I think most people woke up thinking “Oh oh, here we go, I know I need to get to grips with perspective but it’s not a subject matter that drives me wild with enthusiasm!”
Well I totally understand that, it’s one of those subjects that you need to understand so your sketching comes together but it can be very perplexing at times. What a lot of people find is that they look at a subject such as a building and whilst they are looking they can see that the roof line goes up but somewhere along the line between looking and sketching the roof that line suddenly ended up being drawn going down. Yikes, how did that happen?
It’s your brain interfering with your eyes – your brain says one thing but your eyes see it differently, so one thing to get right is to believe your eyes. You see, (no pun intended), one of the core skills we teach at Erin Hill Studio is “How to see” and we must keep mastering this skill, as simple as it sounds.
We started off our day in the studio looking at walls, angles and sketching diagrams of one point perspective and two point perspective. Still puzzled? Yes. A few “aha” moments were achieved when some folk found that comparing perspective with the hands on a clock helped them to understand better. Even more “aha” moments were achieved when we drew lines on photographs disappearing to their vanishing points. It was really helpful to use photographs of the places we would be visiting because then everyone got to see them in real life and learn “how to see”.
Karen Gillespie was a tutor with a gold star badge on – she delivered to us some photos and the most yummy carrot cake to go with our teas and coffees. Not just any old carrot cake I might add. At 7.30 in the morning she baked it specially for everyone in the Intensive. Now there’s dedication to the Studio!
We walked in the glorious sunshine to Manly Art Gallery to look at the vanishing points and then on to sketch a gorgeous driveway with arches of bougainvillea framing it and it was a perfect perspective opportunity. It also happened to make a lovely sketch subject too!
Lunch was much needed as everyone’s brains were getting a little bit fried and we went round the corner to The Ivy Cafe. Their sandwiches are ginormous and we were very well looked after. It was a great place to be able to spend time adding some colour to our sketches too.
Our next sketching location was simply a few paces away, looking at the perspective down Darley Street with the Laundry in the foreground. Toni was a star helping everyone throughout the day and she placed herself strategically in certain locations so she helped people understand what was happening with perspective.
I was so thrilled with everyone’s results as by the end of the day, despite being rather weary everyone managed to get perspective right. Success! Looking forward to seeing everyone’s future sketches and hoping that people can therefore be less fearful when faced with perspective.
A big thank you to Karen and Toni for all their help for the Intensive, it was a lovely day.