```One-Point Perspective
NOTES
Vocabulary
• One-point Perspective- Where all objects look like they disappear
into the distance while one side faces forward to the picture
plane.
• Horizon Line- Where the sky and the land meet, often far off in
the distance.
• Vanishing Point- Lines that are parallel and level with the ground
in your picture plane appear to meet at the same point on the
horizon line. This point on the horizon is called the vanishing
point. Think of standing on a railroad track and looking down the
row of wooden ties. They appear to get smaller and closer
together in the distance.
• Picture Plane- This is the area of the picture we are drawing. It is
controlled by the size of our paper, canvas, or fabric. The picture
plane is the “window” we are seeing our subject matter through.
Vocab 2
• Horizontal- Left & Right, parallel with the
• Vertical- Up & Down, parallel with the side of
• Orthogonal Lines- diagonal lines coming from
the vanishing point.
Vocab 3
• Receding- To go towards the back or move
away
• Foreshortening- The term foreshortening
refers to the artistic effect of shortening lines
in a drawing so as to create an illusion of
depth.
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Early History
• The earliest art paintings and drawings typically sized
objects and characters hieratically according to their
spiritual or thematic importance, not their distance
from the viewer, and did not use foreshortening. The
most important figures are often shown as the highest
in a composition, also from hieratic motives, leading to
the "vertical perspective", common in the art of
Ancient Egypt, where a group of "nearer" figures are
shown below the larger figure or figures. The only
method to indicate the relative position of elements in
the composition was by overlapping, of which much
use is made in works like the Parthenon Marbles.
Renaissance : Mathematical Basis
• The use of perspective: The first major
treatment of the painting as a window into
space appeared in the work of Giotto di
Bondone, at the beginning of the 14th
century. True linear perspective was
formalized later, by Filippo Brunelleschi and
Leon Battista Alberti. In addition to giving a
more realistic presentation of art, it moved
Renaissance painters into composing more
paintings.
Christ Handing the Keys to St. Peter by Pietro Perugino (148182) Fresco, 335 x 550 cm Cappella Sistina, Vatican
• Using one perspective, parallel lines converge
to one point somewhere in the distance. This
point is called the vanishing point (VP). This
gives objects an impression of depth.
• When drawing using one point perspective all
objects vanish to one common point
somewhere on the horizon.
• The sides of an object diminish towards the
vanishing point. All vertical and horizontal lines
though are drawn with no perspective. i.e. face
on.
• One point perspective though is of only limited
use, the main problem being that the perspective
them looking bigger than they actually are.
• So when would you use one point perspective?
• One area where one point perspective can be
quite useful is for sketching room layouts.
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