How to Draw a Bush with Pen and Ink

In this post I will describe how to draw a bush with pen and ink. A bush is usually part of a landscape and different type of bush can be used very effectively to add visual interest in a landscape. learning to draw them effectively is very important to create pleasing landscapes.

A bush can generally be categorised as following:

  1. Dense Bush with few visible twigs:
  2. Twigs are prominent with foliage light and airy

Different techniques are appropriate for drawing bush where foliage is dense compared to bush where twigs are prominent as discussed below.

Drawing a Foliage Prominent Bush:

Drawing a bush with prominent foliage is very similar to drawing deciduous tree foliage and distant foliage. If you haven’t gone through those tutorials, I recommend you look at them first to understand the basic shape and stroke to render a foliage.

In the following approach, the top of a foliage mass is initially drawn and used to lay out foliage mass. This is similar to how distant foliage is done, except that the size is bigger for a bush. Also, ‘leaf’ or scribble stroke should be used instead of parallel lines as a bush is usually closer with more details (foliage) visible.

drawing bush with prominent foliage

Layers of bush can be done in the same manner as a distant foliage. Also, some visible thin branches can be added to give it more interest as shown below.

drawing bush with layered foliage

Drawing a Bush Farther Out:

As discussed in drawing deciduous foliage tutorial, as foliage goes out in distance, it becomes smaller in size and layers of foliage can’t be properly depicted. In this case, draw initial bush foliage using leaf/scribble stroke and then darken some places, especially the bottom to add some volume and depth as depicted below.

drawing bush at a distance

View video demonstration of drawing bush on my YouTube channel.

Drawing a Bush in Outline:

If a bush is at sufficient distance and is surrounded by other elements like trees, fences or background tree line, then it is sometimes desirable to leave bush light so that there is separation of elements. In this case, a bush can be simply depicted by outline as shown below. The mind interprets it as a bush.

drawing bush in outline

Drawing a Twig Prominent Bush:

For drawing a bush where twigs are prominent, first draw twigs of the bush that are showing and then add foliage between them as shown below. Twigs for a bush should be drawn using ‘2 tone technique‘ technique discussed in Drawing Branches and Drawing Trunks Tutorial.

drawing bush with prominent twigs

By changing the structure of twigs and foliage density different type of such bush can be drawn as shown below.

drawing bush with twigs different styles

Drawing a Bush with Twigs Farther Out:

In this case, draw twigs as solid tapering lines and use dots or very small marks to indicate foliage as shown below.

drawing bush at a distance with twigs

This completes the tutorial for drawing bush. Use the templates below to practice. You can find many more examples to practice drawing bush in mini landscapes.

Template & Workbooks:

Click here to download PDF file with templates to practice drawing a bush as shown above. Better yet, get my pen and ink drawing workbooks that are ideal for anybody learning to draw pen and ink landscapes.


You can find video demonstration of drawing bush at my YouTube channel.

Following are some of my drawings where bush is used to add to the ambience and set the mood.

This completes the tutorial. Remember to practice and most importantly have fun. Feel free to reach out to me with any questions.

Happy Drawing,


Back to Tutorials:

I will be regularly adding new templates and tutorials. If you would like to be notified of any new addition, pl. send me your email address in the form below.

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