Some Perspective on Perspective

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Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby Koi » Sun Jan 29, 2017 7:33 am

Hello. I'm a fan of using MakeHuman for prototyping and creating quick armatures for use in ZBrush on my personal projects.
I was playing around with the tool just now and wondered why there is no perspective mode, then I came across this explanation.

As one of those professionals, I can tell you this is the opposite of correct for character design. You should never model without perspective, and no other professional working in the industry would do so.

In life we simply don't see things in an orthogonal view, and unless you're taking your own reference photos with a telescope, you've likely never seen a human being anywhere close to orthogonally (Even a telephoto lens will have some perspective.). With that in mind, when modeling in an orthographic environment, novices will often subconsciously incorporate perspective into their designs. This comes from either "knowing" what a person looks like, or trying to match a reference which has perspective. In turn, this causes proportions to be over exaggerated once perspective is flipped on.

The correct procedure would to match your software's perspective and distance to subject with your reference material (Even if that reference was shot at 350mm). This might mean changing these settings throughout the modeling phase to match various references. When working in general (not trying to match a specific reference), it's advised to work close to the focal length of the human eye, which is about 35mm, though some people claim as high as 50mm is more natural. This can also depend on how close your view is to the model. Orthographic view is best used for checking alignments. That's really about it.

Anyway, I know I'm just some random guy, so I understand you can't just take my word for it. I implore you to do some research on the subject. Ask around some professional circles like the CGSociety. Cheers! :)

P.S. I'm not much interested in getting involved in another community. If I don't respond back to any replies, I'm not trying to be rude. I really just created an account here to offer my opinion.
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Re: Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby punkduck » Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:42 pm

It took me some time to load the 1.1.1 version ... (the host was bit slowly in between ;) )

In between I started to make my first steps in programming. For me it works again ... here is my idea:


Therefore I changed the code a bit. Here is the file:
(7.32 KiB) Downloaded 303 times

If you want to have the same effect: replace this file in the plugins-folder of Makehuman. Then activate it, if not allready done, using settings/plugins.

Edit: since all people using Windows where not able to make the plugin work (because the object I mentioned was compiled in the .exe), I invested a few hours to understand how the module works ...
MH called the calculation of orthogonal and perspective view ... which was weird. Meanwhile I figured out that make human has a gui and application camera ... after I changed both cameras the plugin works.

After switching to perspective mode, there is a small rectangle in the background (canvas?!) ... which looks a bit weird, but sorry ...

You may change focus, x, y, z coordinates of the character.

This plugin also presents a pose-File (.bvh file) with more then 1 frame. That was the real purpose before I changed it, I guess.

I'm just a rookie writing python by the way, so before I will write real plugins and put them into the development area I thought of this way.

In future this could be an idea to use it like a viewer. I know the opinion of the MH team considering the perspective discussion. But I have a proposal: I can also reset the view, when you leave the plugin. I guess I could use the onHide to restore the values.
Last edited by punkduck on Sat Apr 08, 2017 1:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby joepal » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:40 pm

The opinion about the perspective thing was something of a discussion way back when, and most of the people participating in that discussion has left.

I see no reason for why there couldn't be a toggle or something.
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Re: Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby punkduck » Sat Apr 08, 2017 1:15 pm

Only to make the change visible ... ;)

I re-uploaded the perspective viewer above, now no change to the libraries ( must be done and it hopefully also is usable for all Windows users without creating an own version from source.
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Re: Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby jujube » Sat Apr 08, 2017 2:19 pm

It works now! Thanks for the hard work!
perspective cam.PNG
testing the camera
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Re: Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby SilverbackAlex » Mon Nov 26, 2018 11:10 pm

Apologies for resurrecting a year-old thread; but I wanted to second the opinion that a perspective camera is essential. I've worked as the lead technical artist at several small video game companies; on many occasions I've attempted to use MakeHuman to speed up character production, and on each occasion MakeHuman was quickly and urgently abandoned for lack of a perspective camera.

However realistic or unrealistic a perspective camera is, video game characters end up in a game engine, where they are rendered in perspective. Every artist, art director, producer, studio owner, and client to whom I've shown MakeHuman has commented that the orthographic camera is a severe and ultimately fatal hindrance to character design; for the simple fact that it can't display the model as it will look in-engine.

Even an artist willing and able to mentally extrapolate the flattened orthographic face needs to have it approved by someone else - a client, a director, a designer - someone who cannot, in good conscience, approve it. Not until they've seen how it looks in perspective. So the artist is left having to regularly export their models, and import them into a real piece of software that can render it - realistically or not - in perspective.

This time-consuming back-and-forth makes MakeHuman's orthographic camera functionally as useful as a description of the model in text; it suggests the character's appearance, but isn't fundamentally capable of displaying it in any way a director or designer can use.

All this is tragic, because I really like MakeHuman; it's a powerful and amazingly flexible tool. If it had a perspective camera, any studio I've ever worked for would pay handsomely for a license; instead, no studio I've ever worked for would use it for free. I've worked for studios on the bleeding edge of bankruptcy, all of whom gladly paid for other, more expensive solutions to escape the frustrations of MakeHuman's orthographic camera, even when they could barely afford to pay their employees.

While a number of kind-hearted and talented users have developed Perspective-Camera plugins for MakeHuman, the lack of official support makes their usefulness sporadic, as MakeHuman's own versioning plays havoc with their functionality. For MakeHuman to be a useful, reliable tool in any form of game development, it needs to have a perspective camera, built-in, by default, with an adjustable field of view.
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Re: Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby vlad1777d » Sat Mar 16, 2019 7:01 am

Can't perspective view be launched on 1.1.1 from Ubuntu repository ?
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Re: Some Perspective on Perspective

Postby punkduck » Sat Mar 16, 2019 9:54 pm

vlad1777d wrote:Can't perspective view be launched on 1.1.1 from Ubuntu repository ?

with small changes yes ... I did a new version. For the current stable version you can change the lines mentioned in the It is not official but should work.
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