So sharpen your pencil, curl up with your sketchbook, and get ready to draw some amazing animals. Here are a few tips and tricks to make your animal drawings simply stunning:
1. Observe the Real Thing
The best way to get a sense of how any animal looks is to study it in person. Find a zebra in a zoo, or observe a deer during its morning stroll. Taking the time to observe an animal in its natural habitat is an excellent way to get a realistic understanding of its size, shape, and distinctive features.
2. Look at Photos
Even if you don’t have the opportunity to view a real live animal, don’t worry. Internet searches can yield plenty of lifelike images to serve as great references when you sit down to draw. Use the photos to track different animal proportions and visually commit them to memory.
3. Start with the Head
When constructing a drawing, approach the process systematically. Start with the head and build the animal outward from there. This will give your drawing a well-proportioned look and make sure that all the essential elements are not left out.
4. Be Wary of Over Complicating
Although it’s great to capture all the detail and texture of an animal’s markings, don’t become overly obsessed with adding too much detail. Stick to the basic shape and remember this is an artistic representation, not a photograph. Overcomplicating your drawing can leave you with a busy looking mess.
5. Keep it Simple
When learning how to draw animals, it’s always best to start with simple representations. Working with too many intricate shapes too early can be overwhelming and confusing. Focus on the basic shapes; circle, triangle and square – to create the animal’s body and features.
6. Practice, Practice, Practice
Drawing simple animals might not be rocket science, but it does come with practice. Start with a few basic, fundamental shapes and work your way up to more complex drawings as your skill level increases. And, of course, don’t forget to have fun.
7. Begin with Structural Lines
Structural lines are a great way to kickstart the creative process. Envision the animal as a skeletal frame of crossed lines and use them to help you establish a strong balance and structure for the animal’s body.
8. Pay Attention to the Shapes
Shapes are fundamental when it comes to drawing animals. Look for interesting shapes and use them to fill out the features of the animal’s face and body. Add a few circles and ovals to represent eyes, ears and nose, and think outside the box while constructing the animal’s body.
9. Layer it Up
When drawing animals, start with the main shapes and then layer color and details for added personality. Use shading and hatching techniques to give the drawing a lifelike feel and be sure to add plenty of subtle shading. This will make the animal look more three dimensional and lifelike.
10. Select Appropriate Colors
When adding color, be sure to select appropriate colors. Pick tones that reflect the natural colorings of the type of animal you are drawing. If you are creating a chameleon, for example, pick colors that accurately represent its changing hues.
Each animal is unique and has its own character, so don’t be afraid to be playful and add your own personal touch. Drawing can be incredibly fun and energizing and, with a bit of practice, any aspiring artist can learn how to draw simple animals with panache. So grab a brush and enjoy.