A whole new drawing tool! Basic shapes

Over the past year I've received an influx of requests to create a new practice tool for basic shapes such as cubes, spheres and pyramids, for use in practicing the basics of structure and lighting.

I've been conducting some early test photoshoots in service of this goal - I would love your feedback and direction for what you'd like to see in this tool. Here's some example photos:

At present, my plan is to populate this tool not only with basic shapes, but with "still life" arrangements of objects. You will be able to select drawing only basic shapes, only still life composed of objects, or both. But at present, as a test, this new tool is currently up with a small selection of test images of basic shapes.

What I'm expecting to happen over the next few weeks is this:

  • This new "basic shapes and still life" drawing tool will expand rapidly with new images, and start to incorporate still life.
  • The scenes & environment tool previously had some close-ups labeled as still-life. I will be removing all still life from scenes & environments, and refocus that tool exclusively on more macro spaces and landscapes (both natural and human-created.)
  • Scenes & environments will soon become available to all, and no longer be a subscription-only feature.
  • I'm also hoping to be able to release some more quality of life features for all of the tools in August

Please comment what sort of objects, still lifes, basic shapes and lighting you'd like to see added.



this is so exciting! can't wait to do some studies of the basic shapes. as for things to be added i'd love to see food and cookware, hand tools/power tools, and fabrics/clothes in various states of crumpled, folded, and hanging.


Looks like a great little warm up tool. I always doodle basic shapes before a sessions to reaquaint my brain with drawing form, but this seems like a nice little different way to stretch those art muscles

NG (unregistered visitor)

Very helpful! Also what you be cool to set up like a city scene full of blocks and other shapes that will help people with perspective and structure and only focusing on that instead of a picture of a city so they can simplify it better so it is easy to understand, do airplanes, cars, boats, chairs, couches, etc this is amazing!

Polyvios Animations

Awesome. I can hardly wait to try out this exercise tool!


Nice! I love this idea, I'd like to see fruit/food, everyday household objects, skulls, and different colored lighting! Thanks for all the updates and new features!

Sci Girl

I second the skulls motion. Both animal skulls and (fake) human skulls. What could also potentially be a great addition is basic shapes with really unexpected lighting, like extreme backlighting or two different colored lights. Studying how complicated lighting situations play out would be really informative.


seconding the coloured lights idea! i once did a painting exercise of a multi-light setup with pink and green filters over them. the shadows were the most wild, vivid colours.

Kim - Site admin

Awesome! I went and ordered some color gels for my lighting setup, so hopefully I can start playing with this idea soon :D


This is a fantastic idea!!

Lafie Safie

bless your heart, us artists love this website.

Learning Artist

Really great idea, looking forward to it! I'd second also adding perspective, clothing, and human skull rotations.

Extant Knight4

Great warm up and study exercise! This is going to improe my sense of perspective a lot since I have slight problems with it time to time. As my fellow artist suggested I would love to see categories for clothing, skulls and every day objects in the future too. ( and I would like to add texture practices and practices where you have easily visable shadows of objects and animals/ humans to the suggestion-list.


awesome! I have tried to sketch some of basic combinations already, and they are fabulous!


Very Awesome, I can't wait for the Scenes & Environments! Thank you


Great idea for a new tool! Will be sure to check it out and practice my lines and shapes with this. Thank you :D

Accurate Name

Already really loving this new tool. I can't wait for more image sets to be included.

Tomo (unregistered visitor)

I have being using the shapes for warmups and it´s great! I don't know if I just haven't encontered them, but some pictures with a max of just 3 shapes as good too so you can really focus on getting the shadows right with a smaller time. If i

Isha (unregistered visitor)

This site is very interesting


Yay! been waiting on this for a while now. Thanks for the addition.

All the best,
JCML Fine Art


Wow! This seems amazing!


Would you set them up by shape only? Like only "Enter Shape here"
Or Pick two shapes and let the photos pop up accordingly.
I'd also like to see a light feature (daylight, contrasting light, etc),

oh! And colour/greyscale/tone features so people can see the value and vibrancy of colour- which is so important and not always well understood. The image once in colour then flashes the same image in greyscale- so they can see how correct they were. 'Or is this the same colour value?-' test to help the eye see better how colour works.
oh! And a foreshortened feature.

I am really excited to see this happen. More Please this is only the beginning.

Thank you for all of these tools and your hard work.

Michellerose Cusack
JCML Fine Art

Kim - Site admin

These are amazing ideas. Let me see what I can come up with.


I have been using this for a while now. I think it would be good to have a single shapes button.- One shape per photo. So as to concentrate solely on basic angles and morphing of the shape from 3d to the 2d page.

Let us choose if we want a complex mix of shapes in one photo or pictures that are, say, all spheres or all... name shapes. So we can concentrate on how shapes interact with each other and space.

Kim - Site admin

The other upshot of this idea is that it is so much faster and easier to photograph single shapes...


I'll be working on light and shadow soon , sure this tool will be very appreciate , thanks for the add !


This is gonna be awesome!

Add comment

Your email will not be published, sold, or distributed. This is just part of our record-keeping and anti-spam efforts.

As part of our anti-spam efforts, your IP address will be recorded for our records when you post your comment.