Picture Box Redux: New Perspectives on Pictorial Imaging

By Lee Cadieux.

Published by The International Journal of the Image

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Artists have used the Picture Box to solve problems of near and far perspectives in painting and drawing throughout history. Its development dates back thousands of years with elements of its evolution evidenced in Prehistoric rock paintings from Europe and Africa and Ancient Egyptian Bas relief. Picture Box elements have resurfaced at various times and in various art forms including Stage Design, Photography, Cinema, and Animation. Stage Designers represent far perspective on shallow platforms by positioning realistic props in front of painted backdrops. Photographers use depth of field to isolate foreground figures and blur background imagery. Film directors construct elaborate sets and choreograph complex camera movement to force perspective and point of view. Disney’s horizontal multi-plane camera allowed two-dimensional images to be photographed in three-dimensional space. More recently, we have seen the Picture Box evidenced in Computer Graphics Imagery, (CGI) Objects viewed by virtual cameras are rendered in a pyramid-shaped volume known as a viewing frustum, which is structured in many ways, not unlike, the Picture Box. While technologies evolve and adapt, the Picture Box continues to provide a solution for representing near and far perspective in image making.

Keywords: Picture Box, Image Making, CGI, Animation, Moving Image, Photography, Painting

The International Journal of the Image, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp.139-152. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 14.151MB).

Lee Cadieux

Lecturer in Animation, Research Institute for Art and Design, School of Creative Arts, Faculty of Arts, The University of Ulster, Londonderry, N. Ireland, UK

Lee Cadieux, originally from Canada, holds the post of Lecturer in Animation in the Faculty of Arts, School of Creative Arts, University of Ulster. His academic career follows a 20 year career in Animation and Film Production and he has worked extensively on Animated features, TV series, video games and television commercials in the roles of Animator, Director, and Special Effects Artist. He has worked for Disney, Warner Bros., Nelvana, and DIC, in Canada, China and the UK. He was Subject Director for Design and Course Director of the BDes Design and Communication programme from 2003 to 2009 and is currently concentrating on research and teaching. He is an active member of the Research Institute for Art and Design, and his research interests include practice-based work in Animation, Performance and Interactive Technologies.