Part Three, Project 4, Exercise 1 -Parallel perspective – an interior view

Draw a view through a doorway inside a building e.g. a corridor or hall. Try to arrange it so that there is a rectangular rug or something similar in front of the doorway. If the walls and the floor are tiled or have some kind of geometric pattern that will be ideal. Position yourself to draw so that the doorway is flat on to you, as is the rug in front of it.  Draw in line  and check the angles of all receding lines against the horizontal and vertical lines of the doorframe. Don’t use a ruler or a rubber. Draw and re-draw these angles until you think they are correct and then stop for a moment. Estimate the height of your eyes from the ground and mark on the doorframe in your drawing where this point would be. If you wish, stand next to the actual doorframe and mark the level of your eyes there. Whichever method you use, next use a ruler to draw a horizontal line across your drawing at your eye level.

I made aa A3 sketch of a view of my landing.  I was sat on the floor looking down the length of the floor, with my eyeline fairly low down.


I drew in the horizontal eyeline in red using a ruler, and then drew red receding lines to the vanishing point.  The vanishing point is the point on your eyeliner, where all the receding lines, following lines which in reality are parallel to each other, should meet.

i also drew receding lines in pencil using my drawing as a guide to see where they would meet.

I found this a surprising exercise. There are a lot of errors!  I had grappled with the radiator on the right, but in the end, after redrawing it a few times, it falls exactly in line with the theoretical red receding line!!  However, the bannisters on the left are a long way out.  I had known they weren’t right even as I was drawing it, as I could see I was looking up at the corner post and that the bannister rail should have been much more horizontal!  I realise, now that I look at the view again, that for some reason I had left out a complete doorway, which would have brought the far end of the bannisters, where they meet the wall, towards me.  This would have made sense and made it easier to draw what I was actually seeing.  As it was I couldn’t correlate what I was seeing with what I was drawing and a lot of “what I knew” was getting in the way !!

Interestingly, using the actual drawing as a guide to draw the receding lines, they do meet at approximately the same place.  However, there is no way that my eyeline was that high, as I was sat on the floor!
I found it hard to be accurate about some of the reference points- I had to go and sit on the floor next to a wall to mark my eyeline, and then I struggled to relate that to where it should be on the paper.
Here are two more attempts at this exercise, completed whilst I was staying in a hotel (great for corridors etc!)
I realise that in this picture of the bathroom doors I have created two vanishing points?  One for each door.  I was pleased that they matched up to my eyeliner however.
The next attempt was a more typical one-point perspective drawing looking directly down a corridor.  It was a slightly complex corridor to draw, with the columns and lights receding into the distance, but the main structural lines do, on the whole, disappear fairly accurately towards the vanishing point.
Does a drawing have to obey the exact rules of perspective to  still have a sense of form/perspective and atmosphere/ structure?  In some ways I enjoy the slight inaccuracies, which, as long as they are not too far out, can give a drawing life.  Knowing and understanding the rules however, can help with the construction of a drawing, especially where you are unsure.

I was interested in this video link exploring the use of one-point perspective:” /

Parallel or One-Point Perspective-  (Here is some theory taken from

There are only three kinds of lines used in one-point perspective:

  1. Vertical edges are shown as vertical lines.
  2. Horizontal edges (perpendicular to the line of sight and parallel to the ground) are shown as horizontal lines.
  3. Edges that recede (are parallel to the line of sight) are on lines that converge at the vanishing point on the horizon line.

Note that these same three (and only these three) kinds of lines are used to draw the cubes regardless to where they are in the picture.

Also note that the cube to the left, while technically correct, appears distorted. One-point perspective only depicts objects near the vanishing point with accuracy.

1point perspective


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