View Full Version : Painting trees in the distance

11-07-2006, 12:17 AM
Hello Folks,
First Poster here.
I'm after a bit of direction if someone could be so kind. I'm trying a picture, and as a beginner, I'm having trouble with "trees in the distance", very similar to those in the second photo down on this wet canvas page:


BTW im in acrylic. If someone could point me in the right direction, I'm sure I'll be fine.

Many Thanks,


11-08-2006, 03:23 AM
Welcome to wetcanvas.

I'll move this to the acrylics forum where you will get a warm welcome and help with your problem.


11-08-2006, 03:36 AM
I use a couple of methods. load a brush with one or more colors then dab/jab at the canvas, either a one inch house type brush or a regular artists brush like a brite works well. A natural sponge also does a good job but requires more layers

11-08-2006, 09:45 AM
Welcome to the Acrylics Forum!!

dreamz gave some good ideas...also remember that trees in the distance show less detail and are bluer in color than those we see close up.
Have you visited the Landscape Forum?

11-08-2006, 10:28 PM
Thanks people - that's very useful. I was looking in a local gallery yesterday at a painting and there were some similar trees - it looked like a bit of scumbling had been done. Would this be an option?

Thanks Again,


11-08-2006, 11:09 PM
All the above are great ideas - The article you have linked to (very clever - if you can do this - painting trees is a sinch!!!) has lots of good basic information to get you started and can be transferred across to acrylics in terms of blocking in the main colour values at first.
General pointers are
1. study the pattern of the branches and foliage in your ref. to get the general structure of the tree correct -
2. establish the light direction and paint the main values of tree first and then add details and form to the foliage - leaves are often only hinted at and even then just at the edges of the folliage
3. light holes in the folliage are essential to avoid tree looking pasted on
4. In order to get depth in the painting you usually paint perspective into the further trees by adjusting size and making the folliage bluer with less contrast etc.

I am hoping you are planning on painting a pohutakawa - one of my all time favorites !!!!!

11-09-2006, 08:12 PM
Hi Herdsman, welcome to the Acrylics Forum! You have received some very helpful information and that article by Marvin Chew is just great. I'm a huge fan of his watercolors.

In addition to natural sponge, I have also used the edge of a natural bristle fan brush to dab some light into foliage. Sometimes, I mix some really juicy (like cream) color and use a tooth brush to spatter paint. Have fun experimenting. :)


11-21-2006, 01:07 PM
Hi Neil, welcome to WC...from a fellow Wellingtonian...