Place egg whites, vanilla extract and cream of tartar in a grease-free stainless steel or glass bowl (or bowl of a stand mixer). Using the whisk attachment, beat on low until the egg whites begin to foam, then increase speed to medium-high. Continue beating while adding sugar 1 tbsp at a time. Beat another minute or so until the meringue has achieved stiff peaks and is glossy.
Dollop or pipe the meringue onto your parchment, using the drawn circles as a guide. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes without opening the oven door. Turn the oven off, but leave the meringues in for another hour to gradually cool. After the hour, remove them to the counter to cool completely.
The meringues should be crispy on the outside and light-weight. They should have no browning, but ovens vary and they may appear off-white. They should peel easily away from the parchment.