How To Draw 3 Point Perspective

You can see 3 point perspective at work when you look at a picture of a tall building taken from near the base. In this situation, not only do you have the regular 2 point perspective, but the vertical sides of the building seem to draw together toward the top. They are pointing to a third vanishing point.

3 Point perspective-the cathedral of Notre-Dame in Amiens, France


So in your drawings, if you can find that third vanishing point, drawing 3 point perspective should not pose much more challenge than 2 point perspective.

There are two situations you must deal with in 3 point perspective: bird's eye view and worm's eye view.

In a bird's-eye view, you are looking down at objects from a viewpoint well above the horizon. Suppose you are standing on a hill looking down at a small town with houses and trees. To create a scene like that:

  1. First, set 2 vanishing points on the left and right sides of your drawing surface. Make sure to set them wide enough apart so that you will have room for whatever you are going to put in front of the horizon.

    Draw 3 point perspective



  2. Next, imagine a line (or draw one) connecting the first two vanishing points; this is your horizon line. Place a third vanishing point somewhere between the first two, but well below the horizon line.

    The closer together you place these points, the more extreme the “fish-eye lens” effect will be. The further apart the points are, the less effect you'll see from perspective.

    Draw 3 point perspective



  3. Now that you have your 3 vanishing points, let's create a flat surface (like the roof of a boxy office building). Draw 2 lines from the left vanishing point diagonally toward the right side of the drawing surface.

    Next draw 2 lines from the right vanishing point which intersect both the other lines. Connect the points where the 4 lines intersect and you have just defined the roof of your building.

    Draw 3 point perspective



  4. Connect the corners of the roof to the vertical vanishing point down below. At this point your guide lines should resemble something like an ice cream cone (possibly tilted). These lines are “vertical” in your painting (never mind what the slant is on the paper—in the 3 point perspective frame of reference, they're vertical).

  5. Pick the desired height of your building and mark it on the middle vertical line.

    3 point perspective



  6. Draw lines from the base point you just marked to both the left and right vanishing points. Where they intersect your other vertical lines defines the base of your building (and the walls).

  7. You can add features like windows or a sloped roof to suit your needs. Remember to make the windows and other architectural features subject to the same law of perspective. Same with trees and anything else you put in the painting.



When the vanishing point is below the horizon line, as in the above example, you have a bird's-eye view looking down on the scene. In a worm's-eye view, you are looking up at things and the vanishing point is above the horizon. Otherwise, you follow the exact same procedure as before.

3 point perspectiv e-a worm's eye view



Having this knowledge of how to draw 3 point perspective allows you to tackle any scene, whatever the viewpoint. Even if you never need to use it, understanding how the laws of nature govern what we see will shed light on why things look the way they do.

Don't find what you were looking for? Use this search feature to find it.

Custom Search
Perspective Without Pain


> > Three Point Perspective

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.

Custom Search


click me




Click here to be a step away from drawing accurately. With great tools, you can speed up your learning curves to becoming a better and more proficient artist. Read my review here.

Click here to watch video


www.dickblick.com


"Learn the little-known secrets to Mastering the Human Form Through Figure Drawing techniques never before seen!"

If you want to learn EXACTLY how to...

  1. Easily learn proportions and be able to draw them correctly even with ZERO drawing experience...
  2. Draw incredible realistic looking faces...
  3. Master the toughest parts of the human form, like hands, hair, and eyes - almost instantly...
  4. Learn how to draw people in 4 easy steps using industry leading drawing tricks...
  5. Use never before seen figure drawing techniques...to draw like the masters in minutes...

... Plus a TON more step-by-step Figure Drawing strategies THOUSANDS of regular people are already using to Master the Human Form, click here now...



Learn how I built this site here. E-Goods Make Money