Tag Archives: Illusions

Creative artists, creative process.

Creative artists, rule the world, if we think about it but we are not doing that, today because everybody should be able, to at least understand, the creative process and creative techniques we use, if you just keep on reading this simple explanation, you will.  Creative drawing is a pastime, that many people enjoy, all over the world and I am no different, it has been, so many things to me, throughout my life but one thing, it has always consistently been, is pleasure. The wonderful thing about drawing, is you only need, a pencil or pen, some paper, your eyes and your mind, in order to draw great pictures, a pleasure so easily obtained, it’s little wonder that many people enjoy it, the creative process is simple.

When I draw pictures, I often get lost for hours, fantasizing and dreaming to myself, about all sorts of imaginary ideas, concepts, stories or worlds, people, creatures and places, magic, and illusions. This is often the realm of creative artists, things that don’t exist, until you draw them and they are released from the imprisonment, of your mind, onto an unsuspecting world, it’s amazing, when someone looks at your work and says wow.

The creative artists and process.

Below is an image of Gearman, he is an attempt at showing, the workings of how creative artists, with their imagination, create illusions from everyday objects, something I have done many times, when drawing because you can often see things, in other things.

Creative artists example of developmental stages when building an image from another image.
Image showing, the constructional stages of building an image, from another different images.

Yes, I know this is not, a creative drawing as such but is it, because it is not a photograph either, except for the, LX mountain bike gears, the rest could be considered a digital drawing, rather than a pencil drawing but in this format, it more easily shows the process, of seeing things, as other things.

If you draw pictures, any pictures, out of you imagination, from a picture or from life and you look, at what you are doing, you will start to see other things, this is not likely to happen at first because you will need, to build up visual memory from doing, a stock of past works, this is often called a repertoire. This is why, it is important to practice by doing drawings, all the time but if you like drawing, like many people do and you are a creative artist, it will not be a problem, as you will soon have a repertoire.

I want to tell you a little story, it is a bit of a dark story but a true story, all the same and also a good reason for understanding, a little bit more, about what I am trying to explain, about visual memory and creative artists.

I had a bit of an obsession, from when I was a small child, I wanted to be able to draw the human likeness, I wanted to be able, to draw portraits of real people, that looked like them. A large part of my young life, had been focused, on trying to do this accurately, so as others, would uphold my observations and confirm that I had, the ability to capture the human likeness, through drawing. I eventually reached the pinnacle of my success, in this, by drawing and painting portraits for people, getting paid by them for this work. During this time of about 3 years, doing portraits, I sold over a hundred of these, to the expressed wishes of those, I was drawing them for but I also drew many more, in the process, that I also sold, how many I do not really know, but in total, a couple of hundred. I was at it, all the time but it was causing me other problems, I discovered, I was so over exposed to faces, that I began to start seeing them everywhere, in everything I looked at. I seen faces in trees, bushes, the drawings I was doing, buildings, everything, it was fun at first but it soon became annoying, for me because I felt it was restricting my imagination, unless I was drawing faces.

I never wanted to be like that, I wanted to be able to draw faces, as well as cars, robots, landscapes, mountain bike scape’s or what ever but not just faces, and I had to stop.

I am glad I did, I don’t just see faces in everything, I look at anymore but, the only way to do this, was to stop and go back, to drawing anything but not faces, only when I needed them, for something else now.

This leads me to believe, that all creative artists, can hone their skills into a focused but restricted visual memory, by repetitively doing the same subjects, over and over, it seems to be a reason, why some of these creative artists, can draw from memory, without even looking, which is something I did not like because it felt like, my creative abilities where being restricted, to only one type of subject.

My new obsession, is to be able to draw everything and I am joking because I can do that anyway, so that’s what I do, we are all creative artists, developing a creative process, in every thing we do because that’s what humans do, when they focus their attentions on a task, this dose not just apply to drawing.

How to draw easy, creating depth.

In the image below, is an example of how creating depth in a picture can be done, even when looking up into the sky, the buildings create an illusion of depth through their linear structure of lines, converging to a point in the sky, drawing the eye up into the sky, like the perspective construction lines in a drawing, taking your eyes, leading them off into an imaginary distance. This combined with a close fore ground subject, helps the illusion become more believable, in this image there are really only four subjects creating the illusion, the face and building above it, the dragon and the building behind it, all creating a depth of field in the onlookers eye, which tends to be lead from the top middle to the bottom right hand corner and vice versa.

Dragon in the sky.In the image below, although the eye is lead up into the sky by the lamp post and the cranes to observe the big cloud filling most of the picture, the eye is the lead off as other clouds diminishing in size, lead off into the distance, creating the illusion of depth once again in this image, these are two examples of how perspectives, can be created even when looking into something as seemingly empty of structure, like the sky. It is interesting how other structures in the image can help to create the illusion of depth and even something as simple as clouds, can all help when they are reduced in size.

Distance and depth are created by using lines to lead the eye, the reduction of objects in size and making the objects seem further away, less well defined in detail, giving a further impression of distance in your pictures. Although these are not drawings as such, I used them because they give us some very good natural examples, of how distance and depth are created in the world around us, and how this can be utilized to create these illusions in our own drawings, if we think about them, for incorporating them into the drawings we do.


Distance in the sky.(”Miki Falls”) manga creator Mark Crilley shows us in one of his how to draw videos, Manga backgrounds, an interesting demonstration on, how you can be creating depth in your pictures and how it is achieved by placing an emphasis, on using color and line work to create the illusion of depth, controlling the definition of objects within your picture, making fore ground objects more defined than background objects.

Take a look it will be worth it.

Single point perspective drawing.

The single point perspective drawing, is made up of a vanishing point, on the horizon line, where all construction lines, converge to give the impression of the object disappearing into the distance, as objects do, when we look at them in real life, this enables us to give our drawings, the impression of being three dimensional. Many illusions of depth, can be created by doing perspective drawing and most people find it very interesting, to do this type of drawing, in fact many people spend hours doing it because they can easily create, very dynamic 3D drawings, that look impressive.

How to draw perspective, using a single point, the most basic single point of all, can be done by putting a single dot or point, in the center of a piece of paper and then drawing perspective lines, from the center to the out side of the paper or drawing area, this then creates a single point perspective, if everything is then drawn in relation to these lines, it creates, the illusion of things, getting smaller, as they lead off into the distance, like they do in real life.

The drawing below, shows a distorted cup drawn in single point perspective, the cup looks distorted because the construction box, at the top and bottom, are on a slight angle, slanting down to the right, making it seem distorted.

In the drawing further down the page, below, the construction boxes are drawn head on and the horizontal lines are drawn, fairly accurately spaced out from each other, top and bottom making the shape, seem correct and not distorted like the cup drawing directly below.  The other aspect of this drawing, is called an ellipse, which is the oval shape, made by circular objects, when looked at in perspective, this can be created by following the explanations in the drawings.

A single point persepctive drawing of a cup.The drawing below shows a more detailed explanation, of how to draw ellipses in single point perspective, the basic formula for this type of drawing is made by using an horizon line, which can also be called the eye line. The horizon line is mostly, just a horizontal line drawn across the paper, where your eyes, would be level with, when looking at the object and the perspective point, would be placed on this line so everything in the drawing, would converge on this single point, creating the illusion of perspective.

Single point perspective drawing with ellipse.

How to draw an ellipse in single point perspective.

Information sheet, how to draw an ellipse in single point persepctive, diagramatic.

The humble graphite pencil is a great tool to use, as a first place to start because of the many, cool effects you can develop and implement into your drawings with it, like mark making, notice the different types of shading in the drawings above. There is a combination of tonal modeling, hatching and cross hatching, which are the main types of mark making used in most drawings.

Also the graphite pencil, is probably the easiest tool to get your hands on, for doing drawing of all kinds, including the single point perspective drawing, like in the examples above.