Ok! Let's start these suckers off with some guide lines. We'll begin by drawing the two heads in profile (from the side). Keeping it simple. There's a large oval shape for the cranium, and the rest of the face and jaw hangs below.
In this step, we'll lay down guide lines for the rest of the bodies. Start with the necks, and then layer in large round shapes for the shoulders and chest. As simple as these lines are, they really complete the shapes of the body. From here on out, it's all detail work.
Let's do Venom first. Start by drawing the eyebrow wrinkles and upper lip. Then we'll carry a curve over the top of the head. On the back, we want to layer these curves to make it look like folds of skin where the skull meets the neck. From there we can use simple curves to flesh out the neck and trapezius.
That little curve at the front of the lip helps to give a rounded shape to the mouth. It's adds some attitude to this rather smooth area. Use a large curve to draw the main smile of the upper lip. Then get crazy with the line and carry it up toward the back of the head. This is an extreme cut for a mouth. Venom's symbiotic suit allows for exaggerated anatomy like this.
In order to get this done in 25 steps, I'm going to simplify Venom's teeth into these large, shark-like teeth. The teeth in the middle are facing us directly, so they'll appear to be the widest. On either side of those, the teeth will be drawn thinner and thinner.
We've been using bold, smooth lines up to this point, but let's switch to some sketchier, jagged lines for the eye patch. This shape can be drawn very wild, like torn cloth or something like that. Venom normally doesn't have eyes, and sees through these patches. The Venom costume was originally worn by Spider-man, which is why he has the eye patches and chest spider symbol.
I'm actually not a big fan of the huge tongue on Venom. When he debuted, the tongue wasn't hanging out of his mouth all crazy-like. I know if I don't draw it, though, everyone will say "You forgot the tongue!" So here it is. The overall shape is an "S". The tongue is very thick inside the mouth, and tapers down to a pointy tip. I used both curves and jagged lines to give it a wild shape.
For the lower jaw, we're mainly following the guide lines -- just adding variation to the line to create a more interesting shape. The jaw bone looks very sharp now, and we can add some fleshy webbing in the corner of the mouth where the lips meet.
I think I accidentally merged two steps here. To create some depth, let's show both sides of the lower jaw. Start by adding the large teeth that are closest to us. Then add the teeth on the opposite side of the jaw. They're smaller and have a single outline. From there, let's use large, overlapping curves to build up the chest muscles. Start from the bottom and work your way upward. One shape sits in front of another, so start with the closest chest muscle. Then the second. Then the far shoulder.
The line drawing is mainly done for Venom, but he's supposed to have shiny, black skin. I always pictured it like a killer whale's skin. First outline the spider symbol on his chest. Then we need to go around to each curve of the chest muscles and "double" them -- creating a thin, curved triangle shape that will become a highlight. You can see them curving out from the middle of the chest, and curving in from the outside. We'll also double the lines on the collar bones and create a solid white shape. This is so we can fill in the surrounding areas with black. Finally, you can use dashes to break up the highlights and give them a little bit of dimension.
Those dash marks do a lot to prevent the drawing from looking like a flat silhouette. Depending on the shape and angle of a muscle or bone, you'll want to draw those dashes in different directions to achieve that rounded effect. At this point, any white areas become reflective highlights. We can leave highlights to show wrinkles and veins on the neck.
The face is the most important part of this drawing, so take some extra time and care to think about your lines before you draw them. The dashes can be drawn smaller and thinner. When drawing a character, choose what the focal points are going to be -- the areas you most want the viewer to look at. That's usually the face, chest and hands. Here it's the face. The more detailed you draw the focal point (within reason), the more detailed the overall image will look -- even if you skimp on details in some other areas.
Let's wrap Venom up by adding some grooves to his teeth, and detailing his gnarled tongue. I like to add a bit of texture in the form of taste buds on a tongue like this. When it's something this nasty, feel free to draw veins and pustules on there if you like. I opted not to draw a ton of slime splattering everywhere on this drawing. Notice how the thinner portion of the tongue starts to wrap around like a ribbon, and we can see parts of both the top and bottom.
Moving on to Spidey... The guide lines are strong enough that all we really need to do is go in and make it look more organic. Break up the outlines and use overlapping curves to give a rounded look to shapes like the chest muscles. We don't want to outline every bone and muscle. Draw just enough for the viewer to understand what's going on. This is especially important on Spider-man, because he has such a complex costume design. If you outline every part of the muscles and have to draw webs on top of that, it'll turn into a mess.
Let's focus on fleshing out the neck muscles and adding some shadow for dimension. Those short dashes will help to round out the shape of the shoulder and chest muscles. Now we can draw in the eye patch. This consists of a black ring around a white circle. Spidey's eyes are usually shaped like teardrops, but different artists have drawn them in different ways. I'm not sure where I picked up the details I like to add to the eyes. I've added the spikes on the top and bottom of the outer edge. The outer line is very thick, and the line is thinner toward the nose. I've also broken up the black shape with a white highlight. This makes the black look reflective, and gives it some shape so that it doesn't look flat.
The chest spider can also be drawn almost any way you like. It's strange, but Spidey has a sort of realistic spider on his chest, but a very simplistic, cartoony spider in the center of his back. Leave a little strip of white down the center of the spider so we don't lose the outline of that pectoral muscle.
Part One of the webbing. The center of the web on Spidey's costume is right between the eyes, or around the nose area. Start your lines here, and let them curve outward. On the forehead, a single line runs up the middle. On the lower face, two lines split outward toward the sides of the chin. Laying these lines in is the tricky part of the costume. You have to space them evenly, but they have to wrap around the shapes of the body. This may take some practice. Spidey's upper arm (part of it) is blue. We'll draw that in the same way we did Venom's skin.
Part Two of the webbing. This is the fun part. You'll need to exercise some focus to make sure all these little web curves match up and circle around evenly, but I find this to be a really entertaining part of drawing Spider-man. The webbing does break up around the chest spider, so you can leave some space around that. Unless you're using very thin lines, drawing webbing over the spider symbol will just create a mess.
And there you have it. Here's the final line art in black and white. The black really makes a difference on Venom's skin, and the black rim of Spider-man's eye.
The Venom symbiote was originally worn by Spider-Man after the Secret Wars. After he discarded the suit, it bonded to Eddie Brock and took on a more monstrous appearance. Venom did retain the general look of the Black Spider-man costume, though. The main difference was just the muscular body and the large mouth. At the time, there was no crazy tongue hanging out all the time, so Venom often had a grin with his teeth together. In these steps, I'll give you an alternate way of drawing a somewhat more classic Venom.
Here's another take on Venom. This time the top part of the head is more square and boxy. The eye patches are more rounded (more accurate to the very original design). We'll draw the open mouth this time, though, with multiple rows of smaller teeth. I really like this method of layering rows of teeth. Begin with the small outer teeth. Then draw in a second layer and feel free to make the teeth larger as you go inward. Compare the shape of the head, chin, and jaw from each of the Venoms we've drawn. It's ok to mix it up with Venom in order to achieve different looks.
This is me taking Venom to an extreme. The design is loosely based on the more modern Scorpion Venom (I may do a tutorial on that in the future), but I've added a lot of my own flare to it. Rather than a smooth surface, the skin is very rough and bumpy. The entire top of the head is flatter and has a more alien look to it. For this design, use smaller curves and lines to build up the outline of each shape. The small, overlapping lines hint at the overall texture of the skin. This version of Venom has visible eyes within his eye patches. As the wrinkle of the eyelids extends along the head, I've added a tiny eyeball for an interesting effect. Note the small-and-large shape for the teeth. You can repeat this shape and distort it to create interesting tooth patterns. One detail I really like here is the very tiny teeth protruding from the upper lip.
Experiment with pointing teeth in different directions to get a jagged, ferocious look. I decided there just weren't enough teeth, so I started to add them growing through the skin, out from the chin and sides of the jaw. While this is extreme, sometimes you'll see alligators with a tooth poking through their lip, so this is something that has a basis in nature. The tongue this time is more like a sweet potato or yam, rather than a flowing shape. Notice how the length, shape and frequency of the curves can give each tongue a very different feel.
Unfortunately I don't have time to add deep black to this drawing, but here's a quick coloring job to give you an idea of what a fleshed-out monster Venom might look like. I hope you like it, and I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. I feel perhaps Spidey got short-changed a bit, so maybe we'll give him more attention in a future tutorial. Anyway, I hope this helped spark some imaginations. Thanks for viewing!
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