RampArts - Community Art Group

Recipe 5: People at a Party

The aim of this exercise is to:

  • consider 'eye level' in distance perspective
  • create a picture with figures




  • collect photographs and cuttings with people - some small and some close up
  • grey pastel paper
  • poster paint
  • brushes
  • plates for mixing
  • water pots for cleaning brushes


It is an unusual visual fact that, when people are all standing on level ground, their eyes are all on the same level - even though they get smaller as they get further away. First draw a line across your paper to represent your 'eye level'. Now compose a picture, using two or three of your photographs to help you, of people you are meeting at a party. Place the nearest person's eyes one the eye level and follow it with the others. They will get smaller as they get further away. You will not see the whole person that is close to you.

Points to remember:

  • There are approximately right head lengths in the body. We tend to make the head proportionally too large
  • The eyes are about half way between the top of the head and the chin
  • Don't make the features too large in the head
  • Try to create an atosphere of a crowded place
  • Place people behind others


We had a lot of fun with this one - guessing who the people were. There were some quite important people to meet!  Review your pictures from a distance. Everyone was surprisedby the effect of the eye level but getting to grips with it is one of the first steps to understanding perspective. Of course, if you look down on, or up to, a group of people, their eyes will not be on the same level.