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MATCHING PERSPECTIVE

Early Renaissance artists including Alberti, Brunelleschi, Donatello, and Masaccio had an appreciation for the beauty of mathematics, and they developed the concept of perspective to compose and organize images. They understood the picture plane as a transparent window through which the viewer looks into the scene from a fixed standpoint. Prior to the use of perspective, paintings looked flat and figures were stacked on top of one another as if they were paper cutouts without any form or substance.

Types of Perspective

The three types of perspective are one-point, two-point, and three-point perspective. One-point perspective renders only one vanishing point and all vertical and horizontal lines without perspective (figure 12.3). The classic example of one-point perspective is the road that winds its way toward the distant horizon. Two-point perspective rotates the viewer's point of view to a corner perspective, with parallel lines that have two vanishing points. Often the vanishing points are outside of the actual image plane (figure 12.4). The closer the vanishing points are to the center of the image, the larger and more dramatic the subject will be. Three-point perspective, often used by architects, designers, and computer special-effects professionals, renders the additional vanishing point well above or below the horizon to add dramatic volume to the subject (figure 12.5).


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