Learning to draw 🎨

✏️ Tips and tricks for beginners and returners

Landschaft zeichnen Berghütte Bleistiftzeichnung 4
Various motifs


Draw and paint landscapes

In this article, I explain the basics of how to draw landscapes and paint nature scenes. The key elements are the principles of spatial drawing, as well as the different perspectives and horizontal lines. Knowledge of color theory can also be very helpful in creating a landscape painting.

This page is about drawing landscapes and nature scenes in general. The essential tools for drawing and painting landscapes are the horizon (or horizontal line), the vanishing point perspective, and the atmospheric perspective. A realistic and appealing nature scene can only be achieved through believable depth perception.

Landscape sketch with horizon line
Landscape sketch with horizon line

Now let’s focus on the application on this page. A landscape comes to life through the diversity and creativity of its details and perspectives. The principles of design laws can be effectively applied to landscape paintings, particularly regarding the composition and format of the image.

The sense of vastness, tranquility, tension, and height can all be influenced by choosing the right format. The lines within an image also contribute to its overall effect. Therefore, you should not only ask yourself, “What landscape do I want to paint?” but also “What effect do I want to achieve with the landscape painting?

Landscape sketch painted with ink
The image shown above exudes calmness and depth. Multiple horizontal lines divide the image visually into upper and lower halves.


Example tutorial: mountain hut

As an example of a pencil drawing of a landscape, I took the photo of the mountain hut shown above as a drawing template and made a quick sketch with based on it.

Draw landscape mountain hut sketch

Diese Skizze habe ich dann in vier weiteren Schritten schrittweise ausgearbeitet und mit Bleistiften verschiedener Härte Details und Schattierungen ergänzt. Für mein Beispiel habe ich zirka 2 Stunden gebraucht. Wer mehr Zeit und Ruhe in sein Bild investiert kann natürlich noch mehr Liebe ins Detail stecken und näher an die Vorlage heran tasten.

Für ein exemplarisches Beispiel wie man die Horizontallinien und den groben Aufbau einer Landschaft vor zeichnet, reicht eine schnelle Zeichnung aber.

Draw landscape mountain hut pencil drawing 1
Pencil drawing 1


Draw landscape mountain hut pencil drawing 2
Pencil drawing 2


Landscape drawing mountain hut pencil drawing 3
Pencil drawing 3


Landscape drawing mountain hut pencil drawing 4
Pencil drawing 4


Urban Sketching

Another form of landscape drawing is urban sketching, drawing in cities. The artist walks through the city with a sketchbook and his drawing tools (which can be anything from pencil to watercolor, with which one likes to draw and paint) in search of motifs that are worth sketching.

The “real” urban sketcher still makes his sketch on the spot. Others shoot themselves a photo in order to convert the motive at home in all peace. But it is also common to take a photo in addition to his sketch made on the spot to work out his sketch at home. Since you have captured light and shadow and color effect on his photo, you have the impression of the time of the sketch directly before your eyes. On another day or another season, the motif can appear completely different.


Additional Pages


From the German Blog


From the German-speaking Forum


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