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Perspective for Street Scenes with David Questa

Posted on Fri 07 Jul 2017

Perspective is a subject that my students always find challenging, as do many artists. I hope you find my approach helpful.

To show linear perspective, I start by drawing a horizontal line at what I determine to be my eye-level, to locate my own horizon. I can then draw a vertical line from my position that will intersect this line, thus forming a cross on the paper. Using this cross as a reference point I am then able to work out whether other lines should be above or below this horizon line.

Anything above eye level will slope downwards and anything below eye level will angle up towards the horizon. It is also helpful to think about the relative height of other people in relation to me to determine whether their heads should be on, above or below the horizon line. I also deal with aerial perspective by considering how darker tones may be used to emphasise the foreground and how paler, bluer tones appear to recess into the distance, giving a sense of depth to the image.

Click here to purchase the August 2017 issue of The Artist to read more from David on how he expresses movement and energy in his plein-air drawings of  busy city streets, and watch the video below to see David working.

The painting below is Little Italy, New York, mixed media, (50x50cm)

Perspective for Street Scenes with David Questa

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