LOOKING UP. Here, the central visual ray points at something in the sky or at the top of a telegraph pole. The cone of vision barely "sees" the eye level plane with its lowest sight lines. In the picture therefore, the eye level (horizon line) is close to the bottom.

LOOKING DOWN. Here, the central visual ray points not at the distant horizon but down at the tracks. The cone of vision, therefore, just barely includes the eye level plane. (Note the proximity of top sight lines and eye level.) In the picture, therefore, the eye level (horizon line) is close to the top.

Perspective Drawing City

An example of "looking up." The horizon line (eye level) is low in picture.

Drawing by Joseph Bertelli for the Long Island City Savings Bank

An example of "looking up." The horizon line (eye level) is low in picture.

Drawing by Joseph Bertelli for the Long Island City Savings Bank

Landscape Sketching

An example of "looking straight out." The horizon line (eye level) is approximately midway between top and bottom of picture.

Classic Landscape, by Charles Sheeler. Courtesy of Mrs. Edsel B. Ford and Museum of Modern Art, N.Y.

What Happens To Eye Level (Horizon Line) When You Look Straight Out, Down Or Up (Cont.) [35]

In extreme cases the eye level (horizon line) is completely above or below the drawing. The sketches below indicate, respectively, that you are looking downwards and upwards at still steeper angles than before.

Eye Level Sketches

eve level up/7(eye level below _

looking looking down (eye level above picture)

So while it may be obvious that when you look up you see more sky or ceiling, and when you look down you see more ground or floor, what is not quite so obvious is that the eye level-horizon line (always on a horizontal plane through the observer's eyes) shifts up and down inversely.

Therefore, if, when you start a drawing, you place the eye level (horizon line) high on the canvas or sheet, you must be looking down on the subject; if you place it midway, you must be looking out horizontally (the central visual ray is approximately on the eye level plane); and if you place it along the bottom you must be looking up at the subject. This holds true whether drawing or painting from life or from imagination. Try it and see.

So bear in mind: any drawing which shows or suggests its eye level-horizon line invariably indicates the artist's direction of sight and whether the subject was viewed from above or below, or head-on.

Cow Boy Hall Fame Oklahoma City

Below: An example of "looking down." The horizon line (eye level) is above the picture. National Cowboy Hall of Fame and Memorial Museum, Oklahoma City. (Second award, National Competition for Architectural Commission.) Joseph D'Amelio, Architect and Renderer

[36] Reasons For Choosing A Particular Eye Level (Horizon Line)

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Cowboy Drawings

Some factors in making this choice are: Horizontal planes will show their undersides when above eye level, and their tops when below____At eye level they foreshorten altogether and appear as simple lines____Also, all converging horizontal lines or planes will tend downwards when above eye level and upwards when below____At eye level they appear perfectly horizontal (so when you look at a drawing that does not show nature's horizon line, you can find eye level by noting the receding horizontal line or plane that still appears horizontal — e.g., the top of the bookcase).

Drawing Airplanes With Perspective

Object depicted below eye level in Object depicted above eye level in order to see top. order to see underside.

Another reason for choosing a particular eye level is the nature of the subject being depicted. Some things are typically seen from above (e.g., furniture) others are typically seen from below (e.g., airplanes). Drawing a subject from its most common viewpoint helps to express its function.

Because so much of what we see in life is seen by looking straight out you'll find that in the vast majority of drawings the eye level (horizon line) is within the picture.


Mistakes Drawing Cube

Drawing the simple cube (or any rectangular prism such as a brick, a book or the U.N. Secretariat) from many viewpoints is an important exercise which reveals and explores basic perspective principles. The following pages dramatize many of these. But these studies can only point to the problems involved and help to stimulate your powers of observation. To draw properly you must supplement them with intensive sketching and observation of your own. Get into this habit

The six sides of a cube (or any rectangular prism) are "edged" by three sets of parallel lines. When the cube rests on a horizontal surface, such as a table top, one set of lines is vertical (i.e., perpendicular to the ground), the other two sets are horizontal (i.e., level with the ground) and at right angles to each other.

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  • Valeria
    What is level 1 drawing?
    7 years ago
  • paola toscani
    How to find eye level horizon linein an exsisting picture/drawing?
    4 years ago
  • Uta
    What is meant by eye level in architecture drawing?
    4 years ago
  • Ashlyn
    How to find eye level sketch?
    4 years ago
  • Baldovino
    How will above eye level of a cone look like?
    3 years ago
  • ciriaca davide
    What is eye level What structure in formed at below eye level?
    3 years ago
  • Tobias
    When drawing multiple people whose eye view do u taoe as horizon?
    3 years ago
  • Isaias
    Whose eye level to take a horizon line when there is multiple persons on the drawing?
    3 years ago
  • gabriele
    How to draw animals using above eye level perspective?
    3 years ago
  • Torsten
    How to draw a landscape of below eye level?
    2 years ago

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