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Uploaded: June 7, 2011
Artist: Catlucker
Difficulty: Intermediate  Intermediate Skill Level
Steps: 22
Updated: June 8, 2011
P.O.V: 3/4
Favourited: 58 times
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"Eyes are the window to the soul." This quote comes to mind for this tutorial of "How to Draw Eyes in Pencil." I took the time to detail the pupil, iris and skin surround the eye. If you have trouble drawing eyes, don't worry because this tutorial gives lots of tips that can open your mind to the universe of the eye. I've worked hard for both of us. This is my very first time drawing an eye in detail. So I made sure to research, draw, and apply new tips to pass over to you. Personally, I love people and how their eyes speak their emotions. The eye is a beautiful thing. I hope you enjoy this tut. Please vote, comment, and/or fav because it really helps to know who is being helped. I love you all and success to this adventure of "How to Draw Eyes in Pencil!"

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how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil

How to Draw Eyes in Pencil, Draw Eyes With Pencil

how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 1

STEP 1.

Start out with this straight line sketched lightly with a No.2 pencil. Use paper turned landscape and draw the line one third from the bottom of the paper.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 2

STEP 2.

Don't panic. You are not drawing a graph. Actually the slanted horizontal line gives placement for the eye from outer edge to tear duct. And that bisecting slanted red line gives placement for eye's pupil and perspective. Seriously, I drew these first while preparing to draw the eye from the reference photo I downloaded from Google.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 3

STEP 3.

Now you can see why the lines are important. Sketch in the upper and lower part of the eye, including the tear duct. The two horizontal lines help with the size of the eye and where it fits on the page.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 4

STEP 4.

Now lightly draw in the upper eyelid, inner ball part of the eye, and the iris.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 5

STEP 5.

Look and see if your eye is close to what is here. That's important because you want to start out with a good foundation. If not, erase and keep sketching. On the left side of this picture, you'll see part of the girl's face. Now add the red diagonal line placement for shadow, also the pupil with a beginning reflection, and the skin folds in the tear duct.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 6

STEP 6.

EYELASH STROKES! Here's a little tip to help draw those lovely lashes. Yes, those pesky little lashes that look like spider legs are drawn a certain way and they taper (you can add thickness to the roots as you finish stroking them in). The picture to this step shows what direction to stroke. And you have the freedom to twist your paper any angle that makes your drawing easier.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 7

STEP 7.

Hold on to patience because without it, you're robbed of drawing a satisfying and beautiful picture. Making time for this will reward you. Do not panic! Look at how the lashes sprout and compare with the tutorial pictures. Now the rays and lines withing the iris are important. Lightly draw them. These small lines tend to go around in a circle. That spike shape near the pupil is light reflecting off the watery clear surface of the eye.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 8

STEP 8.

You've done a fantastic job! Your eye may look like this one. What's great is that you've already learned quite a bit by doing this drawing. If you want you can shade in the eye. The next steps will involve more precious tips and steps to beautify your drawn eye.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 9

STEP 9.

ANATOMY OF THE EYE -- This picture shows the named parts of the eye that we see. Hey, I've learned something. The white of the eye is called "Sclera," which I never knew. Seriously!
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 10

STEP 10.

As an artist, knowledge about the eye is important, to draw it realistically. You need to know its form, how the shadow falls, and where the light hits. A) Shows the eye is cased in a socket... so it's sunken in the head. B) Shows the three main viewpoints of the eye. The diagonal lines give more accuracy as you draw the eye. C) Remember the skull socket. That is what the circle represents. Always consider the round shape of the eyeball when you shade. That means the shading of the eyeball becomes darker as it curves away from the light source.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 11

STEP 11.

TONE - SHADING - TEXTURE -- Click on this picture to show how tone, shading, and texture affects your picture. Also above are the shapes in general nature. Of course the eye takes on the ball shape.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 12

STEP 12.

This exercise is a good way to familiarize yourself with tone values. Hold your pencil nearly parallel to the paper. Shade on the pencil's side, starting with heavy pressure, then lighten as you continue. The middle value shading is blended with a stump. See how the tone carries further.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 13

STEP 13.

The picture here is a great exercise for value shading. I've got a little secret tip for you to make things easier. You can download this to your desktop. First click on the picture to have access to full size. By right clicking on your mouse, you can select "Save Image As." It should save to your desktop.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 14

STEP 14.

After printing out a number of the above template, practice shading in the values like this picture. You become familiar with this shading technique that gives you more control and confidence. Uhm, I've been drawing for decades. So trust me my dear artists, this helps considerably.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 15

STEP 15.

1) Small, clean white highlights, also called catch lights, in the same place in each eye add sparkle. 2)The upper portion of the eye (sclera, iris, pupil) are shaded by the lashes and eyelid. 3)The lower eyelid is drawn by sketching a fine white line between eyeball & lower lid. Then you leave a small space between the line and lashes. Practice different eye positions and emotions. You can copy these, google others, and even use real models, like family! Practice, practice, practice!
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 16

STEP 16.

Your sketch should appear light, like the first picture. The second picture I've darkened so you can see more details. Since we have taken a break on the previous tips, I'll be going over the sketching information. Sketch in the eye and eyelashes with a No. 2HB sharpened pencil for crisp lines. Make sure the eyelashes curve up as you draw them in. You can darken the eyelash root to give a tapering effect. The difference in doing normal portraits and this enlarged eye is the reflection and catch lights here are much more graphic because you have a magnified viewpoint.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 17

STEP 17.

Use 9B pencil point to darken pupil or your no. 2, but darken as much as possible. Also on the pencil's side, darken the outer edge of the iris for easier application.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 18

STEP 18.

In the iris add more lines coming from the pupil like sun rays. Right under the eye lid add the shadow of the lashes, like hanging little vines. For a quick shading coverage, take the trusty 9B pencil and shade on the side. You can lightly stroke in circular motion as you apply. The next step will be fun. Bring out your tissues (no crying please) and blending tools because it is time to smooth out this eye!
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 19

STEP 19.

Darken the lower lashes so they will not disappear when you blend over them. The wonderful thing about blending with tissues is that they lift the graphite, making the shaded spot lighter. Also the difference in using the blending stump is the shaded area becomes darker when you spread the graphite. You can actually paint/shade in more areas with the stump. I corrected the tear duct by making it a bit smaller. I have not started to highlight yet.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 20

STEP 20.

HIGHLIGHTS -- Click on this picture for help with highlights.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 21

STEP 21.

You're human and sometimes you will not see those very small patterns and areas. So highlight the light reflections in the pupil and iris... little squiggly lines radiating from the pupil. Also add white squiggly lines in a circular fashion around the iris. Use white acrylic paint or a kneaded eraser. This steps shows where you can apply the white. Then you can shade and add more detail. Notice the dark lower part below the pupil? It looks like a nose. When you draw these reflections, draw exactly what you see and also the reflection follows the shape of the object (eye). Play with the skin too. You can add some wrinkle-type of skin texture.
 
how to draw eyes in pencil, draw eyes with pencil step 22

STEP 22.

Darken, enhance, and smile. You have created a masterpiece! I really hope you liked this tutorial. If you finished with an outline, that's great! I'd love to see it. If you ventured into shading, please let me see. I want to know what you, my peeps, are doing. Thanks for taking time out with this tutorial. Please fav, comment, and vote. Peace out!