Are you...?

  • At a loss to draw trees?

  • Do you struggle to paint trees?

  • Are you unsure of what colors and values to use when painting trees?

  • Do sky holes confound you?

  • Do your trees look “pasted on” against your skies?

  • Is your foliage unconvincing and lacking in form and volume?

What you'll learn in this course

  • Drawing

    You'll learn how to use contour and mass drawing to to depict trees.

  • Value & Color

    You'll learn what values and color palettes to use and how to mix all those greens!

  • Structure & Volume

    You’ll learn how to create volume in your foliage and a sense of bigness in your trees, and how to use sky holes and edges to create space around them.

Course curriculum

    1. Introduction

    2. Materials and Reading List

    3. Carlson's Theory of Angles

    4. Why Draw

    5. Reading Assignment for Week #1

    6. How to Sharpen a Pencil

    7. How To Hold Your Pencil

    8. Drawing Tips

    9. Advice from Asher B. Durand

    10. Tree Structure – Taper

    11. CMD - Contours, Marks and Darks

    12. Storing Drawings

    1. Assignment #1 – Part 1

    2. Assignment #1 - Part 2

    3. Assignment #1 – Part 3

    1. More about Values in Trees/Foliage and Tips for Drawing Foliage

    2. Those “Other” Values

    3. Assignment #2 Warm Up – Value Maps

    4. Cottonwoods – Drawing

    5. More About Foliage and Values

    6. Aerial and Linear Perspective in Trees

    7. Foreshortening

    8. Planting Your Tree

    9. Observation

    10. Advice from Asher B Durand

    11. Introducing Ivan Shishkin

    12. Simplification vs Generalization

    13. Simplify!

    14. Another Foliage Factoid

    15. Avoid the Noodle

    16. CMD Example

    17. Sky Holes & Edges

    1. Reading Assignment for Assignment #2

    2. Monochromatic Tree Studies

    3. Assignment #2 Part 1

    4. Assignment #2 Part 2

    1. Optional Additional Reading

    2. Trees and Color Temperature

    3. Mixing Naturalistic Greens for Foliage

    4. Mixing Opaque Greens

    5. Mixing Transparent Greens

    6. Mixing Darks for Foliage

    7. Mixing Lights for Foliage

    8. Mixing Colors for Fall Foliage

    9. Foliage Demo Paint Along

    10. Color Temperature

    1. Assignment #3 – Painting Studies

About this course

  • $195.00
  • 57 lessons
  • 12 videos


Deborah Paris

Deborah Paris is an American landscape painter, author, and teacher. She is the founder of The Landscape Atelier, her teaching studio, and the author of Painting the Woods: Nature, Memory and Metaphor (Texas A&M University Press 2020). Based on a foundation of intense and close observation, drawing, memory, and imagination, her work explores an intuitive connection to and her experience of nature.

Deborah’s work is represented by galleries throughout the US. She has been featured in Art of the West, American Painting Video Magazine, American Artist, Southwest Art, The Pastel Journal and Professional Artist Magazine. Her work has been shown at the Laguna Art Museum, the Albuquerque Museum of Art, the Panhandle-Plains Museum, the Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, The National Wildlife Museum, and the Gilcrease Museum.

When she isn’t painting or teaching, Deborah is an avid walker, birder, naturalist, reader, and writer. She lives and works in northeast Texas.

Visit Deborah at her website –

For more about Deborah’s teaching philosophy and online learning, you can listen to this podcast.

What Students Are Saying

“When covid hit, I decided to take on-line classes and workshops to elevate my painting skills. I wanted to take a deep dive to fill in the skills I was missing. I have signed up for every class Deborah offers. I am thrilled with what I am learning and how it is advancing my painting skills.”

Susan Powers

“My landscape art has improved so much because of the Landscape Atelier with Deborah Paris. Her classes simplify the complex nature of landscape art. Deborah’s classes helped me breakdown the landscape so I could focus and improve on one part at a time. Deborah’s classes will help you find your visual voice in landscape art.”

Kathy Wood

“After finishing a year of classes at the Landscape Atelier, I can honestly say that Deborah is not only a top-notch artist but also a gifted teacher. She brings her experience as an artist to teaching with a generosity of spirit that make her classes both instructive and fun. The interactive online setting with not just Deborah but also the fellow artists who participate in her classes adds to the overall experience.”

Susanne Jantsch

“Deborah is a world-class teacher. She is thorough, thoughtful, kind, and very skilled. This atelier is the place where week by week you build on your skills and understanding with lesson plans, exercises, video demonstrations and zoom meetings. You have a sense of community with the other students and her platform allows you to see other people’s work for her appraisal and for yours. She replies quickly, kindly, thoroughly.”

Maggie Parkinson

“The Landscape Atelier offers a comprehensive set of courses for developing skills as a landscape artist. Deborah Paris is an excellent instructor who has put together a package of course materials that provides guidance and inspiration. I am on my seventh course, and the way the lessons from each course connect and build on each other has been very powerful in underscoring key concepts.”

Susan J.

“Deborah Paris’ deep appreciation for the fundamentals of her craft, her intimate approach to the natural world, and her enthusiasm for teaching the traditions of landscape painting is what makes the Landscape Atelier such a special place. It is a profound place for artistic development.”

Rob Wellings


  • When can I enroll?

    You may enroll in an On Demand course at any time.

  • Do I retain access to my course?

    Yes, you will retain access to the course materials and videos after the course ends for as long as the site is up.

  • Will I get instructor feedback on my work?

    No. On Demand classes contain all of the same written and video content as the Full Access classes, but there is no course community or instructor feedback.

  • Can I cancel a course registration?

    Please see our cancellation policy on the “About Our Courses” page.

  • Are the courses just for oil painters?

    The courses on drawing, values, and composition would be appropriate for an artist working in any medium. Other classes involve techniques in oil painting, and all demonstrations are in oil.

  • Are the courses appropriate for beginners?

    The courses in drawing, color mixing, composition, and values would be appropriate for beginners. The other courses require some basic understanding of oil paint and how to apply it. They would be best for those with at least a year or two of experience working in oil. Our Creative Development courses are best for artists with at least two years of experience working in oil.

  • What materials will I need?

    The materials list for each class is available as a free lesson. Click on “Free Preview” above to access that lesson.

Learn to Draw and Paint Trees Today! Join us!