some information about the most popular categories of painting. Surrealism, modernism, and familiar concepts should be well-known to you. Learn these concepts to write a strong visual analysis essay eventually.

Visual Analysis: Recognized Features

Formal analysis can be performed properly by a prepared student. In fact, preparation is a key point. Before conducting the analysis, you need to check the information on your art piece in advance. Get some important historical names and dates. Check the style of the studied masterwork. It is important to remember that every piece of art is unique. You cannot analyze every work in the same way as the previous ones. Surely, there is a particular structure of your essay. You need to follow it. Still, every artwork has specific features you need to check carefully. Thus, you build the plan for your analysis. You can write it down to prepare your paper timely. Remember to identify the significance of your studied work first. It is important for every art piece analysis.

Use the next steps as guidelines for your essay performing:

  • general information gathering;
  • description of the painting;
  • detailed analysis of an artwork.

General Information Gathering

Once starting your work, pay attention to gather the requested general information. You need to identify the key points first. It includes subject, artist, location, date, and techniques. Thus, every writer needs to identify the type of artwork you deal with. Further, provide information about an artist. The locations of the work area should be revealed as well, as same as the date and source. The techniques exploration requires more time and knowledge. You need to define the material, size, performance style, and other important details.

Description of the Painting

When you tend to write an essay, it needs to be detailed. Thus, the description of the painting should reveal certain artwork features. Besides, you need to represent details in the written piece. Your essay must have an abstract. Besides, you need to describe the artwork in a way for the reader to imagine it in his mind. Check and define the dominant features. You must identify the type of work. The main theme also needs to be revealed. Writers often define the mood of the painting if a deal with a familiar essay.

Detailed Analysis

The visual analysis of your artwork must be precise. Thus, every detail needs to be outlined. Every element needs to be defined and explained. In the case of a painting, you must describe the shapes, lines, colors, use of light, mood, patterns, etc. In conclusion, every significant detail must be written down and explained. Since every work of art is unique, there can be differences between analytical tools to use.

Visual Art Essay Structure

Every essay has a particular structure. In the case of a visual art essay, it requires quite a standard structure. It must include an introduction, main body paragraphs, and conclusion. Moreover, you may need an abstract in your paper. Often, students prepare outlines. The outline helps to follow the proper structure of a paper. It can be used as an effective working plan. Once you start your analysis, you need to gather general information and important data. After, you must analyze and synthesize it properly. The research you conduct must reveal the most important features of the analyzed work. Thus, when you proceed to the writing proper itself, you should already have enough synthesized information to use in your essay.

Introduction Part

The introduction part is the starting point. You need to impress your reader with some interesting information or provocative facts to gain their attention. The information you provide at the beginning must be engaging. Thus, use hook sentences if needed. Remember to include the background information in the introduction. Also, add the thesis statement. The introduction past must be brief and concise. Do not use any unconnected information.

Main Body Paragraph

In the body part, you need to present the main topic. Thus, you should define the artwork you analyze. Among all the information you have gathered, you will find enough evidence to prove your statements. Besides, once defining your arguments, you already reveal the supporting evidence. You can use various data, figures, historical details as evidence as well.


The conclusion always provides summarized information. You should skip the part where you try to summarize your paper and place a summary in the end. Conclusions are more than just a summary. There you reveal all the findings you gained. The entire process of analysis is usually defined in the main body parts. Therefore, in conclusions, you need to recall your main thesis and top proofs.

The Final Insight

There are always more complex points to analyze in a visual art essay than in any other essay paper. Your final piece must be informative and entertaining. In fact, since you deal with artwork, your essay must be original and creative as well. If you have any problems with essay completing, you can always reach a professional writing service online to get your unique creative essay.