How to score high marks in
3D Composition NATA 2020

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Let’s discuss another topic that is extremely important for NATA 2020, which would be for 35 marks, 3D composition. If you want a recap about the NATA exams, what questions to expect etc, do check out our blog All about NATA 2020 and How to prepare for drawing section of NATA 2020

What is 3D composition?

3D composition is where your sense of Spatial Scale and Proportions, understanding of space and placements of objects, Sense of massing and finally effects of light on a group of objects is judged. The question type will include you to arrange/create a 3 Dimensional composition using basic objects such as a cube, cuboids, pyramid, cone, cylinder, and sphere. They can also ask you to create a 3D composition using day to day life objects such as Books, Mobile phones, Bricks, Coffee mugs, Tables, chairs etc. Generally, 3D composition questions are asked to be rendered in only pencil shading, but you should practice colouring them as well.

How will the 3D Composition be judged in NATA 2020?

How can you get maximum marks in 3D composition?

The criteria to judge 3D composition are different from judging 2D composition. But the general principals are the same. If it looks good, it will probably fetch more marks. We take a look at 5 factors that you should definitely keep in mind while attempting 3D questions. These are also the points which we use to judge our students’ work.

1. 3D Sketching

We know it goes without saying, but a lot of students have been drawing the objects in 2D. Focus on drawing the objects where all three dimensions are visible. The massing of the objects should be visible and understandable. This will help you further in showing the effects of light on the objects.

2. Isometric, not perspective

The objects that you draw, should be in isometric. Particularly, if you are asked to draw basic objects like a cube, cuboid, pyramid etc. Same goes with day to day life objects like books, phones, luggage bags. A good way to do that is by drawing a basic object resembling the object and then adding the details accordingly. E.g., If you want to draw a book, draw a cube with the right proportions, and add detailing to the basic objects. Same goes with every object. One thing to keep in mind is that never draw in Perspective. They will have a memory drawing question to check your knowledge of perspective, but not in this question. Keep your objects in isometric. Worm-eye or bird-eye views are also a no-no.

3. Line quality and shading

It is after all a sketch question, so your line quality and shading have to be appropriate. Line quality should be clean, preferably without overlapping with short strokes. Try to make it as realistic as possible. Same goes with shading. Study the basics of sciography in isometric projection. Sciography is an important aspect of this question type. Try shading basic objects first before moving out to advanced compositions.

4. Execution and Presentation

Even if you have a basic composition and an average colour scheme, the execution and presentation can help you in getting more marks. Keep your composition nice and clean, proper colouring within the lines and make sure your composition is presentable. Most importantly, it should look like you have put some efforts into your composition. A shabby looking, poorly executed composition is something you should avoid.

4. Texturing and detailing

“God is in details” is a famous quote that you should apply. Your 3D composition should have a photo-realistic effect to it. If it is using basic objects only, try to be smooth and inert in your shading. Pay special attention to shadows, especially how the shadow of one object be behaving if it interferes with another object. And if you are asked to use day to day life, try to show as much detailing of the object. Also, don’t forget the texture.
E.g., A wooden plank and a concrete block will have different textures. Try to include that in your shading.

4. Physical Stability

Always ensure that your composition is physically stable. An object, deliberately or unknowingly appearing to be in falling motion is never appreciated and can disturb the composition. This does not mean your objects can’t be fallen down or inclining on another object, but an object in a free fall or something which doesn’t feel stable is not something to strive for. Think of it like this: If your composition was to be kept without any supervision, would it stay like that unless touched?

4. X factor

Composition, 2D or 3D, is not just arranging elements side by side. It is about creating something new with the elements given to you. Rather than arranging your objects in just a simple manner, try building something with them. It can be building form, a sculpture, a group of buildings. Or you can add a little bit of storytelling to it. Practice 3D enough, and you will know that there is a lot more than you think.

Final word

Same as we talked in our previous blog, how to prepare for 2D composition, we would like you to focus on the final result. A composition that looks good will definitely fetch more marks than an unfinished/under finished work. A simple but a stable composition with correct shading and shadows will fetch more marks than a conceptually brilliant but unfinished work. Similarly its better to avoid doing something that you are not so sure of, rather than trying something you might mess up. Always remember this, mistakes are observed faster than the right stuff.

We’ll see you in next microblog, till then keep practicing the questions we have given you in our second blog- How to prepare for drawing section of NATA 2020

We’re going to do something different in the next one.
Stay tuned.
Till then, Keep Practicing

Check out some of these examples of 2D Drawing done by our students


Best of luck, do well.

Team ARH