Basic Drawing - Lesson 13
Hello again. Let us now continue with our examination of right - left hemisphere recognation.
A NEW VERSION OF DURER'S DEVICE
Next we will try out the sighting technique by setting up a newer version of Durer's experiment. A modern-day version.
• Tear off a sheet of clear plastic of the kind used for wrapping food. You know, the clinging stuff. Smooth it onto a window that looks out on a street scene. Using a felt-tip pen (marker), draw a grid on the plastic with lines about two inches apart.
• Standing at arm's length from the window, close one eye and reguard the scene from a single point of view --- Do not move your head. Now, with the marker, trace the outlines of the street, buildings, automobiles, trees --- the whole scene --- on the plastic sheet.
• Your completed drawing is a perspective drawing. Carefully remove the plastic from the window and lay it down on a light surface so that you can see the lines clearly. Take a sheet of drawing paper and very lightly draw a second grid exactly the same size as the first. Now copy the drawing from the plastic onto the drawing paper.
• Take this drawing back to the same window. Now you are going to sight angles using your pencil as a sighting tool, and your drawing can function as a check on the accuracy of your sighting.
• Stand again at arm's length from the window, in the same spot you stood to do the grid drawing. Now, holding your pencil up perfectly vertically and parallel to the window, line your pencil up with the vertical edge of a building. You will see that the edge is vertical. Check that on your drawing: the vertical edge will be parallel to the edge of your paper. In fact all lines that are perpendicular to the earth always remain perfectly vertical.
• Take a sight on one of the angled forms you drew --- perhaps the edge of the street or the top of a building. Let your horizontal pencil touch the form at some point.
• Observe the angle between the pencil and the form; note the direction in relation to horizontal. Now look at your drawing at the same angle and see how you drew it using Durer's method. Compare your observation and the drawing. The drawing should match your observation.
• Now check other angles and line directions, in each case looking at your drawing to see how the observation is translated in the drawing.
This is how most artists do perspective drawing. Knowing that vertical lines always remain vertical (except in rare and extreme bird's-eye or ant's-eye views) and that the horizontal edges of forms converge at vanishing points on a horizon line (the viewer's eye level), the artist simply finds out (by sighting) what the angles are relative to the constants, horizontal or vertical, and then draws those angles in the same relationship on the paper. This is possible because the edges of the paper represent horizontal and vertical. The key point is that the artist simply uses the pencil, held at arms length either perfectly horizontally or perfectly vertically, to determine the specific angles. Any angle can be checked, and any angle can be drawn correctly on the paper without relying on complicated perspective systems. You need only to see rationally ---- with your right hemisphere --- what is right there in front of your eyes.

This will be the shortest lesson of the series. For good reason. You MUST grasp this if you are to succeed. I want you to do this exercise "four" times, from four different windows!! I want to give you time to do the exercise but we also need to move on...so I shall give you two or three days and then post another lesson. Please do the exercises just as I have layed out. If you have a problem grasping the concept (many people do, you know), e-mail me and let me give you some personal help. That's how important this section can be to your ability to draw.

E-MAIL: elliot@eurekanet.com