2-Point Perspective Drawing
How to add dimension to our
drawings of structures
Perspective drawing is a
vital artistic technique
in conveying spatial
Defining Two Point Perspective
Two Point Perspective is a type of linear perspective. Two Point Perspective is a
systematic way of drawing box-like objects or anything that can be logically
arranged into a geometric, grid-like structure. This 2pt drawing method is defined by 2
vanishing points that represent 2 convergence points and infinite distance away. All geometric
objects that are arranged perpendicular or parallel to each other will have drawn sides that
converge on each vanishing point. This will become super clear in the examples to come. But
usually, you can tell you’re looking at a 2point perspective artwork if you can see 2 sides of the
Learning 2 pt perspective drawing is one of the smartest things you can do
as an artist. As a result you’ll be able to correctly identify the angles that sides
of objects make and draw them accurately.
2 pt. perspective is really just a recipe for drawing geometric objects with
special realism. It’s a very important stepping stone in your quest to become
a better artist. Whether drawing or painting you’ll encounter perspective
drawing issues everywhere. Even in places you wouldn’t think to such as
portraits and landscape art, but more on that later.
Why Learning 2pt. Perspective is Important
REMEMBER YOUR CITYSCAPE PRE-DRAWING
AT THE BEGINNING OF THE SEMESTER?
Have you ever tried to draw a city scape, or a bunch of houses? How about
an interior scene or a table top scattered with books? How did it go? For
most of you, you’d rather have me shred your drawings than post them to
artsonia for everyone to see! But that’s why you’re here reading this!
Once you understand how to see objects and environments in perspective
they become so much easier to draw. You won’t have to guess as much as
before. Remember, two point perspective is a drawing system. You just need
to follow the system of going back to either of the two points, focusing on
accuracy, to get good results every time, with no guess work! Sounds pretty
good right? It is.
Drawing A 2-point Perspective House
Step By Step Instructions
The following section contains many step by step illustrations to
help you understand the 2-point perspective system at work. Each
illustration is color coded for easier understanding.
You’ll start off by drawing a two point perspective drawing of a
building. I’ve chosen a house for this building’s structure. This will
give you a solid foundation for drawing a building’s exterior. This will
prime you for drawing more complicated perspective drawings such
as cityscapes, town centers… anything architectural really.
Just to make everything super easy to understand I’ll be creating a red vanishing
point on the left and a green vanishing point on the right. What’s the point?
Heh heh… no pun intended!
The step by step instructions have color coded lines. Any of the orthogonal lines
(perspective lines) that need to be drawn to the left vanishing point will also be drawn in
red. All lines that need to meet at the right-hand vanishing point will be drawn in green.
To contrast all vertical lines will be drawn using black. Please note: all vertical lines in a
2pt. perspective drawing need to be parallel. There will be some other types of special
lines too. Here’s a key that you can refer back to:
Perspective Color-coded Key
Use this color key to guide you through the
step by step 2 point perspective drawing
**MAKE SURE YOU DRAW ALL OF YOUR LINES WITH A
RULER OR STRAIGHT EDGE & USE A SHARP PENCIL!
Establish your horizon line and your two vanishing points,
in the middle of your paper.
line is a
*If you find 2 point perspective rather tricky, try this exercise with a red and green
color pencils along with your regular pencil.
Next you should draw the closest corner of the house.
This is nothing more than a vertical line.
To create the front side of the house you should connect the top
and bottom ends of your vertical line to the left-hand vanishing
You’ll have to decide how far back this wall extends. Pick a distance and end
the side with a vertical line. Remember that all vertical lines in this drawing
will be parallel to each other, meaning that they’ll never cross each other.
*You can make sure your lines are perfectly vertical by lining up a bold ruler line
with the top and bottom edges of your paper.
Repeat the same procedure for the other side of the house /
box. These lines can be seen below in green.
The top of the box can be drawn by connecting the remaining
top corners to their appropriate vanishing points.
At this point in the drawing it would be a good idea to clean things
up a bit. Erase any extra lengths you have on your lines.
Finding the middle of something that is drawn in 2 point perspective is not as easy as
measuring it. Because a perspective drawing accounts for visual space, things need to get
smaller as they recede away from the viewer of the drawing. To put this another way, the
back half of the box needs to be smaller than the front half!
Draw the spatial perspective properly!
Fortunately there’s an easy way to do this. Borrowing a simple technique from geometry we
can find the perspective middle of our box by connecting opposite corners. This lines
(yellow) are only temporary so you should draw them very lightly.
Next, with a perfectly vertical line you want to intersect the perspective middle
of the box. This divides the box into two halves that are properly compensated
in size for your perspective drawing.
Now that you have the middle of the box located, you can add a door.
There! Now this box is starting to resemble a house.
Before you attempt to draw a roof you need to calculate the perspective middle.
Check out the yellow lines drawn below. I’m using the same procedure we used
to position the door.
At this stage of the drawing you can decide how tall or how much pitch the
roof will have. Pick a point somewhere on the perspective middle (the tall
yellow line). Next you’ll connect that point to each of the top two corners of
the right wall. (drawn in purple)
Next we’ll construct the ridge line portion of the roof. That’s the highest part of
the roof. This is simple. Just connect the point you established in the previous
step to the left-hand vanishing point.
Note: The next 3 steps require special attention. Most people fake or guess the angle and
positioning for the final line that constructs the roof. But, there is a precise way to draw it. It requires
some extra, temporary lines but is worth learning. Watch this…
You are going to construct the back wall of the house even though we can’t really
see it. Do this lightly.
Now divide that wall into its perspective halves.
Where the vertical line representing the perspective half (yellow) intersects
with the ridgeline (red) that is where the final line should be directed to. Simply
note the intersection and connect it to the remaining left-hand corner. I’m doing
this in purple.
Good job! I’m sure you’ve got some extra lines drawn. Erase them before
Finally you can invite some guests into our house drawing by adding a
walkway. Keep your cool and don’t just make up your own angles. Make sure
you are drawing your lines to the proper vanishing point.
You can even draw a direction change in the walkway. My house has a walkway
that very similar to this one! Notice how I’m using the other vanishing point
to create the direction change in the walkway?
If your drawing is all caught up fantastic! Now you need to challenge yourself.
Can you add some windows to the front and side of your house? How can you
divide up the space so that they are positioned symmetrically yet compensate
for perspective? (Hint use the “x” finding middle technique repeatedly)
1. Legibly write your name, date and time
you finished in a botto