How to draw a bird's nest

Written by deborah walden
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How to draw a bird's nest
Birds' nests in nature look like little works of art. (Thomas Northcut/Lifesize/Getty Images)

Birds' nests remain favourite subjects for nature journals. Learning to create a basic nest shape will help any bird enthusiast when observing these habitats in nature. This subject also makes an ideal accent to homemade greeting cards in spring months. These natural objects provide opportunities to study line, form and cross-hatching. It helps to observe birds' nests through wildlife encounters or photographs before starting your drawing. Also, remember that drawing requires practice, so try this subject in your sketchbook before starting a formal version.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Pencil
  • Paper
  • Eraser

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    Draw the Bird's Nest

  1. 1

    Draw a long, skinny oval shape. Extend a semicircle beneath this oval. Keep these lines light because you will draw over some of them later.

  2. 2

    Shade in your oval shape leaving a small border around the top blank. Use the tip of your pencil and apply pressure to achieve a dark shadow.

  3. 3

    Draw over the semicircle using crosshatch lines. These lines form the twigs of your nest. Make these lines weave over each other in various directions to create an irregular pattern. Draw your lines with slightly curving strokes so that they do not appear rigid. Fill the entire semicircle with these lines. They should extend over the border of the semicircle to create an sense of texture.

  4. 4

    Continue adding crosshatch lines across the border of the oval that you left blank. Make these lines shorter than the lines on the front of your nest. Use these lines to completely cover the external line of your oval. This completes your bird's nest.

Tips and warnings

  • When drawing the lines that form the twigs of your nest, avoid making them too regular or perfectly woven, or your nest may look like a basket. Also, avoid making them too messy or chaotic since this distracts the eye when viewing your drawing. Birds' nests in nature provide the best place to witness the texture, irregularity and striking order of these subjects.

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