Nature doesn’t often give us pleasing artistic shapes. If you’re interested in landscape art and drawing trees, it’s a good idea to have a collection of artistic and abstract tree shapes in a library. An artist needs to be a shape collector. Your sense of aesthetics, to determine an attractive shape, should be innate.
What constitutes an abstract shape for a tree?
1. Draw an imaginary line down the middle and compare both sides. Each side should be different.
2. The shape should not end up symmetrical by being too circular or oval.
3. The contour line should have lost and found edges.
4. There should be color variances within the shape.
5. There should be indentations and protrusions to give a three-dimensional effect.
6. When grouped together, all the negative spaces that form between the trees should be different.
Which of the two shapes below is the more appealing, the circle or the oval?
Surely you voted for the oval because it has a different height than width. If a tree shape fits inside a circle, no matter how realistically you render it, the shape will not be attractive. Tree drawings look better if their foliage is oval rather than circular. The same applies to a square format versus a rectangular format. If a waterfall or a rock fits inside a square, the abstract design is compromised. You would want to change the anatomy of a waterfall and stretch it to fit in a rectangle rather than a square.
The bottom line is that it’s not what you do inside the shape that makes the symbol look good. It’s the shape per se. The key is in making the overall shape appealing. Details within the boundaries of the shape are less important.
“Landscape Painting Essentials” and other video courses are available at NorthLightShop.com. North Light has also just released a new eBook written by Johannes titled Landscape Painting Essentials. Join his online art classes at http://improvemypaintings.com.