How to Draw a Landscape

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To a beginner, full compositions can seem overwhelming. Just remember, most elaborate drawings are just a grouping of smaller drawings. This particular drawing is made up of three main subjects: the building, the tree left of the building and the sheep. Approach it with the idea that each is a separate drawing that contributes to the whole. Take your time, be patient with yourself and enjoy the process.

Must-Have Drawing Materials
• 4H, HB, 4B graphite pencils
• 14″ × 11″ (36 cm × 28 cm) medium tooth drawing paper
• Drawing board
• Kneaded eraser
• Straightedge, triangle or angle ruler
• Value scale

Optional, But Not to Be Overlooked:
• Dividers, proportional dividers or sewing gauge
• Pencil sharpener
• White vinyl eraser

Step 1: Draw the Basic Shapes

With a 4H pencil, lightly sketch a rectangle for the basic shape of the springhouse, then add a line for the roof’s edge and another line for the front corner of the house. This may be a good time to get out your straightedge to help you draw accurate lines. Sketch the grass line, tree trunk, leaf canopy and ovals for the sheeps’ bodies.

Step 2: Add the Window, Door and Roof Lines

Using the 4H pencil and your straightedge, add the window and door to the springhouse along with angles to the roof. You may want to use an angle ruler to check your angles.

Step 3: Add Details to the Building and Tree

With the 4H pencil, add more lines to define the springhouse, including additional overhang to the right side. Erase any unnecessary guidelines with a kneaded eraser. Sketch in more of the tree’s structure, tapering the smaller branches that grow away from the trunk.

Step 4: Add Definition to the Trees, Foliage and Sheep

With a 4H pencil, add more branches. Sketch the basic shapes of the tree’s foliage and the brushes and shrubs along the house. Sketch the heads and legs of the sheep.

Step 5: Refine the Sheep and Trees

Use the 4H pencil to refine the sheep by adding ears and filling out the basic shapes of their legs. Begin shading the leaves of the tree with a 4H pencil. Create texture by applying scribbles with short, broad strokes with the pencil tip flat against the paper, going back and forth. Use this same technique for the shrubbery. Check your values with the value scale and make adjustments as necessary.

Step 6: Add Shading and Grass

Add shading to the springhouse, sheep and foliage. Use the 4H pencil for the lighter shading and the HB pencil for the darker shading. Notice that the springhouse is darker on the left side because it is in shadow.

With 4H and HB pencils, add grass to the foreground and shade the sheep further. Make the body of the sheep on the far left dark and keep the grass around it light for contrast. The bodies of the other two sheep are light, so make the grass around them darker with an HB pencil. By doing this, you won’t have to rely on outlines to define the sheep; instead, they are defined by contrast. Check your work with the value scale.

Step 7: Add the Darkest Darks and Finishing Details

Make any adjustments to the shading and details with the 4H and HB pencils. Use the 4B pencil for the darkest darks, such as the window and door openings and shadow areas of the tree. Check the range of your lights and darks with your value scale and make any necessary changes. Sign and date your drawing.

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