Objecfsr Perspective

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Home Coloured Pencil Sketch

More Than Just Your Point ofView

Without understanding the rules of perspective, it would be impossible to create a drawing of your home, like I did here. I've seen many a drawing or painting fall short because of inaccurate perspective.

Study and practice the exercises in this chapter and you will acquire a better eye for perspective. It will help you see all the angles and slants that are so important in your drawings.

Many ordinary, everyday objects are angular in shape and made up of squares and rectangles. If it has a flat surface and a corner, chances are its basic shape is a cube.

You learned in the previous chapters how to use tone and gradual shading to create the soft curves of a rounded object. The rules really change when you are dealing with rectangular objects. Instead of soft edges you have hard edges, where two sides come together. The changes in tone are more abrupt, because each side will take the light differently, giving them different tones.

Every time you have a hard edge, you will also have reflected light. Always remember, everything with an edge, lip or rim has reflected light along it. Look around for the cube shape in everyday household items. Tables, chairs, books and stairs all share the same basic shape as their foundation. Even a soft, stuffed chair is geometric in shape.

Our Country Home

Stonehenge paper 11" x 14" (28cm x 36cm)

More Than Just Your Point ofView

Without understanding the rules of perspective, it would be impossible to create a drawing of your home, like I did here. I've seen many a drawing or painting fall short because of inaccurate perspective.

Study and practice the exercises in this chapter and you will acquire a better eye for perspective. It will help you see all the angles and slants that are so important in your drawings.

Colors Used

Dark Brown, Sienna Brown, Dark Umber, Mineral Orange, Peach, Tuscan Red, Sand, Cool Grey 50%, Crimson Red, Pink, Cloud Blue, True Blue, Grass Green, Apple Green, Dark Green, Canary Yellow, Chartreuse, Black, White perspective basics

Entire books have been written about perspective. Basically, images change depending on the vantage point from which you view them. Areas that are closer seem much larger, while areas farther away seem to shrink. In realistic drawing, you must always remember this. Your artwork reflects where you are in relation to your subject matter.

Horizon Artwork Train Track

One-Point Perspective

A train track or road is large up front and converges into a point in the distance. When everything converges at one point out on the horizon it represents one-point perspective. That point is called the vanishing point. The vanishing point rests on the horizon line. This horizon line represents your own eye level when looking straight ahead.

Below Eye Level Perspective

Two-Point Perspective at Eye Level

In this example, the cube's horizon line falls right in the middle of the horizon line. You are viewing the cube straight on and are standing on the same level as it.

Get Out the Ruler!

When drawing rectangular objects, make sure that all vertical lines are perfectly straight and parallel to the edges of the paper. This will help ensure accurate perspective.

Color Pencil Perspective

perspective and vantage point

Perspective can be daunting to the beginning artist, because it appears mathematical and complicated. Like anything else, a basic understanding and some practice go a long way. When viewing art, the first step is locating the horizon to determine your vantage point, or the angle at which you are viewing an object (e.g., straight on, above or below).

An Example of Inaccurate Perspective

This birdhouse is nothing but a little rectangular box in two-point perspective. Because it was made by a child, the surfaces don't fit together well, and it is a bit out of plumb. I decided not to fix this in my drawing because I like the innocence of its construction and the story it tells. Even though the perspective is off, I love the pastel colors of the wood against the background and the leaves in the trees.

Two-Point Perspective Above Eye Level

The entire cube is above the horizon line, which means you are viewing it from a lower vantage point. You have to look up at the cube. If this were a building, you would be at the bottom of a slight hill, looking up the street. The light is coming from the left, making the side on the right appear darker.

Worms Eye View Perspective

Above the Horizon Line, or Worm's-Eye View

This cube is elevated, floating above the horizon line. It is much higher than eye level and you see its bottom. Can you see how the lines converge at the horizon line at the same points?

Cartoon Birds Eye View

Below the Horizon Line, or Bird's-Eye View

This time, we are much higher than the cube and the horizon line, looking down on it.

everyday rectangular objects

Once you begin to look, you'll see same basic underlying shapes. Prac-

cubes all over. While all these sub- tice drawing rectangular objects in jects are completely different in the perspective, and it will soon become way they look and the function they second nature to you! perform, each one is made from the

Pencil Sketches Many Stacks Books

A Stack of Books in Perspective

Study photos of rectangular objects, like these books, and analyze the rules of perspective. Basic underlying shapes are the same. See how the rules of perspective apply to them? They seem to get smaller toward the back. If you drew lines continuing out from the sides, those lines would converge at a common point in the horizon, creating a V shape.

A good way to better your understanding of perspective is to study magazine photos of houses and furniture. Take a ruler, carry the lines out from the edges and see where the lines meet with the horizon.

Lederstuhl Industrial

Even Your Favorite Chair Is a Cube

This comfy chair is nothing more than a complex cube. Each cushion and arm rest is rectangular, as is the pillow. Look for rectangular things in your own house to draw to give you practice with perspective.

Pencil Drawings Geometry
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Draw Stairs as Cubes

This staircase is made up of cubes (the stairs) and two cylinders (the columns). Each stair has four flat surfaces that make up its rectangular shape. Because of the perspective, you view each stair from a different height and angle. The stairs seem to become smaller as they ascend, and you cannot see the top surface of the upper stairs. This is an illusion that can be very confusing when trying to draw. Our brains know that each stair is the same size, but our eyes see it differently. That is why understanding perspective is so important.

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