How to Draw and Paint Watercolor Folk Art Trees



I posted a photo of these easy watercolor and line trees last year on Instagram and so many of you requested a handout. It took me this long, but I finally created a handout (for this lesson) and a video too!

This is just the perfect type of lesson: easy, technique rich and beautiful. To create this project, give each student a piece of watercolor paper (not essential but the watercolor paint will look more vibrant on watercolor paper than sulphite paper), a black waterproof marker and access to watercolor paints.


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Draw tree trunks with a Sharpie or waterproof black marker.

Step 1 drawing and painting folk art trees

Draw larger trees near the bottom of the paper and smaller trees behind the larger ones OR draw a row of trees like I did in the video.

Draw various lines to create the branches of the trees (refer to handout for ideas).

Step 2 drawing and painting folk art trees

Use watercolor paints to create a halo of color around the tree branches. If you don’t want the colors of paint to bleed, make sure to allow for space between each halo OR paint a few and then add in more after the first trees dry. This approach takes longer.

Step 3 drawing and painting folk art trees

If you create this lesson in your art room, I’d love to see it!

I have a Facebook group where art teachers from around the world post pictures of their students art.

You can join The Deep Space Sparkle Dazzlers right HERE

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Free drawing guide download- folk art trees

What do you think?

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  • Linda Dinsmore

    Wonderful lesson, thanks for sharing!

  • Lisa

    Thank you!!??

  • Brenda

    Love this

  • Nikole M. Raflik

    love it!

  • Anne

    Thank you!!

  • Mel

    Thank you 🙂

  • Roberta J Smith

    We did the leaves for a tree that I created on a large bulletin board and they turned out beautifully. This is a wonderful extension to our leaf project. Thank you so much!!!

    • Patty

      Thank YOU Roberta!

  • Kelly Warne

    Great idea!

  • jodeworks2u

    Love this

  • cris

    You’re so talented. thank you so much for sharing your gift with us. I love all your posts and I am so thankful for the time you spend to share it with it with the world. (heart emoji) thank you!

  • Liz Gregory

    Love this lesson. I’m trying to download the guide but nothing is appearing in my email,

    • Patty

      Have you checked your junk mail folder? Is it a school email address that might be blocking DSS? Can you try a different email?
      Let us know and then reach out to for more help 🙂

  • Patty

    I LOVE this lesson! I have taught art for 26 years and really enjoy teaching your lessons! You are an inspiration to all! My friends who were afraid to teach art now are having a lot of fun!

    • kelita 3grade

      nice job

    • kelita

      nice job i am in grade 3

  • Vernecia

    Will love the free drawing guide, very fun and easy for kids to add to their art catolog

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