How do you paint trees

Painting Trees With A Fan Brush

by Tracie

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How To Paint Silhouette Trees With A Fan Brush (With Video)

Hello artist friends! I feel inspired to write this post because a fan brush is such a handy tool if you would like to paint pine trees in you acrylic paintings!

This post specifically demonstrates how to paint silhouette trees.

You can also grab your flat or bright brush to paint these kinds of trees. But actually, I sometimes like to grab the fan brush because it gives a different unique effect!

There’s so many different kinds of paintings you can do with tree silhouettes! You can paint a sunset sky first and then do silhouette trees. Then add some water reflecting underneath.

You can also paint a galaxy sky and then paint the trees in front of the galaxy sky! Or…I actually like the simplicity of the pure black trees against a white canvas.

Also a bonus – If you are attempting to paint my American Flag Sky painting soon or have painted it but struggled with the trees, I hope this mini demo will help!

I recommend that you practice this technique on several sheets of paper first. It takes a bit to “calibrate” with the brush and get the hang of it. But when you figure out the technique, it’s really quite addicting!

Are you looking for how to paint a green tree with snow on it?

See my post about how to paint snowy trees three ways, one in which uses this fan brush technique!  

Learn my techniques for painting Christmas Trees

Now Let’s Paint Those Happy Trees!

This post contains a few affiliate links. 

What You’ll Need
    • Fan Brush 
    • Tiny Detail Brush (Any round brush labeled #0 or smaller -I’m using the “0” in this set.
    • Practice Paper or Canvas Paper.
    • Black Paint, preferably a thin paint. I’m actually using Apple Barrel black for the demonstration pictures and it was not thinned out with water. In the video, I used BASICS “Mars Black” that was thinned with a bit of water. It’s hard to do this technique if your black is too thick. 




Picture Steps & Instructions

1. Use A Round Brush to Draw A Trunk

Using a very tiny round brush, paint a vertical line to represent the trunk of the tree.

I recommend watering down the black just a bit to help the flow. I am using Apple Barrel Black craft paint for this demo so it didn’t need to be watered down.  


2. Load Your Fan Brush

When I load my fan brush, the bristles tend to clump together.

Try stroking the brush on the palette a bit to get the fan bristles to spread like a fan! 


3. Stamp the tips from top to bottom

Start at the top of that vertical line.

Stamp just lightly to create a thin set of branches.

To do this, I only used the middle area of the fan brush and not the left and right sides.

Also, I am stamping just the tip of the bristles and not all the bristles. 


4. Work your way down in zig-zag motion forming the shape of a pine tree.

As you work your way down, keep stamping the brush left and right in a zig-zag motion.

Apply more pressure to the brush to make these branches thicker, heavier and wider forming the shape of a pine tree.

5. Keep working your way down, widening the shape. 

As you keep “zig-zagging” your way down, make your tree form a wider shape on the bottom.

I leave a space for the trunk on the bottom too. 


6. Vary the heights and shape of the trees.

If you’re painting a treeline silhouette, try varying the heights of the trees for a more natural look.

Also, you can vary the shape (thin and thick) and the amount of white space showing. 


7. Use the tiny round to add more details on the top

If you “goofed” on the first step and couldn’t get the branches to be thin enough, try using a tiny detail brush to add the smaller branches on the top of the tree. 

8. Practice Practice Practice!

This technique is tricky at first but I mentioned earlier that you’ll need to practice it a bit with that fan brush.

To paint the bottom line, I used a larger round brush. 


And that’s it! Keep practicing and you’ll be an expert at painting those “Happy Silhouette Trees”!


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See Also:How To Paint Mountains

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Tree Painting 101 (Learn to Paint Trees with Acrylics)

How To Paint Trees


I could write a whole book about painting trees in acrylic. As a matter of fact, there are already several books on the market about painting trees. However, in this article, I am just going to give you the basics of tree painting to get you started.


Style of Painting

First you have to decide which style of painting you are doing. Do you want to paint a hyper realistic group of trees, a more painterly style, an abstract tree, a comic book type of tree or something completely your own style. Whatever you decide to paint it’s best to start with a few tips on color mixing your greens.

**This page may contain affiliate links to products I have used or recommend. If you purchase something from this page, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you. For more information click here. **


Color Mixing for Trees

Your palette for painting trees doesn’t necessarily need to include a tube of green. Most beginner painters have bought a set of paints for beginners such as this one.

The green included in this is not ideal for trees on its own. It needs to be toned down, lightened up a bit to give the necessary highlights and shadows to make your tree more dimensional.

You can mix several shades of green with a palette of blues and yellows to give your scene more interest and give you more flexibility over with colors in your painting.

A good palette to start with would be ultramarine blue or Phthalo blue, cadmium yellow, burnt umber, white and alizeran crimson and a tiny touch of black for painting leaves and trunk.

If you don’t have these exact colors, spend some time playing around with mixing what you have to get the colors you are happy with. Use more than one shade of green for your trees and any foliage around the trees.



Here are some basic mixes with Cadmium Yellow mixed with Ultramarine Blue and Phthalo Blue. There are many, many more combinations you can mix to get almost any color you want. Add more yellow to make them lighter or more blue to make them darker. 

Be aware too that the colors may be slightly different on your computer. Also, there may be a difference among the brands of paint. It’s best to make a chart for yourself before you begin painting to see what colors you have and what mixes you can make.

You can also use a bottled green such as sap green or phthalo green and mix it with either a blue or yellow to lighten or darken it.


Color Chart for Trees


Not All Trees Are Green

Not all trees have green foliage. Some, like Japanese maples, have dark red or reddish brown leaves.

If you are bored with painting green leaves or just want a pop of color in your landscape you might think about painting a flowering tree or maybe doing a fall picture with all of its colorful yellows and oranges.

Winter scenes can also be interesting and beautiful with ice and snow glistening on bare branches or little bits of evergreen peeping through on branches heavily laden with snow.

You can also do a whimsical painting using one or two of your favorite colors that are not traditionally used in tree. Use various shades of purples and blues for example to render a unique look. It would be a fun exercise in how to understand tones and values in painting.

Acrylic on Canvas Paper by MarilynO @TrembelingArt


Atmospheric Influence on the Colors of Trees

Don’t forget the atmospheric influence on the color of the leaves and trunk. Bright sunshine, setting or rising sun, dusk or moonlight night. All of these will add shadows, highlights and reflections to your trunk and leaves.

Think about how the red/orange glow from a setting sun can deepen the red of a maple or make the yellows of an aspen seem to glow.

Take time to study the perspective of your painting. Trees in the foreground will be larger and more detailed than the background trees.

The colors and textures in the foreground trees will also be more vibrant. Trees in the background tend to be less defined and take on a more neutral bluish grey color the further back they go. See my post on Perspective.



Observe the shape of the trees you are going to paint and how they fit in to your overall piece. Are they tall and slim? Short and round? Large and majestic?

Do the branches stick out randomly like a bad case of bed head? Are they mostly in shadow or in direct light. Are the trees all of the same species or are there different types of leaves and colors on some of the trees.

Having a good idea of what exactly you are painting will help with your composition. You can add a few leaves or whole trees to fill in gaps you don’t like or add a dead tree to make it more interesting.

The great thing about art is that you can take a reference photo and make it your own by adding or subtracting a few artistic touches.

Painting trees is more about recreating the patterns and shapes you see than placing each individual leaf and branch in the right place.

If you want to see some really hyper-realistic tree painting, check out this Michael James Smiths YouTube channel. He is an oil painter who does some of the most realistic landscapes that I have seen.


Brushes for Tree Painting

You can use just about any brush to paint trees. A lot of artists like to use a fan brush for pine trees.

Load the paint on the corner of the brush and make branches gradually getting smaller as they go up. Add a second and third layer of different shades to give dimension and shading to the tree.

The same technique can be used with a flat brush. Load the brush with paint on the corner and dab on your branches.

You may get slightly thicker branches with the flat brush so this is good for very dense trees.

Use a liner or small round brush for details and highlights on your tree.


Tree Trunks

Tree trunks are not always brown. There are many different colors found in the trunks and branches of trees including grays, blacks and whites. I

t depends on the type of tree, the season you are painting and the play of light on the trees and branches.

Trunks are wider at the base and may have large, prominent roots and knotholes or peeling bark.  Even tall slender, trees are slightly wider at the base. 


Tree Painting

1.Begin by making a line with a flat or round brush and your desired color. You can add a large limb or two to bigger trees.

You can add as little or as much detail as you want. Everything can be adjusted later, for now just get the basic shapes down.



2. Add some foliage to your tree. Start with the darkest of your greens. Use a fan brush or the edge of a flat brush to “dab” foliage onto the tree trunk and branches. Don’t cover it completely but just enough to give it some background. The dark color will act as shading for your tree.

3. Next, add some of your midtones in the same manner, filling in a few more gaps and adding some depth. Don’t go overboard. Most trees have some sky showing through and you want to leave enough dark color showing through to add some shading.


4. Now you can add some light tones and highlights to make your tree pop. Do this lightly with your fan brush or your flat brush just here and there to mimic the sun hitting the leaves.


From here you can continue to add highlights and shading where you see necessary. You can add in a few thin branches and cover them with a little foliage.

Go back and add in some sky holes through the branches. Paint in layers rather than big blocks of color. 

You can also add more highlights and shading to the trunk using a little white or black mixed with your burnt umber. 

These are just basic trees to get you started and more comfortable with mixing the greens and finding the shapes in the trees. As I said, whole books have been written on the subject. 


Color Chart

Here is a chart you can use as a guide when mixing some of the blues and yellows to mix green. It may not look exactly like yours due to the differences in computer screens but it will give you a general idea of the hues you will get.

Ultramarine tends to give you a more earthy green, while phthalo gives a brighter green. 




There are several ways you can make charts to help you decide which colors to use:

Make a chart of green mixes = yellow/green    Blue/greens.

Make a chart of mixing other colors with a base green.

Mix blues, greens, yellows, red, whites and blacks into the browns for tree trunks.




Practice is probably one of the most important things in painting. Get some painting paper or any heavy paper or cheap canvases and practice painting trees to build up the muscle memory and technique.

Practice a variety of shapes, sizes and types.

Practice painting leaves too. Most of your landscapes won’t require you to paint many individual leaves, but there will be some compositions where you will want to paint a closer view of a leaf.

Practicing beforehand will make the painting go faster.

I hope this all helps to get you started with landscapes. I a planning on making a few more in depth tutorials later on and maybe include a short video if I can figure out a Parkinson’s friendly way to do it. 😉   

If you have any questions or suggestions I would love to hear from you in the comments below. Happy Painting!!




Related Posts
    • What is Perspective in Art
    • Color Theory for Beginners
    • Beginners Guide to Highlighting and Shading


Drawing test "My tree"

The test is intended for examination of both children and adults. The drawing of a tree gives a particularly rich material about the "content of life", that is, it reveals specific situations of the past or reflects the personality traits of the person being tested.

The tree seems to show long-term, unconscious feelings towards one's self, which mainly exist on a basic, primary level.

When performing a test, it is very important to keep track of the sequence of drawing details, all comments spontaneously made by the tester during drawing, as well as his emotions.

Task for the test

It is necessary to give the tested person a sheet of paper for drawing, a simple pencil, an eraser and ask him to draw himself in the image of a tree. After the drawing is ready, offer to write about the life of a tree: how does it feel, how does it live at the moment in the forest?

Interpretation of the drawing “My Tree”

Determining the inclinations and characteristics of a person's character

He loves adventures, in which he gets a lot of new experiences.

2. The person who painted the fir tree has good organizational skills. But at the same time, by nature, such a person can be emotionally unbalanced and feel a sense of rejection.

3. People who paint oak are honest and straightforward, they belong to independent natures.

4. The person depicting the birch is vulnerable, emotional and sensitive.

5. Weeping willow speaks of dissatisfaction with the life situation of the painter, low mood, search for positive contacts, the desire to gain solid support.

6. A painted apple tree can express a woman's desire to have a child, in some other cases it emphasizes the infantilism of the artist's personality.

7. A tree with a lush crown is usually drawn by people with developed intuition.

8. A person who has depicted a tree with bare branches has the features of a childish spontaneity.

9. If a tree is depicted with birds on its branches, under the sun or moon, then this indicates a person's inclination to think over any life situations.

Drawing location

1. If the drawn tree is on the right side of the sheet, this means that the person has a strong need to rely on someone's authority.

2. The location of the tree on the left side of the sheet indicates attachment to the mother and the past.

3. A tree drawn strictly in the center indicates the need to systematize one's life experience, and also points to something especially significant for this person.

4. The location of the tree in the upper part of the leaf indicates a desire to get rid of a depressive state.

5. The location of the tree at the bottom of the leaf indicates a feeling of self-flagellation and depression.

6. If a person turned a sheet of paper horizontally and drew a tree in this arrangement of the sheet, this indicates his prudence and independent character.

Some features of the picture

1. Additional objects in the picture speak of the emotionality and good imagination of a person.

2. If a landscape is drawn around a tree, this indicates the sensitivity and sentimentality of the painter.

3. The drawn two trees show the attitude of the painter to the surrounding world and his life position.

4. Many trees - unwillingness to obey generally accepted norms.

Dimensions of the picture

1. A small image of a tree indicates that a person cannot express himself in life.

2. The image of a large tree indicates the inner freedom of a person.

Characteristic details of the picture

1. The presence of fruits on a tree is indicative of people striving for productive activity and achievement of a goal.

2. If a person draws a stump instead of a tree, this speaks of his contradictory nature.

3. A broken tree is an experienced shock.

4. An unfinished top of the tree indicates large unfinished plans.

5. A tree forked from the trunk is usually drawn by those who have very strong family ties with sisters and brothers and who are most often broken or lost. Also, such trees are often drawn by twins.

6. A branch instead of a tree speaks of human infantilism.

7. Dropped branches - low vitality and unwillingness to make any effort to overcome adverse life situations.

8. If the branches of the tree are directed upwards, then this indicates an optimistic attitude and enthusiasm, sometimes the author's desire for power.

9. Branches going in different directions mean a search in the expansion of contacts and self-affirmation of oneself.

10. If the trunk is depicted without branches, this indicates difficulties in establishing contacts.

11. Marking the place where the tree stands is typical for people who need to assert themselves and strengthen their place in life.

Image of foliage

Leaves symbolize the ability to establish contacts with the outside world, and also speak of the psychological security of a person in these contacts.

1. If the foliage of a tree is depicted as a wide fan, then this indicates a person's good interaction with others and his contact.

2. If the painted foliage is sparse and stunted, contact with the outside world is very weak.

1. Leaves of sharp form mean a person's desire to protect himself from danger.

2. Foliage depicted schematically, similar to an empty circle, speaks of unmanifested aggressiveness.

3. Drawn falling or fallen leaves indicate disappointment in life, a feeling of loneliness.

4. Foliage directed upwards - the desire for leadership and the presence of a goal.

5. Leaves in large numbers, carefully drawn, indicate pedantry, but at the same time, sensitivity and aesthetic need of a person.

6. Circles in the foliage - a feeling of disappointment, loneliness, a desire to find peace.

7. The foliage of the tree, traced with curved lines, means an open acceptance of the surrounding world and receptivity.

8. Foliage in the form of a pattern - charm, friendliness, femininity, goodwill.

9. Leaf-mesh shows a desire to get away from troubles and problems.

Tree trunk

1. Trunk cut off from the ground - lack of contact with the outside world.

2. The trunk, expanding downwards - the search for a stable and stable position in the surrounding world.

3. The trunk, tapering downwards - isolation and the desire to strengthen one's Self.

4. The traced bark on the trunk indicates caution and the need for protection.

5. The trunk, drawn from one line, means unwillingness to really look at things.

6. The trunk, not connected with the branches, is an attempt to escape from reality into dreams.

7. The trunk associated with branches and foliage speaks of the desire to preserve one's inner world and good intellect.

8. If a tree is depicted in such a way that the height of the trunk is greater than the size of the crown, we can talk about the predominance of a person's interest in specific things, his ability to live in the present moment.

9. If the size of the crown dominates in relation to the size of the trunk - the author of the picture has good self-control.

10. The trunk with an inclination to the left is drawn by a person giving in to aggression.

11. Trunk tilted to the right means that the person is looking for support.

12. The trunk, as if growing out of a circle, depicts a person who feels protected only in his environment.

13. The image on the trunk of the hollow speaks of a previous illness or operation, as well as sexual experiences and traumas. If a hollow with birds, then this indicates a need for protection and comfort.


The roots of a tree indicate the environment from which a person came out, and testify to his curiosity, impulsiveness.

1. The painted roots are smaller than the trunk - the desire to see what interests or is hidden.

2. Roots equal in size to the size of the trunk - a stronger curiosity than just seeing what is of interest.

3. Very long roots indicate excessive curiosity.


Hatching a tree is of great importance in interpreting a drawing. It can be brighter or paler, have a different shape. Based on this and many other signs, one can draw certain conclusions about the psychological state of a person.

1. Darkening of foliage, trunk, roots is a sign of an alarm condition.

2. Homogeneous, not too intense shading indicates increased sensitivity.

3. Horizontal strokes indicate femininity, weakness, and a developed imagination.

4. Vertical strokes are a sign of perseverance and determination.


If you apply the My Tree test to yourself, you may reveal psychological problems, emotional states, and life resources that you are not even aware of. Let the knowledge you gain give you strength and serve as an impetus for the implementation of changes in yourself and your life.

Analysis of drawings for the test "My tree"

The presented drawings of trees were made by clients of all ages during psychological consultations in order to diagnose and identify the mental, emotional state of a person.

Fig. 1If you look closely at the drawings, you can note one common feature that connects them: the painted tree tells about the most intimate - about loneliness and feelings, about love and the desire to love, about hopes for the best. This serves as sufficient proof that any experience of a person, leaving a trace in his mind, will be indicated in one way or another in the drawing.

Andrei, 16 years old

Andrei is very vulnerable and tends to worry about anything, he constantly feels anxiety and worry about his actions and deeds.

He explains his drawing (fig. 1) as follows:

fig. 2

I am a tree growing in a garden. I would very much like not to be plucked from the fruits until they ripen.

Mikhail, 29 years old

Mikhail is very worried about parting with his girlfriend, who offered not to live together anymore. The girl is from another city, so Mikhail had to go to his home, recover at his previous job, but all his thoughts are connected with the girl. He, according to him, does not see others but her, and wants only one thing - to be together and not part.

Drawing (fig. 2) of Mikhail has the following explanation:


I see myself as a poplar. I want to take root deep. I want the sun to always shine and enough moisture. I want another tree nearby and no winter.

Irina, 54 years old

Irina is married, but does not live with her husband, so she needs warmth and care. Has a responsive nature. For many years he has suffered from insomnia, which is reflected both in the drawing (Fig. 3) - the trunk seems to be gnawed out in the middle - and in the description to it:

Fig. 4

I am an apple tree. I want to be loved, looked after me, and I would give my apples. I want hares not to gnaw on my bark. I want butterflies and birds to fly to me so that the sun shines.

The desire not to gnaw at “my bark” is exactly the torment that Irina experiences every night in insomnia.

Ekaterina, 46 years old

Ekaterina is in love with a man of her age, their romance is dragging on, and she dreams of getting married and is very worried because of the uncertainty of the relationship.

Fig. 5

Her laconic explanation of the drawing (Fig. 4) is in complete agreement with her longing:

I am a birch with green leaves, I want to grow next to a mighty and strong oak that would wrap its branches around me, leaning towards me.

Elena, 60 years old

The woman has been living alone for a very long time. There is an adult daughter who drinks, so their relationship is very complicated. Of course, such a situation depresses a woman, she is not left with fear of the future of her daughter, as well as a feeling of loneliness. The figure (Fig. 5) and the explanation to it reflect this:

Fig. 6

I am a birch tree, weak, tired, with bowed head, in constant fear, thoughtful. I want to be forever young, beautiful, slim, full of energy. Living not alone, but in a birch grove.

Nadezhda, 58 years old

Nadezhda lived in her first marriage for twenty-two years, buried her husband. After some time, she married a second time. She has been married for over twelve years.


Lives with her husband and mother-in-law, who is 89years. Helping an 85-year-old father. He loves flowers very much, he breeds them in the country. I recently planted a willow there and carefully cares for it. And the woman associates herself with the image of this tree (Fig. 6), explaining exactly why:

I see myself as a willow. The tree impresses with its love of life. I also love life. After pruning, it quickly recovers. I also strive to recover faster after all the blows of fate. I really love the branches of this tree, which seem to reach out to someone. I also get satisfaction if I help someone.

Tatyana, 36 years old

A young woman married for more than fourteen years, has a son. He works in a very large company, is engaged in a business that is developing successfully. By nature, she is very friendly, she is characterized by firmness of spirit. Wants to continue to grow in the professional sense, to achieve a higher position and success. Dreaming of a second child.

Fig. 8

Tatyana's positive attitude towards life and her own development is well reflected in her drawing (Fig. 7) and in the story about him:

I am a birch - strong, slender, flexible, in fresh greenery. I grow surrounded by other birches, flowers, grass, birds, in a clearing with a stream under the sun's rays. In my dense crown is a nest of birds. Birds also fly over the forest, their singing and chirping can be heard. In the clearing there is dense, bright green grass and a fast stream.

I would like to grow, get stronger, bloom, pollinate with a nearby birch and give seeds from which new trees will grow next to us.

Svetlana, 40 years old


Svetlana has been the director of a large research institute for a long time. Married, has a son. Currently, there is a question about the relocation of the team to another room. Construction is underway around the building of the institute, which causes great concern for both the leader and the entire team. The drawing (fig. 8) and the comment to it confirm this concern:

I am a young green birch growing on a green sunny meadow. I feel comfortable, because the sun shines gently and warmly on me, the rain waters the earth in time, which I am saturated with. My wishes: that this state last for many years, so that no one changes the purpose of this clearing, cuts down trees, and builds no buildings.

Ludmila, 55 years old

Ludmila is a person with a very strong spirit. She suffered a stroke five years ago. Rebuilt herself. He holds a very responsible position in one of the large enterprises. It is quite logical that she feels herself to be one of the most powerful trees (Fig. 9) and is ready to transfer her strength to others:

I am an oak. I have to be strong, strong in spirit. Protect from the weather, shelter from the heat. My roots are strong and long-lived. I will cover all my relatives, relatives, friends and employees with my crown.

My tree drawing test.

See also:
Non-existent animal test - drawing and its interpretation.
Psychological drawing test "My family".
Diagnosis of intelligence by drawing test.

Psychological test "Tree" | Article on

Please draw a tree - any, except for a Christmas tree.

Test Material: Requires an A4 size sheet of paper and a pencil. The sheet of paper should be white, not glossy, without any rulers or cells. Use a pencil of medium softness; Do not draw with a pen or felt-tip pens.

Questions for the drawing test "Wood"

  • What type of wood did you get?
  • What time of year?
  • Where does the tree grow, what surrounds it?
  • If this tree turns into a man, what will it turn into?
  • Gender of this person
  • Age
  • Occupation
  • Personality
  • What do you like and what do you fear?
  • If there are birds in the crown (like some animals in the house) - a sign of infantilism. If it's a nest, then maybe he's thinking about children.
  • The sun by the tree - a kind of parental eye that can turn into warmth, or can represent control.
  • When the tree is strongly raised (above the middle) - high self-esteem.
  • Grass. If it's low, then no big deal. If the grass is thick and covers part of the tree - the desire to mask unconsciously (either something in early childhood, or if it's like a body -. ..). Grass at the base - covers the bottom of the tree. It often happens that a person hides, either from himself or from others, some traumatic childhood experiences that he had
  • Branches - unrealized opportunities. The more branches, the more possibilities.
  • Young girls (or aged, but consider themselves young) often draw flowering trees
  • When they draw a lake or a river nearby - alcohol abuse. Moreover, it may not be the person himself who drinks, but his relatives (husband / wife, father / mother).
  • If a man draws a woman's tree and it "turns" (in words, he says that he wanted an oak, but it turned out to be a birch) into a man's - this is a violation of self-identification.
  • Broken knots - some possibilities that did not come true.
  • Shading the trunk is a certain uneasiness. If it is noticeable, it is more alarming
  • The height of the tree is the current age of the client.
  • There are trees that do not stand on the ground, but seem to hang in the air. It has no earth line or roots, which means that the person who drew it does not have the feeling that he himself is standing on the ground, on his own feet. He can be insecure, dependent, infantile, psychasthenic, either materially or psychologically dependent on someone. It may be that this is situational: a person has lost his job and his tree is hanging. There is such a thing as overcompensation, for example, an insecure girl who lives in two houses and feels between two chairs, but she draws a tree with a "leg" - she is overcompensated, she compensates for her insecurity too much: if the tree stands too much on the ground , is an attempt to create sustainability at the expense of something. If a person has weak energy, his tree will hang. If a person has a lot of energy, then his psychological defense will be not repression, but hypercompensation. For example, going to work.
  • All animals that are on the tree, as a rule, testify to infantile tendencies

If the tree is in a limbo (divorced, job changes, no support).

  • Or a person not of this world (schizoid) - separation from reality, hovering in the clouds, not standing firmly on the ground

    • A trace of psychotrauma (100%). If there is no hollow, this does not mean that there were no injuries. They did not show up in this test.
    • Hollows can be: divorce of parents, the birth of a child, moving to another place, diseases (which have consequences), separation from home, sexual abuse, or a bad sexual experience, death of relatives ...
    • If the hollow is shaded, then maybe that the injury does not already create tension, if it is strong, then it is bad.
    • If someone lives in a hollow, then the trauma is alive. If not, then there is a void.
    • The location of the hollow can determine the age of the injury.


    • Roots are our past. What we start with.
    • If there are no roots - the client is not so strongly represented in his mind, perhaps he is repressing.
    • There are many and big roots - a person feels the role and significance of the pressure of his past, family lineage.
    • It is especially interesting when the crown does not fit - there is no idea of ​​the future. He doesn't know how to plan. (4-ka on MMPI high). Goes beyond social norms.
    • Sharp roots - aggression is possible. Testing the theory of aggression and family
    • When a person cuts off the roots of a drawing, he does not want to see and remember his parents and his childhood.
    • If there are no roots at all, we don't interpret it in any way.


    • Our body.
    • If we see a blackened trunk - a person is either really sick (somatics, for example, diabetes), or an anxiety condition, or a hypochondriac, it may be psychosomatics, there may be hormones in a teenager (19years) or menopause in a woman
    • It is much worse if our trunk ends in a kind of dead end (and sometimes the trunk is alarmingly blackened). A dead end sounds like a “crooked lane”
    • Thin trunk - asthenic type


    • This is the head of a tree.
    • If this is the past, then it is clear that the crown is the future. There are different options here, for example, it happens that someone’s crown does not fit in the picture. This means a lack of planning. And life and everything. The second interpretation is when a person has an open perspective - that is, a lack of understanding of what will happen next. It may not be related to the scheduling situation. For example, divorce. Or a change of residence. And it happens that a person does not know how to plan, and the situation is like this.
    • If the crown is flattened, if it limits itself (presses, does not allow to grow further).
    • If there is chaos in the foliage or in the branches, there is confusion in the head.
    • Double stroke of the crown is a control



    On the one hand, epileptoids (solid trunk, roots) can be drawn, on the other hand - oak is a symbol of masculinity. Often a symbol of a paternal figure, authority, a strong man (warrior) and a man for whom this is the ideal of "I", who strives to be strong and powerful.

    Or it can be drawn by a woman (either a fatherly figure, or a partner looking for a father-like figure - calm, reliable, protective, strong. She herself is a weak female position - hang on an oak tree, be protected, wrap herself around - a low 5 in MMPI) . More often, a woman raised by a mother who played the role of an oak tree (there is no father, or a weak one, or loves her father to be like him, when a father brings up a daughter and it is important for her to earn her father's respect - she will study, work, make a career). When a woman "turns" into an oak, this is normal.

    Why is the girl painting an oak tree? The way she talks about him, it is clear that this is to a large extent a fatherly figure. But, since it is allowed in our culture to marry people who are older and associated with the father, the presence of such an oak tree in the picture may mean that this is a search for a partner similar to dad. This is the kind of Elektra who wants to be with her father and move her mother away. But then, in this situation, she can be very feminine.

    Or maybe it's different. If, for example, a dad raises a girl like a boy and drags him around everywhere - hunting, fishing and welcomes male hobbies, then the girl has a desire not to attract a man like a dad, but to become like a dad.

    It also depends on the amount of energy: if she is energetic and ambitious, ambitious and competitive, then she will choose male professions and an environment where she will assert herself and avoid the manifestation of femininity. And then the oak that she draws will be her self-identification with her father.


    This is a mother figure. We recall the fairy tale "Geese Swans", where maternal figures go in a row (bulk breasts, maternal breasts, fruit-bearing - children, oven - mother's womb that gives birth to pies, milk shores - mother's milk). Children often draw an apple tree.

    When adults draw - codependence - incomplete budding from adults and the influence can be very strong. This leads to:

    • Transfer of the script through the female line (grandmother - mother - daughter, etc.)
    • Conflict. There may be disturbing, shaded, blackened apples.

    If a woman draws - a family scenario along the female line.

    Alcohol dependence - oral dependence as from the mother's breast. Consumer position in life.

    When men draw an apple tree. Possible situations:

    • Men remain single and live with their mother.
    • They marry for a short time, then back to their mother
    • Completely passes to the wife, sometimes even calls the wife mommy, completely all feelings are transferred to the wife

    What are the variants of the male apple tree? This is an old bachelor who lives with his mother all his life. He can live with his mother all his life and never get married at all. Can marry when mother dies. Or this is a person who can quickly get married and return to his mother. And while he is married, he will compare mother and wife. There is an option when an apple young man marries and generally stops communicating with his mother. Because all the valences that attached him to his mother, he outweighed everything to his wife. In this case, he is not drawn to his own mother.

    Apples are a symbol of mother's breasts. Therefore, for a child, for example, drawing an apple tree is absolutely natural and organic. Those subjects who, in adulthood, draw an apple tree, this means that they have not overcome their maternal dependence, have not budded from the maternal figure. Very often, girls who draw an apple tree adopt the maternal scenario and, in particular, the scenario of inability to build relationships and parting.

    The fact that initially non-standard drawings indicate negativism and protest reactions may indicate a high four on the MMPI: that is, when a certain behavior is expected of her, she shows the opposite. It can be show off, causticity, aggressiveness. And people need not so much and not only this, but sincerity, understanding, warmth, kindness, more emphasis on the needs of another person, and not on themselves.

    If the relationship with the mother is not very good, but there is still dependence, then we can see black apples or black dots in the middle.

    As for men, black apples are found in alcoholics. The fact is that apples are just characteristic of alcohol addiction. Because it is infantilism and dependence. And mothers script things in such a way that children become alcoholics (certain slogans, curses, etc.). Especially if the woman's father and husband were alcoholics, she is more likely to have her son become an alcoholic too.

    Predisposition to alcoholism may be more in infantile people, with oral fixation and with not fully resolved conflicts with the mother.

    Another option is that at the age of 14-15 children studied abroad. And at the very age when they were supposed to be rude to their parents and bud off, they cried into the pillow and missed their parents. It turned out that they were completely immature and continued to draw an apple tree just at a rather late age.

    That is, your mother may die or you will be sent to another city and you will draw the same apple tree.


    • Hypochondriacs who fear for their health.
    • Figure-watching girls.
    • Or maybe there are boys who think about women (example: soldiers after the army).
    • They often draw psychosthenics (the tree is modest, average, does not stand out - to be like everyone else, to get lost in the mass).
    • Points on a birch - dermatitis, there may be some kind of disease, psychosomatics. Dermatitis is an intolerance to the environment, it is a reaction to the environment and to people. Dermatitis in the form of black strokes in the drawing of a tree arose as a reaction to the environment. Psoriasis is a very strong, autoaggressive reaction.
    • Birch is often chosen by those who are prone to psychosomatic fixations due to the little frills. But in general, for our latitudes, the birch pattern is normal.

    PINE - draw a schizoid personality, a more spiritual version, more ascetic.

    MAPLE, CHESTNUT, MAGNOLIA (more refined tree) - men with hysterical tendencies often draw. The tree is beautiful,

    BAOBAB - epileptoid with pronounced hysterical tendencies.

    Plants in artificial pots can mean a symbiotic relationship (rather with the mother) or that a person has remained in development at the level of five years. This is a certain syndrome of unwillingness to be an adult. Bonsai tree - a feeling of artificiality, over-dependence on conditions and unwillingness to grow and mature.

    ASPEN - occurs in depressive states. The tree is unhappy. Association with autumn. Just like weeping birch, willow, depressed mood

    ASH - people with pronounced aesthetic inclinations. This is a narcissist.

    PALMA - I'm not like everyone else. Peculiarities. Maybe demonstrative, schizoids, if there are fruits - more material and carnal.

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