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Basic Perspective Drawing: A Visual Approach, 5th Edition by John Montague

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10

THE FIGURE IN PERSPECTIVE

It is worthwhile developing a basic understanding of the human figure in perspective drawing, for even if figures are not the focus of the drawing, they can add scale, depth, and interest to objects and spaces around them. For human figures to inhabit three-dimensional perspective space credibly, they obviously must obey all the same optical laws. If they do not, they can easily destroy an otherwise perfectly rendered scene.

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It is important to consider that, once figures are introduced into a scene, a significant dynamic is set up between the figures and their setting. Consequently, the form, style, and character of figures are totally dependent on their role in the scene. While human figures and human activities may be the central focus of the drawing, they can also easily upstage the architectural setting when they are not. The key is to find the figure forms, types, and styles that are appropriate. Sometimes this may mean that figures are intentionally set in stark contrast to their setting.

Basic Human Proportions

The proportions of the human figure have been a subject of study for thousands of years, reflecting everything from scientific measurement to aesthetic and spiritual values. For our purposes, the science of anatomy is grossly oversimplified but at the same time very serviceable. What is presented here is a practical foundation for figure ...

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