How to Draw a Straight Line

Monday 25th June, 2012

I’m trying to improve my drawing skills at the moment. I love hand sketching but I just want to be… better.

On Saturday I went to a great presentation and workshop on perspective drawing by Simone Ridyard at the Riba Hub in Manchester as part of the Love Architecture Festival 2012 events. Simone is a fantastic illustrator and showed us some of her work which was just beautiful.

It was a highly enjoyable session and here are a couple of great tips that resonated with me. If you deliberate too much the drawing will lose the charm of the freehand sketch. I can suffer from this, over-drawing and losing a sketch that looked much better to start with.

If you’re drawing people in two-point perspective, the eyes of the people you draw should always be placed on the eye level line in your drawing (the line where your vanishing points are). This revelation caused great excitement for many of us. You still have little people at the ‘back’ and larger ones at the ‘front’, but everyone’s eyes are level. So obvious now I know!

Look at your sketch in a mirror. You might be able to spot something that’s not quite right with it, something that you’ve got used to looking at when your drawing is the right way round. I have done this before but it was good to be reminded.

When drawing a straight line without a ruler don’t follow the line as you’re drawing it with your eyes. Put your pencil on the paper and then look where you want the line to end and just draw towards it. It makes you draw faster and more confidently. Practice twenty lines a day to improve!




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