Lakes supply an artist with a lot of good drawing material: water, animal life, rock formations, tree and plant growth, and other sometimes unusual natural wonders. In this small drawing of North Lake in the Catskill Mountains, I included the lake and an unusual phenomenon called a quaking bog. The bog floats around, gradually increasing in size through the years, and eventually becomes anchored as part of the land mass.
The large drawing was also inspired by North Lake. In both sketches, I created the impression of vastness by the dimension of the trees. In the small drawing, the trees were made small, which gives the illusion of distance. In the large drawing, I moved in closer to the trees and included a flight of ducks. In both pictures I deliberately excluded part of the lake, as I felt a part would be more interesting than the whole.
When drawing lakes, the important thing is to simplify. Look for the main flow, usually created by breezes or the wind, and indicate the movement with a minimum of line. These lines should be mostly horizontal in direction. Leave a thin line of separation between the water and the land mass. If the water is darker than the land mass, leave a thin white line. If the water is lighter, leave a thin line that is irregular and varied in thickness.
Reflections of foliage can be vertical or horizontal, and they should vary in value. Tree reflections, however, should be vertical only. Keep them simple.
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