how to draw the freedom tower, one world trade center

How To Draw the Freedom Tower, One World Trade Center

Step 1.

Before we start working on the Freedom Tower, you must first poses an understanding of perspective. Let's start at the very beginning (if you already have a good grasp of how to use perspective to draw buildings, you can skip ahead to step 10). Let's start with using one point perspective to create cubes. Using a ruler and a 2H or harder pencils, very lightly draw the horizon line (blue line) and the vanishing point (red X).

Step 2.

Next, draw a few squares floating in various places on the page, but not too close the vanishing point.

Step 3.

Draw lines from the vanishing point to the closest corners of each square (red lines). Then close off your cubes by drawing the back line of the cubes (green line), but be sure to stay within the red lines leading to the vanishing point.

Step 4.

Erase your unneeded guide lines leading back to the vanishing point and darken the lines of the cubes. You now have a cube created in one point perspective.

Step 5.

Now let's work on two point perspective. After drawing your horizon line, place two different vanishing points on opposite sides of the horizon line. This time, instead of drawing squares, just draw a few vertical lines floating on the page in various places. These lines will become the front edge of our cubes.

Step 6.

From the tops and bottoms of each line (cube edges), draw lines leading to both vanishing points on the page. It's ok if some of your lines run through each other because they can be erased later.

Step 7.

Now close off the sides of your cube in the same manner as step 3 above. But we are not done, since we still need to draw one more side of each cube.

Step 8.

This is where it gets a tad tricky. To finish off the cubes, we have to draw the third side on all necessary cubes. For any cube floating above the horizon line, we will draw the bottom side of the cube by drawing a lines from the bottom tips of the side edges of the cube leading to the opposite vanishing point. Similarly, for any cube floating beneath the horizon line, we will draw the top side of the cube by drawing a lines from the top tips of the side edges of the cube leading to the opposite vanishing point. Note that any cube who's front edge runs through the horizon line will not require a third edge, as it is hidden from our perspective.

Step 9.

Erase unneeded lines and darken up your cubes if you wish. You now know how to utilize two point perspective. These methods are needed to draw the Freedom Tower.

Step 10.

Freedom Tower has a very unique construction to it. It is not your standard 4 walls and a roof type building. The building technically has 8 sides to it and we are actually going to need 4 vanishing points along our horizon line to draw it. First draw your horizon line across your page. Then draw vanishing points #1 and #4 on either end. Vanishing point #2 should be a little to the right of #1. Vanishing point #3 should be just to the right of the center of the horizon line. This may seem frightening at first, having to use a whopping 4 vanishing points, but we are technically only using two point perspective to create the tower. It will all make sense in a moment…

Step 11.

Start with the base of the tower. Draw the front and right side of a cube below your horizon line. The lines should recede back to vanishing points #1 and #3.

Step 12.

Draw detail in the base of the tower, such as the square entrance at the front and the triangular patterns on both walls.

Step 13.

Now that the base of the tower is finished, let's start working our way up. Lightly draw a guide line through the middle of the front of the base, all the way up to the top of the page (as seen here with a green line). Then draw a tall triangle shape - the peak is near the top of the page, aligning with your vertical guide line. The sides of the triangle should meet the top of the entrance side of the base.

Step 14.

From the tip of the triangle, draw diagonal lines receding to vanishing points #2 and #4 as see here. Close off the tower shape on either side by drawing vertical lines that start on either side of the entrance side of the base and go up to meet the diagonal lines at the top. The is slightly narrower at the top than at its base, so both vertical lines should be leaning to the right ever so slightly.

Step 15.

Draw the final edge of the tower on the right side. It is a vertical line that should connect the top right corner of the base of the tower with the top right corner we just made at the top of the tower in step 14. We now have the shape of the tower complete.

Step 16.

Draw the antenna and circular antenna base at the top of the tower. The antenna is like a large needle shape - wide at the bottom, and sharp at the tip.

Step 17.

Not let's work on the windows. From this distance, not every window is visible. Instead, we can only see the different levels of the building. Draw a vertical line from the front edge of the towers base, up through the top of the tower (green line). This is just a guide line. Then draw each level of the building starting from the guide line, receding back to the appropriate guide lines. The lines representing the levels on the entrance side of the building should recede to vanishing point #1, the lines on the right side should recede to vanishing point #3.

Step 18.

It's a good idea to erase the unneeded lines from the previous step so that you can see what you're doing when you draw the remaining levels in the next step. Notice how the levels here are only on the front side of the building, and the very right side of the building.

Step 19.

Just like we did in step 17, draw the levels on the other two sections of the building. You should be using vanishing points #2 and #4 this time.

Step 20.

You can erase the unneeded level lines at this time if you wish, or you can wait and do it after you ink. You can see here which two sides of the building should have the newest level lines.

Step 21.

Now is a good time to ink the image. Using a ruler and Micron markers, or Copic Multiliners. Be patient and be careful not to accidentally ink any unneeded guide lines. After you have finished inking, erase your pencil marks with a kneaded eraser.

Step 22.

You can add more depth to the image by giving it shadow. Establish your light source and black out the opposite side of the building as well as the shadow cast on the ground.

Step 23.

If you need to make any corrections, you can use white ink or opaque white paint. You can also use it to add highlights or additional details if needed. Here, I redrew some of the pattern at the base of the building. And that is how you draw Freedom Tower using two point perspective! Great job!

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Uploaded: May 17, 2013
Artist: MichaelY
Difficulty: Intermediate  Intermediate Skill Level
Steps: 23
Updated: May 18, 2013
P.O.V: Front
Favourited: 3 times
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A step by step demonstration on how to draw the new Freedom Tower at World Trade Plaza in a comic book style. Includes steps on perspective.