Stippling is the creation of a pattern simulating varying degrees of value or shading by using small dots. Such a pattern may occur in nature and these effects are frequently emulated by artists.
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Pointillism is a technique of painting in which small, distinct dots of color are applied in patterns to form an image. Georges Seurat and Paul Signac developed the technique in 1886, branching from Impressionism. The technique relies on the ability of the eye and mind of the viewer to blend the color spots into a fuller range of tones.
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|Paul Signac, Femmes au Puits, 1892, showing a detail with constituent colors. Musée d'Orsay, Paris. Public Domain.|
Detail showing pointillism technique. Instead of painting outlines and shapes with brush strokes and areas of color, pointillism builds up the image from separate colored dots of paint. From a distance, the dots merge to some extent and appear to be areas of shaded tones, but the colors have an extra vibrancy from the juxtaposition of contrasting dots.
Go to Google Arts & Culture (former Google Art Project) and visit Seurat's artworks.
Zoom in his pointillist artworks