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The representation of depth in children's drawings of a table

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date1987
JournalThe Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology
Journal number3
Volume39
Number of pages19
Pages479-496
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Willats (1977) analysed developments in the drawing of a table in terms of the projection system in which the table top was represented, and concluded that representation of depth in drawing goes through a series of discrete stages, each of which can be identified with a projection system. A partial replication of Willats' study is presented here, using a much larger sample. The relationship between age and use of projection system found by Willats was in general supported. Not all the “stages” were found to be discrete, however, and an examination of the way in which the table tops were drawn shows that whilst the majority of older children appeared to use perspective, they did not use it correctly. A method is given by which tables that are drawn as if from a central viewpoint can be formally classified. It is concluded that development in the understanding of the representation of depth is not very closely linked to development in the use of projection systems.