Yes, You Too Can Draw! – Ch 10 — Two-Point Perspective


Yes, You Too Can Draw logoThat’s right gang, it’s another chapter of your favorite how-to series, Yes, You Too Can Draw!  In the last chapter, I got you started on the road towards mastery over perspective with the lesson on One-Point Perspective. Today I plan to push your drawing ability a little further (and help wow your friends.)  with Two-Point Perspective.

As always, let’s review the previous chapter…

What We Learned From Last Time


So You Think You’re a Bad-@$$ Now?

Shade and add in your details

I bet your were blown away when you first learned how to use one-point perspective. Now you can draw stuff that only posers could dream of. But I bet you’re feeling a bit limited. In real life, you can view objects from all sorts of angles. Yet not everything is viewed dead-on. You might want to add some drama to a drawing. You may want to draw an object in a three-quarter view. We can achieve these desires with Two-Point Perspective.

Two-Point Perspective boils down to using two vanishing points on your horizon line instead of one. Instead of connecting convergence lines to lines parallel to your horizon line, you’ll connect convergence lines from one vanishing point to convergence lines from the other vanishing point. Sound confusing? Allow me to demonstrate.


How to Use Two-Point Perspective

Step 1:

Step 1: Draw a horizon line, two vanishing points, and a station point.

Start with a standard horizon line. It can be placed anywhere on the page. Then add two vanishing points to your horizon lines. Place a Station Point anywhere above or below your horizon line. The station point will basically be where you’ll begin construction. It is also the point where you’ll connect your first set of convergence lines, emanating from each vanishing point.

Step 2:

Step 2: Create convergence lines from each vanishing point to the station point

Connect your station point to each vanishing point using convergence lines.

Step 3:

Determining the depth with a new set of convergence lines

In this step, we’ll determine the depth of our cube. Do this by drawing new convergence lines from each vanishing point. The result should be a square or rectangle in two-point perspective.  This shape will give you a total of four points to work with.

We can also use a diagonal point to determine depth

Not to confuse anyone, but there’s an alternative way of determining your cube’s depth. This can be done with the help of a Diagonal Point. Simply plot a diagonal point on your horizon line, and create a convergence line connecting the station point to your diagonal point. Plot a new point somewhere on this convergence line. This point will determine how deep your cube will be.To complete the square/rectangle draw convergence lines running from each vanishing point through the new point and into each of your original convergence lines. This will feel more constricting, but will bring more accuracy to your cube.

Step 4:

Next we’ll determine the height of our cube by drawing a vertical line from the station point. (In orange.)

We draw a vertical line from the station point.



Step 5:

In Step 5, we’ll create two convergence lines connecting to the top of the previously drawn vertical line. from the far left and right corners of the bottom square, draw new vertical lines (in dark orange) connecting to your fresh convergence lines to your outer convergence lines. This will create two new points to work with. I bet you can see the cube forming. Not only do we have a bottom, but two sides facing us.

Add two more convergence lines connecting to the top of the previously drawn vertical line.

Step 6:

Now we’ll complete the top and the back walls facing the background. Draw in convergence lines, to the two new points you’ve just created in Step 5. (Both upper left-hand corner and upper right-hand corners.) Doing so will create a new point where your latest two convergence lines cross. From that point, we’ll complete the cube by drawing one last vertical line to the bottom square’s far corner. (It points towards the background.)

Step 6, we'll complete the cube.


Step 7:

All that’s needed is to clean up your image and show it off to your friends.

mouse gawking at cube

No Problem!

variations in two-point perspective

 Easy stuff! I want to note that you can apply your pair of vanishing points anywhere on the horizon line. This will allow for all sorts of angles and positions. Generally you’ll be in the habit of using the same pair of vanishing points whenever a drawing has a more geometric feel, such as a room or a city landscape. Most of the objects in those types of drawings won’t likely be positioned at all sorts of angles like the drawing above.


Your Homework Assignment

I want you to practice drawing cubes in two-point perspective in both different places on you drawing surface as well as using different pairs of vanishing points. If you wish, sketch a pencil drawing using two-point perspective, and post your work on either the Facebook page or Tweet me(Use the hash-tag #2PointPerspective.) I’d love to see what you’ve done.