Focal Point

focal point

This piece by Richard McKinley, Minnesota Morning, 9 x 12, has three focal points as marked.

Focal point art definition

The focal point of a painting is the area in the composition to which the viewer’s eye is naturally drawn. It is essential to classic art, although abstract artists may deliberately create compositions without focal points.  Focal points may be of any shape, size or color. Composition theory dictates that focal points ought not to be in the center of paintings, but rather one-third of the way across or up the composition, in one of the rectangle’s four quandrants.

When painting, one of the most important oil painting techniques is to determine your focal point before you begin. However, other than this, there is no dictated correct way to do it.