Perspective is the key to almost any drawing or sketch as well as many paintings. It is one of the** fundamentals** that you need to understand in order to create **realistic **and** believable scenes**. This is used to give a 3 dimension to a drawing because it allows us to see a** depth** in an image and to understand the **distance** between the objects which makes it more interesting rather than a flat image. But more importantly, it captures **how our eyes see the world naturally**, which is not in a measured scale.We are going to start with **one point perspective drawing**. Then this post will be followed by other posts for **two-point** and **three-point perspective**.

I have been drawing since I can’t remember and I can definitely say that learning the rules of perspective made a huge difference in my drawings. After explaining the basic rules, I am going to share a lot of **examples** and **downloadable briefs and exercises**.

Be ready!!

One point perspective drawing is used when we draw an object **that looks directly at you**. It is usually used when the subject is looking directly at the **face** of an object, or when looking to a landscape where we can clearly see the **horizon line**.

– **The horizon line** : All perspective drawings use the horizon line (which is a horizontal line.. yep!) that represent the horizon but also the viewer’s eyes level. The height of the horizon will affect the placement of the vanishing point as well as the viewer’s eye level. Most of the time the horizon line will be imaginary so while you should include it you should draw it lightly so it can be easily erased later.

– **The vanishing point** : is a point on the horizon line where any set of lines that are going the same direction as the viewers is looking will meet at the vanishing point (These lines are called **orthogonal lines**). It is the place where objects begin to disappear because of the distance.

**Things to know about one point perspective**

– The **farthest** are the objects the **smallest** they look. While **orthographic** projection allow **accurate measurements**, **perspective** projection shows distant objects as **smaller**, which makes it more **realist**.

– I usually show the **ground plane** by coloring it (**grey** in here) so it is easier to differentiate the **floor**.

– The horizon line and vanishing point can be **anywhere**, it all depends on your **point of view**.

– The horizon is shown by a** straight line** across your drawing. In closed places where you can not see it, like a room, you can create your own horizon. This is where your **eye-level** is.

– When placing the** horizon line**, you are actually deciding on the **viewer’s eyes level. **Anything above the horizon line is also above the viewer’s eyes level and anything below the horizon line is below the viewer’s eyes level.

– Once you know how to draw **squares** and **boxes** in perspective, you can start drawing **anything** using the **same rules**. They provide a** structure** for other forms, that is why this is usually the first thing we learn in perspective drawing. Then, it is better to learn how to draw ellipses and cylinder in order to be able to draw circular shape objects as glasses, tires, bottles etc.

– One point perspective drawing is good to use for **simple** objects sketches. It is a good way to get started in perspective drawing, but it can’t be used for every object in every position.

– Perspective is all around you. Get inspired by the objects or places you see in your daily life!

#### Drawing of a box using one point perspective

As it is best to start off simple, learning how to draw a **box** in one point perspective is a good start.

First, trace the horizon line and place a vanishing point on it. Draw the **front side** of the box first.

From the **corners** of the square , draw the straight lines that converge to the vanishing point.

Any slight mistakes can lead to distortion in the drawing. Therefore, it is better to use a **ruler** for this part.

End the form. Remember that these final lines in the back are **parallel** to their coinciding lines in the front.

Clean up! When drawing in perspective you’re always going to end up with some extra lines or lines that are too long. You can draw all lines lightly first and then erase them later.

I personally like to keep these lines in some of my drawings!

As I said it before, learning how to draw boxes is important because it provide a **structure** for other forms, that is why this is usually the first thing we learn in perspective drawing. Try to draw different size of boxes, then I will show you how to draw ellipses and cylinders.

#### Drawing of an ellipse using one point perspective

An **ellipse** is the result of viewing a circle from any point other than “straight on”. To draw an ellipse in perspective, we need to draw a square first.

Now, find the **center** of the ellipse by tracing the diagonals and the middle lines of the square. These lines will be used as guide to draw the ellipse.

You see where these lines meet the **edges** of the square? Using these points, we can draw an accurate ellipse.

Since there are many objects that are circular in shape, ellipses will be used quite frequently in our drawings and paintings.

Drawing circles in some general drawings can be tough so try to **practice** a lot this part. Try all kind of circles with different sizes in different vanishing lines !

#### Drawing of a cylinder using one point perspective

Drawing a **cylinder** when the part we are facing is the circle face is actually really easy. Remember how we draw the box ? Use the same steps for this kind of cylinder.

To draw a cylinder in perspective first draw a prism that is as tall as you would like the cylinder to be. Then use the the top and the bottom of the prism to draw the ellipses. Connect these shapes with vertical lines. Here is your cylinder in perpective.

**Different size of cylinders** using one point perspective

#### Examples of one point perspective drawing

Well yes, this is the famous example of the **railroad**. This is the most basic example of one point perspective and the easiest! Draw the trees and the road using the converging lines and see how the farthest are the objects the smallest they look!

Draw your horizon line first, anywhere on the page, though closer to middle works best for this exercise. Trace the** back wall** of your room and the main corners of the room using the vanishing point. Add objects to the room using boxes and cylinders as structures.

This is the same room as seen from the **ceiling** but this time, we are facing the **floor**. So instead of drawing the back wall, this time we draw the floor first. Then, we trace the main corners of the room and add the bed and other furnitures using boxes and cylinders.

This drawing shows one of the **corridor** of my university. We can also see this as an **interior** and this time the back wall, ceiling and windows are circular. But all the rules are the same!

Even though this one looks a little hard, it is pretty easy! You just have to draw a lot of boxes in perspective and add the details of the **streets** and **buildings**. I used a view of New York from Google Earth. You can also find there a city that you like and draw it using this technique!

In this case, the vanishing point is located behind the building so this is a little hard to find out where it is. But if you see the objects and details as boxes, everything becomes easier!

That is all for one point perspective. I know that it may look complicated in the beginning but I promise it is not! It will come **naturally** to you after some practice. So **practice, practice, practice!**

Not to mention, these types of drawings usually lead to very **satisfying** **results** and **improve** our artistic skills so much! You can find my next post about two point perspective here.

Do not forget to download the PDFs and do not hesitate to show me your drawings on Instagram! Also, check out my latest post!