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• Break out your pocket watch and your paintbrushes! It's time for episode 9 of

• 10 minutes to better painting! I am your incorrigible host, Marco Bucci.

• Let's dig right in. The teacher from Starship Troopers said:

• "Figuring things out for yourself is the only freedom anyone really has." This episode is about

• perspective, which falls under the category of: depth. You there! Gaze upon

• the visit of gods! Well...artists, actually. And they, back in

• the Renaissance era, developed something called 'linear perspective.' The basics

• of which involve a viewer, whose eye line gets projected infinitely far into the

• horizon: this makes a horizon line - onto which we can plot a vanishing point. And

• from that point comes a linear perspective grid which you then

• reference to ensure your scene has cohesive depth. A single vanishing point

• is called one-point perspective. You can have two vanishing points on a horizon

• line. Usually these points are located quite a bit out of frame... and you get a

• different angle to the scene. Changing the distance between the two vanishing

• points simulates various focal lengths of a camera's lens. If you want to look

• up at something, add a separate grid entirely and have that grid recede to a

• third vanishing point, independent of the horizon line. This is of course three

• point perspective, and putting that third point below the horizon line will

• simulate looking down. This is knowledge we owe to artists who lived, like, six

• hundred years ago - which is pretty cool if you ask me! ...and I bet they're rolling

• in their graves. Geez, minute and a half into this

• thing ... where's my unpaid intern??

• ...Thanks. Hey! Get back in your car drive away and then come back again. Jus--just

• do it! When he drives away from camera the car gets smaller, and when he comes

• back toward camera, the car gets bigger. This leads us to a hidden relationship

• between size/distance/and the eye line. This checkered floor will reveal the eye

• line (or horizon line). Now, pay special attention to where the car crosses that

• line. The eye line tells us that everything above that line is above our

• eyes and everything below the line is below our eyes. *psst, do the driving again*.

• So, as the intern travels through depth the size of the car changes but its

• relationship to the eye line does not. This relationship tells you how to

• resize your objects, too. The ratio of the object space above the horizon to the

• object space below the horizon should also remain consistent. And of course

• that ratio will change depending on where your eye line sits.

• I'll move the camera here to show you how some of those changes might look.

• In this illustration by Juanjo Guarnido, these two figures are at different

• depths in the scene. Our eye line is nicely positioned at ... well... crotch level. I

• know this because all the perspective lines traced back to a vanishing point

• right at his ... Man, come on, really? *sigh* Let's take stock of the measurement above and

• below the woman's crotch. When we translate that scale to our main figure,

• who is the same size give or take a few inches, the relationship holds true. Of

• course his feet are off-screen. But because the woman has given us the eyeline

• reference, the hidden information here can still be resolved! I see a lot

• of people trip up here, by simply placing large objects close to camera in hopes

• to give depth to the scene. But there's no reference for these objects. I don't

• know their relation to the eye line; I don't know how big they are; so it's

• basically like they're floating. In the last example I had the information to

• complete the picture whereas this time I do not. Speaking of

• missing information: when working with depth, objects will inevitably overlap

• and therefore conceal other parts of the picture. Guarnido has designed his

• picture to give us contiguous slices of the perspective grid, and we then fill in

• the areas that are overlapped by other stuff.

• We can do this on much less - Dean Cornwell here shows us a few areas where

• objects are providing some perspective information. From there we can roughly

• extrapolate back to the vanishing points, from there the horizon line, and from

• there the viewer can approximate the perspective grid for the entire scene!

• Things that touch the ground are very good depth cues because even if an

• object gets rotated, creating a custom vanishing point, that point will still

• indicate where the horizon line is. Getting back to overlaps: be careful with

• silhouettes. This tree overlaps the temple, while still preserving a healthy

• chunk of the temple silhouette. Too many overlaps can compromise the silhouette.

• This temple now almost reads like a ... *Spooky music plays*. Here's another tricky little thing! I'll call up

• some perspective lines, and the unpaid intern. The intern will drive from this

• point close to camera to this point a little further away. *rusty engine sound* I ... think that car

• needs a tune-up, but let's plot the line he took. It looked like this. Now let's

• pull out and have him drive that same path. This time the line looks like this!

• Here are those two lines side-by-side. They show us that distance forces

• horizontal lines. Take a look at the river that travels through depth in this

• Scott Christensen painting. When I analyze the lines that those river banks make

• from close up to far away we see a gradual progression towards horizontal

• lines. It's like a cypher for a perspective grid that we the viewer can

• solve! But a perspective grid is not an absolute requirement. Color and value

• alone can deliver depth through something called

• 'atmospheric' or 'aerial perspective.' ...painting goes over there and over here

• I'll draw up a quick chart. I'll plot the colors of the lights on the left and

• shadows on the right. Starting with the shadow category, these are colors across

• all objects in the painting. And I'll identify the foreground midground and

• background sections. There are two things to notice here. One: there's more variety

• of shadow colors and values in the foreground progressively less variety

• toward the background. And second: with depth, the color is pulled toward the

• cyan side of the blue family on the color wheel.

• Alright let's examine the light category now. Again, corralling colors across all

• objects. The first thing to notice is the overall

• cooling of the color still happens ... though the light family preserves its

• color more than the shadow family. Also, yellows get filtered out by the

• atmosphere. This causes distant colors to appear a

• touch redder. When we don't observe these trends and when we don't have a

• perspective grid, we can only achieve limited amounts of depth. But just by

• implementing some atmospheric perspective, we can make even large

• objects in the background recede much further into the distance! This is all

• super powerful stuff that we'll explore in part tw-- yeah yeah I was just getting to that.

• Hey how did you buy that car?! I don't even pay you.

• ...Ah, the choices we make.

• Alright let's sketch something! I'll start by plotting the

• horizon line, vanishing point and perspective grid based on the story I

• want to tell. I'm imagining myself high above the ground - like on the second

• floor of a building or something. Right around roof level. So when I block my

• scene in all the rooftops will be just above the horizon. I'm also picturing

• this city kind of elevated off the ground, so that means the ground plane

• needs to be put way below the horizon line, which you can see is this kind of

• waterway I'm developing here. So right away my choice of viewpoint dictated

• quite a bit about how I block in this scene. I'm also thinking about the simple

• concept of having things overlap other things: like the foreground building

• overlaps the mid-ground building; the foreground people overlap the platform

• they're walking; on those little boats overlap the walls. I know that seems like

• an obvious point, but I have noticed there seems to be a common reluctance to

• have shapes overlap other shapes, which of course just robs the scene of depth.

• But remember when you do overlap shapes, consider the silhouette you're losing

• and the silhouette you're retaining. Oh, I should say I'm not trying to make this

• like the coolest concept art piece you've ever seen ... what I want to show you

• is how these simple concepts will allow you to start sketching a place that has

• a sense of believability to it. At this point in the painting I feel like I know

• the space well enough to populate it. You know, at the beginning I was worried

• about the placement of big things but now it's like ... put a boat here ... put a

• person there ... with the basics in place it becomes just fun to explore the space

• you're creating. But be careful! I'm finding myself drifting from my own

• perspective grid in some key areas! So here I'm

• just kind of auditing that. Tweaking a few of the important lines that really

• have to recede to that vanishing point. And I guess I'll leave the sketch

• unfinished because at this point it's just noodling out the rest of the scene,

• which is not really the focus of this lesson. *Squeaky voice* Huh? Oh the intern wants me to

• tell you that I have longer art lessons featuring real time paintings and

• instruction available at www.marcobucciartstore.com

• I'd like to get back to this

• opening quotation. If figuring things out for yourself is freedom ... then are my

• videos somehow removing freedom?? Well, teaching art, to me, is like helping

• someone navigate. And there are two overall lands you can wind up in. My goal

• with these lessons is to encourage you to move in this direction. And trust me,

• you'll still have to navigate countless twists and turns by yourself. And that, in

• my opinion, is where the real discovery, learning, and freedom happens. So I'm

• really happy you're watching my videos! But I hope you're also spending the time

• to sort out the information on your own.

• *Christmas bells jingle*

• "Hey buddy, its Marco. Are you having a good Christmas? Yunno, I know that I

• don't always give you the easiest time ... I yelled at you for the coffee thing ... and

• got you drunk on the air ... and I had you kidnap that one guy ... but I want you to

• know you make this show better than I could make it alone. So, in this envelope

• is a check! There's a '1' with a few zeroes after it, which I hope you can use

• to pay off that car of yours. Maybe a few months' rent? Or, I don't know, just go buy

• a lot of coffee. You deserve it and I want you to know that! Well, I hope you

• have a great holiday, and I can't wait to come back in the new year and make more

• episodes with you :)"

Break out your pocket watch and your paintbrushes! It's time for episode 9 of

Subtitles and vocabulary

B1 INT US perspective horizon line grid vanishing depth

# Perspective - 10 Minutes To Better Painting - Episode 9

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