Shape and color african masks take on many forms they can be oval circular rectangular elongated heart shaped animal or human or any combination of these shapes and colors of african masks are tribe specific thus they are used as parameters to locate the masks origin in ethnic art. African mask lesson the shape of the face draw a simple shape for the outline of the face on the light paper this shape could be oval circular rectangular elongated heart shaped animal shaped or human or any combination of these different outline shapes will give you different expressive effects. African masks the use of pattern in an african mask bold pattern either painted or carved is a powerful expressive element in african mask design. Signs and symbols in african art graphic patterns in burkina faso the colors of the patterns and of the mask costumes themselves refer to spirits for the color red is associated with danger especially in the form of spirits from the bush which are almost always thought to be red similarly animal shapes do not mean the mask
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