As a curious student, I have big aspiration of revealing the rule behind the art. And just as a lot of people, I was totally amazed when I found out about 3D street art (usually known as 3D chalk art/sidewalk art/…). At that time, the illusion of the depth in Tracy Lee Stum, Edgar Muellere and Julian Beever ‘s artwork always obsesses me all the time. “How can they do that? How can they make those things just so REAL?” is the question that I couldn’t answer. Until…
Firstly I thought that the shadow and the light are the keys, they could paint a crack on the street or a tomb of Pharaoh just because they were the artists and they knew just how to paint something in 3D, how to make people think that those works are real. However, the secret here is not only about the light and the shadow. It’s about a simple rule of perception: using perspective anamorphosis to make your picture become lively “under the earth”.
Many people, especially artists or architects have to learn about the rule of perception as a very important step to give your picture a lively appearance. It’s just simple rule of space to spread your imagination on paper or some flat surface such as the streets. It was first known as perspective anamorphosis from Leonardo da Vinci’s art journal (the Leonardo’s eye).
-The Leonardo’s eye illusion
Then Hans Holbein the Younger made the symbol of perspective anamorphosis with The Ambassadors. At the first time I saw the photo of the painting, I can’t recognize what is on the floor and why it is there. Then I found a little photo which was taken in a different spot. Mind-blowing! It was perfect – the skull in the painting appears exactly according to the space’s rule in spite of it was painted in a different spot from all other details.
( Anyway I still don’t know why Hans Holbein puts it there. What is a skull doing there? _ _! ).
The process of a simple 3D street artwork is started with defining the grid according to the flow of the picture. Artists mostly use strings to avoid the damage to the last outcome. Then the picture was completed step by step with passion and artistic skills.
-Making of The Crevasse – 3D Street Art – Edgar Muellere
-Tracy Lee Stum
Nowadays, people not just enjoy the 3D street art, they use it as a method of public advertising. However, it is difficult to make it into a big trend in the youngster community because it’s not only about practicing; it’s about art sense and even science of accuracy.