With my latest commissioned oil painting of Paris France, a unique perspective drawing challenge arose that required a judicious amount of artistic license.
My client and his wife visited the Musée d’Orsay in Paris France due to her love of impressionist art. Desiring an impressionist painting as a reminder of their trip which included staying in a lovely rented apartment near the Eiffel Tower.
The inspiration photo was taken using an iPhone in panoramic mode which created extreme distortion. As you can see, Paris looks to be in the midst of an earthquake! My client’s wife in the window doesn’t seem to notice.
Here’s what was done to stop the earthquake and turn an unbelievable perspective into an artistic arrangement.
A LITTLE HELP FROM A PHOTO PROGRAM
Using a free photo program (GIMP) and its perspective tool to straighten up the buildings was the first task. Although it’s not really a perspective tool as it couldn’t correct everything.
With a supplied street address, and using Google’s Street View a better understanding of the surroundings was achieved. In reality, the buildings are parallel. However, with two unchangeable elements, (client’s wife looking out the window at her husband and the Eiffel Tower in view) the scene cannot be painted as it actually is.
ARTISTS LICENSE TO THE RESCUE
To make the scene believable imagine the buildings as being pie shaped and positioned at a corner street. To strengthen the concept, a mock up of paper was used to represent the buildings and then positioned at a corner of a table which represents the edge of the street.
Equipped with this information work began on a modified photo/drawing montage. Height was added so the street could be included. Adding a vintage Citroen car and some other people, it kept Paris from looking deserted. These “extras” will act as visual aids in leading the eye through the composition. Ultimately color will also play a part in directing the eye back to my client’s wife and enliven the composition.
Here’s the completed drawing on canvas which is 15×30 in size. I’m sure more adjustments in perspective will be made as I paint. Being primarily a landscape artist this has been a fun challenge for my alter ego Byron!
Stay tuned as work on the painting continues. More sharing to come!