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How to Draw a Compass

How to draw a compass

Not so long ago one of our readers asked us to make a lesson on how to draw a compass. And now, as you can see, the lesson is ready.

The compass is actually a rather deceptive subject for a novice artist. The whole trick of this subject is that it may seem easy to draw. But in fact, it’s not quite like that. To correctly draw a compass, you have to depict a series of very smooth and balanced circles and lines. And in this lesson about how to draw a compass, we will try to examine in detail all aspects of this action.


Step 1

Our compass (as well as any compass) starts with a the simplest circle. Start drawing this geometric figure with very light pressure of the pencil. Since we do not draw a compass strictly from above, the circle should be slightly flattened, and rather be an oval.

How to draw a compass

Step 2

Inside the circle draw another one, a little smaller. These two circles should be equidistant from each other along the entire perimeter. Draw the bottom edge of the compass.

Learn to draw a compass

Step 3

Continue drawing a compass. At the top of the circle draw a loop. This uncomplicated detail can have more complex forms, but for ease of learning, we decided to choose the most standard and simple form.

How to sketch a compass

Step 4

In the central part of the compass draw a scale with inscriptions N E S W around. Again, due to the fact that we draw the compass not strictly from the top, these details may seem to have slipped down a bit, which is normal.

How to draw a compass step by step

Step 5

Now in the central part of the instrument draw the compass needle. This detail can also have the most complicated and intricate forms, for example, be in the form of arrows.

How to draw a compass easy

Step 6

Erase all additional lines, add some highlights and shadows by hatching. Shadows will help our compass drawing to get a little more volume and realism. And by the way, you can add a cast shadow on the surface.

How to draw a compass

At first glance, the lesson on how to draw a compass is too easy. But the fact is that such lessons are extremely necessary, in order to learn how to draw such simple figures as circles. Also, lessons like this help you learn how to build smooth geometric shapes. This knowledge is very useful for any artist. If you could easily cope with this lesson, then proceed to more complex ones (such as tutorials about the Great Wall of China or a skyscraper).

One Comment

  1. Your drawing is great. Your circle is the best. I like the way how you drew this.

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