How Do You Draw 3-D Shapes?

Shapes in three dimensions require spatial thinking and a knowledge of perspective, as well as an idea of lighting. By determining the shape to draw and the angle it's being viewed from, the artist or illustrator can draw 3-D shapes more easily.

  1. Set the vanishing point or points of perspective

    The vanishing point is an imaginary point toward which all lines in 3-D space converge. It is located in the center of the horizon from the viewer's perspective. It's best to lightly mark the vanishing point on the paper.

  2. Draw the flat plane of the shape in the foreground

    For example, you're drawing the basic frame of a building, it might be a rectangle. Draw lightly; many lines are later erased or traced over in the process of drawing, so light lines prevent the art from looking too cluttered.

  3. Draw lines from the vertices of the shape to the appropriate vanishing point

    Use a ruler to keep the lines straight, especially in architectural design.

  4. Draw the background part of the shape

    After doing this, connect the lines. Determine where the light source is, and shade accordingly. For example, a light source from above puts undersides of shapes in the shade.