Okay, so. Real talk?
I am possibly getting into the market to save up and drop some money on a new tablet, soon, from either Monoprice, Huion (either the GT-190 or GT-190S) or Yiynova brand (MSP19U is a liiittle bit at the pricier side but not out of the question..?) ‘cintiq’-like monitor is not out of the question!
But I am kind of freaking myself out trying to compare and get the best option. aaaaah DB
If anyone has good advice for my sister on her exciting possible purchase, that would be really cool!
GUEST TUESDAY: Perspective guides!
Hey, I’m Dirk Grundy, I make an internet comic titled String Theory. It’s About villainy and no-goodniks, responsibility shirking, and feeling lost. I think. Mostly it’s the product of me just loving the creepy buttholes in movies and comics and suchlike. Anyway.
If there’s anything I hear artists complaining about, besides drawing hands, it’s perspective! I’ve seen all sorts of tutorials to get around even attempting it. And, I gotta be honest. Those shortcuts? They usually look like MORE work to me.
I’m not gonna lie and say setting up proper scenery is a breeze, but, hey, come on, what part of art IS? But, it definitely looks more complicated than it is.
Perspective is really nothing more than intersecting planes. You have plane A meeting up with plane B and plane C and whoops you have a cube. Add in plane D and wow maybe even a E and suddenly your drawing is a fish eye lens. Most drawings will never require more than three points or planes, and you can usually get by with two. Sometimes even one! Or none if you are drawing someone up against a flat wall or floating in the vastness of space for some reason. Hey, it could come up, you don’t know!
Look at these dorks, hanging out on a 1 point perspective ladder. How exciting! The Point likely ends somewhere in that glowy manhole. Which is a metaphor. Somehow.
This should PROBABLY have been 3 point, but it’s only 2 point, so it’s a pretty good example of fakin’ it, I guess. The mythical third point would have been the vertical one, zooming off into the ground under their feet.
Easier to see without all the overdone colors, perhaps.
Here’s the thing about perspective points. To look normal they need to be WAAAAAAY off your paper. But be careful because the further out the flatter the perspective. The closer in the wackier. Like, go to google street view and check out how wacky the angles are. That’s because the camera lens is distorting the perspective, so the points in any given photo from that would be way way closer to the edge of the photo than this is here.
As you can see here I like to imagine the points as string pinned to a surface. I work digitally, but this would work fine with real media as well. You could literally use pins and strings.
The mythical third point I should have used would have been pinned under the picture, since the camera is hovering above the scene, looking down.
3 point, like it says on the picture. The vertical point is usually located way way way further out than the horizontal ones if the scene is ground level. But if you wanted a bug’s eye view the vertical point would be right above the picture, or below or even inside for a bird’s eye view. Play around with the points, see what sort of weird ass points of view you can make! It’s useful to do this sometimes for atmosphere or story. Think about the goofy Dutch Angles in that 1960’s Batman tv show. Always angled camera to show how ‘offkilter’ the badguys were.
Angled views can create unease, or increase the sense of motion. Get creative!
of course I mostly just use these straight lines as guides and hand draw in the details so it doesn’t look too sterile. You can even draw over every line if you want a looser style, but man I don’t got time for that. Plus I draw in too much detail to do that. You definitely do not have to draw in this much detail to get a use out of perspective guides. Loose cartoons also benefit. What better use for going nuts with perspective than for cartoons, anyway?
Here’s an older drawing that I sorta screwed up the perspective on. The colored lines are where things should have been. The original image is only 2 point, again, and it was before I switched from Open Canvas to SAI, and wow it was way harder to set up perspective guides in OC let me tell you (couldn’t zoom out far enough, even for the much closer horizontal points).
the zoomed out view shows just what I mean by the vertical line being WAAAAAAY away from the picture. This is because the camera is damn near right on the horizon line. The further it goes from the horizon (up or down) and the closer it gets to the picture.
This goes back to this being all about planes! Were the camera pointed nearly straight on at that prison wall rather than looking off to the side of it, the left point would also be waaaaaaaaay waaaaaaay away from the canvas. Further away the point is, the flatter the plane is.
So, hopefully this was at all helpful and didn’t just make matters worse. Just get to experimenting! Take some photos or find some and figure out where the perspective points on them would be. Pay attention to cinematography in movies, especially old ones like film noir or italian westerns! Practice practice practice!
This is seriously flippin’ awesome, String Theory has some of my favorite background work, and Dirk gives the best advice!
Goddamn I’m tearing up now but Helvetica and H&J in general are so important to me and while I don’t talk about it a lot the fact that there is a comic out there that is so positive in portrayals of diverse women who are all fantastic and deep and gorgeous and actually there for female readers to admire and laugh with is a beautiful thing
This is so sweet (and SO TRUE!!!).