Andrew Loomis—Arcs of Movement in Perspective Analysis I

Thank you to commenter Richard Matthew for asking about a diagram on page 46 in Andrew Loomis's "Figure Drawing for All It's Worth."

Page 46 from Andrew Loomis's "Figure Drawing for All It's Worth."

Before I attempt to answer Richard's question about the "snow angel" diagram, a reminder that I'm neither an expert nor experienced; I'm just sharing what I've learned or think I've figured out.

So here we go!

Richard's question regarding this page made me realize something about this book that I hadn't realized earlier: the order of the information in this book is illogical.

This page and the Flat Diagram pages deal with the FIGURE in PERSPECTIVE. Wouldn't it have been helpful, however, to have started the book with an explanation of perspective,  followed by an explanation of drawing the figure before teaching about the figure in perspective? So I think that the steps are out of order thereby causing confusion.

Therefore, to understand the snow angel diagram, we first need to understand its perspective and then place the figure into that perspective.

(NOTE: use a ruler to ensure that lines drawn to vanishing points are accurate. Some of my lines are freehand and therefore neither straight nor accurate.)

 1. As drawn by Loomis, the snow angel diagram is in 2-point perspective. One vanishing point is clearly shown below the text in the middle of the page. The second vanishing point, however, is WAY off the page to the right. I drew it by hand to make sure I found the right spot, taping two pieces of tracing paper together:

If you follow the horizontal lines of Loomis's diagram, they converge at a second vanishing point far off to the right.

2. To understand the arcs of movement, I thought it best to first draw the figure before it moved into that position, inside the 8-head-divided box explained earlier in the book. To make that box, I drew diagonals to find the midpoints of the box's left and right halves:

3. A line through both of those intersections to the second vanishing point divides the main box into quarters:

Line through midpoints goes to vanishing point on the right.

4. Lines to the first vanishing point create a new, centered box:

Vertical lines, centered, for placement of figure.

5. These newly drawn lines are the only ones with which I'm concerned right now:

This is the box to be divided into 8 heads to fit a standing figure.

6. Four boxes go below the middle line and four above. To determine their placement, again draw diagonals and use the intersections as midpoints:

Bottom section is halved.

7. Divide again to get the 4 bottom boxes in perspective…:

…to finally look like this, the first 4 boxes of our 8 box diagram:

8. Repeat the process to create the remaining 4 boxes:

The 8-head diagram in 2-point perspective.

9. Place the figure in proper perspective with the anatomical landmarks falling in the right boxes (please excuse my digitally mutated and inaccurate Loomis figure):

The standing figure from which we'll draw the figure with arcs.

Phew, that was exhausting! I'll continue tomorrow with the next steps of how to show the figure with the arcs, otherwise this post will be too long!

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