How To Draw A Bank – Art Instructional Tips

Have you ever wondered what it takes to draw a convincing bank building? As one of the pillars of any community, banks have a certain architectural presence – they’re meant to convey stability, trustworthiness and even a bit of grandeur. That distinctive and imposing style makes them fun to recreate in your own artwork.

In this guide, we’ll cover the essential techniques for capturing the architectural elements of banks through drawing. You’ll learn key concepts like applying tone and shading to emulate light effects. We’ll also explore easy methods for constructing the roof, windows and other structural features.

To follow along, you’ll want to gather some basic drawing tools like pencils, eraser, rulers and coloring supplies like crayons or colored pencils. Feel free to substitute as needed – art is all about imagination and you can even create some drawings with just a simple pen and paper!

Now, let’s dive into the vault and uncover tips for illustrating these symbols of money and security!

Getting Started: Key Drawing Concepts

Before attempting to depict any complex structure, it helps to brush up on some core artistic skills. Observational drawing trains you to carefully examine source images or real-world objects to translate their details onto paper. This boosts your hand-eye coordination. Alternatively, you can draw solely from your mind’s eye – great for boosting creativity.

You’ll also want to understand the difference between primary and secondary visual sources. A primary source means drawing directly from an existing object that’s physically present. Observational sketches of actual buildings would fall into this category. Secondary sources involve materials created by other people, like photographs or architectural plans.

As you practice, focus on developing quality of line. This refers to creating lines of varying thicknesses by adjusting the pressure you apply to the pencil. Combining lightweight sketch lines with darker outlines adds dynamism and depth. Weight of line is closely related – it describes creating bold or fine strokes.

Your grasp of tone is also vital for replicating light effects. Tone refers to relative lightness or darkness. By layering graduated tones from faint grey shading to near-black shadows, you can simulate how light wraps around shapes. This builds mass and volume.

Those foundational skills allow you to realistically render everything from fruit still lifes to complex city skylines!

Drawing the Bank Form

The most instantly recognizable bank feature is undoubtedly the massive columned facade flanked by an angular pediment style roof. Let’s break down constructing that element by element so it’s less intimidating!

First, sketch a long rectangular base to represent the ground floor level where patrons would enter. Offset a smaller centered rectangle on top – this will form the base of the triangular roof housing that iconic giant dollar sign!

To complete the roof, draw two steep lines slanting downwards from the edges of that smaller second rectangle. Erase any interior lines to leave an upside down V shape.

Next, frame the lower and upper levels with a set of vertical columns. This creates the illusion of a heavy structure supported by strong pillars while allowing for rows of stately windows.

Speaking of windows, dot your bank facade with orderly rectangles representing window frames. This conveys symmetry and order. Inside each frame, pencil in multiple slim horizontal bands to indicate window panes.

No bank is complete without a set of imposing double doors! Sketch these as two adjacent vertical rectangles. Divide them into panels with some straight lines. Attach a rounded awning above as the finishing flourish.

Once your structural drawing is complete, pull out those crayons and colored pencils to bring this institution to life!

Drawing Architectural Details

As you complete your bank illustration, take the opportunity to accentuate some coveted artistic skills in the process. This project is perfectly suited for practicing your hatching and cross hatching prowess!

Hatching involves filling an area with a texture of closely grouped parallel lines. Cross hatching layers two or more sets of hatchings applied at differing angles to build up tone. This technique replicates the mottled grey texture of stonework. Use it to render the sturdy columns framing those previous windows and doors we drew.

You can also demonstrate your mastery of perspective by angling some parallel lines towards a shared vanishing point. This tricks the eye into perceiving depth and 3-dimensional space which boosts realism. Apply that to any strong vertical elements like drain pipes or roof edges.

Finally, put those shading techniques to work by envisioning a light source illuminating your bank building. Add gradual shadows extending from wall edges and beneath overhangs by deepening your pencil pressure. Soften blurred lighter areas into denser darker tones. This introduces a eye-catching sense of drama!

Creative Embellishments

Once you’ve nailed the structural drawing, consider some playful artistic interpretations. Stylize the bank into bold geometrical shapes for a retro modern cubist appearance.

For an abstract twist, ignore conventional colors and paint the whole building shades of imaginary purples, greens or blues. Add some fluffy cloud shapes floating through walls for a whimsical effect.

Or populate the surrounding environment with waving patrons, guard dogs, armored trucks and lush garden beds for an engaging narrative scene.

If your bank resembles traditional carved stone, incorporate some weathering and aging effects. Sketch cracks, faded edges, trailing vines and scattered leaves collected around the base. This hints at decades or even centuries of stately history!

Ultimately, the entire creative medium is yours to explore so don’t be afraid to think outside the drawing box!

Can Drawing a Bank Represent the Process of Transferring Money?

Drawing a bank does not directly represent the process of transferring money to a bank account. However, it could symbolize the concept of financial transactions. When transferring money to a bank account, the funds are moving from one place to another, similar to the act of drawing a bank in art.

Practice Bank Drawings

The best way to improve artistically is through repeated practice. Start by rendering some quick line sketch studies focusing only on structure and proportion. Work on gradually increasing detail with each iteration.

After you feel comfortable with line drawing, attempt some tonal studies that demonstrate your growing mastery of shadows and light. Really pack in those pencil strokes to create rich sections of blackness and gradients fading to white.

You can also set yourself artistic challenges by timing each sketch to enhance your confidence. Or close your eyes and test your memory by generating blind continuous contour drawings where your pencil never leaves the page.

Once you’ve nailed realistic renderings, have some fun by purposefully distorting perspective or exaggerating colors for funky stylised banks. Treat them as playful artistic experiments – there are no mistakes in art, only opportunities to grow creatively!


Whether aiming for classical realism or avant garde interpretations, depicting banks in your artwork helps build artistic dexterity. You’ll boost eye-hand coordination through repeated practice while learning to translate complex structures onto paper. Mastering foundational methods like applying tone, shadows and perspective opens unlimited doors for recreating the world around you through drawing.

This guide should have equipped you with enough tips to start tackling bank illustrations with confidence. But don’t stop there – apply these skills to cathedrals, museums, factories and other inspiring architecture in your local community. The only limit is your imagination so set pencil to paper and start bringing your own unique artistic vision to life!