Point of View Perspective drawing refers to the representation of things as they are arranged in space and seen from a single point of view. The central issue in perspective drawing is the artist ’s bodily position in relation to the things represented. A fixed viewpoint is an important achievement in a drawing. This will affect perspective, proportion, and composition.
When looking at a drawing or painting, we tend to identify with the implied point of view; that is, we know whether the artist was looking up, down, or straight ahead. Looking down Looking up
Cone of Vision: A conical volume that constitutes the three-dimensional field of vision. Its apex is located at eye-level; its base is within the imagined picture plane.
Fixed Position Before learning the rules of perspective, students often combine what they see with what they know. The first drawing shows some common mistakes: it combines what is known (the table is square) with what is actually seen (three out of four table legs). In this way, image (a) is showing two viewpoints of table. Image (b) shows the table from a fixed position. Notice that you can still tell that the table is square, even though it is not drawn that way.
By shifting your point of view, you also shift your perspective. Look at the differences between these three drawings. They are all drawn from the same distance and position, but the artist has shown the changes that occur when viewed from straight ahead, slightly above, and below.
These shifts in the shapes occur when your eye level changes. Eye level is the height your eyes are located in relation to a ground plane.
“ Look here, man, shouldn’t that be the other way around?”
Convergence: One of the central concepts of linear perspective is that parallel lines in nature appear to converge (come together) as they recede. The apparent convergence of parallels occurs at eye level.
Diminution of Objects: When observing two subjects that are the same size but different distances from the apex of your cone of vision, the closer subject will appear larger. The subject farther away will appear smaller. This is because the farther away a subject gets from the apex of your cone of vision it takes up less space in the field of vision.
In this image, both the convergence of parallel lines is obvious and the diminution of objects of the same size. Notice how the poles supporting this arch get smaller and closer together as they recede in space.
In the above image, you are standing on a railroad track midway between the two rails. The track a few feet ahead of you fills up the lower part of your field of vision. As the track recedes, it takes up less space in your field of vision.
One-Point Perspective Vanishing Point: This example of railroad tracks is a classic example of one-point perspective. If you were to stand in the center of a straight stretch of railroad track, you could look down the rails until they appear to finally converge. The point of convergence is called the vanishing point. Presuming the ground is flat, the vanishing point will be located on the horizon line.
Eye level and the rate of convergence: If you had a view of the track from the top of an engine, you would see the tracks converging at a slow rate toward a high vanishing point (a). If, however, you were tied to the railroad track, you would see the tracks converging sharply to a low vanishing point (b).
When creating a one-point perspective drawing, select an area that shows parallel lines converging and diminution. Consider your eye level. Mark this on the page as your HORIZON LINE.
Next mark the point on your horizon line where your parallel lines will converge. This is your VANISHING POINT.
Now you can begin to mark the converging parallel lines on your page. You should always use your ruler to make your lines straight and accurate.
The boxes to the left to the tracks in the one-point perspective example have one face perfectly aligned parallel to the picture plane. This is a limitation of one point perspective. Another problem with this technique is that objects become more distorted the further they are from the vanishing point, as can be seen with the far left box in the example.