Instructional Books

All of our books cover the same basic techniques; some go more in-depth on certain topics than others. If you are a true beginner, we recommend A Beginner’s Guide or The Joy of Botanical Drawing to get started.

The Joy of Botanical Drawing by Wendy Hollender, 2020

(perfect for everyone!)

Our most current book, with updated techniques and supplies

Named one of the best colored pencil books of all time.

Has more watercolor techniques than the other books.

Bite-size lessons break down the basics, then increase in complexity, all paired with in-depth illustrations to guide you in using colored and watercolor pencils to bring a botanical subject fully to life.

Examples of lessons:
Drawing a red tomato in colored pencil and watercolor
Mixing Bright Colors and Shadows
Leaf Front and Back
Drawing a Tubular Flower in Perspective
Advanced Root Overlaps
Drawing a Zinnia (Composite Flower)
Drawing the Pattern on a Strawberry
Plant Process Pages

The Practice of Botanical Drawing by Wendy Hollender, 2017

(perfect for students subscribed to the Practice of Botanical Drawing Course)

A companion to The Practice of Botanical Drawing Course, this book includes all the PDF instructions from the course, spiral-bound.

A “step-by-step” approach

Mostly colored pencil, with some watercolor.

Enhanced by the video companion lessons, but also a great stand-alone book.

Examples of lessons:
Drawing an Acorn
Drawing Citrus Fruit
Drawing a Rose
Drawing Outdoors
Identifying Plant Families
Creating a Composition

Botanical Drawing: A Beginner’s Guide by Wendy Hollender, 2007

(perfect for beginners and those who like to work right in the book)

Learn to draw 3-dimensional subjects on a 2-dimensional surface and have them look real.

A wonderful book for beginners

Colored pencil only

“Workbook-style” with blank paper inside the book to practice right next to each lesson.

Examples of lessons:
Making a Circle look like a sphere
Making circles look like apples
A cup becomes a tulip
Drawing Tulip petals with colored pencils

Botanical Drawing in Color by Wendy Hollender, 2010

(perfect for students who have finished the Beginner’s Guide and are looking for more instruction with colored pencil)

Focus on colored pencil

A good follow-up to the Beginner’s Guide

Examples of lessons:
Measuring in Perspective
Drawing Three Views of a Daisy
Basic Color Theory
Studying a Tree or Plant Year Round
Observing and Drawing Under Magnification
How to Plan a Composition