A Landscape Drawing Lesson AND Free Caran d’Ache Pencils!

Welcome to your chance to win a set of quality drawing pencils from Caran d’Ache! To celebrate this special offer, we’re sharing the following free excerpt from Drawing for the Absolute Beginner by Mark and Mary Willenbrink. Featured is a step-by-step landscape drawing lesson on composition. 

In the comments below, tell us: If you could travel anywhere in the world just for drawing landscapes, where you would love to go? Leave a comment and you’ll be automatically entered to win* the Caran d’Ache drawing set!

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

Landscape Drawing | A Step-by-Step Drawing Lesson for Beginners

By Mark and Mary Willenbrink 

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

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

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

For Beginners: How to Draw a Landscape

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

Step 1: Draw the Basic Shapes

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

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

Step 2: Add the Window, Door and Roof Lines

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

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

Step 3: Add Details to the Building and Tree

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

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

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

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

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

Step 5: Refine the Sheep and Trees

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

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

Step 6: Add Shading and Grass

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

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

Landscape drawing tutorial | Mark Willenbrink, ArtistsNetwork.com

Step 7: Add the Darkest Darks and Finishing Details

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

Caran d'Ache drawing pencils | ArtistsNetwork.com

WIN this set of Caran d’Ache drawing pencils for landscape drawing and so much more!

*Comment below and tell us where you’d love to visit to draw beautiful landscapes. We’ll choose a random winner (must be a U.S. resident) on March 31, 2017, to receive a FREE set of Caran d’Ache pencils for drawing. Good luck!


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211 thoughts on “A Landscape Drawing Lesson AND Free Caran d’Ache Pencils!

  1. masons1954

    I’d love to visit rural England in the spring or early summer to sketch. Specifically, I’d like to capture some of the sights surrounding Avebury and Glastonbury. That area of the U.K. not only contains great natural beauty, but many examples of Neolithic and medieval ruins that beg to be drawn. I’m also a fan of ancient legends and folklore, and Wiltshire is perfect for that too.

  2. vrichmond

    I live on a sailboat, and my dream is to head off with my pencils and paints and document my travels. First stop, Sea of Cortez and Pacific Mexico and from there, who knows!

  3. Dashelle

    I would love to go draw in Hawaii. I love the lush greenery and the hills as well as the huts and buildings, oceans and beaches It’s a little bit of everything all in one place.

  4. Amy McCauley

    I have been to Tuscany and I would love to be able to go there and be able to spend time drawing and painting plein air. Such lovely scenes to delve into!

  5. dnipps

    I would love to go to the southwestern United States and capture nature in all it’s glory. I’ve always wanted to try and sketch the ancient dwellings and petroglyphs. And the colors are so vibrant… yes definitely the southwest.

  6. Prasanna

    I would like to draw the landscapes of Goa , India. The culture , people, the heritage, the sea , the costal rain forest , it is a picturesque place to be in yourself and indulge into an expressive medium like sketching.

  7. Deez

    Thank you artist network for the lesson!!

    If I could travel anywhere in the world just to draw landscapes, I would love to go to Machu Picchu! Love the place for its Breathtaking views!!

  8. J_White

    Ireland! I’ve never been there, but it seems to run the run the gamut: modern, traditional, pastoral, wild. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a photo of rural Ireland that didn’t take my breath away, and if I got tired of wind-swept vistas, plenty of inspiring town and city scenes to fallback on.

  9. Sean5169

    Hi, if I had the chance or could afford it, I’d have to say the islands of Hawaii. Just seeing the spectacular landscapes and vistas really moves me. Thxs Sean