Drawing trees means getting involved and interested in their live. Most of us know that trees are good, for the environment. But how good are they? There are numerous attempts to quantify the benefits of trees. All of the calculation models have their weaknesses, but at least one can get a bit of an idea. However calculatiing the benefit of a single tree seems questionable, because the benefit of trees is very complex and depending a lot on the location. The benefit of a group of trees, a grove or an entire forest is not only the sum of single benefits, but a multiple.
If you like to know more “Trees are good” is a great website with loads of informations on trees including the
Tree benefit calculator. US residents can calculate the benefits of a tree in US dollars/per year for various species depending on diameter and location. Perhaps you want to calculate the benefit of your garden ?
Todays tree drawing is a pen study of a group of apple trees. Those some 20 trees would make up for about $ 1600.- per year, if they were located in the Northest of the US.
Some people can, for example the swedish artist Om Jan Tenow. He does terrific charoal landscape drawings in an amazing format. His works take you on an areal trip over coniferous forests with myriads of tiny trees. Here is the link to the inspiring work: Charcoal drawings by Om Jan Tenow
The image of today is a drawing in oil colors, a trace monotype done outdoors on site.
I am an avid collector of online tree drawing tutorials. There are many of them out there and quite a number are good ones.
For today I have picked a 15 Page tutorial : Guide to tree sketching by Claire Walke Leslie, which I find very suitable for beginners too.
Mrs. Leslie explains many aspects of a tree drawing. What I find particularly helpful are her (handwritten) instructions on her demonstration drawings, which explain exactly what she did.
One can print out the file and there are empty pages inserted for own studies.
Many of her instructions are very similar to my own findings I have put down in an instruction sheet “How to draw a pine tree“.
Todays blog illustration shows a sketchbook page dated from December 2004. I made quick notes of trees with a ball pen to study forms and proportions and colored from memory with watercolors at home. The winter 2004 was a relative warm one no snow to see at that time.
Vincent van Gogh is famous for his paintings that are a common place by uncounted reproductions. His drawings are less well known, but it seems that they are re-discovered again. The developement van Gogh took in drawing from academic style to his very own idiom is remarkable. I selected some examples of tree drawings by Vincent van Gogh for my microwebsite on tree drawing as his drawings are great material to study.
Van Gogh used mostly simple, more or less dense bundles of parallel strokes. To achieve different tonalities he used feathers with different thickness in his ink drawings. Very rarely there are hatches in several layers as it was typical for the academic way to draw. He invented and used different patterns and abreviations for different types of vegetation and materials in his landscapes. Thus his drawings look bright,transparent and easy to read for the viewer. Van Goghs drawings look so easy because every single move he made on the paper can be seen. His contemporaries probably had not a very high opinion about these drawings as they did not fit to their ideas of skills in drawing.
Yesterday evening I went out to play a bit with sepia ink and a pen with a broader nib to draw similar to van Gogh. It is worth trying, what looks so simple in van Goghs drawing is the fruit of long studies and exercises.
There is a weblog in my reader which sometimes seems to come to a complete halt, but I like it too much to delete it from the subscription. The reason : it is a very good one from my point of view and it is about drawing.
So for quite some time I am Awaiting a drawing and it is cool when it comes or even better when they come in a series. Werner Pfarr has surprised me after a quite long interruption with a series of drawings showing a place in the woods. The series of pencil drawings in the tradition of the paysage intime starts with drawing No.27 and has continued with a zoom in movement to No.33 meantime. I loved how this thing emerged on site out of the air and took its way.
There are a lot of great tree trunks and shrubs to see.
The charcoal drawing at the top of this post is from 2008, a study of the Abbey Maulbronn
It is very rewarding to look at the same trees from different sides and to study them again and again. Many trees are good old friends of mine and I re-visit them regularly. Each time I find something new and surprising, some changes that have taken place, which tell about time and age.
Today I want to point out to an interesting series of tree photographs by Werner Rauber I found on the net. It opened a further, interesting aspect of such a series of views.
The series is called “seeing the land”, it shows black and white photographs of several trees and groups of trees from different view points,thus exploring the trees and the space they occupy.
Apart from giving the pleasure of viewing these variations, these tableaux invite the viewer to inquire about the movements and the changing positions of the photographer. By doing so the viewer can construct a three dimensional imagination of the trees. The photographers intention is not to put emphasis on the beauty of the landscape, but to point out to the limits and conditions of seeing.
Todays illustration is a recent ink drawing from the series excursions into the residual landscape.