One of my biggest passions is airbrushing, and as an airbrush artist, I'm often commissioned to scale up smaller images onto larger surfaces. My wife, on the other hand is a perspective type of artist who enjoys finding a real life scene and recording it on paper. Sometimes, it can be difficult, for each of us to get proportions correct, especially when scaling an image. That's where the perspective drawing grid comes in. Now, the drawing grid isn't a new creation. In fact its first recorded use is in hieroglyphs dating back 3000 years. In Victorian times, it was a popular tool with architects and landscapers who wanted to record their work for posterity, but fell out of common use once the camera made an appearance.

It's two-fold use is simple. As a perspective grid, the artist places it in front of their line of sight, and draws a corresponding grid pattern, in light pencil, on the page they're working on. Then the scene they are attempting to recreate can easily be transferred to the page, and the pencil grid erased leaving a perfect duplicate. As a drawing grid, you first lay it on the surface where you intend on putting your image. You then draw the grid on the photograph you want to scale-up.By employing a coordinate system to each square on the grid, I.E. as in the game battleship, you can achieve a perfect duplicate of whatever scene or image you choose.

This design is for a 24"x24" drawing grid with a one square inch grid size. The advantage is that the smaller the grid, the more detail and accuracy, however every second or third hole can be threaded for larger squares.

Step 1: Tools and Supplies


  • saw - table is preferable
  • drill with bits
  • Sewing needle


  • 1"x3"x24" wood
  • 2"x4"x6" block of wood
  • string - nylon, dacron, dental floss, etc. Thin strand but stronger than sewing thread.
  • sandpaper
  • 4 nuts, bolts, washers - 1" long. I used #8 but you can use whatever you have on hand.
Very neat!
<p>Great idea, thanks! </p>
its such a simple idea but really useful. thanks for sharing.
What do you think about using yardsticks? They'd already have the 1 inch markings on them.
<p>Yardsticks would work fine. In fact the first one I made using aluminum ones. Just remember it's based on a 1&quot; wide frame, so you need to compensate for that. I.E. if thinner reduce by the difference, or if thicker, add the difference, to the dimensions of the frame, otherwise your grid won't be even.</p>
<p>Very good idea. </p><p>Maybe you could improve it setting a sight point. It will allow you to see the same thing until finish the drawing. </p>
<p>You'd be surprised how easy it is to line up your sight when using it as a perspective grid. Trick is to keep your seat positioned in one spot. The coordinate system helps you realign again quickly enough if you need to get up for a bathroom break.</p>
<p>Ahh! Something I've always struggled with. I'd love to make one of these. Thanks for sharing!</p>

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm the kind of person who's mind doesn't stop. Literally, I take medication to fix that just so I can sleep at ... More »
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