Space and shape, two of the elements of design, work together to form a finished work of art. There are two kinds of space: positive and negative. Positive spaces are those occupied by the main subjects of the work. The Negative spaces are the areas around and behind the positive spaces. Negative space can also be referred to as the background.
It is no mystery that the shapes of positive spaces are determined by the shapes of the main subjects of the work. However, negative spaces have shapes as well. If one removes the subjects from a work, the negative spaces are left with a blank in the shapes of the parts removed. Therefore, the shapes of the negative spaces are determined by the shapes of the positive spaces.