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Did the "old masters" use optics...
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Thread replies: 21
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Camera Obscura's have existed for over 2000 years, most historians put the earliest ones a few hundred years BCE.

Camera Lucida's have existed since the late 1700's.

Isn't it possible that some of the masters were using these kind of optical devices to aid in their artistic endeavors?

Personally, I think if would be naive to believe that it was always skill, but what does /ic/ think? Did the old masters use the existing technology, such as ancient cameras, to give them an edge on their realism?
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>>2364552
It was pure skill and relentless talent stop looking for excuses you stupid cunt.
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>>2364552
Yes, they were doing that, lika any other craftsman they used tools and helpers to produce stuff better and faster. It is not really a big secret, but it burst the bubble of people who got their own idealised version of the old masters, which are rather frequent on this site.
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>>2364552
some of them did use the dark room as you said, but they did also understand realism.
go back to draw.
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>>2364575
>some of them did use the dark room
>dark room
did they also studied anatomy there? male anatomy? sweaty sticky male anatomy?
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>>2364581
You know that camera lucida/camra obscura translates as dark room (like the ones used in photograph) right?
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>>2364584
did the post look like i cared?
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>>2364552
I wonder which ones actually used it.

Fuck man, that really sucks.
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Old artists were even more "no rules just tools" than people are today.
Results were more important than process. I really wouldn't be surprised if some used them, and I don't think it diminishes their accomplishments either. The abundance of art and artists nowadays, and the excess of convenient tools to create good art, has stigmatized pragmatic approaches and glorified busting your ass to do it 'properly', but you still see that sort of pragmatism in concept art.
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>>2364608
There were some surprising jumps in realism from great artists that coincided with advances in technology, it might be a bit unjustified to say that these types of devices had nothing to do with that.

If anything, I would say that the stigma of using technology to enhance ones artistic talents has risen drastically in more modern times.

I agree it shouldn't diminish their accomplishments, but its odd how so many people on this site, and others, ridicule others for tracing/projecting/copying, when its entirely possible that the people they hold in high regard used similar technologies of their time.
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>>2364557
Read a book once and a while faggot.

http://www.abebooks.com/Secret-Knowledge-Rediscovering-Lost-Techniques-Old/18189986609/bd?cm_mmc=gmc-_-gmc-_-PLA-_-v01&product=COM9780670030262USED
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>>2364552
Yeah, many did, but some did not. A lot of people, curators especially, are quick to rebuke the notion, but it was very much a thing.

For instance, Rubens and Rembrandt didn't give a fuck about it most of the time (they were more like high caliber illustrators), but Caravaggio and Vermeer were more dependant on it for the effect they were looking for, though those two in particular were adamantly secretive about their processes.

It never really mattered ethically until photography was invented.

Frankly, if you're trained and skilled in academic sight-size, using any sort of tracing is sort of a burden.
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>>2364721
Yeah, I tend to wonder if some of that kind of technology was considered "tricks of the trade", sort of like how certain art processes that make commissions easier seem difficult to people not familiar with the techniques, but are actually quite easy when the 'trick' is revealed.

I imagine some artists used mirrors and/or optics but were careful not to divulge how it was done in order to keep their own process somewhat more magical.

That said, I am sure there were artists who did not need to use those technologies, but there are artworks from masters that I would suspect did use something similar to at least get the perspectives/proportions/outlines well placed, and then finished the rest as normal.

Also, I can't imagine many subjects willing to sit and hold the same pose for 8 hours while an artist works from reference. It would be much easier to use some such device to get all the major parts completed quickly, and then use skill and observation to fill in the remainder of the image.
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>>2364631
Seconding this, Hirst has a boner for camera trecxhnology and dives in depth tonanswer the question.

tl;dr Yeah they did.
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>>2364552
Why do people not understand that setting up a camera obscura to capture a real scene is completely different from tracing an image you found on the first page of google image search.

Are you producing an image that is new and compelling? If yes, good, do whatever you have to do to do it.
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>>2364743
This. The "m-muh old masters did it t-too!" thing is utter shit when used to justify ripping off other works.
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>>2364733
For full body portraits, much of the time the body with all the intricate cloth would be roughly sketched from a live model, then recreated with a lay figure or maquette for the final rendering. If there was a particularily good portrait of the face already available (say the subject is a king or something) the previous portrait can be used for reference. Nobody is gonna make a queen sit there motionless while you render the lace on their collar for 10 hours.
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>>2364743
>>2364744
At no point did anyone attempt to justify printing a google image and tracing it as though that was legitimate art. The point is that people need to realize that using technology to maximize potential is not new, and shouldn't be admonished IF it is not used to pretend like you are more adept than you really are. So long as you're not passing off traced work as your own, Tracing is a legitimate method of learning to draw, it helps teach basic line control, hand steadiness, forms, proportion as well as building up a larger repertoire of internalized art.

Think about a commission for a piece of artwork, from a photograph given to an artist. It's not "cheating" to scan the image in a computer and project the image onto a canvas and trace the basic shapes and outlines. If you think that's cheating, it just demonstrates your own ignorance and biases. I'd dare to say most people who do commissions from photographs find a way to blow up the image and trace the basic shapes, just like the old masters did using cameras/mirrors/lenses etc.

ps. stop samefagging
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>>2364552
I think Vermeer probably used one
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>>2364552
Yeah, learned this in school, never looked at art the same way. If you are doing an original composition, it shouldn't matter what you use. Complaing that someone traced a projected image is like complaining that photography cant artistic because it's just a copy of something that already exists.

The people on /ic/ that belittle others for using projectors, photo reference, or tracing seem to forget that "muh skill" is only a tiny piece of the overall puzzle.
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>>2365336
He did. There was even a part in the Girl With a Pearl Earring movie devoted to it complete with a dummy like >>2364746 said. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HzCGd_bsWns

Grid methods were also used by many.
Thread replies: 21
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Thread DB ID: 468354



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