Line Quality: Contour Line

by | Dec 5, 2017

Video Category:

drawing of a hen by LZM Studio

Drawing of a hen by LZM Studio


One of my favorite types of lines to use in a drawing is the contour line: a spatially descriptive line that shows the depth of the form via the directionality of the line. Contour lines depict the three-dimensional form by mimicking perspective, allowing for shading and conveying depth all at once. This is a more complex way to use multiple lines than hatching or cross-hatching, as the lines shade and demonstrate the sculptural nature of our three dimensional world at the same time.┬áIt helps to have some understanding of perspective to use this line, but looking closely at the things you’re drawing will also help. Let me know your questions or where you get stuck in a note in the comments- I’m happy to help you get unstuck!


Contour lines on an apple by LZM Studio

Contour lines on an apple by LZM Studio


Also, check out the nest drawing video on my Youtube channel and image on instagram for more images of contour lines.


PS. Something went wrong on our audio recording of this video, so please pardon the background noise!! Oops!


Thanks for watching, liking, subscribing & commenting! Your views help a small business to grow! For more in-depth online drawing tutorials & a forum with other drawing students & support from me:


For licensed access to an online drawing curriculum for school kids ages 8-18:


See more of my drawings & students’ drawings- LZM Studio:


Graphite Squad:


LZM Studio LLC is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to


I have no relationship with the manufacturers/dealers of this product, I just have experience using it in my artwork/teaching.