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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    How do you do a planar analysis on Still life?

    Hello everyone at CA.

    I have been trying to do some still lifes lately (doing erarses and simple stuff right now.However someone advised me that I should be doing something called "planear analysis")in order to understand light and form better.

    I did some research on planar analysis (the image over here)

    Name:  Capturadepantalla2013-05-02alas002430_zps14066ebf.png
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    But I am still a bit clueless on this "plane analysis". I was wondering if someone could recomend me a book on the subject or some information on how to do it. I have been trying doing some. But I am not sure if what I am doing is right.I pressume each plane represents a change in value...right??

    Thank you for your time!
    Last edited by FallenLegend; May 2nd, 2013 at 01:59 AM.
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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Ottawa, Canada
    Thanked 1,447 Times in 748 Posts
    Well a planar approach is just painting it as though it is a low-poly model. Think of things as having a front, side, top. Each side is a flat surface, and a single value. Anytime there is a plane change there is a value change. That image you posted actually is a very clear example of what it is.

    Planar approaches are very very useful...that being said, I took a look at your sketchbook, and I don't think you should be doing this exercise yet. To think in planes (and to get something out of the exercise) requires a certain level of understanding of form and three dimensions, and is a bit advanced for you at the moment--you are still drawing with symbols. I recommend just practicing drawing through objects as though they were made of glass, working on perspective, and also improving your 2d observation as well. Try to always think about how the forms you are drawing exist in space.

    Hope this helps!

    "Complacency is the womb of mediocrity. " -- Jason Manley

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  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Toronto, Ontario
    Thanked 1,217 Times in 967 Posts
    I don't think you should wait doing planar analysis, as it is an excellent way to learn about 3d form. I suggest you keep it linear, without values, stick to triangular and rectangular planes, working transparently. It is really analysis, not so much drawing, so take your time, keep erasing and retrying until you think it is correct.
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  5. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    WI, Milwaukee area
    Thanked 117 Times in 96 Posts
    "But I am not sure if what I am doing is right.I pressume each plane represents a change in value...right??"
    Interesting that you said this..! And I think this mindset will help you out more: each change in value represents a change in plane. Value change = plane change. Knowing this, you can look for the most signicant value change steps in your subject, and recongize that there's a plane change there. Then draw it. Draw your subject out in lines and go slowly to make it very accurate. You can add values in later, if you'd like. Here's an example I grabbed off flickr:
    How do you do a planar analysis on Still life?
    That apple example does an okay job of breaking the apple down into planes, although I wouldn't be blobbing highlights on it. Make your subject a low-poly model and assign ONE value to each plane. Be conscious of where each plane is getting its light from and how light the plane is. Simplify. Use geometric shapes. It might be helpful if you start with a very simple shape (such as a cube) and then continously break it down into smaller planes (diagonal-planes for the top of the apple where it rounds over, more side planes as the apple turns, eventually the stem, etc). Create a base to work off of and work into.
    And of course, start with simple objects and slowly build your way to more complex ones (like human heads)...fruits aren't a bad choice to start but they're very organic and can be difficult to portray geometrically. Doing something man-made, like a remote, a camera, a cup, your monitor... those might be easier entry points. It'll be easier to see the object in planes.

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