Sketching Nature

Drawing The Human Head Perspective

90. However incomplete a work on perspective may appear, without its rules in reference to shadows, the artist-student, whose eye now looks on nature alive to the just perception of the influences of the art, who can counterfeit the reality in conformity with its laws, can scarcely need a recipe for its shadows; falling, as they do, in masses, more or less defined, of position and form, modified and influenced in their shapes by the recipient object on which they are thrown, and those by whose intervention with the source of light they are produced; perspective pictures traced, as it were, on perspective pictures, and mutually developing each other in perfect harmony with the great and leading truths of the art; doubling the resources of design, in the means of its expression, and placing in the intelligence and hand of the artist a power as unlimited as the mind's imaginings.

91. To place objects reflected in perspective, needs but one general rule, requiring the reflection to be treated as a reality. Consider it, thus, an inverted duplicate, not of the picture,

but of the reality, and the way is plain. To illustrate and verify this, place a mirror level on a table, and upon it any object that first comes to hand, a book, a pen, a letter, anything—the perspective direction of the lines of the reflection will be found perfectly to /\ harmonize with its original, and its image perfectly inverted. Look i again to the mirror on the mantelpiece or wall, and remark how per-

| fectly the perspective of the objects presented by it responds to the originals. Should the glass be not perpendicular, an irregularity, as it were a general upsetting of everything, will be perceived; for thus the perpendicular plane of its picture is thrown out of harmony with nature, and all its lines follow. The same would be the case if the mirror were placed flat, but not perfectly level, with regard to all objects retaining their horizontal and perpendicular character, but the reflected images of those resting on its surface would still harmonize with their originals, in the degree of inclination of its plane, etc.

Fortunately, in our most frequent occasions to represent reflections, they are given back by a mirror, ever most true of all other objects to the level—Nature's mirror — not duplicating her

ff| __1j |j| | perspective pictures, as presented to the eye, as

——-j^—. _ __ j, •• -- - if by a mere inverted tracing of their outlines,

\ ■ ^ but with all the truth of an actually inverted

MBBWllplll^gjJj image of the reality. Such objects as rise or

- - .-------—J HB^^^g occupy a position perpendicularly in reference

------to the mirror-like surface of the tranquil water, preserve their real proportions. Thus, the cliff that rises in an unbroken perpendicular above its base, throws its reflection to its full height 5 while that of the receding hill or distant mountain, although much ^higher, may ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

perspectively covering the in-observation could be placed exactly on a level with the water, then picture be repeated 5 but the slightest elevation of the point of view.

clined plane. If the point of and then only, would the real and consequently of the line of the horizon, above the level of the water, affects the general outline of everything reflected that is not perpendicular to the water's edge, as more fully demonstrated

Human Head Outline Drawing

in the annexed profiles, showing the perspective relations of the various elevations. In objects projecting over the water, as the beam in the example, the reflection will of course be naturally longer than the receding lines of the original. An arch may repeat, its outer semicircle as perfectly in its reflection as it really is, and so may be also its more receding outline, but the archway itself is not perfectly duplicated. In the original we see less of its internal form than we do in g^ ;... ■■■■ the reflection, for the elevation of our point of view enables us

§HV^-to see farther into the reflection than within the arch itself.

" Although brought to a conclusion of this chapter without - ir hKJ having covered, as it may seem, the whole ground of perspec-

F 'IÉl^^lBiL ^ve' artist-student will find therein, if not a recipe for all

,_pSBB&A- his requirements, the elements and principles of the art suffi-

^^^^^S^jfvf^^S^F ciently explained to enable him, upon their basis, to meet any

--^¡Hj§gg difficulty that may be presented in the course of his practical operations. The fear of big books and elaborate treatises drive : many a one from the pursuit of knowledge, and most of all, those Ij^pys'; y devoted to the arts of design ; whose restless spirits unwillingly

^jjllfe- hear the control of any established routine ; unapt to delve in the mine of abstruse investigations, they hasten to conclusions; and, most fortunately, all their requirements of knowledge are progressive. Discovery and possession beget wants, and he who lives the longest, and knows the most, has more still to learn. In the next chapter it will come in place in some degree to review the subject of perspective as to its practical application in drawing and sketching from nature, when an opportunity will be presented of introducing at least more generally pleasing subjects for illustration than mere diagrams.

Sketching Nature
Freehand Sketching An Introduction

Freehand Sketching An Introduction

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