Arc and Tangent Theme

A design theme that is derived from a combination of different themes is the arc and tangent theme (Figure 10—55). This theme combines arcs from circles of the circular theme and straight lines from the rectangular theme. The straight lines provide a feel­ing of structure while the curves counter this with soft, sweeping lines. Both can work well together.

Parts of the circle that can be used in the arc and tangent theme are the quar­ter-circle, half-circle, and three-quarter-circle. To create an arc and tangent theme,

Figure 10-54

A diagonal design theme can make a small site seem larger by emphasizing the longest possible dimensions.

Figure 10-55

An example of an arc and tangent design theme.

the designer might first develop the composition as a totally rectangular scheme (left side of Figure 10—56). Then, selected portions of the design can be converted to selected arcs of a circle (center of Figure 10—56). The introduction of arcs is not done randomly. Rather, the designer must carefully decide which areas or lines of the composition require the use of arcs for soft corners and rounded edges. However, the designer should not merely round corners of the rectangular forms (right side of Figure 10—56). This creates a weak design with difficult corners to maintain.

Again, the designer needs to consider variety of size, scale, and overlap of forms as they relate to the arc and tangent theme. In terms of landform, sloping sites should be terraced in an arc and tangent theme owing to the structured character of many of the spaces. Rolling landform will not be very compatible with the character of the strong, bold lines and arcs of the arc and tangent theme. Although the plan drawing might seem appropriate in terms of form-to-form relationships, the boldness of the arcs may be lost in the actual profile of the rolling landform.