MATLAB Function Reference    

Viewpoint specification



The position of the viewer (the viewpoint) determines the orientation of the axes. You specify the viewpoint in terms of azimuth and elevation, or by a point in three-dimensional space.

view(az,el) and view([az,el]) set the viewing angle for a three-dimensional plot. The azimuth, az, is the horizontal rotation about the z-axis as measured in degrees from the negative y-axis. Positive values indicate counterclockwise rotation of the viewpoint. el is the vertical elevation of the viewpoint in degrees. Positive values of elevation correspond to moving above the object; negative values correspond to moving below the object.

view([x,y,z]) sets the viewpoint to the Cartesian coordinates x, y, and z. The magnitude of (x,y,z) is ignored.

view(2) sets the default two-dimensional view, az = 0, el = 90.

view(3) sets the default three-dimensional view, az = -37.5, el = 30.

view(T) sets the view according to the transformation matrix T, which is a 4-by-4 matrix such as a perspective transformation generated by viewmtx.

[az,el] = view returns the current azimuth and elevation.

T = view returns the current 4-by-4 transformation matrix.


Azimuth is a polar angle in the x-y plane, with positive angles indicating counterclockwise rotation of the viewpoint. Elevation is the angle above (positive angle) or below (negative angle) the x-y plane.

This diagram illustrates the coordinate system. The arrows indicate positive directions.


View the object from directly overhead.

Set the view along the y-axis, with the x-axis extending horizontally and the z-axis extending vertically in the figure.

Rotate the view about the z-axis by 180º.

See Also

viewmtx, axes, rotate3d

Controlling the Camera Viewpoint for related functions

axes graphics object properties: CameraPosition, CameraTarget, CameraViewAngle, Projection.

Defining the View for more information on viewing concepts and techniques

  vertcat viewmtx