MGM - Faux New York Skyscraper

Close-up Skyscraper

Artists who have mastered painting perspective can transform a flat board or canvas into a scene where you would swear you could see half way across the country. An artist myself, I have always found it quite magical that you can take something flat and lifeless and turn it into a whole new world. It's a major reason I love Disney, they do that all the time.

Trompe l'oeil, an art syle meaning "fool the eye", can take a forty foot board and turn it into a 10 story hotel you'd swear you could walk into. Shading is one key to a successful effect. And, in this case, the way the flats are cut contribute to the effectiveness of perception that it is 3-D when it is not.

When you view these skyscrapers your mind accepts them as real. I point out the water tower because it is one of the most obvious fakes. The Hotel Pouilly is interesting in the way it is cut out, the cold blue color on the shaded side gives added dimension, and the fire escape spaces are painted a different blue so you think the railings look fuzzy due to the "great distance". Take a long look at this, then take a photo. The photo should tell you more than your own eyes did. Try it.

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