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Introduction to Drawing and Painting Perspective

Course Times & Enrolment

This course is currently unavailable.

Course Summary

Whether intending to create a rendering of an interior or exterior scene, having the drawing skill necessary to accomplish ‘believable space’ and three dimensions is beneficial when recording an environment, setting a scene or developing a design idea. By direct observation in the studio and out on location (weather permitting), this course will encourage personal expression using a variety of drawing media to avoid a formal technical drawing approach in the exploration of the fundamental principles of perspective.

Course Details

Pre-requisites for enrolment

Some art and design experience desirable.

Special Infomation

Essentials materials and equipment students will need to provide themselves:

· Cartridge sketching pad A2 or A3

• Several sheets of newsprint type paper

• Two sheets of thick cartridge paper A1

• Graphite pencils HB, 2B or 4B or 6B

• Willow charcoal

• Eraser and putty rubber

• Scissors

• Masking tape

• Fixative

• Protective clothing

• Long edge ruler


Additional recommended materials and equipment students can provide:

· Green grey/ blue grey mid tone pastel paper/sugar paper A1 or A2 size

· Soft colour pastels (Inscribe)

Content of Course

The course teaching is delivered in 4 sessions of 2 hours 45 minutes, two sessions per day for two days.

  • Session 1 – Discussion and demonstration of the basic elements of perspective as a device to create depth and three dimensions in pictorial composition. Students will explore these elements as they apply to interiors in theory and practice using achromatic drawing media.
  • Session 2 – Resolution of compositions embarked upon in session 1 with attention to enhancing depth further with the use of tonal value and focus of interest.
  • Session 3 - Revision and group discussion regarding perspective theory with regard to previous course projects and class references with attention to exteriors. Students will attempt an exterior composition in which perspective principles will be demonstrated using monochromatic or coloured drawing media on a toned support.
  • Session 4 – Resolution of compositions embarked upon in session 3 with attention to enhancing depth further with the use of colour and/or detail.

Teaching method(s)

This course will be based and delivered in specialist art and design studios or workshops and will typically include a range of practical exercises, introductions to techniques, processes and concepts, and set projects which lead to more focused and personal exploration. Students’ progress will be monitored and supported by the tutor who will suggest follow up reading, research and practice to support their studies. Teaching will include practical demonstrations, one-to-one tuition, group discussions and critiques.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate basic skills with increased confidence in rendering three dimensions with accurate perspective;
  • show a basic understanding of fundamental elements of perspective;
  • use a variety of approaches for making compositions with spatial depth.


Core Readings

Stobart, Jane, 2006. Drawing Matters. London: A. & C. Black

Craig-Martin, Michael, 1995. Drawing the line: reappraising drawing past and present.  London: The South Bank Centre

Maier, Manfred, 1980. Basic principles of design.  New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold

Class Handouts

Handouts will be provided.


If you have questions regarding the course or enrolment, please contact COL Reception at Paterson's Land by email or by phone 0131 650 4400.

Student support

If you have a disability, learning difficulty or health condition which may affect your studies, please let us know by ticking the 'specific support needs' box on your course application form. This will allow us to make appropriate adjustments in advance and in accordance with your rights under the Equality Act 2010. For more information please visit the Student Support section of our website.