Learn to take organic elements and transform them into cubes that diminish with perspective.
- [Voiceover] Right now our city block looks a little bare. There's no trees, no powerlines. The buildings are a little more organic, but let's add some things to give it a little more interest. Elements like trees and powerlines are great things to help us elaborate more of a dramatic sense of depth, and will also give our drawing more of a spirit of place. Let's keep our shapes simple when it comes to trees. Let's imagine that our trees have just been delivered in large wooden crates.
They happen to be blue wooden crates, but regardless these are our crates. Notice that these are still just boxes. They should look a little familiar. They're boxes in two-point perspective. They have a front corner and the tops and bottoms are converging back to our vanishing point. So these are our containers. These are our containers for our trees. What we need to imagine is how a tree would be contained within this 3D space.
So let's plant some trees. Notice how these are sort of shorthand for trees. They're loosely drawn, I haven't drawn every single leaf. They're almost an essence or a gesture of a tree. But notice how each one feels like it's almost just busting out of the container, each one is planted in the midst of a rectangle that's been pre-placed on the ground. And to imagine trees being ultimately revealed by removing the containers allows us to actually create the trees with more three-dimensionality.
So this is a great way to plant the trees, starting again with the containers, and then removing the containers and revealing three-dimensional trees. So we can notice even when we just look at the organic shapes of these three trees, comparing this one to this one to that one that they still follow along these perspective lines, all the way back to the vanishing point as do where they're planted along the sidewalk. So I feel like powerlines kind of get a bad rap.
I love drawing powerlines. Powerlines to me are a way to kind of put a little grit in the drawing, but also help us get our eye back into the perspective and really help carry our eye around the drawing. So we can create map for these too. Here's our powerline map. We've created some verticals, right? Each vertical's been planted into a little square along our sidewalks spaced pretty evenly down the perspective.
We can go ahead and just place our poles right along those verticals. Notice how as we follow this blue line back into space once again, these powerlines fit into this structure. They get smaller and diminish as they go back into space. Ultimately, the sort of final place here is like layering these wires. Look at how we can come in here, increase black, and back again all the way back into the distance.
This is really a device to help us move through the picture. Because when we're making a picture, we don't want it to feel static. That's actually part of the reason why I even kind of create a little curve to these trees, make 'em organic. There's something about moving through this structure that's really quite beautiful. So whatever you add to your scene, whether it's powerlines or trees or park benches, we really want to ask ourselves when we put them in, is it helping us increase this illusion of space? Is it helping us to create this beautiful sort of drama? So I'm gonna take away this grid, this light ghost grid that we have behind everything, and then I'm gonna show you this drawing as I've worked it up a little bit further, just gradually bringing it up, adding a bit of tonality, and just a little bit more detail.
When you look at this you start to realize how important it is to really plan out how you place your additional elements in space, whether it's a lightpost or trees or park benches. You need to ask yourself am I arranging this in a way that's really helping me create a more dramatic sense of space? We've seen that multiple elements repeated and diminished in scale along a perspective line can really add interest and personality.
Join artist Amy Wynne in this class as she demonstrates the basics of two-point perspective. After a brief demo of asymmetrical vs. symmetrical perspectives with 3D blocks, she takes us through more complex projects: an imagined street scene, complete with windows, doors, trees, and light posts, and an interior room with furniture. In chapter 5, Amy introduces strategies to strengthen your compositions by improving the illusion of depth. Practicing these techniques will breathe new life into your drawing and give you a new "perspective" on drawing.
- Symmetrical vs. asymmetrical perspective
- Drawing 3D cubes
- Drawing exterior and interior spaces
- Adding streets details including trees and powerlines
- Drawing furniture
- Creating the illusion of depth
- Finding a composition to draw from life