River Landscape - Colored Pencil Drawing

"River Landscape" Colored Pencil

High in the northern mountains, a slow-moving storm has settled in a secluded river valley. Heavy, low-hanging clouds are beginning to consume the purple peaks and it won’t be long before the entire landscape is devoured by a snowy whiteout.

Down below the disappearing mountains, the dark woodland is a menacing border enclosing the billowy moraine. The meadow is a verdant field during the summer but here it’s gradually turning golden brown.

In an aggressive prelude to the drama that is about to unfold, the red willows are portrayed as separate sections of simplified form. The fallen grasses droop forlornly over the muddy riverbank, reinforcing the picture’s already melancholy mood.

You can feel the spirit of freedom in this wild country where the unpredictable elements are beyond your control. Some of the most spectacular scenes occur in the ethereal light characterized by bad weather conditions.

I admire the resiliency of the immoveable boulders that have been polished smooth by the powerful current of a mighty river. The glistening rocks somehow manage to survive even while trapped in the midst of troubled water.


  1. A beautiful and intense scene. What brand(s) of pencils did you use?

  2. Thanks so much! I was trying to depict a dark and menacing landscape just before a storm comes in. This one is 20x12 inches so much bigger than I usually work. I usually work around 10x8 inches and I use the Prismacolor Premiere Pencils. They are soft and waxy but I'm able to apply multiple layers of color.

    1. Gorgeous! What sort of paper do you use and do you blend with solvent?

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