Ravens are fascinating and mysterious creatures that have captured the human imagination for centuries. Drawing a raven can seem intimidating, but with this step-by-step guide, you can learn to create a confident and realistic drawing. Read on for tips, techniques, and encouragement to get started!
Before you begin, gather the following materials:
– Pencils: a set including a range of hardness from 2H to 8B.
– Eraser: a kneaded eraser works well for removing mistakes.
– Paper: choose a high-quality sketch pad or drawing paper.
– Reference: find a clear, detailed photo of a raven to use as a reference.
Sketching the Basic Shapes
To start your raven drawing, begin with simple shapes to establish the basic proportions:
1. Draw a circle for the head.
2. Add a curved line underneath for the neck.
3. Sketch two ovals for the body, one smaller for the upper body and one larger for the lower body.
4. Connect these shapes with curved lines to form the body, wings, and tail.
– Don’t worry about making everything perfect at this stage.
– Use light pressure so you can easily erase later.
– Your reference photo will help you determine the proportions of the shapes.
Adding the Details
Once the basic shapes are in place, it’s time to add more detail:
5. Sketch the head’s beak, it should be long and pointed.
6. Add two small circles around the head circle for the eyes.
7. Add the detailed feathers to the wings, tail and belly.
8. Add feathers to the legs and feet.
– Use your reference photo to guide you on feather placement and direction.
– Feathers can be simplified into shapes of triangles with wavy outlines.
– Ravens are highly detailed in their feathers, so erasing and redrawing experiences is expected.
Shading and Texture
Even the most detailed drawing will look flat without shading:
9. Determine the direction of light and shade the raven’s body, wings, and tail accordingly.
10. Use dark pencils like 6B and 8B for the darkest areas, and light pencils like 2H and H for highlights.
11. Layer and blend shading to create an even texture.
– Observe the reference photo to see where the shadows fall on the raven’s body.
– Lightly sketch in directional lines of the feathers to help guide your shading and texture.
– Layering shades with a light hand is better than using a heavy hand from the start.
Finally, add the finishing touches to create a polished drawing:
12. Darken the outline where needed to create contrast.
13. Use the eraser to clean up any mistakes.
14. Sign and date your completed raven drawing.
– A little bit of smudging can create depth for effect.
– Adding background or landscape elements can add context to your drawing.
– Continue studying and practicing, keep pushing your limits.
Drawing a raven is a fun and rewarding experience. Remember, it’s okay to make mistakes and take your time. With these steps, you can create a realistic raven drawing that will impress yourself and others!
Q1: What if I can’t find a good reference photo?
A: Look for a clear and detailed image via the internet, that has good resolution and is licensed under creative commons with proper attribution.
Q2: What other techniques can be used for shading?
A: Instead of using pencils, other techniques like crosshatching, stippling, and blending with brushes can be immensely beneficial.
Q3: What’s the best way to get better at drawing ravens?
A: Practice, and more practice. Looking at different photos, videos, and illustrations also helps to understand the anatomy better.
Q4: Should I draw from memory or use solely a reference?
A: Use a reference, especially when learning. Once you feel comfortable drawing ravens, challenge yourself by drawing from memory or imagination.
Q5: What’s the best way to avoid smudging my drawing?
A: Use a tissue or clean cloth, and make sure to rest your hand on an open part of the paper where you are not actively shading.
Q6: Should I draw my raven with an open beak or closed?
A: Choose whatever best suits your preference or your reference photo, depending on whether you want a more fierce or peaceful-looking visual.