How to Draw a Windy Tree

Updated February 21, 2017

The ability to draw a tree is a fundamental skill for an artist. But to draw a tree that is blowing in the wind is a bit more interesting and requires more thought. Many evergreens barely appear to be blowing at all on a windy day, but deciduous trees might blow so violently that leaves blow off. Drawing one of these trees requires a bit of imagination and ability to create movement in a picture.

Determine the direction that the wind will be blowing in your picture. Wind might swirl sometimes, but to draw a windy tree, the strongest gust will be slowing it in one direction.

Sketch a basic tree by drawing a line near the bottom of your paper to symbolise the ground, and then spring two lines upward from that to become the tree trunk. Since the tree will be being blowing in the wind, keep the trunk vertical for at least a third of the way up, and then where the trunk becomes more malleable and vulnerable to the wind, start to bend the trunk away from the direction of the wind.

Sketch the leafy area of the tree. What normally is the shape of three circles will now be flattened out to a large horizontal oval positioned to the side where the trunk is bending. Sketch the oval's size to about twice the length of the visible trunk. Outline it with a jagged edge. Shade it in somewhat with the side of your pencil. Erase some small areas where light should penetrate.

Draw branches attached to the trunk within the oval that are being blown to the side. In strong winds, leaves come off trees, so draw some unattached leaves to the side of the oval and some that might be drifting to the ground. If your picture is an autumn scene, draw more loose leaves, because leaves more readily come off during that season. There are occasions when wind swirls in more than one direction and leaves blow off to the opposite side of the tree. Draw a few loose leaves on the other side of the tree, too.

Draw some effects that will support the windy feature, such as grass on the ground blowing in the same direction of the tree or maybe some angry clouds in the sky above the tree.

Air gusts can be simulated by sketching lines of dust that have blown up into the air beside the tree. Lightning or rain also can be added to the picture to create the effect of a storm.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Eraser
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About the Author

Ann LaPan travels exuberantly in body and mind via planes, trains, automobiles and superb literature. A webmaster, website designer, graphic artist, accountant and musician (Jill of all trades, master of a few), she writes Today’s Horoscope for Shooting Star