Join Doug Hills for an in-depth discussion in this video Using the perspective ruler, part of Manga Studio Essential Training.
- Perspective Rulers are awesome. I love this ruler. I don't even want to spend time explaining why I love it. I'm just going to show you. Now before I place a Perspective Ruler on here, if you're not familiar with how perspective drawing works, it's like this. Using the Pencil tool, you have your eyeline or what you will call the horizon, and you'll have a vanishing point, and the basic idea of perspective drawing is to add three-dimensionality to what is essentially a two-dimensional object. So when you have a vanishing point on the horizon, let's say I'm going to draw a box here, you would have a square but in order to make it a box, you just have your lines draw to the vanishing point, like so, and that is what gives the illusion of a three-dimensional box.
Now, if you're noticing one thing as I go in, it was very difficult for me to just draw this freehand. I'm kind of close to the vanishing point but I'm kind of taking a best estimate, and this is something that I really struggled with when drawing perspective on computers. Now, if I had a regular sheet of paper, I would just use a ruler and have my ruler right on the vanishing point and I would just create my box that way, but doing it on the computer was a lot more difficult until the introduction of the perspective ruler in Manga Studio. So I'm going to clear this out, open up the Rulers tool, come down to Perspective ruler, I'm going to add my vanishing point, and just click, drag and you'll see this guideline, like so.
That's your first guideline, your second guideline, and now, we have our eyeline or horizon, and we have our first vanishing point, and you can actually see what those guides were doing was letting me know where the vanishing point's going to be. Now, I'm going to grab my Pencil and I'll draw a box. I'm just drawing the same way that I drew the example. I'm drawing as freely as I was before except this time, I know that it's more accurate because every line that I draw is either snapping vertically, horizontally, or right to this vanishing point.
I could even kind of go like this if I want to, snaps vertically, snaps horizontally, or snaps to the vanishing point, and that right there is why I love Perspective Rulers. Now, this is just 1 point perspective, but you can actually work in multiple points as well. I'm going to clear this out and select the ruler with the Object Select tool, and clear this out, and I'm going to show you the second way that you can add Perspective Rulers to your canvas. So the other way you can add it is coming up to main menu and selecting Layer, Ruler - Frame, Create Perspective Ruler, and this brings up a dialog box where you can choose whether to have a 1 point perspective, 2 point perspective, which is vertical lines and two vanishing points on the horizon, or this one, and we'll do 3 point perspective.
There's also this additional option of whether or not you want to have this Perspective Ruler created on the layer that you're currently working on or on a brand new layer. I'm going to set it to Create new layer, I'll hit OK, and you'll notice, we now have a Perspective Ruler layer. We also had one earlier when we created using the Perspective Ruler tool, and we have these beautiful lines here. Now, come over here to the Object Select tool so we can see what we're doing. So we have our first vanishing point here, or second vanishing point here, and we have our third vanishing point way up here.
Now you'll notice that it just arbitrarily placed these on the canvas, but maybe this isn't exactly how I want my 3 point perspective to be set. So, I adjust the guidelines. You're going to move them by pressing the circle here, or in this case, press the plus button, and it's going to change the angle and in the process, it's going to move the vanishing point. You'll move that way off there, I'll keep this one on, like so, and then, we'll move my two vertical ones, and the guides are just that, they're there to guide you in a general idea of where you think the lines are all going to go.
So now we have a basic idea of our three vanishing points, come back here and then snap, like so, and create... a three-dimensional rectangular box in 3 point perspective, just like that. I'm going to clear this out because I also want to know. Come over to the Sub Tools palette, click the wrench icon, come down to Correction, and make sure Able to snap is turned on for the drawing 'til they want to snap to the Perspective Ruler.
If this option is not here, you won't be able to snap to the Perspective Ruler, or any rulers for that matter, but if it's there, and you want to, check Able to snap and it'll snap to the Perspective Ruler. And it's not just the drawing tools that do this. Let's go to the Ruler tool, come over to Direct Draw and click the Rectangle icon, Rectangle Sub Tool, and check it out. It snaps to whichever vanishing point I want it to go to.
A little jerky at times, but this is actually one of those things, I'm going to draw this and it'll actually allow me to set the angle that I want the rectangle to be by just hovering and dragging along and you'll see, that one looks good, so I'll tap and there's my rectangle in perspective. You could even make selections in perspective, though you have to do it with either the Rectangle or a ledge marquee. Basically, you have to use one of the Shape tools to do it but you'll be able to make a selection in perspective.
Now how cool is that? Now, let's show how I would apply this to the sample page we're working on here. First off, I'm going to come up here to our first panel. Zoom this out a little bit. I'm going to add a new roughs layer so go down here, new raster layer, and because I want to have the colors different than what I have currently, I'm going to click the Layer color button, I'm going to change the color from blue to more of a red. I mean a slightly lighter red, OK? And now I'm going to place a 1 point perspective ruler on this panel.
Over here, Direct Draw, switch to Ruler, Perspective ruler, and I want to place the vanishing point around here, so I'll set my first guide here, second guide like so, and there's my 1 point perspective ruler. Incidentally, if I wanted to have like a second point, I'd just keep adding, like so, and there would be my second point and it would just adjust accordingly, but since I don't want that, I'm going to undo, and go back to my Pencil tool, come up to my perspective roughs Layer.
I'll call this Roughs 5 by double clicking on the name and entering in the new name, and because the Perspective Ruler is down here on its own separate layer, it's actually visible across all the layers here, and that's kind of why I like having them on a separate layer because if I wanted use this Perspective Ruler on multiple layers, I don't have to worry about being just locked down to one layer. It's down there and it views on all these, especially, the one I want to work on, Roughs 5. So, switch to Pencil tool and then just start roughing out my idea for the building.
So it allows me to keep doodling except I get to doodle in perspective. So I'm going to wrap this up but before I do, I want to note one last thing, and I feel that this is something that's really important, even though it's not directly Manga Studio-related. Now clearly you're seeing how excited I am that I can draw in perspective, and it'll definitely help you when drawing your environments in perspective, however, it won't automatically make you better at perspective drawing if you have never done it before. Now, the theme of this course has always been about building your knowledge foundation, and it absolutely applies here.
You still need a foundation of how to draw in perspective and there are lots of resources on the subject and if you're new to perspective drawing, I highly recommend checking them out, but once you have that foundation, I think you're going to have some real fun with this ruler.
- Creating a new comic page in Manga Studio
- Adding and adjusting layers
- Penciling roughs
- Using the Direct Draw tool
- Using rulers
- Inking pages
- Coloring pages
- Adding effects
- Drawing vector artwork
- Creating stories
- Customizing Manga Studio