How to Draw a Tree

Trees are beautiful and amazing parts of nature, and I feel very drawn to trees. I have found that over the course of years that I have been drawing, which is most of my life, that I tend to always come back to drawing trees. Maybe I love nature, or maybe the age and wisdom that a tree suggests is what brings me back to trees all of the time; either way trees are great subjects for any artist, and this article will teach you how to draw a tree in a few simple steps.

First you will need a pencil and paper. Any paper will do, and you can use canvas for this project if you plan on painting it afterwards. Gather your tools and find a peaceful place to relax; if you can try to sit out side so you can be inspired by your surroundings.

Start your drawing by creating a horizon line; this line will help you find the place where your tree will live. Your horizon line can span the horizontal length of the paper, or it can trail off to suggest a mountain or hillside. Next decide what season it will be because the different seasons will add a different touch to your tree.

Now start by drawing the trunk; this is accomplished easily by starting with a line a little below your horizon line. Taper this line in a little bit up from the bottom, follow through in a straight line upward, and have your line branch outward at an obtuse angle. It is okay if your line does not stay completely straight because most trees are not completely straight. Next draw a similar line on the opposite of the line to create the other side of the tree.

If you are creating a tree full of leaves you will not need to make many branches so start out by adding another line to the branches that have extended out of the top of the tree trunk. These lines should be parallel to the first lines, and they should form slender branches. When you reach where your trunk ends create a V shape by drawing a line going back upward. This line does not have to be as high as the first lines. Add another V shape in the middle to show more branches, and fill in smaller v shapes in areas that look empty.

If you are planning to make a leafless tree follow the same method as you did to create the branches on either side of the trunk with the branches on the inside. In order to finish the branches you will have to create smaller V shapes at the end to show tinier branches. It is amazing how many v shapes make up a tree.

If your tree exists in the spring time you can add leaves very simply; all you need to do is start at one side of the tree branches and make a squiggly line. Continue with this line until you have made an oval shape. This part will be the leaves. Now you can make smaller overlapping diamond shapes to add individual leaf details. Remember to round some of the edges because not all leaves will be completely pointy.

To add details to the tree trunk you can add some more lines of varying lengths to the inside of the trunk. These lines should be parallel to the trunk itself. You can also add an oval that is filled with smaller oval shapes to add character to the tree. This is a spot where an owl would live.

I hope this article has taught you the basics of tree drawing, and I hope it inspires you to draw!



Sarah Ganly is an artist, entrepreneur, and lover of life. She is a lifelong learner dedicated to making people smile.

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Sarah Ganly

Sarah Ganly is an artist, entrepreneur, and lover of life. She is a lifelong learner dedicated to making people smile.