Below are some common formats in the world of traditional art and design, film and television, and digital media. The General Formats are extremely general, and therefore won't likely change. There will always be compositions that fall into one of the following format categories:

GDPE diagrams formats 29

The format of a composition refers to its size, shape, and material qualities. E.g. "I want to design a one-sided, 3.5 inch by 2 inch business card, in landscape configuration, on thick cardstock." Or "Get me an 8 by 10 headshot, ASAP!" Or perhaps, "I am painting on an 5 by 7 foot canvas." Regardless, of what the particulars of your format are, they are usually decided upon first and therefore, a discussion of format is really where we want to begin when starting a new composition. Format is really less of a design principle and more of a collection of decisions about how to implement some overarching principles and elements, such as the proportions of one side to the other, the overall scale of the piece, and what will the shape of the whole thing be.

Below are some common film, video, and device formats. This is by no means a definitive list and it is definitely subject to change as more devices advance to the marketplace. 

GDPE diagrams formats 30