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Get to Know the Tree

Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.

Abraham Lincoln

I’ve never chopped a tree in my life, but before I sketch a tree, I do spend a good amount of time walking around it, to learn it’s form, anatomy and to study the light and shade of the place.
The same I apply to architecture or any large object that cannot be moved. For buildings or structures, I do this to find the most intriguing angle and lighting. I do this also to find an unusual sight that will be memorable to even someone who’s familiar with the subject.

Contrary to still life, which you can move around and have full control of the scene, the lighting, the background… If you want to sketch or paint better trees, buildings or large structures, I suggest then that you spend more time selecting the point of view, the angle from which you want to show the world a new interpretation of what you capture.

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