|Michael Whynot. Study in Foreshortening, 2013. Red chalk.|
Foreshortening is a powerful tool for the draftsman to add dimensionality to their drawings. When forms recede from our view in space they become smaller. We are so accustomed to seeing this optical trick in nature that our minds take it for granted and immediately notice, in a drawing, when this isn't done.
When handled properly, by using overlapping forms, the drawing gains dimensionality, with the nearer forms appearing to be in front of the more distant forms. And the form will appear shorter than we know it to be, instead of simply looking out of proportion.
The above study was a five minute study from life.