How to Draw Natural Sceneries for Beginners

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Beautiful drawings can be done by beginning artists with only a few tools and a few valuable rules to get started. Nature is a great resource for artists who want to start their process by drawing from real-life scenes. Many lessons can be learned by observing the effects of distance, light and color in a natural setting.

Things You'll Need

  • Drawing paper
  • Drawing board
  • Viewfinder
  • Pastels or charcoal
  • Gum eraser
  • Chamois cloth
  • Spray fixative
  • Work outside. You can always take photos of the scene for reference later, but start your drawing outside. Get a clear view of your composition and observe how the light affects your scene.

  • Practice blending and shading with warm and cool colors. Use charcoal to create a tonal drawing and focus on light and shadow. Use pastels to create a colorful drawing.

  • Choose your scene using a viewfinder, if desired. Construct a viewfinder from four long pieces of straight-edged cardboard, taped together to form a rectangular window. The window should be a size that reflects the ratio of your drawing. Determine the focal point of your scene by looking through the viewfinder.

  • Find your horizon line. The horizon line is the line at which the ground and sky appear to meet.

  • Sketch lightly the subject of your scene. Draw the closest objects larger, with more detail and sharper outlines. Sketch background objects smaller, with less detail. For example, use the length of your chalk to determine the size of a tree or flower as compared to other elements of your composition. If a tree in the distance is half the size of your chalk and a closer tree is the full length of the chalk, you will draw the tree in the distance half the size of the tree in the foreground.

  • Work on the tonal aspects of your drawing. Objects closer to you will have greater contrast of light and dark and more variance of color. Blur edges on background objects using your fingers or a chamois cloth. Lighten an area that fades into the atmosphere with a gum eraser.

  • Fill the page to complete the drawing. Add details and texture.

  • Use spray fixative to preserve your work.

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References

  • An Introduction to Perspective; Ray Smith; 1998
  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images
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