Forest Landscapes: Rocks
By Rio

Drawing landscapes takes many items and puts them all together in one scene. The next step to drawing a forest is the ability to depict rocks or all sizes and shapes.

There's no right or wrong way to draw rocks but here is some steps you should consider when drawing them.

1) Decide the Purpose and Choose the Shape
You always have to start with what kind of shape your rock will be but first you must conclude what the rock will be used for. For example, if you're creating multiple rocks, will they all be the same shape such as rocks for a wall or will they be different for those rocks just laying on the earth in no particular order? Once you've decided what purpose the rock will fulfill, pick one of the usual rock shapes below:
Rock shapes A. Rectangular or Square-shaped
Good for brick walls, fences, slab foot paths. Usually has to be formed by humans to achieve this shape.
B. Circular or Oval
These types of rocks may be smooth or worn around the edges as shown. Smooth versions may be natural or man-made.
C. Triangular or Conical
Rocks of this kind tend to have jagged edges. Some may be formed naturally or not. Unnatural edged rocks include arrowheads. Natural edges may be caused by sudden blows from wildlife or other sources that split a rock and create a sharp point which brings me to my next point....

2) Determine What Kind of Edges the Rock(s) Will Have
Rock edges We have talked about some causes for how rocks are shaped. Consider that when drawing rocks in a forest or in another setting. There are basically three types of edges for rocks: uneven, sharp, and rounded.
Uneven edged rocks are the most common type out in nature. Sharp edges may also be found but may be harder to locate naturally in the wild unless it fits certain environmental conditions. Rounded rocks naturally form at river-beds as they are being constantly buffeted by water and other stones creating a rounded piece. Rounded rocks may also be made by humans by being polished and shined by machinery. They can usually be found in flower or arts & crafts stores to be used in vases, fountains, or pther purposes.

3) Signs of Wear
A majority of rocks have signs of wear from the environment. Everything from being thrown, throd on, hit against, chipped, and the elements themselves. Displayed is four signs of wear that rocks may have.Signs of wear on a rock
1. Curved lines - the best way to show the curviness and impressions of a rock.
2. Straight lines - may be formed due to different types of rocks piled together with softer rocks wearing out faster than tougher rocks or may be man-made using chisel.
3. Pockmark-like shapes - Usually caused by direct blows to the rock that chips or "dents" it.
4. Grain dots - Shows the texture of a rock or may be used to show minute nicks less visible than the pockmark-like shapes. Below is how you would add each particular sign of worn to a rock:
Drawing the signs of wear

4) In Its Environment
When drawing a rock, you have to consider the surrounding environment. In terms of drawing a rock in a forest, you have to consider all the vegetation around it and even on it. Below you see a rock partially uncovered surrounded by grass and even a flower. If you look closely, I've drawn some moss growing up the rock and all around it (no, those aren't pockmarks ^_^). It has multiple signs of wear telling you it's been there for a long time.
A rock
For rocks in other areas, you have to consider the environment always. What shapes will rocks have near the beach? What kind of rocks will you find in a cave? If you're in the desert or on a mountain, what kind of rocks will be there and what will be around it? If you need to, study the various areas if you don't know the answer and above all, keep practicing.