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Uploaded: February 7, 2012
Artist: Finalprodigy
Difficulty: Advanced  Advanced Skill Level
Steps: 14
Updated: February 8, 2012
P.O.V: Front
Favourited: 36 times
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I'm going to try and knock out all of my bird tutorial requests this month starting with this tutorial. I originally drew a flying great horned owl a while ago but someone requested a portrait of one. So, since I've improved since the last time I drew this majestic bird I decided to give it a shot! Enjoy!

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how to draw a great horned owl

How to Draw a Great Horned Owl

how to draw a great horned owl step 1

STEP 1.

Start out by picking your pencils. I used a 5H pencil for light shading/lines, an F pencil for sketching/details, a 2B pencil for dark lines, and a 4B pencil for dark shading.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 2

STEP 2.

Start out with a very basic sketch. I used an F pencil to sketch and then went over my lines with a blending stump.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 3

STEP 3.

Your sketch should look something like this. Don't worry too much about proportions and getting things perfect right now. Just get a simple representation down.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 4

STEP 4.

Now using the same sketching pencil start defining your sketch starting at and around the eyes. Pay attention to the direction of the feathers around the eyes.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 5

STEP 5.

now sketch in the top half of the head. Again, pay attention to feather direction.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 6

STEP 6.

Now sketch in the rest of the rest of the owl.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 7

STEP 7.

Roughly shade in the background with a 4 B pencil then smooth out your shading with a blending stump.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 8

STEP 8.

Now, start your details at the eyes. Use a 2B pencil for dark lines and a 4B pencil for the darkest shading, like in the pupils. Use a 5H pencil for the light parts of the eyes and the feather details. Use an F pencil for general shading and details.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 9

STEP 9.

After you finish up the eye area move up to the forehead. I went ahead and blended in my shading with a blending stump then erased in some spots for the light feathers. After that start shading in the areas above the eyes. Us 2B and F pencils for the dark feathers and 5H and F for the light ones. Only use a 4B pencil for the darkest values. You can also start building up your background with a 4B pencil.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 10

STEP 10.

Finish shading the top half of the head then move on to the beak. Start by blending in your shading. If the beak seems too large or too small fix it during this step before you start final details.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 11

STEP 11.

Develop the beak and the feathers around it. Use a blending stump to smooth it out. Use mainly 5H and F pencils for the feathers around the beak.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 12

STEP 12.

Now, take either a 2B or 4B pencil and roughly shade in the body feathers. After that smooth over your shading with a blending stump.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 13

STEP 13.

Now start detailing the feathers from the neck downwards. Use mainly 2B and F pencils. Use a 5H pencil for the light feather and a 4B pencil for the darkest areas.
 
how to draw a great horned owl step 14

STEP 14.

Finish up the drawing by shading in the rest of the feathers, cleaning up your details, and smoothing out your background. I hope you all enjoy this one. Leave any comments or questions below!