How to Draw Stones With Pen and Ink

In this post, I will demonstrate how to draw stones with pen and ink. Stone is a great addition to any landscape scene as it is relatively easy to draw and really helps to anchor a scene and creates simple focal points. Follow this tutorial to learn how to draw a stone in simple steps.

To understand how to draw a stone, it is useful to visualise a box. When seen in three quarter view, which is most interesting, you can see its left side, right side and top. Same is the case with a stone. You just need to make the sides irregular and add marks to show surface texture of the stone.

a box

To believably depict a stone you need to accomplish following 2 things:

  1. Show its solidity by defining planes and shading them appropriately to bring out their solidity.
  2. Use various marks and other techniques to bring out the rough texture of the stone.

Drawing Stone:

To draw a stone, follow the steps shown below. First the planes (left, right and top) are draw with lines. Next they are shaded to bring out solidity and finally additional marks are added to enhance its texture.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

By varying the length and angles of lines for different sides, you can create many interesting shapes. Some examples are shown below. Angled top is always more appealing.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

Following are some more examples of drawing stone outline.

drawing stone outline

 

Following is how to texture simple stone outline to bring out a feel of stone.

 

drawing stone

Suggestions on Finishing a stone:

To make a stone look more believable, use the following techniques:

  1. Add intersecting planes at the edges and in the body. To do this in an edge, create a discontinuity in the edge line as shown below.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

2. Make the edge broken and irregular by adding dark spots and lines as shown below.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

3. Use different direction of parallel lines for shading to suggest plane change. This will add to the interest.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

4. Use small random marks to give overall effect of rough texture

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

5. Shade one side darker than other depending on light source. Also shade bottom darker than the top of sides. This gives solidity to the depiction of stone.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

Options on Depicting a Side:

An important consideration for a side of a stone is the nature of its ‘irregularity’ as it will affect how it is depicted. Following are 2 options:

  1. The side has mostly small surface irregularities but no major plane change: In this case simply use marks shown below to show surface irregularities. The edge lines should not have major angles.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

2. The side has sharp angled plane: Stones are more interesting if the side has an angled plane. To do this, the edge lines need to have a sharp angle that can be used to create a plane as shown below.

 

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

Above discussion on adding plane to side can now be generalized to create  stones that have multiple planes.

Drawing Stone with Multiple Planes:

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

There are many other type of stones with rounded sides, flat tops,  angular edges etc as depicted below. Drawing them is discussed in detail in vol 3 of my pen and ink drawing workbooks.

Drawing a group of Stones:

Always start with the stone in first and follow the steps described earlier but don’t draw the plane lines that are not visible due to stone arrangement. Finish the stones as explained before.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

Same steps can be used for stones going down as shown below. Stones should also become smaller with distance. Also note that in examples below, less dark is used for shading to give stones more of sunlit effect. Experiment with different levels of shading to see what you like.

pen and ink tutorial, drawing stone in pen and ink

 

This completes the tutorial. Remember to Practice and have fun. Drawing stones is discussed in detail in vol 3 of my pen and ink workbooks. Try it today.

You can also Subscribe to receive my weekly emails that demonstrate how do a simple drawing in easy step by step manner. These are great for regular practice and to get weekly inspiration. See a sample here.

Happy Drawing,

Rahul

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