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Painting Tips - Your Perspective
March 25, 2009


Here is a snippet from a conversation I had with Gill regarding perspective. Gill said that fundamentally perspective relates to the eye level or horizon line of the viewer, parallel to the ground plane. This therefore varies according to our personal height above the ground. When sketching landscapes most often the actual horizon is obscured by hills or other objects so the artist must begin by establishing the horizon in the minds eye, simply by locating it at eye level.
When this is established it is easy to determine where objects such as buildings fit into the composition in relation to the horizon line.

Perspective relates to the angles of lines which appear to converge in the distance i.e. The vanishing point The parallel lines may be building lines or a line of trees or simply the road which apparently vanishes in the distance.

Buildings, trees and other objects become smaller and closer as they recede. They also apparently meet at the eye level mark. Buildings may also be viewed from a two or three point perspective, this occurs when viewing a building from the corner, you have two angles “moving” away from your eye. You now have a vanishing point on either side of the building. It can also happen that you have both or either of the vanishing points falling off the edge of the paper. When sketching windows and doors remember that the tops of the doors or windows may be angled slightly differently to that of the roof as the window is lower than the edge of the roof.

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Tip 2 Remember
When placing people in a painting

  • All heads are at eye level
  • The tops of doors and roof lines go down to eye level
  • The bottoms of doors and pavements go up to eye level

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