Class 5/6 – May 23rd 2012 –
During the group feedback on last weeks results we mainly discussed the use of perspective. An important observation was that even though not all perspectives were perfect the overall impression was that the wall starts to look like a wall in a ‘real’ design studio! The techniques that you are using to communicate the results are really starting to pay off.
Today’s class is about cylindrical objects and perspective. In order to draw cylinders it is crucial to practice drawing circles and ellipses until they become fluent. The best way to do this is by drawing from the shoulder while pointing your pen (or pencil) perpendicular to the major axis of the ellipse. Avoid using finger or wrist motion while drawing for these will create unbalanced non-symmetrical ellipses.
We looked at a 3D model of a cylinder and analyzed the behavior of the lines and ellipses in perspective. Just like with the cubes last week it really helps to understand this behavior first before trying to reproduce it yourself.
The main principle of a cylinder in perspective is that the major axis is always positioned perpendicular to the axis of rotation. Furthermore the ellipse that has the longest distance to the viewer will be the widest (minor axis).
Another important realization is the fact that the ellipses do not follow the direction of the rectangular surface that they sit on. You can rotate the surface as much as you want, but the cylinder remains unchanged.
We sketched a simple block and protruded it with cylindrical holes from all sides. Most of you ran into trouble immediately with the vertical hole through the top surface. It is tempting to use the perspective of that surface to align your ellipse with but as we’ve seen before, the direction of the ellipse is unrelated to that surface. Instead it should ALWAYS be placed perpendicular to the axis of rotation.
Then we’ve looked at images of products and analyzed their geometry and the ellipses in particular. We explored multiple views of these objects by simplifying the geometry and making a series of sketches in blue pencil. In the last demo i demonstrated how to apply marker to a cylinder to make it appear 3D using a core shadow and a high-light.
Just like last weeks exercise you should practice rotating the objects mentally to be able to sketch it in a different perspective. Explore as much different products and perspectives as you can. Don’t forget to do some warm-up ellipses and circles before you start! Finally take some time to communicate a couple of the results applying black felt-tip and grey markers. Add a layer of communication to the whole page explaining what can be seen on the page.