My favourite tree, year five

It’s become a yearly tradition to paint this maple tree in my neighbourhood. Here it is in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015. It’s still a perfect tree in every way — with a trunk to foliage ratio of 1 to 10, a perfectly intact crown (no chainsaws hacking away chunks to make way for power lines), and an unobstructed spot on a corner lot. But I think it’s getting too big to fit on my paper. When I look back at my first sketch of this in 2012, I can see that I had the same problem as today — I just couldn’t fit all of its beauty onto the page. Some things never change.


22 Comments on “My favourite tree, year five”

  1. TonyU says:

    Another year, another lovely sketch. Good to know that some things don’t change. Long may this particular one continue.


    • Thanks Tony. I hope so. Of course I always wonder if the people who own the property with the tree wonder what I am doing, lurking in front of their house, in my car, for an hour. So far no police have shown up but I’m always checking my rear view mirror to see if they pull up behind me.


  2. Tom Jump says:

    It must be growing! It’s always great seeing your painting of this tree Shari. If I were guessing, it looks like a Bur Oak 🙂 And belated congrats on your blog anniversary and thanks for keeping it going for us! ~Tom


    • Hi Tom. It’s great to hear from you. Yes, the tree is growing, or my sheets are getting smaller. It’s definitely a maple tree, probably a sugar maple from the shape of it. Thanks for writing and hope all is well in Denver.


  3. linder322 says:

    I loved seeing your previous versions of this lovely tree. I especially love this year’s version with the small stone structures/paths to the left. You have captured the transitory beauty of my favorite season.
    Could you please tell us what size brush you use for the shapes of the leaves?
    I think I need to use a larger brush!


    • Hi Linda,
      I know I have been promising to do a post on painting foliage. I should do it soon before all the leaves are gone. Last week I painted foliage with a 1″ flat brush but this time I painted with a big round, probably a #8, which is actually not that big.
      If I can get through all the grading I have at this time of year, I will try to do a step by step tree demo.
      Hope all is well with you.


  4. loisajay says:

    What a beautiful history of this tree. My new next door neighbors just had a huge, huge oak tree in their backyard taken down to make way for a room addition. I almost cried. These are all lovely. I should have photographed that tree so I would have a bit of history, too.


    • That is very sad. Do you follow the work of Donald Owen Colley? He is an amazing artist who I follow on Facebook and Instagram. Recently the city cut down a beautiful tree outside his apartment window. He was destroyed and I think he sketched the process. You should check him out. I can’t find a link to send your way.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. wrightottawa says:

    another one to print and tape above my desk


  6. Jodi says:

    Fun to look at all the versions!


  7. miatagrrl says:

    I loved seeing the whole series! I have a few trees that I sketch every year, too. It’s fun to have such sketching rituals.



  8. Monique says:

    It just burst out of the page/screen!
    Glumglum today…


  9. I’ve come to look forward to that tree every year, it’s so exuberant in your painting.


  10. linder322 says:

    Thanks so much for your tips. You have a busy schedule but always find time to share your brushes, pigments and so on with all of us?


  11. linder322 says:

    There wasn’t supposed to be a question mark at the end of my sentence…oops!


  12. Lee Kline says:

    I feel I know this tree too! Thanks.


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