250 Cylinder Challenge

9:12 AM, Thursday April 21st 2022

Cylinder Challenge — ImgBB

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Cylinder Challenge album hosted in ImgBB

Please critique these cylinders

2 users agree
8:59 PM, Sunday May 1st 2022

Hello Purpel, I hope you are well.

Starting with your cylinders around arbitrary minor axes, your mark making is looking good, with your straight lines coming out smooth and confident and most of your ellipses are smooth too. You’ve done a great job of aligning your ellipses to your minor axis, but I do see some cylinders where either you haven’t marked your true minor axis, or the checking line is so faint I can’t see it, especially because you haven’t extended them beyond the ellipse. (my poor old eyes were squinting a lot) Do be conscientious and fastidious in checking your ellipses' minor axes, even catching very slight misalignments as they are still valuable to catch in order to avoid plateauing in a “close enough” region.

It is great that you took the time and effort to hatch one of the end faces on most of your cylinders, but I think you may have missed an important part of the instructions here. You’re supposed to hatch the visible face ie the one closest to the viewer. Just like in the box challenge where you chose one of the 3 visible box faces to hatch. Hatching the far end is visually confusing for the viewer. I don’t know if you just hatched one face at random, or if you don’t know which end of your cylinder is closest to the viewer.

Continuing onto the actual convergences and foreshortening, I’m pleased to see that aside from the first couple of pages you by and large avoided any situations where your side edges would remain extremely parallel on the page (which would be incorrect, given that this only occurs when that set of edges runs perpendicular to the viewer's angle of sight, not slanting towards or away from them through the depth of the scene, and this challenge has us rotating cylinders randomly so that perfect of an alignment is unlikely to occur).

However, you are not demonstrating a clear understanding - whether subconscious or conscious - of how the two shifts from one ellipse to the other need to operate together. These shifts include the shift in scale, where due to the convergence of the side edges the far end becomes smaller overall, and the shift in degree where the far end gets wider than the end closer to the viewer. The thing is, we need to make sure that both of these "shifts" occur in tandem. Should one shift be dramatic and the other shallow, it creates a contradiction that the viewer will pick up on, noticing that something's "off" even if they don't specifically know why. I’ve marked on your work here https://i.imgur.com/cv8VeLi.jpg some cylinders where you have the degree shifts correct, and some others where you have them the wrong way round.

Moving on to your cylinders in boxes, you’ve done a pretty good job.

Where the box challenge's line extensions helped to develop a stronger sense of how to achieve more consistent convergences in our lines, here we add three more lines for each ellipse: the minor axis, and the two contact point lines. In checking how far off these are from converging towards the box's own vanishing points, we can see how far off we were from having the ellipse represent a circle in 3D space, and in turn how far off we were from having the plane that encloses it from representing a square.

It looks like you’re only marking the minor axis onto the ellipse itself, instead of extending it to see if it converges to the same vanishing point as the box and the sides of the cylinder. It is important that you extend them properly as they’re an important test of whether the end faces of your boxes represent squares in 3d space. https://imgur.com/a/Gx3uyt8 Your other extensions are correct. and your box convergences are looking good.

I think this is this first time I’ve seen a student choose to make an additional two lines across the end face of their boxes, as if they were doing the ellipses in planes exercise from lesson 1. Normally I’d expect students to just extend the contact points after completing the cylinder as part of the error checking process, and I’m glad to see that your did that too. It isn’t part of the instructions, but I’m not sure if it’s a mistake either. On the plus side you gave yourself lots of practice at subdividing planes in perspective, which will be useful in lesson6 and 7, for sure. On the downside I feel like having your contact points explicitly marked before attempting to draw your ellipses may have encouraged you to draw them more hesitantly and deform them to hit those tangent points, which isn’t what we’re after. The ellipses exist to test the end faces of the box, smushing them to make them fit better (instead of drawing true ellipses) might give you a false read when you do your extensions.


We have a couple of little misunderstandings to clear up before you move on.

Please complete the following:

20 cylinders around arbitrary minor axis. Please hatch the visible end face of each cylinder, the one closest to the viewer. Reread this section of the instructions https://drawabox.com/lesson/250cylinders/1/degree and be sure to draw the smaller, further ellipse with a wider degree than the larger, nearer ellipse.

5 cylinders in boxes. Extend your minor axis correction lines far enough to see if they converge with the box and the sides of the cylinder.

Next Steps:

Please complete 20 cylinders around arbitrary minor axis and 5 cylinders in boxes.

When finished, reply to this critique with your revisions.
5:53 AM, Monday May 2nd 2022

Revisions - https://ibb.co/album/2qZPW3

I made sure to follow your instructions on both of them.

Thank you for the feedback!

8:46 AM, Monday May 2nd 2022

Thanks for responding with your revisions.

Great job! You've rectified the points I raised in my critique, well done. I'm going to mark this challenge as complete, but I have one more tip for you to bear in mind when you practice cylinders in your warmups.

Don't be afraid to change up both the viewing angle and proportions a bit more. Sometimes if the cylinder is very short, or we're looking almost directly at one end, the two ellipses will overlap. This page has examples of both cases https://i.imgur.com/K12LafM.jpg and I think it would be a good idea for you to experiment and play around with this (when you can stomach drawing more cylinders, 250 was a lot to plough through and you might be fed up with them right now)

Well done, and good luck with lesson 6!

Next Steps:

Feel free to move on to lesson 6.

This community member feels the lesson should be marked as complete, and 2 others agree. The student has earned their completion badge for this lesson and should feel confident in moving onto the next lesson.
9:32 AM, Monday May 2nd 2022

Sure I'll try doing more of them in different orientations in the warm ups.

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