Drawing In Nature Or Is It Drawing Nature?

The beauty of drawing isn’t simply what shows up on paper. The beauty of drawing for me is the process. Take for example when drawing in nature, I’m not so much excited about the end result, (well, maybe a little), but I’m more into the process.

Combining the lines, making the shapes, seeing gradually, how the image comes together.

Drawing in nature is about drawing from nature. I think you must be in the environment your trying to draw to fully feel it. Oh, pictures work too. 

More Than A Photograph

I understand not everyone has the opportunity to get outside and draw some pretty little trees or that woodchuck that runs away the second you breathe.

So yes, you can use a picture and work from it as a reference. I do it all the time with my floral work. It’s not preferable, but you either fulfill that need to create, or you don’t. The choice is yours.


But nothing beats getting out into the environment you want to capture. Photographers obviously have no choice. They either go out and visit their location or create their scene in studio.

Artists have a few more options (thank you photographers for capturing said reference photos.)

I think the best way to fully embrace your art is to experience your art. This happens when you experience the process. Everything from the rough sketches to foster your ideas to the finishing touches.

The experience of creating is the true passion.

The creative process is time consuming. Daunting. Draining both emotionally and sometimes physically. But this process, this system of creativity is the reason most of us create.

Yeah, sure you get a cool little picture at the end. But why is it cool? Why do you feel this sense of overwhelming joy and satisfaction when your piece is done?

The simple answer is because you went through the process to create it.




Drawing in nature is the best way to capture the sense of environment you’re aiming for. How can you fully capture the intricate details of leaves or birds?

What about the shapes and abstract lines found in a marshy swamp with wild reeds popping up all around you?

Nature Happens Indoors Too

I don’t just go outside to find my natural groove. I actually look inside too. Stores, yes retail establishments. I put most of my designs on various pieces of apparel. But how do I know what I want to create?

I look at what’s out there already.

Why reinvent the wheel? You may ask where does the nature happen indoors? Well, it doesn’t really except I look at what’s on the racks and get a sense on how to put the art onto apparel, posters, hats you name it.

Let’s be honest too, just because I like what I design (for the most part,) doesn’t mean everyone else will. When you’re designing a product, you need to design for your buyers.

I’m designing for my e-commerce site, my Society6 and Etsy shops. But I have to get out in the real world and do some research too.

It’s how creative process and business interact. Or in my case, collide in the “ah-ha!” moment.




If you’re struggling with your creative process, regardless of the medium, get out into the environment your trying to capture. You want to draw a tree? Go out in some trees. You want to draw a fish, go fishing.

If you’re a street photographer, go out on the streets and take some images. The possibilities are endless. Your creative products are not just a reflection of you, but of your creative process.

Nature inspires much, so drawing nature requires drawing from nature.

Go. Be. Creative.

Thanks for reading and if you like any of the pieces in this post, check out my store here

Drawing In Nature Or Is It Drawing Nature? was originally published on Vincent Vicari Art

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