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3.2 Sketching Straight Lines

Most of the lines in an average sketch are straight lines. With practice, your straight lines will naturally improve, but these basics may help you improve quickly.

  • Hold your pencil naturally, about 1″ back from the point, and approximately at a right angle to the line to be drawn.

  • Draw horizontal lines from left to right with a free and easy wrist and arm movement.

  • Draw vertical lines downward with a wrist and arm movement.

  • Draw curved lines using finger and wrist movements.

Blocking in a Freehand Drawing

Over the years, freehand sketchers have developed all sorts of tricks to improve speed and accuracy. Methods for finding midpoints or quickly blocking in straight vertical and horizontal lines are just a few secrets of the technical sketching craft that can come in handy, even today. When a great idea hits, or you need to sketch quickly at a meeting or on a job site, you might not have access to a CAD system, or even a ruler.

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