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There are many things that an artist needs to know to depict a more or less realistic street scene. Some of them are easy to grasp, and others a very tough. I think that perspective is one of the most difficult to understand concepts for almost every artist. We all know that objects appear smaller at a distance, but there is a big difference between seeing that and putting it on paper.

Doing perspective exercises and regularly practicing perspective drawing definitely improves your artworks over time. Still, sometimes you feel that something is wrong with your perspective, but you have no idea what it is. One of the problems I noticed by my students with one-point perspective is that they perfectly understand how to draw a building itself, but when it comes to drawing doors and windows, they lose their focus and seem to forget how it works.

In one-point perspective, surfaces facing the viewer appear in their true shapes, without any distortion: all their sides are parallel or perpendicular to the horizon line. And it's essential to keep it in mind and draw all the facing surfaces this way, using only parallel and perpendicular lines.

The mistake I see a lot is that beginning artists try to draw that red-marked lines in a kind of perspective without a vanishing point. It makes the doors and the windows look pretty strange.

So, let's take a look a little bit closer at how to draw doors and windows in the right way.

Step 1

Let's draw one-point perspective scene with one door and one window. I start drawing shapes of the wall, the door, and the window on the perspective side. The surfaces here are moving away from the viewer. That means that all the horizontal lines go to one vanishing point, and all the vertical lines are perpendicular to the horizon.

Step 2

Now, let's add their facing surfaces. The ones that are not in perspective. The wall thickness around the door and the window and the facing side of the building. First, I add the horizontal lines. These are strictly parallel to the horizon.

Step 3

And then, I add the lines that determine the thickness of the wall. These are perpendicular to the horizon.

Step 4

And finally, I can add the horizontal lines on the perspective side that go through the intersecting lines towards our only vanishing point.

And here we are! We have a simple but correct drawing of the door and the window in one-point perspective. If you want to add frames, you just follow the same steps again. Start with drawing shapes on the perspective side, then add the facing surfaces and finish it by creating the perspective lines.

Drawing in perspective is quite simple once you get the hang of it. The trick here is that you keep focusing on the directions of the lines you draw and practice until it becomes second nature.

If you have any questions about perspective or just want to share your thoughts or experience, please, let your comment below.

If you want to learn more about how to draw in One-Point Perspective, join The Basics of One-Point Perspective course in Brave Brushes Studio, my membership for artists and urban sketchers. When you sign up, you will get immediate access to the course, my two Skillshare classes on perspective, and my entire archive of classes and workshops.


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Hello, I'm Julia Henze.



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