Improve Perspective in Technical Drawing: 5 Tips
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 6 min read


  1. Draw horizon line first
  2. Use vanishing points
  3. Apply the rule of thirds
  4. Add details last
  5. Practice often

Let's dive into the world of technical drawing. If you've ever wondered how to improve perspective in technical drawing, you're in the right place. We will explore five practical tips that can help you achieve more depth and accuracy in your work. Whether you're a budding artist or a seasoned pro, these tips can take your technical drawing skills to the next level.

Draw Horizon Line First

Starting your drawing with a horizon line is one of the best ways to nail the perspective. It's like laying the foundation of a house — it sets the stage for everything else that follows. So, let's see how you can do it and why it's important.

What is a Horizon Line?

Imagine standing on a beach and looking at the sea. The line where the sky meets the sea — that's your horizon line. In technical drawing, this line represents the viewer's eye level and is the point where objects begin to disappear from view.

Why Start with the Horizon Line?

  • It helps with perspective: The horizon line is the anchor of your drawing. It's from this line that you'll draw the vanishing points, which will guide the rest of your drawing. This way, you maintain consistency and accuracy in perspective.
  • It sets the scale: Depending on where you place the horizon line, you can make the viewer feel like they're looking up at an object (by placing the line lower) or down at it (by placing it higher).

How to Draw the Horizon Line?

It's simple. Just draw a straight line across your paper or canvas, preferably in the middle but it can be higher or lower depending on the viewpoint you want. Remember, this line should be as level as possible, to maintain realism in your drawing. A ruler can help you achieve this.

There you go! You've taken the first step in improving your technical drawing perspective. But remember, drawing a horizon line is like tying your shoelaces — it's just the start of the journey. The real fun begins when you start adding vanishing points and creating depth in your drawing. But we'll get to that in the next section.

Use Vanishing Points

Now that you've drawn your horizon line, let's add some depth to your drawing with vanishing points. If you're wondering how to improve perspective in technical drawing, mastering the use of vanishing points is a game-changer. But what is a vanishing point, and how can you use it?

What is a Vanishing Point?

Imagine you're driving down a straight road. As you look into the distance, the road appears to get narrower until it seems to meet at a point. That point, my friend, is what we call a 'vanishing point'. In technical drawing, vanishing points give our drawings a three-dimensional look by creating the illusion of depth.

Why Use Vanishing Points?

  • They create depth: Vanishing points are vital in technical drawing because they simulate the way our eyes perceive depth in real life. They give your drawing a 3D feel, making it look more realistic.
  • They provide a reference: Vanishing points act as guides, helping you determine where and how to draw the lines of your objects to maintain accurate perspective.

How to Use Vanishing Points?

Firstly, decide how many vanishing points you need. A simple drawing might need just one, while a complex cityscape might need two or three. Position your vanishing points on your horizon line. Then, draw lines from the vanishing point(s) to define the sides of your object. The lines should converge towards the vanishing point, creating a sense of depth.

And there you have it! By leveraging the power of vanishing points, you're another step closer to mastering how to improve perspective in technical drawing. But don't stop there. The next tip will add even more depth and interest to your drawings. Stay tuned!

Apply the Rule of Thirds

Now that we've covered vanishing points, let's dive into the next tip for improving perspective in technical drawing - the rule of thirds. This rule is a fundamental principle used by artists and photographers to create balanced and interesting compositions. So, how can you apply this rule to your technical drawings?

What is the Rule of Thirds?

Picture your drawing divided into nine equal parts by two equally spaced horizontal lines and two equally spaced vertical lines. The rule of thirds suggests that you place the important elements of your drawing along these lines or at their intersections. It's a simple rule, but it can significantly enhance your drawings.

Why Use the Rule of Thirds?

  • It creates balance: Placing your key elements along the lines or intersections creates a balanced composition that's pleasing to the eye.
  • It adds interest: By not placing your main subject directly in the center, you create a more dynamic, engaging composition.

How to Apply the Rule of Thirds?

Start by imagining or lightly sketching the grid on your drawing. Then place your main elements on the grid lines or at the intersections. For instance, if you're drawing a building, place the horizon on one of the horizontal lines and the building on one of the vertical lines.

Remember, the rule of thirds is more like a guideline. It's okay to break it when necessary. The goal is to create a drawing that's balanced and pleasing to the eye.

Using the rule of thirds is just another tool in your arsenal on how to improve perspective in technical drawing. But we're not done yet. Next, we'll cover why adding details should be your last step in the drawing process.

Add Details Last

Moving on, let's discuss the next pivotal tip in our journey to improve perspective in technical drawings—adding details last. This often-underappreciated strategy can be a game-changer in your drawing process. But what does it mean to add details last, and why is it so important?

Understanding the Concept

When you begin a new drawing, it's tempting to dive right into the details. After all, they're the parts that make your work unique, right? While this is true, it's important to focus first on laying out the basic shapes and forms. These are the backbone of your drawing. Once you've locked these in, you can then add the details. This is an effective method for keeping everything in perspective and properly proportioned.

The Importance of Adding Details Last

  1. Prevents Overworking: If you start with the details, you run the risk of overworking your drawing. By focusing on the big picture first, you can ensure a balanced and proportional composition.
  2. Improves Accuracy: When you lay out the basic shapes first, it's easier to maintain accurate proportions. This helps keep your drawing in proper perspective.
  3. Boosts Efficiency: If you add details last, you can make changes to the overall structure more easily without having to erase and redraw intricate details.

How to Implement This Tip?

Start by sketching the basic shapes and forms of your drawing. Once you're satisfied with the layout, you can start adding the details. Take your time with this step. The details are what bring your drawing to life.

Adding details last is a simple, yet effective step in improving perspective in technical drawing. But remember, practice is key. So, grab your sketchbook and let's move onto the final tip—practice often!

Practice Often

Finally, we've arrived at our last tip on how to improve perspective in technical drawing—practice often. You might be thinking, "Isn't that obvious?" Well, yes, but it's often the most overlooked aspect. Let's dive into why consistent practice is so vital and how to make it a part of your routine.

Why Practice is Important

Think about it: how do you get better at anything? Whether it's learning a new language, playing an instrument, or mastering a sport, the answer is always practice. Drawing, particularly technical drawing, is no different. Practice helps you to internalize the rules of perspective, making them second nature over time.

How to Make Practice a Habit

  1. Set a Schedule: Designate a specific time for drawing each day. It could be first thing in the morning, during a lunch break, or in the evening. Consistency is key.
  2. Start Small: Don't overwhelm yourself by trying to draw complex scenes right away. Start with simple objects and gradually work your way up.
  3. Experiment: Try different techniques, styles, and materials. This keeps your practice sessions interesting and helps you to find what works best for you.

Practice with Purpose

Keep in mind, though, that mindless repetition won't help you improve. What you need is deliberate practice. This means consciously applying the techniques you've learned, analyzing your work, and making adjustments as needed.

There you have it, folks! Five practical tips on how to improve perspective in technical drawing. Now it's time for you to put these tips into action. So, go ahead, grab your pencils, and start drawing. Remember, it's the consistent effort that will truly help you level up your skills. Happy drawing!

If you're looking to improve your perspective in technical drawing even further, don't miss the workshop 'A New Perspective on Perspective' by Roberto Bernal. This workshop will teach you valuable techniques and tips for mastering perspective in your drawings, helping you create more realistic and accurate works of art.