Room with a View

•In this breadth assignment you’ll use 1 or 2 point perspective to create a convincing interior space that includes a door or a window that lets in light. This piece should be more about how the light comes through the window or doorway and less about the view outside. You’ll work from a photo that you take. The room must be drawn in accurate 1 or 2 point perspective and rendered in prismacolor pencil.

Process:

1. WHAT room will you draw? Choose a part of a room with a window or doorway that has light coming through it and is interesting to you. Choose carefully! I recommend that you draw a room in your own home, NOT my classroom (the windows are weird and the light is terrible).

window2. WHERE will you stand in the room when you take your photo will determine weather it’s 1 or 2 point perspective. DO NOT take the photo of just the window with very little of the room showing, like this example on the right:

Also, avoid symmetrical compositions. They’re BORING! Use the rule of thirds grid on the camera to help you design a pleasing asymmetrical composition. What is the rule of thirds, you ask? Click HERE to visit my rule of thirds page!

Instead, stand to the side of the window, not right in front of it. And stand back far enough that you can see the wall meeting the ceiling or floor or both. You must show the light coming from the window or door as it falls on the wall or floor in the room.

*Remember, you CANNOT just print out a picture from the internet and copy it; this is visual plagiarism! YOU must take the photo yourself or your work will not be original. If you do not shoot your own photo you can’t us the work in your AP portfolio and I will not grade it! Click here for more info on plagiarism and ethics in art.

3. WHEN you take the photo is very important! Remember, the light is the star of the show in this piece so the time of day that you take the photo will determine how the light enters the room. The light will be very different at different times of the day. The best time for direct light is early on a sunny morning or late afternoon but the direction that your room faces will also affect the light.

4. After you take a photo of the space you’ve chosen, print it out in black and white,  no color prints! You may use a cell phone camera to take your photos but you MUST print it out; you cannot work from your phone!

5. HOW can you figure out the type of perspective? I can help you with this, but the easiest way is to line up several rulers along the horizontal receding lines in the photo, like the edge of the wall & ceiling. If they all line up with one point (which may be waaaaay off the edge of the paper), then it’s 1 point perspective. Or if they seem to be going in different directions, then it’s probably 2 point. BE SURE YOU KNOW WHICH YOU’RE DEALING WITH before you start your drawing!

Vps_and_hls_interior

Here you can see how the vanishing points were found on a photo by lining up two or three lines going the same direction. I often do this using two rulers.

Horizonex2

If you’re doing 2-point it’s often best if your vanishing points are FAR away from each other, even beyond the edge of the paper. Feel free to put them on the drawing board. Just be sure they’re level by using a yardstick to make a horizon line.

You need to know where your vanishing points are in order to draw your room accurately. *Open doors and objects in the room may have their own vanishing points!

(You can crop in on a smaller area that you want to draw AFTER you’ve done this step!)

If it’s helpful, you can draw a few of the most important lines directly on your print in red pen.

6. WHAT media should you use? You should use 9″ x 12″ Bristol Board for your final draft. I recommend you tape off a border and attach it to a large sheet of newsprint so that you have room to draw any vanishing points that will be off the edge of your bristol. Sketch lightly in pencil first, starting with the vanishing points and major parts of the room.

*You may include as many or as few details and objects in the room as you wish. I’d recommend that you include enough so that it’s interesting but not so many that it’s distracting from the light.

7. Once you’re certain that the room has been accurately sketched you will add color using a monochromatic color scheme (OR if you have the option of a limited palette of no more than 3 colors). Limiting your color scheme will give your piece more unity (too many colors can look disjointed and crazy). Obviously, you’ll need a wide variety of values of your color for the monochromatic option. If you’re using a limited palette you’re not limited to just 3 pencils. You’ll need light, medium and dark versions each of your colors, so you’ll need at least 10-15 pencils. You may use any color media that you already are familiar with but I’d recommend that you use one that lends itself to precise work using a ruler. For that reason, pastel may not be a good choice.

Below are some examples by my AP Art students:

 

 

VARSITY Option:

Varsity AP students may choose to include people in the room. However, be sure that the focus of the piece remains on the LIGHT. Here are some examples by master artists:

 

Need More Help?

Here’s a powerpoint on perspective & creating depth: PERSPECTIVE Powerpoint

And here’s an excellent timelapse video of drawing a room in 2 point perspective:

 

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Surreal Interior in perspective

Below are some of my favorite examples of interior spaces or rooms by master surrealist artists.

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 Goals:

•              To show a liberation of the mind by emphasizing the critical and imaginative powers of the subconscious.

•              To show a strange and unreal-like imagery in the collage.

•              To create a perspective drawing  in pen & ink  based on the collage using a variety of ink shading techniques.

•              To use compositional principles of design like balance, center of interest, and harmony in the completed drawing.

Process:

1. Take a photo of the space you’ve chosen to depict and print it in black and white.

2. Find the vanishing point(s) and by lining up rulers with the lines in the room. Draw a few of these lines directly on your print in red pen.

3. Fantasize your space to trigger surreal, preposterous, outlandish, outrageous, bizarre thoughts.  Topple mental and sensory expectations.  How far out can you extend your imagination?

Think:  “What-if” thoughts: What if automobiles were made of brick?  What if alligators played pool?  What if insects grew larger than humans?  What if night and day occurred simultaneously?

3. Quickly create a collage by gluing images found in magazines, online etc. to create a fantasy environment inside your room. *You will use this collage to make a drawing, the collage will NOT go in your portfolio, it’s just a guide for your drawing.

Here are some examples of surrealist collages of interrior spaces:

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4. Use the collage to create a drawing. Sketch in pencil first, starting with the vanishing points and major parts of the room. Then add shading using various pen & ink techniques.  **Remember, you CANNOT just print out one picture from the internet and copy it. YOU should take the photo yourself, or use a collage that combines several different photos.

Below are few examples of pen and ink drawings that use hatching, cross-hatching, etc to create shading and a sense of depth.

Ink-drawing-of-the-bedroom-in-arles-1888

Below are few of my favorite examples of “Surreal Classroom in Perspective” by my AP Studio Art Student’s over the last decade.  Most were done in Pen & Ink using hatching, cross hatching, stippling and other kinds of shading in ink. I taught this unit just like this for many years, but recently I’ve opened it up to other media and other interior spaces. You can see those examples farther down this page.

B-surreal_churchB-christian_surrealinteriorB-astronautxB_classroomKayleneDestiny_classroomSusana002Jackie02Brittney06Gail_classroomHai01Kim002B-contourderpdolphin

The AP student examples below are in other black & white media (not ink) and range from normal to surreal to completely imaginary spaces.

Vanessa07Brittney07Hai12B-hallway_w_ross

These AP student examples are in color and are completely random. Many of these are the surreal bedroom homework assignment.

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HOW TO DRAW A ROOM IN PERSPECTIVE:

This isn’t easy and it takes a real understanding of how perspective works. First, you’ll need to figure out if your photo is in ONE OR TWO POINT perspective. I can help you with this, but the easiest way is to line up several rulers (or pencils or anything straight) along the horizontal receding lines in the photo, like the edge of the wall & ceiling. If they all line up with one point (which may be waaaaay off the edge of the paper), then it’s one point perspective. Or if they seem to be going in different directions, then it’s probably 2 point. BE SURE YOU KNOW WHICH YOU’RE DEALING WITH before you start your drawing!

 

Below are some 2-point interior perspective samples- also simple, no surreal stuff… Just basic images that will help show you how to tackle 2-point perspective!

Bookshelves

Some of the earliest and finest examples interior spaces using linear perspective. These examples also show you HOW to find the vanishing points in a photograph.

Interior_one_ptIp39Ip40Vredman_de_vriesIp41

Here you can see how the vanishing points were found on a photo by lining up two or three lines going the same direction. I often do this using two rulers.

Vps_and_hls_interior

If you’re doing 2-point it’s often best if your vanishing points are FAR away from each other, even beyond the edge of the paper. Feel free to put them on the drawing board. Just be sure they’re level by using a yardstick to make a horizon line.

Horizonex2

Here’s a powerpoint on perspective & creating depth

1h_PERSPECTIVE.ppt

 

Surreal Landscapes in Perspective

Below are some of my favorite examples of landscapes by master surrealist artists.

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Goals:

•                To show a liberation of the mind by emphasizing the critical and imaginative powers of the subconscious.

•                To show a strange and unreal-like imagery by adding surrealist elements.

•                To create a drawing or painting that clearly shows depth by using atmospheric and linear perspective.

•                To show an interesting foreground, middle-ground and background.

*This assignment is similar to the Room In Perspective assignment, in that it includes both surreal elements and perspective. But now, you’re not limited to any interior space, you can go as big as your imagination will allow!

Play with SCALE, JUSTAPOSITION, and HUMOR

You can, if you like, create a collage from which to draw, much like you did with the Interior in Perspective assignment. Here are some examples of surrealist collages of landscapes:

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Some student examples:

B-duckyB-ants_landscapeB-creepy_racoon_landscapeB-jankleysurreal_landscapeB-surreal_fish_landscapeB-jaredsurreallandscapeB-drawing_a_cityscapeB-quadB-fish_outta_waterB-tankDsc_8249_copy

OTHER OPTION:

If the idea of making a “Surreal Landscape” isn’t exciting to you, a landscape without the surrealist stuff is ok too. But, like the surreal landscape, there must be elements that show linear perspective, like a road, fence, building, etc.

Be prepared to show me your reference photos. *Remember, you CANNOT just print out a pretty landscape from the internet and copy it. YOU should take the photo yourself, or use a combination of different references; one photo for the land, another one for the building, another for the sky, another for the trees, etc.

Here are some examples:

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Surrealism: WORLDS of Imagination “Beyond Reality”

“The world of reality has its limits; the world of imagination is boundless.”

                                                                        -Jean Jacques Rousseau

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The Surrealist movement was about recovering from the destruction of World War I and II.
The Surrealists turned INWARD – escaping into a private reality based on

                DREAMS (including nightmares)

                MEMORIES

                and FEELINGS

The new science of Psychology suggested that the “UNCONSCIOUS” mind guides our inner feelings, fears and desires, and that CLUES to this unconscious can be found in DREAMS.

Surrealist art is about:

                JUXTAPOSITION of objects – joining of objects in unusual combinations

                NATURAL LAWS are reversed

                SCALE CHANGE

                DOUBLE IMAGES echo and repeat

                SYMBOLS

Here’s a link to a stunning collaboration between Walt Disney and Salvador Dali

 

Here are some surrealist artists to research:

The old masters:

 Salvador Dali:

http://thedali.org/collection/collection_highlights.html

Remedios Varo:

http://serandipity.50megs.com/inform.html

Rene Magritte

http://www.magritte.be/

 

Georgio de Chirico:

http://www.moma.org/collection/artist.php?artist_id=1106

 

Max Ernst:

http://www.theartstory.org/artist-ernst-max.htm

 

Some New masters:

Josh Keyes:

http://www.joshkeyes.net/paintings.htm

 

Greg Simkins:

http://www.imscared.com/gallery/

 

Bob Dob:

 http://skywalker-terraincognita.blogspot.com/2010/05/bob-dob-visual-storyteller.html