December 1, 2023
This beginner's guide provides a step-by-step approach to drawing trees, using different mediums and techniques. It offers tips and tricks for mastering tree drawing and creating eye-catching landscapes. The guide also explores the symbolism of trees in art and how to convey different emotions and meanings through your drawing.


Drawing a tree can seem like a daunting task for beginners, but it’s a fundamental skill in art that can be mastered with practice and patience. Trees are a common element in landscape and nature drawings, and they can be portrayed in different ways to convey various emotions and meanings. In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to draw a tree, using different mediums and techniques. This article is aimed at beginners who are interested in learning to draw trees and improve their artistic skills.

Step-by-Step Guide

Before starting, we recommend having a reference image of a tree to guide you. This can be a picture you took yourself or one you found online. The following steps will help you break down the process of drawing a tree into manageable parts:

Basic shapes to start with

Begin by drawing a vertical line that will serve as the trunk of the tree. Next, draw a horizontal line on top of the trunk to represent the shape of the branches. You can also draw a circle or oval shape on top of the branches to represent the canopy of the tree. This will serve as a guide for adding the leaves and making the tree look fuller.

Adding details such as branches, leaves, and texture of the bark

Start drawing the branches from the horizontal line, extending them out in different directions. Add smaller branches that come off the main ones, and don’t be afraid to make them uneven or irregular. The bark can be drawn by making small, rough lines that curve along the trunk and branches. To add leaves, draw small ovals or circles that overlap each other to create a fuller look.

Tips and tricks to get started

One helpful tip is to use a light hand when drawing the basic shapes. This will make it easier to make corrections as you go along. Start with a simple tree and gradually work towards more complex ones. Also, observe the different types of trees in your area and notice the shapes of their branches and leaves. This will help you draw more realistic trees.

Visual Guide

Visual aids can be helpful when learning to draw a tree. Infographics and illustrations are easy to follow and provide a clear understanding of every step of the process. Try to find visual guides that show the different parts of the tree and how they fit together.

Using Different Mediums

You can draw a tree using different mediums, such as pencil sketching, charcoal drawing, and watercolor or acrylic paints. Each medium has its unique characteristics and techniques.

Pencil sketching

Pencil sketching is an easy and convenient way to start drawing trees. It allows for shading and adding texture to the bark and leaves. Use a pencil that is not too sharp to create soft lines and shadows. You can also use different grades of pencils to achieve different variations of shading.

Charcoal drawing

Charcoal drawing is a more versatile medium that allows for bold and dramatic contrast. You can create a dynamic and textured look with charcoal by blending it with your fingers or a blending stump. Experiment with different techniques, such as crosshatching, to create depth and dimension.

Watercolor or acrylic paints

Watercolor and acrylic paints provide a more vibrant and colorful look to your tree drawing. It requires more skill to use these mediums, but they can create beautiful scenery and add texture to the tree’s leaves and bark. Use a paintbrush to apply the paint and layer it to make it more opaque.

Tips and techniques to master each medium

Practice is essential when learning to draw trees using different mediums. Start with simple sketches and gradually work towards more complex trees. Use reference images and observe the details of trees to ensure accuracy. Also, experiment with different techniques, such as stippling and scumbling, to create various textures and effects.

Drawing Different Types of Trees

Different types of trees have their unique shapes, proportions, and textures. It’s essential to observe and study the different species of trees and the characteristics that make them distinct.

Oak tree

The oak tree has a distinct crown shape and rough bark texture. Its leaves are usually angular and lobed, and they are green or brown in color.

Pine tree

The pine tree has a cone-shaped crown and long, needle-like leaves that are green or blue-green in color. It has a smooth bark texture and a straight trunk.

Maple tree

The maple tree has a rounded crown and a gray or brown bark texture. Its leaves are characterized by a distinctive shape with three to five lobes, and they turn yellow, red, or orange in the fall.

Creating a Landscape

A tree is a fundamental part of a landscape drawing, but it can be enhanced by adding other elements such as rocks, houses, people, or animals. Adding these elements can make your drawing more complex and eye-catching.

Tips on how to create a more complex and eye-catching landscape drawing

Use a variety of sizes and shapes to create depth and balance in the scenery. Also, consider the value of light and shadow to create a more natural and realistic look. Observe the details of nature and use them to add interest and uniqueness to your drawing.

Tree Symbolism

Trees have been used in art for centuries and can hold symbolic meaning. From life and growth to death and decay, trees can convey various emotions and deeper meanings.

Discussion on the symbolism of trees in art

Consider the emotions and meanings you want to convey in your drawing and use the tree to represent them. For example, a tree with a strong and straight trunk can symbolize stability and strength, while a tree with many branches and leaves can symbolize growth and abundance.

Using drawing to explore emotions and deeper meanings

Art is a way of expressing emotions and perceptions. Use your tree drawing to explore deeper meanings and convey your thoughts and feelings. Be inspired by the world around you, and use it to tell your story.

Examples of how to convey different meanings with different drawing styles

A sketch of a barren tree with twisted branches can symbolize death and decay, while a painting of a lush, green tree can symbolize life and growth. Experiment with different drawing styles, such as minimalism or realism, to convey different emotions and meanings.


Drawing a tree is a fundamental skill in art that requires patience and practice. Start with basic shapes and gradually work towards more complex ones. Experiment with different mediums and techniques to find your style and overcome challenges. Remember to observe the details of nature and use them to add depth and interest to your drawing. Use the tree to convey emotions and deeper meanings, and tell your story through art.

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