On page 92 of Tom Phillips' A Humument, Phillips shows that life is made by events in short bursts and that nothing lasts forever by using contrast of colors, one word lines, and the shapes that appear on the page. Each of these techniques Philips uses gives allows the eyes to easily see the quick and random bursts of colors and allows the viewers to see that verbs in the red explosions are powerful but swift. The image can be related to life, in which events in life can be powerful but swift.
Philips uses the contrasts of the blue, green, and red to give a contrast between the calm parts of the page and the exciting parts of the page. The blue on the page is a very relaxed color that many viewers can relate to as a calm color. The blue allows the red and green colors to stand out and make a strong statement in front of the blue. The red, which is usually associated with fire, passion, and energy, easily stands out in front of the blue back ground. The strip of green also separates its self from all the other colors by differentiating from the red and blue. The strip of green gives a break from the calm blue as well as the bursts of red. The colors are similar to life. The blue is the relaxed and calm parts of life. The exciting parts of life are like the red in the page, in which it breaks apart the relaxed blue. All the colors, or elements of life, are never continuous, giving the message that a part of life is never continuous.
Philips also uses quick, short, and positive words to further support the fact that life is never continuously one thing. All the one word lines like “feel,” “confide,” and “enjoy,” are all verbs promoting living life. The words are given in quick and sudden bursts showing how fast each word pops up and move on. Each of the words is spread randomly over the page, never in a constant order. The words are all different as well. Similar to life, everyday is a new day. Each day will not have the same placement and will not have the same meaning. The peculiar line in the middle of the page also supports Philips’ message. The small volume published by the speaker was soon forgotten because life moves on without our control. The short, quick, and meaningful words that never stay too long are similar to life. Events happen in people’s life, people eventually move on.
Lastly, the use of shapes in the piece of art allows the viewers to easily visualize the power of the one word lines and the break the strip of green gives. The oddly shaped shape around every one word line in the page gives the word an image of quick and sudden power. The shape is similar to an explosion, powerful but quickly over. The explosive color along with shape suggests action and excitement, like a fight scene in a comic strip. The shape is random and never exactly the same, similar to the words in the bubble, it represents the unpredictability of life. The melancholy straight lines and the green color are be over-shadowed by the explosive shapes. The straight lines give a small break, but also quickly moves on to the random shapes again. The shapes mimics life’s tendency to never stay the same for long periods of time.
Life never sits stills and never stays the same for long. The image of page 92 supports the fact about life. Life never stays a relaxed blue, but randomly explodes with the red of excitement throughout life. Life is also never one experience, similar to how the image never shows one word in an ordered way. The words also quick and random similar to events in life. The random explosive shapes mimics life in the way that it is never the same. Life is not static but random, colorful, and quick like the image on page 92.