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DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:21 PM
TREES


Trees. In almost all landscapes, they play an integral part in the scene. How the trees, grass and foliage are represented in a drawing have a direct impact on the entire mood and success of the drawing. Trees are also one of the most complex and intimidating subject matter to draw.

GOAL OF LESSON:
- Take a close-up view of trees
- Learn tips and clues on how to draw trees
- Focus on full-foliage trees such as oaks and maples

REFERENCES:
Without a doubt, the most influential and important reference that I can recommend is Mike Sibley's book "Drawing from Line to Life". He dedicates an entire chapter just on drawing trees. Mike’s on-line tree tutorial was the foundation of my learning and understanding on how to draw trees.

The Smithsonian Handbook on Trees is beneficial in providing information on the general shapes and varieties of trees.

HOMEWORK:

Start where I began by reading Mike's tutorial on trees! He covers material in his tutorial that I have purposely left out of this lesson. Why? Because he says it so much better than I do! Visit www.sibleyfineart.com – Drawing Trees.

I also have a tutorial on trees at www.dianewrightfineart.com/drawing-trees-1.htm There are additional samples that are not covered here. Also stroll through my galleries and pay particular attention to the trees and foliage.

Diane

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:22 PM
HAVE YOU HUGGED A TREE TODAY?

What better way to learn how to draw trees than to get up close and personal!!

During the past few years, I have spent a lot of time just observing and sketching trees.. It is so important to understand the substructure of a tree. It's like trying to draw the human body without understanding about muscle, bones etc. Here is my analogy — just as elbows, wrists, fingers, knees, ankles and toes are crucial to express the 'flow' of the human body - the joints (limbs, branches, twigs and roots) are crucial in expressing the 'flow' of the tree.

You must feel the texture of the bark in your own hands, you must understand how each leaf attaches to the branches and the branches to the trunk.

PLANTING THE TREE FIRMLY IN THE GROUND

How to plant the tree firmly in the ground? I always pay particular attention to this step when drawing. If that tree is not on solid fittings, it will look like it is floating on the paper.

- Most trees will flair out just as they meet the ground. Emphasizing this flare, and avoiding drawing the tree trunk straight, will give the tree a good base.

- Remember that trees are actually a cylinder in shape. The shading should represent a cylindrical object. Also the bark of the tree will gradually get more dense on the edges as it wraps itself around the tree. (See sample below).

- Be sure to put shadow at that base and draw the grass 'around' the trunk.

- Change and vary the weight of your pencil stroke to help develop depth in your tree. The darker areas should have a heavier weighted line. 'Feel' those shadows go through your hand as you lay down that pencil stroke.

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:27 PM
ASSIGNMENT #1 ROOTS:

Roots - What better way to understand the structure of a tree than to get to the root of the issue! These reference photos offer us an opportunity to draw some interesting and unique tree roots. After drawing these, I guarantee you won't draw a straight line out of the ground to represent a tree again! I have drawn the first tree roots for an example.

The third tree root can be found in the Reference Library:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=69861

With this assignment as well as any of these assignments, feel free to use your own favorite photos and post your drawings.

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:30 PM
BARK and Branches

The texture of the tree trunk can vary greatly. Here are a few trees that I have drawn. The level of detail depends how close the tree is in the scene.

Trees are three-dimensional forms, cylindical in nature that 'branch" off into smaller cylindars. Here is a illustration of a tree branch dissected into cylindrical tubes. The shading should represent a cylindrical object. Also the bark of the tree will gradually get more dense on the edges as it wraps itself around the tree.
The texture of the trunk is much more pronounced than on the branches as well.

- Pay particular attention to the 'points of articulation'. This means the point of where every limb attaches to the trunk, every branch to limb and every twig to the branch. This is what helps identifies the type of tree it is. Drawing the correct proportions and angles of these points is what 'creates' the tree.

- A common mistake is drawing the branches too straight. Try to identify those knots and kinks, and those bends in the branches. This gives 'life' to the tree. To help see these, it is helpful to observe the negative space between the branches instead of looking just at the branch.

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:34 PM
ASSIGNMENT #2 BARK & BRANCHES:

The purpose of this assignment is to work on the 3-d form. Concentrate on the finding and identifying the elbows and kinks in the branches. Look at the negative spaces (area between the branches) to help with placement. Also, experiment and work on pencil strokes to represent the bark.

Once again, I've included one of my drawings using the first image as a reference....

The last image can be found in the WC Reference Library:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=24481&cat=553

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:36 PM
Winter Trees:

Tips for drawing a winter tree
- Another common mistake is making the branches too thick or too thin for the tree type

- One more tip...watch the angle of the joints. The angles between the branches should be wider at the bottom of the tree and gradually become tighter at the top of the tree.


ASSIGNMENT #3 – Winter Trees

The intent of this assignment is to give you an opportunity to look at the sub-structure of trees. Here are a variety of ‘naked’ trees for you to practice on. Don’t feel overwhelmed at all those little branches….you don’t have to draw each and every one. Instead draw enough to give the impression and capture the essence of the species. The oak trees have thicker branches than the other varieties.

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:38 PM
LEAVES – Up-close

ASSIGNMENT #4: Leaves

Study and sketch the leaves, fruit and branches of trees. The purpose of this exercise is to develop an understanding the shape of the leaves, identify characteristics that make it unusual and how they form the leaf bundles. This understanding will assist you in drawing the tree as a whole.

These can be just sketches or completed drawings - the choice is yours.

I have attached a few samples of sketches that I have done. I have also attached reference photos from WC Image Library and some of my own images.

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:41 PM
Full-Foliage Trees

When I draw a tree with leaves, I don't think about drawing each leaf. Instead I am thinking of what kind of 'texture' or pencil stroke I can use to represent that bundle of leaves.

With each variety of tree, the pencil stroke and texture seem to change to accommodate the different leaf variety and how the leaf bundles lay.


Tips for drawing a summer tree
- The distance of the tree - background, midground, foreground or up-close - determines the size of the texture and detail placed on the tree.

- Always, be aware of where your light source is coming from. This will impact how those leaves will look and how the bundles will be shaded.

- Identify those ‘almost’ hidden branches and draw them in for key placement.

- The open spaces between the branches are important to allow the sky to show through.

- Use a minimum of 4 tonal values.

- The inside branches will always be darker and can create a lot of depth to your tree.

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:44 PM
UNDERHAND PENCIL GRIP:

So just how do I draw the foliage on a tree? I use an under-hand pencil grip when drawing foliage. I keep my wrist straight and use full-arm motion. I do not rest my hand on the paper. This will take some practice to control your pencil strokes, but once learned, you will discover your pencil strokes will have more fluidity to them.

I also use .5 mm mechanical pencils as the tip is just the right size. For upclose leaves or larger areas – I will use a clutch pencil with a chisel point.


PENCIL STROKE:

The pencil stroke that I use is a scribble stroke. Using the under-hand position, I create a scribble or a short random stroke to create the leaves. I build up the areas to create texture that will represent the leaf bundles.

In the shadowed areas I press harder creating darker areas.

A tree is never outlined or solid. Those outside leaves and branches are critical to the shaping of the tree

I keep the trees airy – leaving more openings than the reference photos show.

I use a battery operated eraser to restore the lightest leaves or to give sun-kissed highlights to a tree.

ASSIGNMENT #5 - Foliage

Practice the scribble pencil stroke using the under-hand pencil grip. Draw the branches first to give you a sense of where you are at. Save the white spaces (sky showing through). In these areas notice that the leaves are actually darker. The inner branches will be darker than the outer branches.

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:48 PM
ASSIGNMENT #6 – Full-Foliage Trees

Select one or more of these trees to draw. Two of these trees are also in the winter tree photos. Can you match them up?

DianeWright
03-18-2007, 05:53 PM
Conclusion

PHEW!!! :eek: That is a lot of information and assignments! But I know you are all up to the challenge!!! :thumbsup:

Just take your time and slowly work your way through each section and assignment. I will be here to answer questions! I also plan on drawing right along with you and posting my results too!

As always, feel free to use your own reference photos for specific assignments.

I hope you discover the enjoyment of drawing trees as much as I have. I have hundreds of photos of trees and it was difficult to narrow down the references to use for this tutorial. Each tree has their own uniqueness and story to tell.....we just have to listen them.

ENJOY!!!

Diane

rafaelmarron
03-18-2007, 08:49 PM
Hi Diane
I new in wet canvas, and now I am reading your tutorial on trees, I think you are right tree is a intimidating subjet but I try with your support.
Sorry for my english

Rafael

Judi1957
03-18-2007, 10:58 PM
Hi Diane!:wave:

Wow-this is magnificent! :clap: :clap: I know I have said it before-but I am still amazed --your work intrigues me. I will be joining in by Tuesday-and cannot wait!:thumbsup:

I can see that this is going to be a fabulous Class-as all of yours have been. You have taught us sooooo much! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!:heart:
We have such top notch teachers who are sharing with us their knowlege-and you have given so much time to lead so many Classes! So I give you the big hands!:D
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Mar-2007/37258-clapping_hands.gif
Thank-you

Chloe_1
03-18-2007, 11:46 PM
Hello Diane..
I would like to thank your for all your effort in the courses you are offering here. Unfortunately I am unable to participate with all the previous classes. I did some sections on the clouds; but missed the water and rock.
I have been reading everything though, and am learning.
I will try to do an assignment .Thank you

tyree
03-19-2007, 12:23 AM
:wave: hi diane...Ive been waiting for this class!!!! Lots and lots to take in here..ive read thru once ..and tomorrow will re read..and read mike sibleys chapter also...I do feel i have learned so much from your classes..and am looking forward to this one...Thank you...another five star class!!! tyree:clap: :thumbsup:

mothsailor
03-19-2007, 04:50 AM
This is a wonderful class. I love drawing trees, so I hope that I'll be able to participate "live" in this class, rather than after everyone else has moved on as I did with the earlier ones. But, regardless, there is so much to learn in these tutorials. Thanks, Diane!

jasminerose
03-19-2007, 07:08 AM
Me too diane dido too all that was said before by tyree and the others . thank you for the classes and I would bye that book by mike but its heaps for us in aussie its about 70 aussie dollars . too much for poor little old me . thanks jasmine by the way im going too try again the sky .

DianeWright
03-19-2007, 08:30 AM
Rafael - Welcome to Wetcanvas!
I think you are right tree is a intimidating subjet but I try with your support. Sorry for my english

If we treat the subject matter of trees like any other subject matter, they aren't as intimidating as they might seem. Understanding what you seeing, breaking it down into smaller pieces, dissecting and figuring out a pencil stroke that best represents the texture of bark and leaves. These are all steps we have been using throughout these lessons. You really can draw anything if these steps are followed.

And your English is just fine! I only speak and write one language, so I envy others that can communicate in multiple languages.

Judi - oh...gosh....thank you so much for the BIG thank you! It has been my pleasure to share my techniques with others. It's the participation of the students that make these classes so successful!

Chloe - participation can be at many different levels and these classes are on-going. At any time, feel free to go back and do some of the projects. I hope you will be able to join us as we romp around exploring trees!!

Tyree - Thank you to being such a devoted student! I'm glad my lessons have been able to assist others in drawing. Trees have to be my favorite subject matter - so this should be fun!

Mothsailor - Dave - I'm glad I'm not the only one who enjoy drawing trees! I can't seem to get enough of them. Each one is so unique and begs to be drawn!! :lol:

Jasmine - Since not everyone has the opportunity to purchase Mike's book, we really learn to appreciate the opportunity that Wetcanvas offers. I went to college to study art and I have to say that the WC Basic 101 and 102 classes surpass any college training that I had! I really appreciate the opportunity to be a part of them!

THANKS EVERYONE! So let's start drawing!

Diane

BTW - a pdf file of this class is now available on my website! Just go to the tutorials tab, select Trees and at the bottom of the last page, you can download the file!

joane
03-19-2007, 11:55 AM
Hello, Diane--thank you for the wonderful class on trees--doing the close-ups is another first for me. Are we supposed to post in this thread when we have completed the assignment?

DianeWright
03-19-2007, 11:58 AM
Are we supposed to post in this thread when we have completed the assignment?

YES! Definitely post your work in this thread. If you have any questions, be sure to ask!

Diane

joane
03-19-2007, 12:36 PM
Here is my first attempt--I know it needs some work, but not sure just what!http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Mar-2007/100657-Tree_1_wc.jpg

DianeWright
03-19-2007, 01:15 PM
Joane - wow you work quickly! This is really good. You have developed a nice cylindrical tree trunk and the roots are pushing themselves into the ground. The only thing I might recommend is giving some of the bark some highlights (the sun catching little pieces of bark). This will just add more to the roundness of the tree. Also just a little more grass behind the tree roots... But this is nice just as it is.

Diane

frieda L
03-19-2007, 03:02 PM
What a great surprise! Class is on! I was looking forward to the tree part. Diane, gave us soooo much information, you wrote the book on drawing trees! :clap: :clap: :clap: we will never look at a tree in the same way again. Thank you so much:heart: :heart: :heart:
Maybe I can do an elefant tree for one of the asignments. I just love those, and have been wanting to draw one.

I will probably need today to read and research all you info... but just wanted to sign in...

frieda

joane
03-19-2007, 03:30 PM
Thanks, Diane--this one did go quite fast--your tutorial is great! I spent my Sunday evening engrossed with trees!

DianeWright
03-19-2007, 03:46 PM
Hi Frieda! Welcome to class! An elephant tree, huh? That will be interesting!

Joane - That's what I like to hear....that I'm causing others to become obsessed about trees :smug: :D

Diane

tvandeb
03-19-2007, 04:29 PM
Diane,
Thank you, I can surely use this classroom. I too, learned alot from your other classrooms. I can do trees in pen and ink, but graphite is always a challange for me. I just got Mike Sibleys book, so now I have a reference to your classrooms. Thanks, I will post assignment 1 this week. Take care....:)

frieda L
03-19-2007, 04:39 PM
The elephant tree (torote), is very medicinal, similar to neem or tee tree. A tincture of the bark, leaves, berries...will cure about anything. It is very abundant in the Baja, quite rare in the States. Grows very slowly, needs to be respected and protected.
This one was photographed in october, after we had a LOT of rain, so it is uncharacteristically green. I will have to go out with the camera, ...
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Mar-2007/22676-san_vicente,_oct_06_001.jpg
there are actually two varieties. It is the "torote colorado" with beautiful golden bark, that is medicinal.
hope you don't mind, could not help myself, it is a beautiful tree.
frieda

DianeWright
03-19-2007, 04:44 PM
Frieda - this one will be perfect to draw for the last assignment. With the lighter bark and the small, close bundles of leaves, and those beautiful curving branches, and the shadows....it will be a wonderful challenge!!!

May I take a try at drawing it too?? If you can't tell, I love trees.....

If you get a chance to take more photos, be sure to take photos of the bark and leaves upclose. This will help you to understand the tree better. You might want to try drawing them for the bark and leaf assignments too.

Diane

frieda L
03-19-2007, 05:07 PM
Diane,
May I take a try at drawing it too??
Of course !!! I will go and get some more photos, though. The bark is very characteristic.
If you can't tell, I love trees..... Yep, I can tell:lol:
frieda

tyree
03-19-2007, 05:51 PM
frieda...that is a beautiful tree!!! glad you posted it!!! joane...what a great start...your fast..but it really looks good!!! tyree:wave:

DianeWright
03-19-2007, 07:31 PM
Okay, here is my attempt at Assignment 1.

The first sketch was an attempt to try and get a "feel" for the roots. I've determined that it is much too straight, too long and there isn't enough flow from the root through the tree.

My second attempt is much better. I spent about an hour on this one. The roots are more fluid and seem more planted.

You folks are so fast, I hope I can keep up with you all!!! :)
Enjoy!

Diane

Chloe_1
03-19-2007, 07:54 PM
Thanks Diane.. Are we using the F and 2B .5 mechanical pencils for the trees also?

DianeWright
03-19-2007, 08:07 PM
Thanks for mentioning that Chloe - it would help if I mentioned lead weights and pencil types!!! Those are definitely my favorite ones to use! In fact, I used the F weight .5 mm mechanical pencil on these sketches.

I also used a tortillon to shade the ground area around the tree. Probably a better technique would be to use a circularism pencil stroke on the ground for a more true texture.

Diane

scrappie
03-19-2007, 08:09 PM
Trees love all of them just planted Sunburst locust Sunday, guess I had better get to drawing.
Joane, nice detail.
Diane, Thanks for your time these class have opened up my eyes I still have a ways go.

tyree
03-19-2007, 10:35 PM
diane...yours looks great...started mine tonight..trying not to let it float off the page:p have been looking in on Mike Sibleys Trees and your extra tutorial...great info in both....!!!! tyree

tyree
03-20-2007, 11:26 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Mar-2007/65063-1st_trunk.jpg Here is my first assignment..with Staedtler pencils 4h..2b..3b...on canson drawing pad...your c and c's are welcomed...btw its a trunk:p tyree:wave:

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 11:47 AM
Tyree - good attempt! Looks like a tree trunk to me. You have good form and shading to suggest a cylindar trunk. Your shading on the left side of the tree might be just a bit too heavy. Here's some other suggestions...the root that is overlaying on top of the other one...is too straight. Additional shading is needed as well as some curvature to the root to make it look like it laying on top of the other one.

Also overlay some of the grass on top of the roots not just at the base. This will allow that root to be firmly implanted into the ground, not just floating on top. The grass seems to be consistently dark 'around' the roots. I know the photo reference does not have a strong light source, but there should be a difference in the shading of the grass 'behind' the root compared to the grass 'in front' of the root.

This is not an easy reference photo. I have started one of this too and will post it tonight. I'll have to try again because I don't like how it's looking.

Diane

Judi1957
03-20-2007, 12:36 PM
Diane-I know this is tree Class-but you still ROCK!:D I noticed on your webpage that you have the pdf's of your lessons there as well.
:clap: :clap: :clap:

tyree
03-20-2007, 12:37 PM
thanks diane...for the points...will work on her some more tonight!!!! tyree:wave: :smug:

mothsailor
03-20-2007, 02:21 PM
Here's my first go at the roots assignment.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Mar-2007/52179-tree_roots_1.jpg

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 03:38 PM
Dave - you have a good tree trunk going there! The trunk has nice texture and shading, creating a nice cylindical form. Your roots are firmly planted in the ground. I especially like the delicate texture of the bark. :clap: The only suggestion I have is to push the shading a bit more around the roots to develop more depth.

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 03:42 PM
Dave - you have a good tree trunk going there! The trunk has nice texture and shading, creating a nice cylindical form. Your roots are firmly planted in the ground. I especially like the delicate texture of the bark. :clap:

The only suggestion I have is to push the darks and shading a bit more around the roots to give them more depth.

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 03:42 PM
And now my message is hiccupping and I've posted twice.... :rolleyes:

mothsailor
03-20-2007, 03:48 PM
And now my message is hiccupping and I've posted twice.... :rolleyes:

And there was me thinking my tree was so good that you posted twice in your excitement! :wink2: :angel:

RuthT
03-20-2007, 04:07 PM
Hi All :wave: Lots of lovely work already. I have read Sibley's chapter on trees and your lesson Dianne and thoroughly enjoyed them, but can see that there is a lot of work ahead of me. I am one of the slower workers, but just wanted to let you know that I am on board :)

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 04:36 PM
Dave - I like your excuse...I mean explanation better! Your drawing is so good...it made me stutter... :D

Ruth - Glad you can join us! Take your time...I'm very slow at drawing, so I'm a hopping to keep up!! But I'll be around long after class is over to assist.

Diane

Dreamsun
03-20-2007, 06:09 PM
Hello everyone! :)

Diane,
at first a very big "thank you" to you! I love trees very much and so I do love drawing them. But all my trees I've drawn before look more like a washed-out scrubber or a piece of cotton wool with dents and spots. :D

I think this will change now because of this great workshop.

And now I have a question:
Can I join in yet?
And - do you smudge the bark and then draw the structure? Or did you only smudge the gras or the backyard?

Warm greetings from the frozen north of Germany.

Martina

PS: Did I mention that I love your way of drawing very much, Diane?

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 06:49 PM
Martina - Here's a warm welcome to WC! :wave: You are not too late to join and we've just gotten started!

And - do you smudge the bark and then draw the structure? Or did you only smudge the gras or the backyard?
I try to avoid smudging whenever possible. When I first started drawing trees, I would smudge (blend) the leaves and bark, but now I've learned a much better way of creating an even tone.

Draw in your details, such as the bark, the crevices, knots and imperfections and shading. I like to use a F lead for the finer details and a 2B for darker areas. Then use a harder lead like a 4H or 6H with a chisel point (flat angled edge to your pencil) and burnish the top of the details. This will create a beautiful toned area without losing any of the detail!! Smudging or blending will only diffuse or eliminate all that detail.

I learned this technique from Mike Sibley's book "Drawing Line to Life" and it has made an incredible difference to the quality and crispness to my drawings.

I still find when I am "sketching" like the root assignment, I will rush and resort to blending again. But Mike's technique offers a much better result.

PS: Did I mention that I love your way of drawing very much, Diane? Thank you for the kind words. :o You make me blush....

Diane

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 07:04 PM
Here is my next root for assignment 1. I think I'm just going to leave this one unfinished, but what you can see is the technique that I mentioned in my previous post.

You can see I have added the details of the bark and then a top layer of burnished harder lead (4B). You can see how this creates a nice even mid-tone with no smudging of the graphite.

Diane

jmfletch
03-20-2007, 07:05 PM
How did you sneak in and start this class?

I will join in but must catch up on a few other started projects first so maybe by the weekend.

Here I am just finding the thread and several have already posted beautiful work!!
Joane, tyree, Dave - Props on nice work!! :thumbsup:

Joe

scrappie
03-20-2007, 07:45 PM
Assignment 1

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Mar-2007/88717-treetrunk_1_class.jpg

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 07:51 PM
Scrappie - very very nice! You've got it!!! :clap: :clap: The ground work has a beautiful texture that compliments the bark of the tree. I can just feel those roots pushing themselves out of the ground. I really like this!

Joe - we'll be looking for you soon!!

Dreamsun
03-20-2007, 08:10 PM
Thank you so much, Diane, for the quick reply and the explanation. Now I understand what I have to do or better NOT to do. :)

I tried to get Mike Sibleys book here but it is'nt possible. But I think with such a good workshop that you are doing I don't need it necessarily.

Now I'll go and draw the roots even if my husband looks at me as if I've got crazy! (it's late after midnight here.)

DianeWright
03-20-2007, 08:27 PM
I tried to get Mike Sibleys book here but it is'nt possible. But I think with such a good workshop that you are doing I don't need it necessarily.

You can purchase Mike's book directly from his website. I am sure he ships to Germany! And his book is a must. This workshop is just a snippet of information compared to the comprehensive and wealth of information in his book!

I'm starting to sound like a broken record...but in my humble opinion, there isn't a drawing instruction book available that is thorough as Mike's.

Even my book that is coming out in June only touches on some of these techniques. The name of my book is "Drawing Made Easy: Beautiful Landscapes" published by Walter Foster. (Visit my website for more information.....end of commercial....)

Diane

rafaelmarron
03-20-2007, 09:41 PM
Hi Diane

Here is my drawing of root for assignment 1, I used pencil HB and 2B, I wait for your opinion.

Rafael

tyree
03-20-2007, 11:10 PM
Hi All :wave: Lots of lovely work already. I have read Sibley's chapter on trees and your lesson Dianne and thoroughly enjoyed them, but can see that there is a lot of work ahead of me. I am one of the slower workers, but just wanted to let you know that I am on board :) hi ruth...glad you found us!!! tyree:wave: :D :wink2:

mothsailor
03-21-2007, 03:47 AM
Here is my next root for assignment 1. I think I'm just going to leave this one unfinished, but what you can see is the technique that I mentioned in my previous post.

You can see I have added the details of the bark and then a top layer of burnished harder lead (4B). You can see how this creates a nice even mid-tone with no smudging of the graphite.

Diane

Thanks for posting this...it is very interesting to see this. I wouldn't have known that you used hatching! But I think you mean a 4H pencil, not 4B.

Dreamsun
03-21-2007, 07:46 AM
Good morning everyone. :wave:

Diane, I am sorry but I have a little "understanding-problem" (because of my unperfect english):


Then use a harder lead like a 4H or 6H with a chisel point (flat angled edge to your pencil) and burnish the top of the details


Does this mean that you overlay every detail you have drawn with a new layer of this harder pencil?

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 08:44 AM
You can see I have added the details of the bark and then a top layer of burnished harder lead (4B).

But I think you mean a 4H pencil, not 4B.

DAVE - THANK YOU FOR CATCHING THAT ERROR! I'd fix the typo, but for some reason this morning I can't edit the posts. Hopefully everyone understands!

THANKS!

I wouldn't have known that you used hatching!
You will find that in most of my work, I use various forms of hatching. I also use a random short stroke too that is a variation of hatching. I find it gives me freedom to really 'feel' the pencil strokes as I lay them down. I can vary the weight of the pencil stroke and build-up layers very effectively. The textures created are endless. I'm not much for circularism as I find it very time consuming (and I'm impatient) but it has it's uses for textures too.

Diane

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 08:47 AM
Rafael - It is so interesting how everyone can interpret and represent objects so uniquely! I really like your technique on this drawing! The roots are nicely planted in the ground and you have good rounding of the tree. The bark looks more like the bark of a shaggy hickory with it's large, loose sections. But that's okay - I like it! :clap: :clap:

Diane

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 08:57 AM
Dreamsun I think your English is great and I understand you very well!

Does this mean that you overlay every detail you have drawn with a new layer of this harder pencil?

That is correct! Be sure to practice on another piece of paper, but I think you will be amazed at the results! I use a very flat chisel edge on the pencil. (I use a piece of sandpaper to create the flat edge with an angle.) This flat edge creates a wide, smooth pencil mark. By applying a firm, consistent layer over the detail, you create a smooth tone and you don't lose the detail.

Take a look at the assignment I just posted (half-done). You can see the lighter layer over the detail.

If you want to create subtle highlights, just use blu-tak or a kneaded eraser and lift off the graphite.

Keep asking the questions until I explain it well enough for you to understand!!!

Diane

tyree
03-21-2007, 10:35 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/21-Mar-2007/65063-2nd_stump.jpg diane...lets see..i lifted some darks...used a .05 mech to add more values to limbs..added grass and more leafs to limbs...im not sure how much more tyree abuse my paper will take:p so if you would like me to do another trunk..i will!!! i think it a little better though...Great job by everyone so far!!!! tyree:wave:

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 10:40 AM
Tyree - much better. All the changes you made really sets the tree firmly on the ground and those roots look so much better. How do you feel about it? Do you think it's an improvement? You only have to do another trunk if you want to! :cat:

Diane

tyree
03-21-2007, 10:44 AM
diane...thank you..think ill try another one...there are still people starting there first one!!! practice!!! practice!!! tyree:wave:

Dreamsun
03-21-2007, 11:33 AM
Uff - okay, here is my attempt on the treetrunk.

It was fun to draw and especially to overlay with a 3H pencil. The other pencils I used were 4b, 2b and F - all Derwent wooden pencils.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/21-Mar-2007/94648-treetrunk_mid.jpg

Edit: I forgot - I'll try to get Mikes book on his website. I had a look on some pages and must say: I WANT TO HAVE IT! :cat:
Thank you for the hint, Diane!

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 01:21 PM
Dreamsun - very nice drawing!! Here's just a couple of minor suggestions: limit the use of outlining or at the very least change the weight of the line to match shading, or highlights. You have a heavy outline on both sides of the front roots. If you lighten one of the sides, it would indicate the direction of your light source.

Also vary the length of your grass and weeds, don't be afraid to overlap the grass in front of the roots. This will create more depth and plant those roots more firmly in the ground! :clap: :clap:

And I agree...Mike's book is a must have!!!

Diane

rafaelmarron
03-21-2007, 01:36 PM
Hi
Diane thank you for your comment. :heart:
I rushed the drawing of the bark but I take note of your observation.
Rafael

tvandeb
03-21-2007, 01:40 PM
Well, Diane; here is my first attempt at assignment #1 roots. I don't know...:eek: Comments and pointers are definitely welcome.
On canson 140lb paper, pencils hb, f , 2h, 4h, 2b, and 4b. Thanks...:o http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/21-Mar-2007/71359-tretutorialassignment1roots1.jpg

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 01:57 PM
Tammy Jo - way to go! :clap: Here is a suggestion: Your tree trunk has some strong V shaped patterns occurring. I often will create repetitive marks and then use a white plastic eraser and drag through the marks. For a softer effect, use blu-tak and drag or lift areas off. Then I build up another layer of graphite over the areas to make it more random affect.

I think you will find that by breaking up just a few of those V's, it will make a big difference!

That reference photo doesn't show much of a light source, but you have created a fairly even tone across the tree trunk. By shading one side will give the tree more 3-dimensionality. You did condense the bark as it approached the sides, but just a bit more shading will give it even more shape.

BRAVO!


Diane

tvandeb
03-21-2007, 02:20 PM
Thanks Diane, wow, alot of good tips, I wrote these down. I am going to try the next root. I was afraid to use the electric eraser on the last one, and I am glad I did'nt. I 'll ty the blue- tak on the bark too, I used kneaded eraser. Thanks, good tips !!!:clap: :clap:

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 02:39 PM
Tammy Jo - I'd have to agree that the electric eraser would be too dramatic to use in this instance.

Everyone is doing a fantastic job with these tree trunks and roots. I am just so impressed. :thumbsup:

Diane

Dreamsun
03-21-2007, 03:29 PM
Diane,
thank you for your commendation!!!!
And for your comment. Yes, I find it myself too much outlined, I tried to remove them with Blutak (I love it, it is so much better to handle for me than a kneaded eraser) but not enough.

And the grass - I see what you mean. it looks like a brush or like a turf, not very natural.
I've read the lesson on Mikes homepage about drawing grass and tried to do so - as quickly as I could, but somehow I got a knot in my fingers. :lol:

I have another question - have I darken the trunk enough? I sometimes seem to be afraid of dark tones.

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 03:48 PM
I have another question - have I darken the trunk enough? I sometimes seem to be afraid of dark tones.

Martina - I think you could go darker in the shadow areas under the roots. They seem to be a bit flat. The more range of values (shades of gray) you use, the more realism you will gain. Your drawing has about 3-4 values currently, adding a 2-3 more values will create more depth and realism. Where to add them? I'll let you play and decide that! :smug:

Diane

Dreamsun
03-21-2007, 04:09 PM
*rofl* Thanks Diane. I'll put on my "Sherlock-Holmes-cap" and find it out.

And thanks for your patience. It is such good that you are here. I learned everything about drawing 8it is not much) from books til now and it is a feeling like Xmas and Easter at one day that I can ask a question and get a direct answer on a very special problem.

DianeWright
03-21-2007, 04:15 PM
Martina - you are most welcomed. I started drawing again just 5 years ago (after a 20+ year break) and didn't know where to begin. I discovered on-line forums like Wetcanvas and with the help of others, I improved very quickly. Now it is my turn to give back and help others!

Diane

RuthT
03-21-2007, 04:46 PM
...there are still people starting there first one

That includes me tyree :D. It may be a couple more days before I post as I'm going to the doctor for a check-up tomorrow. I draw every day but I think I need a battery attached to my arm to speed it up a bit :lol:

Your roots are looking really good and I like the foliage behind too tyree. I enjoyed the feeling of an illustration that came across to me from your tree dreamsun. I like the darks that you achieve tvandeb, mine always start out so pale. I'm also going to follow your good idea of writing tips down as I always have to go back through threads looking for something I know was mentioned.

I did write to you earlier tyree but I cannot find my post, so presume I forgot to press the "Submit Reply" button AGAIN.

tvandeb
03-21-2007, 06:55 PM
Diane,
I like what you said about giving back, I am hoping that I can do the same thing someday . I did the 2nd root this afternoon, this one was very hard for me, so many areas , I really could not figure out, so I guessed. :o Thanks !http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/21-Mar-2007/71359-root2.jpg

tyree
03-21-2007, 07:39 PM
tammy...great job on the second one!!! scrappie...excellent !!! dave....such great detail and darks....rafael...i do like that bark!!!! dreamsun...good start on yours!!!! hi ruth and joe!!!!! tyree

Judi1957
03-21-2007, 09:48 PM
Time to catch up. Sorry I'm a lil late for Class teach.Last night was hubby's birthday-so didn't really draw:wink2: :lol:

Ohhh Dave-I think your trunk looks great!!!:clap:

Diane-That is beautiful!!!:clap:

Scrappie-Love it!:clap:

Rafael-That looks wonderful-love the texture!:clap:

Susan-First of all that looks great:clap: -and second-thanks for sticking around for us snails.:D

Martina-You may find you want to sleep with Mike's book! I always keep it by my chair. You wait till you see the dogs in Mike's book-as well as everything else. Now all I need are Diane's books to go with it.:thumbsup: :thumbsup:
Your tree is really looking good!:clap:

Tammy Jo! Looking good!:clap:

Hi Ruth-my fellow snail pal!:wave:

Here is my first installment on assignment 1. I am missing those values (should have remembered the rock lesson and read Dianes post on pencils here. Hopefully it will come along faster now. This is 1 1/2 hours so far. Looks a tad darker than it is.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/21-Mar-2007/37258-gnarly1.jpg

tyree
03-21-2007, 11:12 PM
judi...its looking fabulous..i like it dark:smug: hey...i like snails...going to put them in my second trunk drawing:D :lol: :p tyree:clap:

tvandeb
03-22-2007, 12:29 AM
Tyree, thanks, yours looks pretty good, how did you get it so dark, I can't seem to get it that dark??
Judy; I like your textures and the dark areas. I have not tryed the leaves yet, but will watch everybody so I can learn.
Ruth, thanks , but I still am not dark enough in areas, I still have to figure that one. :o
Take care all...

DianeWright
03-22-2007, 08:33 AM
Tammy - good job! Keep working on building up your shading around the edges.

Judi - I love your tree! Those roots show such a solid mass and strong 3 dimensionality because of the range of tones you are using. The dark shadows adds so much feeling too. EXCELLENT!!! :clap: :clap: :clap:

Diane

Chloe_1
03-22-2007, 01:30 PM
:wave: Everyone,
I manage to find some time doing Assignment 1 on RootsHere it is!
Comments and suggested appreciated:)
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/22-Mar-2007/68155-IMG_1848.JPG

frieda L
03-22-2007, 01:45 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/22-Mar-2007/22676-assignment1_004.jpg
My internet connection is not stable enough today to allow me the time to comment ... lost it a few times, so I will just wish a happy thursday to all... good job guys, everyone is working hard!
Here is my first effort, I managed to get into it yesterday for a few hours...
frieda

RuthT
03-22-2007, 03:30 PM
Looks as if you made some good guesses Tammy Jo. The bark is lovely, you obviously learned quickly from Diane's advice on your first assignment.
Wow-ee Judi - your work is beautiful and the background growth really brings it to life.
Very nice work Chloe. I think a little grass or leaves around it would help to show its size.
Your work is so delicate Frieda, yet all the different tones and differing directions of the lines give it an underlying vitality. A lovely drawing!

DianeWright
03-22-2007, 03:45 PM
DITTO TO WHAT RUTH JUST SAID!!!! I couldn't say it better, so I won't even try.

(Thanks Ruth....)

Diane

Dreamsun
03-22-2007, 04:03 PM
Hi everyone :wave:

I am deeply impressed by all these wonderful drawings of you all. It gives me such a big support and motivation.:heart:

May I askanother question? (If I am bothering please tell me.)
How large are your drawings? I have the suspect (can I say so?) that my drawing is too large. It's about 6" x 8" /14 x 21 cm - is this too large?
Because in a complete drawing the tree trunk would propably not so large.

Hm - do you know what I want to say? :o

DianeWright
03-22-2007, 04:18 PM
May I askanother question? (If I am bothering please tell me.)
How large are your drawings? I have the suspect (can I say so?) that my drawing is too large. It's about 6" x 8" /14 x 21 cm - is this too large?
Because in a complete drawing the tree trunk would propably not so large.

This is a very good question and an excellent observation! In landscape drawings, the trees will be relatively small. The only time your drawing would be larger is if the subject matter is specifically focused on the tree root and you want to capture all its wonders in detail.

My tree trunk drawings that I have posted have been about 3"x5" at the most. I also tend to draw very small with my landscapes. The average size of my drawings are 11"x14".

Diane

RuthT
03-22-2007, 04:46 PM
DITTO TO WHAT RUTH JUST SAID!!!! I couldn't say it better, so I won't even try.

(Thanks Ruth....)

Diane

You are truly welcome Diane :)

RuthT
03-22-2007, 04:54 PM
At last I have finished assignment 1 :angel: The eagle eyes of my fellow artists will probably detect it, so I am 'fessing up to starting my drawing right at the top edge of the page. I have never done that before and I have no idea why I did it now. (Maybe I was leaving room for the roots to grow :D :D ) Oh dear! it is a little darker IRL.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/22-Mar-2007/3715-treerootsassign1.jpg

Dreamsun
03-22-2007, 05:44 PM
Ruth
may I say this although I am a greenhorn? Hm - I simply do it: I like your tree - especially the curywurly roots.:)


Diane,
thank you for this information. My last treetrunk was definitely too large. I tried another one - and tried to avoid outlines :angel:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/22-Mar-2007/94648-mytreetrunk.jpg

Comments are very welcome! :)

frieda L
03-22-2007, 05:52 PM
tyree, btw its a trunk ... You are so right, and a good one. Love the second version !
moth sailor great texture on the bark
Scrappie, interesting roots, nice values, believable dirt.
Rafael, good job, unique tree, well rendered
Dreamsun, nice style
Tammy Jo, well done on the second one, maybe just a bit of grass or dirt would "ground" it
Judy just beautiful, you turn this exercise into a 'framer'
Chloe good roots,
Ruth, there is yours... very nice. Love the texture in the bark, it is very believable and natural looking.
Dianna, thank you for the examples and working along with us...
frieda

frieda L
03-22-2007, 05:56 PM
Hi Martine, I like the new one:clap:

Dreamsun
03-22-2007, 05:59 PM
*blushing*

Thank you Frida! You made me happy.

tyree
03-22-2007, 07:39 PM
thanks all for kind comments...i think i may still try one more...tammy...if i want an area a little darker...i take a graphite pencils shavings from it ..and put in on the drawing with my finger..delicately...then go over with a 4h lead to smooth it out!!! thats how i get it a little darker:wink2: ...chloe...its looking lovely..will you be adding foilage to yours???? frieda...wow ..great tonals...good job girl!!! ruth...that bark is wonderful...nice work...!!! martina...ohhhhh yeah ..i like the second one...really really nice work!!!! tyree:wave:

Judi1957
03-22-2007, 11:13 PM
Thanks all:heart:

Susan-can't wait to see your snails on your tree. Yeah-go ahead-work on another!:p :p :D

Hi Chloe! Long time no see!:wave: Your toning is really starting to add the shape!:clap:

Frieda! I love the bark that is appearing!:clap:

Ruth-Good job on getting the texture!:clap:

Martina- I would suggest you add more dark under the roots to ground it and add more to indicate the shadowed root part.
The top is really good too!--keep going!:clap:

Installment 2-My name is Judi and I am a detail freak:lol:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/22-Mar-2007/37258-gnarly2.jpg

Chloe_1
03-23-2007, 08:19 AM
Thanks for your comments..
Judi..Your tree is really coming to life..great! What pencils are you using?
Ruth..I think the picture came a bit washed out . I will take another picture and make some minor adjustments on it. Your tree is looking good.
Frieda...Good root system!!!
Tyree.. Good going Tyree!!!
Tammy..Nice contrast on your first tree

frieda L
03-23-2007, 05:13 PM
I won't be able to post till monday, so I'll post the start of my next tree...
wondering if it has enough texture, is it too smooth/bland in places... for some strange reason, I started at the bottom...
If this was a portrait, someone would not be happy, but for a tree... I'd like to get its likeness, personality...
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/23-Mar-2007/22676-assignment2_002.jpg
frieda

Dreamsun
03-23-2007, 05:26 PM
Judy, Frieda,
it looks wonderful! :clap:
(Frieda - This is only the start??? It has more structure than any of my drawings.)

Every time I look at all the drawings here I wonder if I would ever be such good. Is it my less patience or my less ability...:cool:
I really don't know how I can add more structure yet, but I learn a lot only watching what you all do. And the advices are s ogood and help a lot.

Thank you all. :heart:

mothsailor
03-23-2007, 06:44 PM
Everyone is doing really well with their trees! I'm hoping to get to go out and draw some real live ones over the weekend, if it's warm enough! Here's my start of the second assignment. I'm not so happy with this so far, so any hints would be welcome! I'm not sure that I should have put that cast shadow in...it's on the ref but it looks a bit odd to me.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/23-Mar-2007/52179-tree.jpg

frieda L
03-23-2007, 07:15 PM
Martina, thankyou - This is only the start??? :lol: well, the top third is not there yet... You know, it's all about practise, and more practise... the patience comes when you realize that you can get a drawing the way you want it to look... I am not there yet myself, but I have improved immensely since I bought that box of Staedler pencils about a year ago.
Your drawings are nice, by the way:clap: :clap:
Mothsailor, you have very nice bark texture going there, the eyes,...excellent.:clap: I agree the shadow looks a little strange right now, but maybe when the tree is done it will make sense, or maybe Dianna will know what to do...
Judi, now that is a tree... love the detail. :thumbsup:
frieda

DianeWright
03-23-2007, 07:41 PM
Frieda - Great job! This tree looks awesome!

And you've got it right! Observing and practice is really what it is all about. You have to take the time to really study what you are looking at. Not only getting the proportions right and all that obvious stuff, but to look at that bark and understand that the dark lines are crevices. And the bark has texture. Mike explains it in his book really well, but I'll try and write the gist of it. We see texture by have light bounce off the surface. The rougher the texture, the more little dents of shadow we are going to see. If the surface is smooth our pencil stroke should be smooth, but with bark it needs to be rough and textured.

Dave - you have some really good sections of detail and texture appearing. That shadow line needs a bit of work though. Make sure the crevices go through the shadow. That will help it to lay into the surface more than such a strong line on top.

Most importantly, don't be shy with your pencil. Really feel those crevices with your pencil. Press harder in the crevices and shadow areas, lighter in the highlight areas. PLAY, DOODLE and EXPERIMENT. ::cat: That is what this is about!

I am posting a sample of what I am talking about. These are just sketches, but they help me learn what pencil strokes work the best to represent bark. I'm using a 2B .5mm mechanical pencil. The softer lead allows you to create bolder strokes (but watch out for some of the graininess that goes with it.)

Diane

joane
03-23-2007, 09:29 PM
Here is my drawing for lesson two on branches. I felt a little overwhelmed at first, with all the branches and twigs,etc.--so I just started with a few of the simpler shapes and added as I went along.

tyree
03-23-2007, 09:41 PM
thanks diane...for all the help!!! its a wonderful class...judi...its jaw droppin' good:eek: !!!! ..frieda...its wonderful..especially the roots of the tree..good and strong!!! dave...good start..i like all the knots and crevices...joane..great darks in those crevices..very nice work..im still doodling:p tyree:wave:

tyree
03-23-2007, 10:33 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/23-Mar-2007/65063-3rd_roots_practice.jpg this is the one ive been sketching on tonight...not happy with the bottom limb...may work on it some more..will work on assignment two this weekend...tyree:wave:

scrappie
03-23-2007, 10:38 PM
WOW! Nice work every one.:D

Diane- Thanks once again.:wave:
Judi- the texture and darks really look nice and your roots have beautiful form.:thumbsup:
Chloe- looking good :)
Frieda- lines and texture looking good, on both post.:clap:
Ruth- really like the barke.:wink2:
Dreamsun- we have all been there and most of the time I feel I am still there, keep at it.:)

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/23-Mar-2007/88717-treetrunk_2_class.jpg

Sandy K
03-23-2007, 11:36 PM
You are all doing so well in this class. I am really amazed at all the graphite works that are incredible. Keep up the good work everyone! Could not participate as got some sick grandkids and they keep me bopping but when I get home, I will try and catch up. Does anyone know the price of Mike Sibley's book for Americans with the shipping? I went to his website and tried to figure it out but it looks to be terribly expensive? Maybe I am way off base (which I usually am). Anyone have any idea of the total price?? If it is in my budget, I am going to buy it................and Dianne's book also which comes out in June.

rafaelmarron
03-24-2007, 02:38 AM
Hi

Thanks all for kind comments :o

Here is my second drawing for the assignament 1, I do not finish yet.

Rafael

jasminerose
03-24-2007, 06:50 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/24-Mar-2007/97398-tree.jpg here is my assingment one my scanner is making funny noises so it may not work much longer if that happens im stuck :( thankyou jasmine

jasminerose
03-24-2007, 06:56 AM
sandy yes im not american but in australia and I also found it too be very expensive for us too even more that for you our money is not as much as yours but he did email me and expalain that its a very comprihensive book . so its worth the money but ive got too save up its 2 weeks food for me lol . thanks jasmine.

joane
03-24-2007, 09:05 AM
Sandy, the Sibley book is $82 including shipping ($17). It has actually come down a bit as they are shipping from a distribution center in the US now. I just ordered it--an early birthday present.

Judi1957
03-24-2007, 11:26 AM
Frieda-that tree trunk/roots is wonderful!:clap:

Dave-Your trunk is great! :clap: Sooooo good to have you back in Class!:clap:

Scrappie-Beautiful!:clap:

Sandy-I hope your grandkiddies are well soon! :) :heart: Enjoy your book when you get it-it is superb!:clap:

Rafael - Awesome work!:clap:

Chloe-I didn't read Diane's recommended pencil till the second half of my drawing-the left side is .5 mech-not sure what lead is in it-though perhaps 2B I would think. The second half I used the .5 and 4H wood encased tourquise.

Tyree-Oh great Queen of the Darks-I keep looking and not seeing any snails.:confused: :D Beautiful work! I agree on the bottom root-perhaps some darks there:D :clap:

Jasmine rose! Lovely-just needs some darks to shape it.:clap: I hope you get your book soon!

Done with this one I think. Finished at 1am. Well though now I see I need more texture and tones to the roots and the dirt on the right.
Almost on to branches!:thumbsup:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/24-Mar-2007/37258-gnarly3.jpg

Dreamsun
03-24-2007, 06:03 PM
Hey everybody! :heart:

Impressed by all your drawings and especially the patience I tried to render my treetrunk alittle bit.
I hope the picture shows this, in real it is much darker now (woohooo -finally I lost my fear of dark shades!;)) than before and the structure is better.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/24-Mar-2007/94648-mytreetrunk-attempt2kl.jpg

And - I HAD TO make this treetrunk a dead tree - I don't know why. Maybe because our neighbour killed three of our border-larchs yesterday while we were in town.

I hope it's okay that I did so - artists freedom?????

Of course it is not comparable with yours, but it is a good start and I am pretty satisfied now.

I wish you all a very nice sunday tomorrow!

mothsailor
03-24-2007, 06:29 PM
I'm going to go back to the one I was working on earlier, but today I went to the woods to do a tree drawing from life. Nearly froze to death in the process! Anyway, here it is!
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/24-Mar-2007/52179-tree2.jpg

rafaelmarron
03-24-2007, 07:25 PM
Hi

Here is my second root, I finished.
Judi1957 I like the bark and foliage in your drawing is very well
bayside girl I like the texture in your drawing.


Rafael

jasminerose
03-25-2007, 05:25 AM
THankyou judi . yes I need that book lol . im going too beg for my kids too help me bye it for mothers day . what a good idea ! lol thanks for that tip about the birthday . jasmine.

mike sibley
03-25-2007, 10:08 AM
I felt a little overwhelmed at first, with all the branches and twigs,etc.--so I just started with a few of the simpler shapes and added as I went along.
That's the way to go, Joane! Never let these things overpower you. Any job is simple if you break it down into small enough segments - as you found out. Just begin wherever you feel most comfortable, and don't think about the rest of the tree. Just enjoy yourself and create that small area of texture. Just picture that area in your mind and draw what you see. Pretty soon you'll find that it's working for you, as you're not overloaded with thoughts of the rest of the tree. Now expand that area into the next small drawing - and keep expanding until there's nowhere left to work :lol:

You have a good sense of recession going on here, but do remember that the detail of the bark will decrease at it goes around the sides. In nature you would be looking at it obliquely.

That top-right branch shows good form - I can easily understand it visually. I feel you were 'living' that area when you drew it. Now transfer your thinking into the other areas too - especially down at the base. That area looks flat because the detail of the bark (internal spacing of shadows) is uniform across the trunk. In reality, only the central section would look that way. And the chances are that one edge would recede into shadow and the other into highlight. Imagine its roundness as you draw, imagine it a as living being - don't think about drawing, just think "tree" and it will happen for you.

mike sibley
03-25-2007, 10:50 AM
AObserving and practice is really what it is all about. You have to take the time to really study what you are looking at. Not only getting the proportions right and all that obvious stuff, but to look at that bark and understand that the dark lines are crevices. And the bark has texture..... Most importantly, don't be shy with your pencil. Really feel those crevices with your pencil.
Well said, Diane. Also, ask yourself why you can see those crevices. You can see they are deep crevices, but why? Well, each will catch the light along the edge facing the light source. Bark often curves up away from the trunk where it splits into a crevice - use that to your advantage. It's not flat, it's a three-dimensional shape, so if you picture it in 3D as you draw, you will find yourself explaining "Well, if this bit's sticking up, it should catch the light" or "The shadow of this raised bit would be cast over this other edge". If it lives in your mind, it will live in your drawing too. Don't think "pencil" think "tree"!

Something else that has occurred to me while reading this thread (I do wish I had time to join in!), and something Diane mentioned... not just "practice" but "observation" too. If you don't have a good mental store of, in this case, bark information or tree formation then you severely handicap yourself when you attempt to draw it. Learn to look at everything around you. It may help you more if you work out in your mind how you would draw whatever you are looking at. That tends to make the image stick in your mind. Not only that - observation in Nature also helps you to understand photo refs as 3D "realities" and not 2D representations. In brief, I think one or two of you share a common problem - you're trying to draw something that you don't really understand.

Once you have that information stored away and you have confidence in your drawing, then you can begin to play games with it. Personally, I prefer the "realistic" approach, including almost all that the eye can see. Diane's work has developed into a more generalised appearance that perfectly captures the mood and atmosphere of the scene - so much so that, given the choice, I'd prefer to live in Diane's world any day :)

mike sibley
03-25-2007, 11:01 AM
Done with this one I think.
Hi Judi!

I really feel I can run my hands over this and explore every hole, trough and crest. I can put my arms around it - it's so three-dimensional. I feel quite certain that you are drawing what your mind is seeing. You're not trying to make pencil marks look like tree - you're seeing "tree" and making the pencil reproduce it - carving it, sculpting it, getting deep into the crevices and skating over the highlights. Lovely!

mike sibley
03-25-2007, 11:21 AM
...today I went to the woods to do a tree drawing from life. Nearly froze to death in the process!
Dave, just before I get back to doing my accounts :rolleyes: - good for you and well done! That certainly solves the "lack of mental information" problem and, of course, adds mental information for later use.

You've done a great job. But one thing did occur to me. There is a natural tendancy when working outdoors to look at and draw one area at a time. Heck, who wouldn't? It's a big tree! But that can result in a flat appearance, as tonal variations between different areas go unnoticed. A last step back to look at the subject as a complete object often puts this right. I feel I can understand every part of your tree - except the roundness of its form.

Sandy K
03-25-2007, 12:23 PM
Joane, thanks for the info............think I will pass on it.......way too rich for my blood......I think Diane Wright's book will be just fine if it is my price range. Besides that, Diane has been devoting alot of her time doing this class and it is awesomely presented so that we can follow right along so I can only hope her book is just as awesome. I mean heck the woman puts downloadable tutorials right on her website......how great is that...it is great...so my hat is off to you Diane.........thank you for the wonderful classes......remember the old saying "you get back what you give?" Well, I would think you would reap baskets of whatever you're looking for with all that you have given to us with your time.

Came home today from taking care of my grandbabies..........still running 103-104 temps. Doc thinks it is a virus..nothing they can do but keep giving the Tylenol - Motrin combination. Hopefully, it will be gone from them in a couple days. They are 2 1/2 and 1 years old. Look for me to get the darn bug now this week. Ugh!

I really am amazed at how everyone is progressing in the thread. Totally awesome. On my way home, I stopped at an Office Max and picked up some Wausau Premium Card Stock....110 lb. Smooth finish...acid free...it was only 11 bucks for 250 sheets. I bought the white but it comes in multicolored packs also. Only problem is it comes in only 8.5 X 11.5 inch size....I just did some quick sketches on it...and it works wonderful....just thought I would let everyone know that the finish is similar to Strathmore and costs a heck of alot less.... Was going to try and catch up in here today but I think I need some major sleep.

lneustadter
03-25-2007, 12:27 PM
Hi Diane:

I am posting my Assignment #1 WIP, so I can get some feedback before I do more.

I normally draw using a tortillion and blending ... I decided not to blend in this class, so I will learn new techniques. Here is how I applied your technique:


I used a 2B mechanical pencil to draw the detail, such as bark shadows and crevices. (I didn't use a F for finer details ... probably a mistake.)
Using a 2B mechanical pencil, I did hatching to indicate value. I wasn't sure if this was necessary ... do you use the 2B to get value or rely on the 4H?
I burnished with a chiseled 4H pencil. I covered each section to blend. I repeated if I wanted to darken the tone. I used the point of the 4H pencil to darken and better define bark shadows.


Am I using the right approach? The detail is too coarse and not precise enough ... is it too late to correct it? Do you use a kneaded eraser? Can I use the 2B pencil again? Or once I burnish with the 4H, am I stuck with 4H or harder? I have heard that softer pencils won't write over harder ones.

Do you do the detail for the entire tree and then use the 4H as a final step? Or do you do a little detail, a little 4H, a little detail, etc?

Also, what is the purpose of burnishing? To blend? To darken? Both?

Thank you for this class and for all of your help.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Mar-2007/41206-Image1.jpg

Thanks!

Laurel

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 12:57 PM
Wow....Everyone has been so busy!!! I've got some catching up to do....

Way back on page 6...Post #77

I did the 2nd root this afternoon, this one was very hard for me, so many areas , I really could not figure out, so I guessed.

Tammy Jo - You will find in almost any drawing, that there will be areas that you just can't figure out. It is easier to just leave the area undefined and vague, but sometimes that in not an option. The better approach is to put your 'knowledge' of the subject matter to good use. If the roots don't make sense how they are twisting around - change them so they do make sense. That is part of our creative license. It is better to fix it than to allow your viewer to question that area too!

Diane

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 01:08 PM
Page 6 Post #90

Ruth -

Nice shading and sculpting to your tree! Your roots look a little hurried. I would recommend giving them more thickness to match the girth of the tree. Observe where the roots enter the ground, your's are a bit vague - which tells me you aren't quite sure how to handle that area. That's okay - it's a lot to absorb! Take a fresh look at the photo reference - focusing only on that area.

Try doing a mini-sketch of just a root and the ground around it with just a couple of weeds. It is a great way of allowing you to focus on a trouble area without getting overwhelmed of having to do the whole scene.

This is an approach I do all the time. I call mine doodles. I will sketch little sections of an object and sometimes they aren't even recognizable except to me. It helps me "work out" those gray or fuzzy areas.

Diane

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 01:18 PM
Hey...I'm making progress...I'm to page 7! Post #98!!!

QUOTE]wondering if it has enough texture, is it too smooth/bland in places... for some strange reason, I started at the bottom...QUOTE]

I think this tree is wonderful. There is so many good things happening! Is it too smooth/bland? I don't think so. You have captured the essense of this tree. The armature of the branches are excellent. The cast shadows add the feeling that it is a bright sunny day. The root on the right has a nice solid feeling and flow to it. I really like this drawing!

If this was a portrait, someone would not be happy, but for a tree... I'd like to get its likeness, personality...

That's why I so enjoy drawing landscapes. Unlike a human portrait, you can be slightly off with a portrait of a tree and know one will know it!!! In fact, exaggerating features of a tree can enhance it's personality.

Diane

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 01:23 PM
thank you for this information. My last treetrunk was definitely too large. I tried another one - and tried to avoid outlines

Martina - The size of the drawing will make a big difference. If you are after the smallest of details, then larger is better. But I find I draw relatively small - just a mark is all I want to make to give an impression of that detail.

I like your tree trunk - you've got good shading and highlights. The big root seems to a bit stiff and should flow downward into the ground instead of being unsure of itself. That just takes a little more practice.

Diane

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 01:32 PM
I felt a little overwhelmed at first, with all the branches and twigs,etc.--so I just started with a few of the simpler shapes and added as I went along.

Joane- Perfectly said. That is how I feel everytime I start a drawing!!! Did you observe the 'white' spaces (negative space) between the branches as you placed them down on your paper??? You did an excellent job with the angles, bends and kinks of these branches. Your shading and bark textures are excellent. You have added just enough smaller branches for interes!

EXCELLENT JOB!! :clap:

Diane

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 01:40 PM
Scrappie - This is wonderful! I have no recommendations or suggestions for improvement. I love the delicate textures - VERY NICELY DONE!!!

Rafael - You have a very distinctive style and it is very interesting. It's almost like you are sculpting. The textures and crevices feel like they are abstracted. The tree is not really realistic but I am very impressed by it. :heart: I don't know if that is what you really wanted to hear - but don't change your style - I'd exploit it - because I am really intrigued.

Jasmine - I agree with Judy - just a little more shading will set this drawing off.

Judi - Spectacular finish!!! The textures are beautiful!!!:clap: :clap:

Martina - Your concentration and observation of the knots and details are starting to show. That main root still wants to reach skyward and is getting way too much attention! :D

Dave - Kudos for you to go out and draw plein air! :clap: :clap: :clap:
Nice job!

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 01:55 PM
MIKE SIBLEY - Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to drop in!!! :wave: :wave: :wave:

Your advice and comments are timely and have added SO MUCH TO THIS CLASS!!! :thumbsup:

THANK YOU SO MUCH! It is greatly appreciated...

Diane
(who has been one of Mike's 'students' for over 5 years now.:heart: )

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 02:21 PM
Laurel -

Am I using the right approach?

The approach you are using sounds good.

The detail is too coarse and not precise enough ... is it too late to correct it?

If you feel this is happening, try using a F lead (my favorite of all) with a fine point or a .5 mm mechanical pencil. The B leads will create a coarser application. It's not too late - you can always add harder lead over softer.

Do you use a kneaded eraser?
I find the kneaded eraser does not 'lift' enough graphite off to be effective. My preference is to use Blu-tak (sold in the UK and can be purchased on Mike Sibley's web site). I also use a Knetgummi eraser (made by Faber Castell) it is much tackier and lifts more graphite than the Blu-tak but doesn't hold up as well. Another option is to get some wall-putty - it is tacky but doesn't last as well - and be careful some of them can cause staining.

Can I use the 2B pencil again? Or once I burnish with the 4H, am I stuck with 4H or harder? I have heard that softer pencils won't write over harder ones.

I have used softer over harder - and it is a very effective technique. In my rock tutorial, I use this approach. It creates uneven 'rough' texture. Use is carefully as the results are not always predictable. I have used it to add further detail on tree bark after I have burnished.

Do you do the detail for the entire tree and then use the 4H as a final step? Or do you do a little detail, a little 4H, a little detail, etc?
YES and YES! How's that for an answer? I usually do a larger section at a time and then use the 4H. But sometimes, smaller sections is better. My philosophy is I only want to work on an area once, so I work on a section until it is 'finished' then I move on. Sometimes the sections are very small, and sometimes the sections are larger. I want to keep consistency through an entire section of object, so that determines how much I work on at a time.

I will sometimes have to return to an area to 'adjust' tones etc as I work my way across the drawing.

Everyone's approach is different - so do what is comfortable for you.

QUOTE]Also, what is the purpose of burnishing? To blend? To darken? Both?[[/QUOTE]

Burnishing accomplishes all of these! But think of it as a means to create an even tone over an area without using a tortillon or blending. You do not lose the detail - but it creates a smooth even value over your detail.

You also have so much more control over the value ranges in the your drawing. By using a 4H to 6H chisel points - you can create the lightest of values. Using 2H - 3H will create wonderful mid-range tones. And when applied over the softer leads - creates rich tones as it fills in the tooth of the paper that the softer leads left white.

I find it also "finishes" and seals the graphite to the paper. I almost always apply a layer of the harder lead over my soft applications - I don't seem to have as much smudging.

EXCELLENT QUESTIONS Laurel!!!

Diane



Thank you for this class and for all of your help.

RuthT
03-25-2007, 02:39 PM
Thank you Martina, frieda, tyree, Judi, Chloe, and scrappie for your comments :) (Comments from greenhorns are happily accepted Martina :) )

joane
03-25-2007, 04:12 PM
Mike,
Thank you for the detailed critique--the time that talented and professional artists give to this site is wonderful and so very much appreciated. What I know about drawing has come from reading and attempting various work on my own and I think the things I am learning here are already improving what I am able to see in my mind's eye--I hope one day to be able to translate it consistently to my drawings. I have certainly been motivated by joining WC! I have ordered your book and look forward to learning from it as well.
Diane--thank you for the interesting and informative classes--it is great to have someone with your talent to critique our work and help us "see" better! I would not have attempted something like this before WC and your classes. I hope to add your book to my "library" as well--I usually get such things for my birthday and other holidays!
Sandy--I agree with you that Diane has really gone the extra mile with her classes--detailed feedback and great preparation for the lessons.
I just went through "flu season" with my 18month old granddaughter and 6 year old grandson so I am in sympathy. I babysit one day a week while Mom works.

RuthT
03-25-2007, 04:22 PM
I like the fine lines and the dark strokes in your tree Martina, and the suggested background sets it off well.

Your tree is growing even more gorgeous Judi.

Lovely drawing frieda, I particularly like the shading in the crook of the tree, it helps to give it personality.

Your shading from dark to light gives a great sense of the light source Dave.

Joane your branches really do look as if they are growing in all different directions, and give a sense of movement to your drawing.

You have some great darks in your work tyree and a lovely contrast with the delicate foliage in the background.

The lovely delicate touch you had in your rocks scrappie is in your tree, even the touches of dark are delicately done.

I like your use of different textures Rafael, and also your range of tones.

Great texture on your bark jasmine, and good strong roots.

A very charming drawing Connie M. The balance of dark and light seems just right to me, and I love the lost edge at the top of the tree.

joane
03-25-2007, 04:24 PM
PS--Diane--I did use the negative space concept, especially to form the mid-size branches that were so twisty--I went back and did the class on negative space when I read about it so much on WC. It really helps me to think in that way when drawing something complex--.

RuthT
03-25-2007, 04:39 PM
Page 6 Post #90
Your roots look a little hurried. ...your's are a bit vague - which tells me you aren't quite sure how to handle that area.(Lots of great advice in here ) ...It helps me "work out" those gray or fuzzy areas.


How well you read my work Dlane :) When I got to the roots I was eager to finish the assignment so that I would not be so far behind everyone else. My eyes kept going back to the wrong spot on the tree, so the roots were not in the right place, but I thought "It doesn't have to be exactly the same as the reference" and just made up a root for the space I had.
THANK YOU DIANE for the great advice you gave to me which I am going to follow. :) If we are not all eventually rich and famous it will not be your fault!!!

joane
03-25-2007, 05:08 PM
Mike and Diane
--I have made some changes on the branches according to Mike's suggestion--I would like to know if I am working in the right direction--I added some shadows, changed the crevices at the base and blurred the receding branches a bit--I also added some highlights at the edges of some of the crevices.
Thank you again for all your help

Sandy
Your tip about the paper is great--I found some Bristol smooth white in 67lb at Office Depot--Hammermill and have been using that--250 sheets about the same price. Would like to try some different surfaces, but would like to keep the cost down!

joane
03-25-2007, 05:09 PM
I forgot to say that I posted the original and the reworked version side by side

rafaelmarron
03-25-2007, 07:05 PM
Hi
Thanks Diane, your comment touch me, :heart: to me is a surprise, but I am glad, when I was 15 year, my drawing was not seemed to the subject and I abandoned the drawing for many years, now I am drawing again, and only worry for making my drawing looking good, maybe I found the way. (I hope, I wrote correctly :o)

Rafael

rafaelmarron
03-25-2007, 07:07 PM
Hi

Thanks Diane, your comment touch me, :heart: to me is a surprise, but I am glad, when I was 15 year, my drawing was not seemed to the subject and I abandoned the drawing for many years, now I am drawing again, and only worry for making my drawing look good, maybe I found the way. (I hope, I wrote correctly :o )

scrappie
03-25-2007, 08:06 PM
Diane – Thank you for your kind words like I mentioned before your classes, have opened up my eyes.
Mike – What can one say about your work that has not already been said? Fantastic and I ordered your book today.
Ruth – Thank you for the kind words.
Joane – love the texture and form.
Judi – Beautifully done.
Dave – Nice job I have been whating to do some plein air.

joane
03-25-2007, 09:31 PM
DIANE
I want to do winter tree 6 for the next lesson, but don't know what I am seeing down the center of the trunk--do you know what the pale line is? I tried to enlarge to make it out, but the resolution wasn't good enough to tell--thanks

DianeWright
03-25-2007, 10:10 PM
Joane - I think it is an old lightening strike. The bark is smoother and lighter in this section as though it has been damaged. I wouldn't emphasize it too much and it probably would make the viewer wonder as well! :smug:

Diane

tyree
03-25-2007, 11:11 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Mar-2007/65063-assign_2_trees_2.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/25-Mar-2007/65063-assign_2_trees_3.jpg Diane..here are two sketches i worked on this weekend for the assignment two...mech. pencil and staedtlers f..h..3b..and graphite pencils on canson drawing pad....i wish i could do the detail of the others here...but mine seem impressionistic...Im way behind on reviews..so..ill just say there is some really awesome work in here......critiques welcomed...tyree:wave:

scrappie
03-26-2007, 01:55 AM
Tyree - Drawing one has a impressionistic look and I like it, you may want to try just three round objects on the front of tree, odd numbers work out better in nature. Tree two good form,texture and depth looking good.

jasminerose
03-26-2007, 06:46 AM
Hi guys . is this any better ? you know I went out today and looked at the trees in my street . like really looked . wow they are amazing they all have diffrent bark and If I get the time im going too draw one of them in real life my nieghbors may commite me but who cares I just feel the need too really draw up close . jasmine . ps shall I use my real name or not what you think?:) http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/97398-tree_assessment_one.jpg

jasminerose
03-26-2007, 06:57 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/97398-2nd_assesment_tree_branches_trina.jpg Hi guys this is once again me jasmine my second assessment . I was wondering if I should use my real name . what do you think cause theres another jasmine on wet canvas . do you think any stalkers can get you here or is it safe? thanks again for all your help please give me feedback . im here too learn. thanks guys .:clap:

jasminerose
03-26-2007, 07:01 AM
tyee I love your work its very unique . and everyone has done so great a job. thanks Diane for you help its awsome too have a free online class like this cause Im too sick too go too a class in the real world . thanks agian.jasmine

jasminerose
03-26-2007, 07:03 AM
ps I used f pencil and 6b also . thanks jasmine

joane
03-26-2007, 08:47 AM
Thanks, Diane--will pretty much ignore most of that line--gotta get started now!

mothsailor
03-26-2007, 12:13 PM
Wow, feedback from Diane Wright AND Mike Sibley...how lucky are we!

tyree
03-26-2007, 02:08 PM
Tyree - Drawing one has a impressionistic look and I like it, you may want to try just three round objects on the front of tree, odd numbers work out better in nature. Tree two good form,texture and depth looking good. thank you for kind critique...i never even thought of the odd number on this one...its so very dark,,and its on not very forgivable paper..so four may have to stick..but i will keep that in mind!!!! tyree

tyree
03-26-2007, 02:11 PM
tyee I love your work its very unique . and everyone has done so great a job. thanks Diane for you help its awsome too have a free online class like this cause Im too sick too go too a class in the real world . thanks agian.jasmine thank you Jasmine...id stick with Jasminerose ,,cuz its how we know ya!!! your second assignment came out very well,,particularily the bark...good job...tyree:wave: :wink2: :thumbsup:

bayside girl
03-26-2007, 02:36 PM
My apologies to everyone.........

When I signed on today, I noticed that I posted the wrong sketch in message 115. It is Diane's sketch and not mine.

I have pm Diane with my apologies. and have asked JayD to remove the message from the board.

I've been saving Diane's tutorials and some how mixed up the two sketches.

This is what I should have posted.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/97897-root_1.jpg

Connie M.

RuthT
03-26-2007, 04:43 PM
[QUOTE=bayside girl]My apologies to everyone.........

When I signed on today, I noticed that I posted the wrong sketch in message 115. It is Diane's sketch and not mine.

Well I'm glad I gave you a good crit. :D

Dreamsun
03-26-2007, 05:18 PM
Here is my first attempt on the bark - assignment #2.
I hope it's okay that I've taken my own reference photo. It is a birch tree in our garden which I grew up myself (you know what I mean, I miss the correct word).

I used F, B and 3B wooden pencils on a smooth thick paper/board. The size is about 15 x 10 cm (sorry, I don't know the inches right now - the site isn't available in the moment... :D)


http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/94648-assign2-cv.jpg

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/94648-assign2-c.jpg

frieda L
03-26-2007, 05:41 PM
martina, my first thought seeing your drawing was Ah, a birch tree!!

Should have followed my intuition to wait for the leaf exercises to finish this tree, but I decided to finish it before moving on to the next one... I was pretty clueless. I figured I would draw entire and bits and pieces of leaves, and fill in some and leave some white, drawn negatively. I thought you would end up not knowing which leaf is which, hoping to end up with a mass that looks like leaves...:rolleyes: The tree was probably happier without the leaves.:lol:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/22676-assignment2_005.jpg
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/22676-assignment2_004.jpg
trying to wrap my brain around some of the negative-drawing-way-of-thinking...

Should I make it freeze and erase all the leaves?
I like Tyrees, by the way.:thumbsup:
frieda

Dreamsun
03-26-2007, 05:54 PM
Hey Frieda,
I like the tree including the leaf/foliage. Maybe the differenz of bigness of the leaf in front and the leaf in the back is a bit too much, but I like it.

Angela 212
03-26-2007, 06:18 PM
Hey Everyone,

Your trees are amazing! I would love to be able to draw trees like this, I'm going to have to have a go! Thanks Diane for putting together such a brilliant class, it looks so well laid out I actually think I could learn to do this really well!

Here are the trees I've already done, please let me know what you think:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/87082-Frozen_in_the_Moonlight__Dec_06.jpg
Frozen in the Moonlight


http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/87082-Bonsai_Tree.jpg
Bonsai Tree

DianeWright
03-26-2007, 07:24 PM
PS--Diane--I did use the negative space concept, especially to form the mid-size branches that were so twisty--I went back and did the class on negative space when I read about it so much on WC. It really helps me to think in that way when drawing something complex--.

Joane - I thought so! And the tree limbs show the importance of the areas around the limbs. NICE!!!

If we are not all eventually rich and famous it will not be your fault!!!

Ruth - I have to get there first!!! lol

Diane

DianeWright
03-26-2007, 07:40 PM
Joane - Much improved!! The shadow on the left adds so much depth!

Tyree - Nicely done! I see you are working on creating dark crevices in the detail trunk!!! Your next drawing is coming along great. I like the space between the two main branches. The smaller branches may be just a little too straight - look for those subtle kinks and bends to give interest in those branches. The front area of your tree looks incomplete? I'm thinking you need to continue your shading down, plant that tree with some roots and add some grass infront? BRAVO for nice work!!!


i wish i could do the detail of the others here

It could be the paper you are using! Canson doesn't lend itself well to finer detail. If cost is an issue the Hammermill or Wausau papers that have been mentioned by some others, may be an option. I still prefer the Strathmore Bristol Board Smooth 300 Series paper. I can control the amount of detail I want as well as how light or dark of values I want to achieve.

is this any better ? you know I went out today and looked at the trees in my street . like really looked . wow they are amazing they all have diffrent bark
Jasmine - The texture of bark is improving. I can tell that you are starting to 'see'! You will find that the more you look, the more you see, the more you see the more you understand. The more you understand, the more you will be able to draw.

Regarding using your real name? If you are asking, maybe you aren't ready to share it!!! Feel free to remain Jasmine - we know you by that name and staying in 'incognito' would be fun!

Judi1957
03-26-2007, 07:52 PM
Fab trees All! I'll be back later to get a better look. I just adore these classes with every one.:heart:

Jasmine-I am sorry you are not well:(
Keep your name the way as you feel more comfortable-I want you to feel safe here. :heart:

Stage 1 of assignment 2-not happy yet with the texture and shape-perhaps it will help to print out a lighter image of the ref. This is about 3 hours into it. About 10" high.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/37258-stage_1.jpg

DianeWright
03-26-2007, 08:07 PM
Connie - Wow! You've got it girl! :clap: This is awesome. You've got nice texture and it really reads as a tree. The only suggestion would be to push the darks, but you've got the basics down!

I hope it's okay that I've taken my own reference photo. It is a birch tree in our garden which I grew up myself.
Martina - What a beautiful tree! :heart: That is great that you are using your own reference photo. It has a special meaning for you and it fits perfectly with the assignment!!!

I can you are working to understand those dark crevices. I can feel each one as you create each of those pencil strokes. That is great! Now...even though your photo reference shows an almost white bark, it really has delicate detail lines and shading and it's own unique texture. Depending on how much detail you want to show. Leaving them too white is giving the impression of being flat which doesn't allow the tree trunk look cylindar all the way across.

Frieda - The leaves look good. They can be overwhelming because there are so darn many of them! Just remember, you don't HAVE to draw every single one! Drawing in shadows and highlights (squinting helps to see general shapes and values) and then drawing in just a few with more detail is all that is needed. The ones that are completely silhouetted with the sky should have proper shape so they read like leaves for the viewer. Excellent first attempt!!! No freezing allowed...leave the leaves just as they are! :cool:

Martina is right too...I'm thinking some of the variance in leaf sizes is causing confusion in our perspective. Yeah...you heard it right...perspective. We have to follow perspective rules, even in nature!!

Here are the trees I've already done, please let me know what you think
Angela - Welcome to class! I'm going to refrain from making comments about your work. I'd like to suggest that you read the lesson, join in on the assignments, post your efforts and at the end of the class, answer that question yourself! :evil: :angel:

KEEP UP THE AWESOME WORK EVERYONE! I AM SO IMPRESSED!::D

Diane

DianeWright
03-26-2007, 08:10 PM
Judi - Oh my gosh...the depth and texture and feeling of those branches!!!! Those subtle highlights of reflecting off each piece of bark....just yummy.... I have to start taking lessons from you!!!

Diane

Dreamsun
03-26-2007, 08:12 PM
:o :heart: :)
*overwhelmed with joy*

Diane, thank you for this compliment. That means sooooooooo very much to me! you encouraged me unbelivable much (I'm talking nonsense I think but I hope you know what I mean).
Now I can go sleep with a satisfied happy artists heart.

Judy - I love love love this tree!!!!

tvandeb
03-26-2007, 08:20 PM
Wow, So many different variations!! I am learning just watching everybody!
I worked on the 3rd root off and on all week. I reworked the bark a bit, and added the light source, hopefully it looks better? Comments and pointers are welcome, please? Thanks...:) Take care....http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/71359-treetutorialroot3.jpg

joane
03-26-2007, 09:53 PM
JUDI a lovely piece of work!
TAMMY JO You improve with each piece--take the time to finish the background and add some shadows to this one--it's worth it!

tyree
03-26-2007, 10:21 PM
diane...thank you for the critique..and all the time you take to help...!!! connie...very lovely job too!!! martina...i love the design and darks in your bark!!! frieda...thank you...those leaves are troublesome..i must have tried to redo them several several times until the paper wouldnt give...great job..has a wonderful shape..and good negative space in it...hi angela...nice work!! judi...what a neat piece..it has a very interesting shape to it..bending in the wind...!!! tammy...coming along very nicely,,nice values..and darks...good work!!!! tyree:wave:

Chloe_1
03-26-2007, 10:51 PM
Hi Diane and all:wave:
I did another one for Assignment 1(Root 2),and this time with a little more grass:) . I used h,f and 2b .5 mechanical pencil.
I did the finishing touch by doing a gentle horizontal and vertical wash with 5h wooden pencil.Comments welcome!
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Mar-2007/68155-IMG_1865.JPG

tyree
03-26-2007, 11:13 PM
chloe...wow ..its wonderful...i like all the interesting shapes to the roots..and great values...you did a terrific job...tyree:clap: :clap:

tyree
03-26-2007, 11:14 PM
[quote=bayside girl]My apologies to everyone.........

When I signed on today, I noticed that I posted the wrong sketch in message 115. It is Diane's sketch and not mine.

Well I'm glad I gave you a good crit. :D :lol: lol..too funny ruth!!!:p tyree:wave:

Chloe_1
03-26-2007, 11:31 PM
Hiya Tyree...
Thanks!:heart:

binkie
03-27-2007, 12:02 AM
Hi Diane, I hope I'm not too late to join in. I have company for the next two weeks so I'm afraid my progress will be terribly slow.

Thank you so much for offering this great class. Your trees are awesome.

binkie

All the tree drawings are looking great!

Here's Lesson 1:

lneustadter
03-27-2007, 07:18 AM
Hi Diane:

Thanks for answering my questions.

I started over; here is my WIP:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/27-Mar-2007/41206-Image1-1.jpg

I am assuming a light source from the right.

Do you have any suggestions for improvement thus far?

I am struggling with getting the form of the overall tree ... i.e., the cylinder ... correct while at the same time getting the form of each section of the trunk correct. Do you have any suggestions on how not to lose site of the cylinder while focusing on each section?

Also, do you have any suggestions for reasoning about the form of bark? I read Mike's posts about drawing bark ... if my imaginary light source is from the right, does that mean I should not have deep shadows on the right side of any piece of bark? I am thinking this would only be in the sunlight. Is this correct? In the upper left of the photo reference (and in my drawing), there is strong shadow on the right side of bark pieces. I think this will still work in my drawing, since the left side of my tree is in the shadow. Is this reasoning correct?

I have a new appreciation of trees ... I never noticed their complexity before.

I'll go out and draw from life this coming weekend ... I'm chained to a desk during daylight hours during the week.

Laurel

jasminerose
03-27-2007, 08:04 AM
thankyou guys . thankyou very much . yes I do feel safe here and it is fun too be incogneto lol . thanks too uyou all . jasmine.

Chloe_1
03-27-2007, 08:20 AM
Hi Ineudstadter ..Your tree is coming on nicely..:)

DianeWright
03-27-2007, 08:21 AM
I'm chained to a desk during daylight hours during the week.
SO AM I! That day J.O.B. sure gets in the way of doing more fun stuff, like drawing! In fact, that's where I am right now. I will get back to responding to the other posts this evening, but I wanted to give you a quick response.

I am struggling with getting the form of the overall tree ... i.e., the cylinder ... correct while at the same time getting the form of each section of the trunk correct. Do you have any suggestions on how not to lose site of the cylinder while focusing on each section?
I don't have an definitive answer for you, Laurel. This is just one of the many interesting challenges in drawing trees! But you are really starting to observe and understand your subject matter! You have identified and even articulated your dilemma in writing. Now you can start to explore how to achieve this!

I think the answer is in burnishing. You develop your details and the overall shading and shape of the tree. Then as you apply that light burnished layer on top, it seems to bring it all together. Then pick out some select highlights with blu-tak or a battery-operated eraser. This seems to work for me - but to be honest I struggling with the same thing.

I've got to run...but I'll be back to respond to the rest of your questions later....

Diane

Angela 212
03-27-2007, 03:26 PM
Angela - Welcome to class! I'm going to refrain from making comments about your work. I'd like to suggest that you read the lesson, join in on the assignments, post your efforts and at the end of the class, answer that question yourself! :evil: :angel:


Thanks Diane, here's my first efforts - Assignment #1
Drawn with a 2B pencil on A5 Sketchpad

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/27-Mar-2007/87082-Tree_Class,_Assignment_1_-_Roots.jpg

Very scary this, I've not drawn grass before, so hope that came out ok and you recognise it as grass! The bark I found difficult, it was only when my Mum pointed out the lines were too straight and I started making them a little more varied that they appeared a bit more like bark!

I think I'm artistically challenged! Help Please! :o

mitika
03-28-2007, 02:06 AM
hi Daine,
I noe i am very late for the class... but its btr to be here than never..
will catch up with the class.

i was never able to sketch good trees but i think now it will be better.
thank you for such a nice class

will be showing up my work soon
Mitika

jasminerose
03-28-2007, 02:57 AM
Here we go . assingment 3 done . critasise please . im thinking im slowly getting better . maybe the answer is too go out side and really look at what you are trying too draw . thanks from jasmine:) http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/28-Mar-2007/97398-trees_assingment_3.jpg

mothsailor
03-28-2007, 04:00 PM
Everyone is doing really well. I'm having a great time with this! Here's my attempt at assignment three.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/28-Mar-2007/52179-winter_tree.jpg

Angela 212
03-28-2007, 06:27 PM
Oooh, lovely tree mothsailor - I can almost see it moving in the wind!

Mitika - I don't think you can be too late for the class, I've only just started myself - we'll be the two newbies! :p

Jasminerose - I think going outside and looking at the trees really helps, I was travelling on the bus to work this morning, and kept staring at all the trees I never normally notice, and longing to draw them - especially all the twisty windswept ones!
This class really makes you think in a new way about trees! :clap:

lneustadter
03-28-2007, 09:32 PM
Diane: Thank you for your response to my questions.

Chloe 1: Thanks for your words of enccouragement.

Here is my completed assignment #1. Derwent graphic pencils on Strathmore 400 Series Sketch Pad.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/28-Mar-2007/41206-Assignment1.jpg

Laurel

mitika
03-29-2007, 01:32 AM
.

mitika
03-29-2007, 01:39 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/29-Mar-2007/97811-assign_1.jpg
hi... this was the first assignment i think.. i have done it with stedlear pencils..i know its not looking good, so please help me improve it

Angela : hey thanx for making me feel comfortable
laure : wonderful work..

Blooming
03-29-2007, 09:31 AM
I discovered this thread and decided to face my fear and join in. I so badly want to learn to do landscapes, but they intimidate me, especially trees. This is my first attempt. I am working from a laptop with a poor resolution, so I had to create details I could not see very well.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/29-Mar-2007/30618-treetrunk1.jpg

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 09:50 AM
Looks like I've got some catching up to do again...I hope to respond to everyone this evening!!! :angel:

Welcome Blooming!! :wave:

Just wanted to offer a .pdf format of this lesson. Here is the link:

http://www.dianewrightfineart.com/tutorial-trees/trees_tutorial.pdf

Diane
(now back to work...)

Dreamsun
03-29-2007, 10:17 AM
Laurel,
your tree looks like a very old and gnarly, I like this.

Dave,
only one word: Great!!

Blooming,
it is really your first attempt on trees? Wow!

Mitika,
I like your tree and I can see that it will be very good. I know it is difficult in the beginning, but add more darks. I feared the darks in the beginning very much, but with dark values you give the tree more life.
But I'm sure :cool: Diane can tell you much better.

Here are two attemps, both taken from life - our garden. I never thought that I am two draw or sketch from life, I ever thought to draw from a photo is easier, but after Mikes comment I tried and it worked for me.

Okay - here is the first, still for #2. I used a Sanford "Ebony"-pencil and it took me some hours to finish.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/29-Mar-2007/94648-plumtree2.jpg

And the next one for #3. It is about 12x12 cm and I used 2B, 4B and b pencils "Staedtler Mars Lumograph. It was a pretty quick sketch of about 45 minutes.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/29-Mar-2007/94648-trees3.jpg

Ha, but today I ordered my mechanic pencils - how I look forward to them..... no sharping any more!!! ( My electrical sharpener went down yesterday)

Sorry for the long post. Seems I had tree-class-withdrawal.... :D

mitika
03-29-2007, 10:38 AM
martina : Thanx.... even i realise that darkness will give it a more realistic effect... as it was in ur sketches.. i liked them alot.

i'll try to show up wid some better efforts soon

Angela 212
03-29-2007, 10:50 AM
Angela : hey thanx for making me feel comfortable

You're Welcome Mitika, Your drawing looks good, Well Done! I'm sure Diane will be along shortly with some good advice for us both (I've only just done this one myself!). See my attachment.

Hi Blooming, yours also looks good, I like the roots shape. If your struggling with the resolution on your screen, maybe printing the pictures out might be easier to work from? (Although that could work out very expensive with paper and ink if you do a lot!)

Dreamsun - Your trees are beautiful, is that first one a cherry tree? I have a Cherry Tree out in my back garden and wasn't sure how to do the bark, that looks very good!

kswistak
03-29-2007, 12:10 PM
This is my first try:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/29-Mar-2007/86915-tree1_kswistak.jpg

I used this reference photo:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=24480&si=9270llanberis_nov_16_014.jpg

I will work on it a little bit more tomorrow. Any suggestions how to improve it?

frieda L
03-29-2007, 03:59 PM
many posting in the last day or two... I am amazed at the progress made in just a short time, thanks to Dianes very detailed class.:clap: :clap: :clap:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/29-Mar-2007/22676-assignment_3_002.jpg

a few questions came to mind...
the reference picture has this grey wintery skie... it would have helped the drawing to put it in... but would you do it before drawing the tree? Would you tone the whole surface or trie to leave out the twigs and branches? Is it too late now?

HOW do you keep track of where you are? Whenever I decide to get as much detail as I can, I just loose the reference spot. One reason is that the drawing is not exactly the same, but I find that a big hurdle for detail.
The other problem (for me) with detailed drawing is that it takes a lot of pencil-control (as well as brain control:lol: )... I find that at this point, I am not able to get that incredible detailed stuff into a very small space. The patience I can muster, the drawing skills... will follow, I hope.

Diane, thank you so much for your coaching.!!! You are a Wet Canvas hero!!!
frieda

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 06:05 PM
Finally....the day j.o.b. is over so now I can do something enjoyable!

Let's see...everyone has been so busy!!!

I'm going back to page 11 Post #165

Tammy Jo! You've done such a fine job on the tree and the tree limb, don't hurry through the background! Take your time and draw in some grass around the roots and around the back of the trunk. Adding a stronger light source helps create a good round tree!

Diane

Diane

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 06:11 PM
Chloe - Excellent job on this!! You've got highlights and nicely flowing roots growing right into the ground. Everything is looking good!!! I really feel the solidity of this tree.

Binkie - Welcome to class, and you're never too late for these classes! Nice exaggeration of the root structures - they have wonderful flow to them and are looking great! Keep going! You are doing a fine job!

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 06:19 PM
Also, do you have any suggestions for reasoning about the form of bark? I read Mike's posts about drawing bark ... if my imaginary light source is from the right, does that mean I should not have deep shadows on the right side of any piece of bark? I am thinking this would only be in the sunlight. Is this correct? In the upper left of the photo reference (and in my drawing), there is strong shadow on the right side of bark pieces. I think this will still work in my drawing, since the left side of my tree is in the shadow. Is this reasoning correct?

Laurel - I'm finally getting back to the second half of questions on your post! I think your reasoning is sound. To help emphasize the darkest shadows on the right side of the bark, a fine highlight should be on the edge of the bark. This provides the strongest contrasts (darkest/lightest) and gives the impression of a more distinctive detail. I see you have done this but perhaps a few areas with a bit more contrast will bring out the detail you are after.

Your tree has a nice form to it. Drawing a tree with a stronger light source would much easier. Taking photos of trees should be done on both a sunny day and on an overcast day. You will find that overcast days are perfect to capture texture and detail of trees that are tough to capture on sunny days.

Diane

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 06:29 PM
hi... this was the first assignment i think.. i have done it with stedlear pencils..i know its not looking good, so please help me improve it

Mitika - WELCOME TO CLASS!!! For a first try, don't be so hard on yourself. As a sketch, you have captured the shape of the tree and the impression of grass. Here are just a few basic concepts for you to think about to change this from a sketch to a drawing.

- Reduce the use of line. There are no lines around objects in nature, so there should be no lines outlining the tree.

- Emphasize shading. Shading is what creates the 3-demensional form. Using a light source and apply consistent shading.

- Textures. Develop textures that represent the object.

These fundamentals have been covered in the earlier Basic 101 classes. All of those fundamentals need to be understood and applied to drawing any object including trees.

Diane

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 06:48 PM
Blooming - One more comment - you have a good start on your tree. Your paper looks to have a lot of texture to it. This may hinder you from creating finer details. Instead of dissolving the ends of the roots into white, try adding just a few blades of grass in front of some of them.

Martina Beautiful tree! You have captured this bark perfectly! Not all barks run vertical on a tree, bark from apple trees and Martina's tree is very thin and goes around the tree horizontally. By curving the lines and applying the light source like Martina has achieved - she has captured the 3-d effect and characteristics perfectly!!! :clap: :thumbsup:

Your second sketch is good as well. Your smallest branches probably need to be a bit thinner with more variety in size and thickness. Also take extra time to observe the space between the branches - this will actually help you avoid making your branches too straight.

kswistak - Welcome! This is your first try??? Wow. Very nicely done. Your trunk and branches are excellent, good form and wonderful shadowing. Your leaves are awesome and you are leaving lots of 'open spaces' between the branches. Improvements? I can suggest you to study the reference photo. Identify where the leaves are more in shade and darkening them in your drawing. This will give your leaf bundles more form and 3-dimensionality. They don't need much and don't lose the openess or texture of what you have!!!! :clap: :clap: :clap:

Diane

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 07:16 PM
the reference picture has this grey wintery skie... it would have helped the drawing to put it in... but would you do it before drawing the tree? Would you tone the whole surface or trie to leave out the twigs and branches? Is it too late now?

Good questions! I would use the same technique as in the first lesson on drawing skies and clouds. I would tone the whole surface and blend with a chamois right over where the twigs and branches are. Then with a fine tipped eraser I would erase my branches and create crisp edges.

I am working on your photo reference right now and have done this process. I loved the dark sky behind the white branches and didn't want to lose that feeling as I captured the tree.

Is it too late to add it in? YES....:( :heart:

HOW do you keep track of where you are? Whenever I decide to get as much detail as I can, I just loose the reference spot. One reason is that the drawing is not exactly the same, but I find that a big hurdle for detail.

When you get into the complex subject of a tree it is very easy to lose track of where you are!! Here are some tips you can try:

- Grid your reference photo and grid your drawing to the same proportion. I personally don't like to draw grids on my paper (because I can't draw a straight line with a ruler...don't tell anyone though....it's embarrassing....:angel: ) I use clear transparency sheets with printed grid blocks and then just overlay on top of my reference photo and/or drawing whenever I need to check my placement.

- Drawing enough outline on your paper to give you good reference points. I will also draw dots on the outside of the tree branch tips so I know how far I need to go.

- Keep your reference photo as close to the area you are drawing as possible. Move your eyes from the photo to your drawing frequently as you draw to insure you are in the same spot.

- Draw and complete small sections at a time.

- If you are drawing leaf bundles, draw in the branches first to help as reference points.

The other problem (for me) with detailed drawing is that it takes a lot of pencil-control (as well as brain control )... I find that at this point, I am not able to get that incredible detailed stuff into a very small space. The patience I can muster, the drawing skills... will follow, I hope.

Here are the 3 P's for every artist to follow: PRACTICE, PATIENCE AND PERSEVERENCE.

When I find my mind is wondering...it's time for a break. If I start rushing an area...it's time for a break. My drawings average between 20 - 40 hours to complete and my drawing sessions can be anywhere from 5 minutes to 8-10 hours.

Diane

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 07:29 PM
Angela - Your mom was right about changing the variety of your lines, they definitely helped give your tree the feeling of bark. However, I think your lines are still too heavy. (Check out my response to Mitika) In your next assignment see if you can work on achieving the 3-d form of a tree with the use of shading only without using outlines. Looking good...but keep practicing!!!

Diane

DianeWright
03-29-2007, 07:38 PM
im thinking im slowly getting better . maybe the answer is too go out side and really look at what you are trying too draw . thanks from jasmine

Jasmine - You are doing a fine job. It's an excellent idea to go out and really look at the trees. It's amazing the variety of bark and trees there are.:)

I have one suggestion: Observe closely at the juncture points of the big branches as they attach to the trunk. You have a fairly tight V shape, but if you look at Dave's tree (just below yours), see how the same larger branches areas are more of an open U where they attach to the tree. The lower branches will have a wider space/angle and as they progress to the higher branches the spaces/angles will narrow.

Dave - EXCELLENT TREE!!!! I love the budding and just enough detail!!! Nice shading and form and well....very very nice....:clap:

Angela 212
03-29-2007, 07:56 PM
Thanks Diane, I'll give it a go! :)

rafaelmarron
03-29-2007, 11:52 PM
Hi everyone all your work is beautiful. :thumbsup:

I am late but here is my last root. :wave:

Rafael

bigspender
03-30-2007, 12:22 AM
I've been a looker :o for quite a while couldn't make up my mind to post but this tree class caught my eye and so even though I'm starting late here is my fitst Roots sketch. I'm having trouble getting the fine marks for the bark and the grass

Comments and ideas kindly accepted.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/30-Mar-2007/42957-Tree__Root_demo1.jpg

will be trying the next lesson on branches waiting for comments and where I should go from here on this one.

as ever Peggy :wave:

binkie
03-30-2007, 12:24 AM
Diane,

Thank you so much for reviewing my roots. I love your trees and would really like to produce more photo-realistic trees. I'm afraid I'm in over my head. I do not understand some of the terms, although I tried to find them on the net: burnish, chisel point, and a couple of others I can't recall (I apologize). I would love to have Mike Sibley's book but it is something I will have to save for. I attempted the next lesson but it came out less than acceptable so will try again. Any suggestions or should I go back to Drawing Lessons 101?

Thank you again for offering such a wonderful class.

binkie

bigspender
03-30-2007, 12:25 AM
Diane

I tried downloaded the pdf from your site but it woukd not save any idea why.

as ever Peggy

kswistak
03-30-2007, 04:33 AM
Diane - first try with drawing realistic tree. I will try to add more light to it. Thank you for this lesson. I found it very useful.

DianeWright
03-30-2007, 08:34 AM
Rafael Nicely done. The curve of the big roots is gentle and is very 3 dimensional.

I've been a looker for quite a while couldn't make up my mind to post but this tree class caught my eye and so even though I'm starting late here is my fitst Roots sketch. I'm having trouble getting the fine marks for the bark and the grass

Peggy - Welcome aboard! Great sketches! Your second shows you are working to create roundness to the roots. Are you using regular pencils? My preference is to use .5 mm mechanical pencils and even have a few .3 mm mechanical pencils. They help to get the finer marks where regular pencils have to be continually sharpened to keep that point. The type of paper you use also makes a big difference. Sketch paper will prohibit you from capturing fine marks.

Binkie - Sorry about the terminology! Burnish means to apply a layer of harder graphite (such as 2H or 4H lead) over softer graphite (2B or 4B lead).

Chisel means to create an angle on your lead tip. I like to use sandpaper and scribble my pencil over the sandpaper at an angle. This creates a wide, flat (chisel) edge to the pencil lead and can create nice broad smooth strokes of graphite.

Feel free to ask more questions if you don't understand a technique! :)

I attempted the next lesson but it came out less than acceptable so will try again. Any suggestions or should I go back to Drawing Lessons 101? It just takes practice and lots of it! REMEMBER the 3 P's: PRACTICE, PATIENCE and PERSEVERENCE! If you are unsure about a concept, you can always go back to the fundamental lessons. I find I enjoy going back to reread them myself! ;)

Diane

DianeWright
03-30-2007, 08:41 AM
Peggy - I'm not sure why you can't download the .pdf. Here is the direct link.

http://www.dianewrightfineart.com/tutorial-trees/trees_tutorial.pdf

It is a large file and if you are dial-up, or do not have a lot of memory on your computer, it might not open. Also you need Adobe Acrobat Reader on your pc.

Diane

mitika
03-30-2007, 09:01 AM
thanx Daine.. will surly try to improve

Blooming
03-30-2007, 09:03 AM
Just a quick question. I have never participated in these classes before. Are we to do each picture in each assignment? I am heading out of town for a conference this weekend, and will have lots of hotel time in which I plan to spend drawing.

kswistak
03-30-2007, 09:22 AM
Ok, I'm done with this one. I did a small adjustment:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/30-Mar-2007/86915-tree_kswistak.jpg

It wasn't so hard as I thought. I will practice with next drawings. Again, thanks for this lesson :wave:

DianeWright
03-30-2007, 09:22 AM
Blooming - You do NOT have to do every picture in an assignment. I have provided a variety so you can choose which ones to do or how many you wish to complete.

Diane

Dreamsun
03-30-2007, 09:32 AM
Diane,
thank you very much for the wonderful compliment on my plum-tree.
What you said about my "winter tree" is totally correct and I know it.

I have to practice the trees much more, until now the most of my wintertrees looked more like a deer head than like branches :D - this one lookes so much better than any exemplar before. *laughing* So I can say you tought me a lot, Diane!!! :heart: Even my husband noticed that.

Btw - I am totally afraid of drawing the foliage.......... :(

Now I have another question (for all):
Today I received my mechanical pencils. I'm not very happy with them, maybe it is the brand (Faber-Castell, TK-series).

Which brand do you use?

DianeWright
03-30-2007, 09:46 AM
Today I received my mechanical pencils. I'm not very happy with them, maybe it is the brand (Faber-Castell, TK-series). Which brand do you use?

I use Pentel 120 A315-A .5 mm. They have a soft rubber grip. This is a very personal preference on the pencil types and styles. There are so many different varieties!!

Here are two links that show the pencil I use.

http://www.bestpensonline.com/ProductDetail.jsp?LISTID=3480000-1138237619

http://www.cheapofficesupplies.com/items_item.asp?sku=PENA315A

Btw - I am totally afraid of drawing the foliage

Don't be overwhelmed!! We're going to take baby steps to approach drawing foliage...so start with the leaf assignment....then we will do a couple of branches....then we will work up to the whole tree....(there is method to my madness!!!:evil: )

Diane

Dreamsun
03-30-2007, 10:05 AM
Don't be overwhelmed!! We're going to take baby steps to approach drawing foliage...so start with the leaf assignment....then we will do a couple of branches....then we will work up to the whole tree....(there is method to my madness!!!:evil: )

Diane

*lmao* Okay, I think I can get my fear under control........

Diane, these pencil you have - do you have different leads? We too can get such similar pencils (I have two - a .5 and a .7) but only one lead (polymere).

DianeWright
03-30-2007, 10:11 AM
I have a different pencil for each hardness of lead (ranging 4H - 4B). I have a small label on each pencil identifying which lead is in each pencil. I have also used small blots of enamel paint to color code them to tell them apart.

These are my favorite leads:

http://www.rexart.com/mar_marsmicro_carbon.html

But the pentel leads work too.

I hope that answers your question.

Diane

Dreamsun
03-30-2007, 10:30 AM
Thank you Diane, for your patience.
Those Staedtler Marsmicro Carbon I can get here. I hope.

bigspender
03-30-2007, 01:28 PM
Diane

I am using just a regular mechanical pencil from the local drugstore. .5 HB lead. Will the .3 lead you talked about fit this pencil or will I have to get a pencil for that size? You also mentioned the different hardness of the lead would I have to shop at an art store to get these? I am using just a 50 gms sketch pad. What would you recomend as a beginner sketch pad/Paper something smoother or with more texture? and Why?

as ever Peggy

DianeWright
03-30-2007, 01:40 PM
I am using just a regular mechanical pencil from the local drugstore. .5 HB lead. Will the .3 lead you talked about fit this pencil or will I have to get a pencil for that size?

You will need to get a .3 mm mechanical pencil to use the .3 mm lead in. I use this pencil very sparingly as the lead is sooooo thin. But when I want a small detail, it works great.


You also mentioned the different hardness of the lead would I have to shop at an art store to get these?
The office/drafting supply stores sometimes have different hardness of leads. Our local art store carries the variety of leads. But I usually buy my lead on-line at Rexart (see above link)

I am using just a 50 gms sketch pad. What would you recomend as a beginner sketch pad/Paper something smoother or with more texture? and Why?

My personal preference is never to use sketch paper. There is just no comparison to using good quality paper even to practice on. I can't practice and get the same results on lesser quality paper...the results are just not the same. I use Strathmore 300 Series Bristol Board Smooth. I purchase it online.

However, I understand the need to use sketch paper. I would recommend a medium finish. When graphite is applied to the textured papers it will be more grainy. The finer details are unable to be achieved. But if the paper is too smooth, the graphite will skirt right off the surface.

Diane

kswistak
03-30-2007, 05:31 PM
The bristol you use, is it 300 gms?

DianeWright
03-30-2007, 05:54 PM
Looks like it is 260 gms. Here's the pads that I use.

http://www.dickblick.com/zz133/07/

Diane

Dreamsun
03-30-2007, 06:12 PM
Hey Kswistak! :wave:
If you find a shop where you can buy this bristol pad, would you please tell me?
I tried to get it all ober here in Germany but it isn't available here and Dickblick doesn't ship to europe, as far as I know.
(And if he would do so, it is unbelievable expensive because you have to pay customs duty extra.

joane
03-30-2007, 07:10 PM
You can buy bristol smooth surface 147Gms in 250 sheet packages for less than $5/package (US) made by Hammermill which is a division of International Paper Company. It is called Cover Stock and can be found at most office supply stores. It works very well for practice at a very reasonable cost. While it is not quite as heavy as the artist's Bristol smooth by Strathmore and others, I have found the results quite nice with ordinary graphite pencils.

Dreamsun
03-30-2007, 07:17 PM
Hi Joane,
thanks for this information. I looked it up but couldn't find it except in USA.

Are you sure that the shipping to Germany won't be more than 5$??

jasminerose
03-30-2007, 10:37 PM
Hi diane . thanks for your tips . I was just wondering if the papper you use and the pencils etc you get are avalible in australia ? how can we get it here ? I am using a pad called 110gsm cartridge . is that too smooth ? thankyou for your help jasmine

bigspender
03-31-2007, 01:03 AM
Diane

First every one is doing so well :clap: :clap:

I really like the beginning smaller steps to each progress. Will you be doing a smaller and less complicated demo for leaves as well??


:wave: I've made an attempt at the branches as you will see.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2007/42957-Branches_3.jpg


What is wrong with the first top branch it's not looking right and I didn't want to go on when something was wrong? My hubby said he thought it was because it was too straight but that's not it and I can't put my finger on what it is. Help Help!!

The tip isn't right either, is it one branch or the other isn't front or back and so it is flat or what??

Will be patient and perservere.



as ever Peggy

Judi1957
03-31-2007, 10:27 AM
Hi Diane and All!:wave:

I really wanted to get some foliage at least started last night-and will come back to the winter trees when I have this done.

This is drawn from a ref in the RIL on Japanese Maple leaves (http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=47854&size=big&cat=&si=japanese%20maple). The ref was provided by madmum-ty!

Stage one-about an hour-finished drawing will be about 8"w X 6"h.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2007/37258-jap_maple_1.jpg

mitika
03-31-2007, 11:16 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2007/97811-assign_2.jpg
i tried wid this tree bark... seem better than b4 to me
i used F, 2B,4B, 6B grades of pencil
lookin forward for commets

DianeWright
03-31-2007, 05:36 PM
As promised, here is Frieda's Tree!! Thank you so much for sharing this photo! I loved the foliage, the branches and the dark sky in the background. It's just an awesome tree!! :thumbsup:

Here are 3 scans of the my work. The first one shows the blended sky with just a hint of clouds to the left. (See the sky tutorial for the steps). I used a mars eraser and erased back out the branches and trunk of the tree.

I used small dots on the outside edges of the tree to guide me for placement of the leaves.

I used a very small scribble marking to give the impression of leaves. The most detailed are at the edges. I also leave lots of sky showing through at the edges. The darkest areas are inside the tree.

The folliage on the ground is done with the same method. I didn't get into much detail but wanted to give the impression of all those bramble bushes. It is so strange to put in the cactus but they give it a very unique flavor!!

The drawing is small at 4 3/4" x 7" and I have spent about 6-8 hours on it.

Enjoy! :wave:

Diane

frieda L
03-31-2007, 06:38 PM
WOW!!!!!
That is definitely the elephant tree! incredible, Diane, I love it!
An awesome drawing of an awesome tree!
And the desert brambly stuff is such a treat! It is one of my major stumbling blocks. ( I guess I have no excuse for leaving it blank any more:rolleyes: )
Thank you for your comments, I feel like I am learning with leaps and bounds not only with the assignments, but the comments you give to everyone.
thank you
frieda

frieda L
03-31-2007, 07:02 PM
hum, do I dare... a leaf exercise.
The land of elephant trees and cactuses is not the land of bristol paper. The owner of the only art store in La Paz was trying to convince me Bristol is a brand name. So I still have no idea what it really looks like. The previous tree assignments I did on a paper from Office Depot (got one of those, here, though they do not have the papers mentioned in this class before), called OPALINA. It is smooth,(no texture visible), fairly sturdy, sort of like matte photo paper, maybe... I like it, but I wonder if it is just a tad too smooth for detail. Does anyone know this paper, and how it relates to bristol? Does bristol have a name in spanish that anyone would know?
Is Bristol a really smooth paper? Not glossy, though?
So for this, I tried Bockingford watercolor paper, which the art store said is used for drawing... I really do not know what to think of it. I think I will save it for watercolor.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2007/22676-assignment4_002.jpg
frieda

tyree
03-31-2007, 08:14 PM
frieda...i would not think w/c paper good for drawing?? wasnt it kind of rough??? however that is a good drawing!!!! diane...that tree is something else..thanks for the mini tutorial!!! im starting my wintry tree tomorrow..hope it doesnt look like a bunch of sticks:p judi...wonderful start!! tyree:wave:

scrappie
03-31-2007, 10:05 PM
Looks like I’m really behind on the tree assignments,:( been busy with other chores, but trying to catch up.
Every ones doing a great job, would like to post on some of the drawing but short on time at the moment, will try later.

Here's assignment 2

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2007/88717-tree_brak_1.jpg

jmfletch
04-01-2007, 04:27 PM
Starting late... I am about a week and 230 posts behind.:eek:

Sorry for not commenting but I have not yet caught up on reading/viewing.:o

This is for assignment #3 ... roots. 9x12 Canson Sketch paper using 2mm leads 4H, 2H, HB, & 2B

Please C&C.
Joe

DianeWright
04-01-2007, 06:18 PM
NICE JOB EVERYONE!!!:clap: :clap: :clap:

I have just posted the next WC Class 14 - Landscape - Putting It all Together! But DON'T PANIC if you haven't completed the Tree assignments yet.

I would like you all to continue and work on the foliage assignments before you move onto the last Lesson. :wink2:

I'll be around for all the lessons, so you won't be left behind.

Diane

jmfletch
04-01-2007, 06:58 PM
Starting late... I am about a week and 230 posts behind.:eek:

Sorry for not commenting but I have not yet caught up on reading/viewing.:o

This is for assignment #3 ... roots. 9x12 Canson Sketch paper using 2mm leads 4H, 2H, HB, & 2B

Please C&C.
Joe

Errr That is 2 weeks behind and Assignment #1 :o :o :o

...and now a Lesson behind :eek:


Joe

Judi1957
04-01-2007, 07:03 PM
LOL Joe:heart: -I think a few of us are behind!:D :o

joane
04-01-2007, 07:30 PM
Hello all--back again--and I thought I was behind--had to work in the "real world" much of the week! Here is my winter tree--who knew a bare tree could be so much trouble!

Sandy K
04-01-2007, 10:33 PM
You all are doing so great. Keep up the good work!

Joane, I really like your tree!!!

Seems like every couple days, someone in my family is getting that bug that's going around with a high fever so I have been busy. Surprisingly, I have not gotten it yet.

jasminerose
04-01-2007, 10:55 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Apr-2007/97398-kangaroo_apple_tree.jpg
Hi guys this is a start too the leaves on a tree . its a kangaroo apple tree its native aboriginal bush tucker food . I thought you guys might like too see something you wont see in your part of the world . what you think? should i keep going or try another tree . ? thanks jasmine:)

jasminerose
04-01-2007, 10:57 PM
also I could not get in here on the weekend ? do you know why ? was it too much trafic? thanks jasmine

blspencer33
04-02-2007, 12:48 PM
Very Interesting!
This is just what I've been looking for. I will be joining the class soon.
Thanks for the info.

Dreamsun
04-02-2007, 05:11 PM
Looking at all your drawings I feel I want to hide my attempt on foliagedeeeeeeeep under a lot of paper. :o

I don't do so but show it. Here it is, and - you didn't guess that - I'm not very happy with it.
I only used a HB mech. pencil .7.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Apr-2007/94648-foliage2.jpg

I have big problems with scribbling strokes. How do they look - like circles or like eights?

And did I mention that I hate my scanner? :envy:

joane
04-02-2007, 06:13 PM
I had trouble getting to the site on Sunday--must have been a lot of traffice here!
Thanks Sandy, isn't this a great class--so much to learn and so much offered.
Sorry about your "flu season" --hope it is all over soon!

DianeWright
04-02-2007, 06:42 PM
Back to Post #225

Peggy - Nice Branches! DId you find working with the cylinder shapes helpful? I still like to do sketches that way, just so I can get the feel of the shapes.
What is wrong with the first top branch it's not looking right and I didn't want to go on when something was wrong?

I would incline to agree with your hubby. It looks a bit too straight, just a slight kink about 2/3 of the way up should fix it. Also if you add just another small branch on the right tip it will off set that empty space on the right.

But you have nice depth!!!

Diane

DianeWright
04-02-2007, 06:58 PM
Judi - Nice start and this should be interesting!! I'll be watching these Japanese maple leaves come to life!!!

Mitika - wonderful job! I love that upper branch area especially!!! I really feel it growing out of the tree. :thumbsup:

Frieda - good job on the maple leaf!!! I don't know much about papers available in other countries (sorry folks...I'm just an Iowan farm gal...). My best recommendation is to experiment with different papers until you find something you like! Watercolor papers that are hot press (not cold press) are smoother with less texture. Arches Watercolor paper hot press or Fabriano hot press paper are EXCELLENT papers to use for drawing.

Scrappie - SUPERB job on that tree trunk. The texture of the bark is wonderful and I love the old knots!!! :clap: :clap:

Joe - NICE!!!!! :thumbsup: You've got good solid roots and the bark looks splendid! Only suggestion I have is perhaps just add a few blades of grass in front of some of those roots.

Joane - Your winter tree is perfect! :clap: :clap: What a beautiful job. From the main branches perfectly positioned with the right thickness to the wonderful umbrella of thin branches. This is just awesome. I love it!! :heart: How long did it take you???

Jasmine - don't stop now! Keep going! Sounds like a fascinating tree!

DianeWright
04-02-2007, 07:07 PM
Martina - Don't be so hard on yourself! You have good shaped leaf bundles and you have left open spaces between the branches. Be careful with the thickness of your branches at the ends. They should taper off to multiple thinner branches.

I have big problems with scribbling strokes. How do they look - like circles or like eights?

Are you holding your pencil like you are writing??? Try holding your pencil under hand (look back in the lesson for hand position). This hold gives you so much more freedom. The writing hold is too tight and controlled.

Also try and vary your scribbles. Keeping it all figure 8's or circles is too uniform.

Here is an example of my 'scribble'. It is more like short random strokes. I pay particular attention to the edges of the tree - actually creating a few marks that look like leaves (just a few is all it takes).

Diane

tyree
04-02-2007, 08:20 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Apr-2007/65063-wintry_tree.jpg this is my wintry tree...on bristol, with varied staedtler pencils...i think ive put too many branches on the right side....tyree

bayside girl
04-02-2007, 09:10 PM
Here's my winter tree. It looks a bit on the light side, the drawing is much darker than this scan shows.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Apr-2007/97897-winter_tree_5.jpg

Connie

binkie
04-02-2007, 09:20 PM
I was outside while my furkids played a couple of days ago so I sat down in front of my silk floss tree and drew that for the winter tree assignment. Hope that's okay. I know the two large branches look too straight. That's the way I saw them. Should I have curved them regardless?

Thanks
binkie

joane
04-02-2007, 09:39 PM
Gosh, Diane--such a good review coming from someone as accomplished as you are is like a great big gift! This is my first tree--I have done a lot of firsts since tuning in to WC in late January. I do confess to reading, studying and watching what everyone else was doing for a long time, but I never pushed myself to try such complicated projects--maybe afraid they would not turn out well--in any case thank you for your kind comments and all the support and help you give to all of us who are struggling here!