Animating Perspective

In the late 1980s there weren't university programs offering coursework in computer graphics. Or if there were, no one in my world knew about them. Disillusioned with architecture, I stumbled into an opportunity to work for Dr. Kim Veltman, the world expert on perspective, illustrating his digital dictionary of perspective terms. In my free time I pursued my interests and created an animation that led to another five months of work with Dr. Veltman in Italy and some of the richest learning experiences of my life. HEIGHT 400 Click the Go and Stop buttons

My original work succumbed to bit-rot. There were two sorts of animations I created. I have long been interested to re-create these in javascript and three.js. These could make an interesting place to start a role as developer advocate at Observable.

One began with perspective construction drawings by Piero della Francesca, Leonardo da Vinci, and contemporaries. These would be folded from their two-dimensional construction into the three-dimensional space they represented.

The other animated construction diagrams themselves. For example, I animated Piero's instructions for constructing a pentagon in perspective and then created a different sequence in a way that clarified his procedure.

In 2003 I re-created an animation of a vanishing point in javascript and SVG. The original animation was built with AutoCAD 10 and custom AUTOLISP scripts I created in the fall of 1990. Happily amazed that 15 years later this code runs unchanged in modern browsers. blog

Perception depends on context. From one point of view the way seems impassible. From another point of view the path is revealed. Each view is limited by its own frame. Changing frames changes perception. Changing perception changes both understanding and action.