How to Draw a Lake

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"Life is better at the lake." "What happens at the lake stays at the lake." Phrases such as these have become popular to describe our innate fascination with lakes - large inland bodies of water.

Lakes are generally known as peaceful retreats. Popular lake activities include fishing, boating, swimming, camping, and hiking. Lakes represent a way of "getting away from it all" - especially modern distractions such as cell phones and social media.

Lakes and the surrounding area are home to many species. The lake itself provides fresh water for animals to drink. Fish, reptiles, insects, and even aquatic mammals live in the lake, and ample food attracts birds such as ducks and herons.

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Did you know? Lake Baikal in Russia is home to more than 1,000 kinds of plants and 2,500 species of animals. It is uniquely home to the nerpa or Baikal seal, one of only three species of freshwater seals in the world.

Would you like to draw a placid lake? This easy, step-by-step scenery drawing guide can make doing so easy. All you will need is a pen, pencil, marker, or crayons and a sheet of paper.

If you liked this tutorial, see also the following drawing guides: River, Ocean, and Mountains.

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Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing a Lake

How to Draw Lake: Step 1

1. Begin by drawing a long, curved line. This outlines the shore of the lake.

How to Draw Lake: Step 2

2. Draw another long, curved line parallel to the first. This gives the shore a three-dimensional appearance. Draw several overlapping, inverted "V" shaped lines at each corner of your page. These are the grasses and plants at the edge of the water. From one set of plants, draw long straight lines. Draw a small oval shape at the top of each line, followed by a shorter line. This indicates the seed heads of the cattail plants. Next, draw wavy lines to give the water of the lake a rippled texture.

How to Draw Lake: Step 3

3. Draw a straight line across the top of the drawing, just above the shore. This is the horizon line.

How to Draw Lake: Step 4

4. Draw a pair of pine trees, erasing existing lines as necessary. For the upper portion of each tree, enclose a triangular shape using short lines that meet at points. Extend parallel lines to form the trunk, and connect them at the bottom.

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How to Draw Lake: Step 5

5. Draw additional pine trees, located behind and partially hidden by the first.

How to Draw Lake: Step 6

6. Draw more pine trees on the opposite side of the drawing. Again, enclose the roughly triangular shape using short lines that meet at points. Use parallel lines for the trunk, and connect them at the bottom.

How to Draw Lake: Step 7

7. Use a long, curved line to draw the mountains in the background.

How to Draw Lake: Step 8

8. Use several overlapping curved lines to draw more mountains in the background, taller than the first.

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How to Draw Lake: Step 9

9. Draw fluffy clouds in the sky. Form the bottom of each cloud using a horizontal line. Then, layer "U" shaped lines above it to enclose the shape of the cloud.

How to Draw Lake: Step 10

Color your lake scene.

You can set the scene for other stories, including fall scenery, a forest, an ocean sunset, a winter scene, a beach, or a desert found among our plant and miscellaneous drawing guides.

Scroll down for a downloadable PDF of this tutorial.

The Complete Lake Drawing Tutorial in One Image

How to Draw Lake

Printable PDF of the Drawing Guide

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