how to draw a realistic frog, white-lipped tree frog

How to Draw a Realistic Frog, White-Lipped Tree Frog

Step 1.

For this drawing I used a 4H pencil for light shading/line, a B pencil for general shading/lines, and an 8b pencil for rough shading/background shading. The 8B pencil is a personal preference of mine; a 6B or 4B pencil can get the job done as well.

Step 2.

First thing is first, start out with a very basic sketch of the frog. Try to build your sketch with basic shapes: circles, ovals, triangles, rectangles. Since the frog’s form is so rounded I stuck with basic round shapes for my sketch. I always find it easier to start with a shape for the head and then build around it. I used a B pencil for this step but any pencil should work as long as you sketch lightly.

Step 3.

Start defining your forms using the same pencil. Make your lines a bit bolder. Start with the head and work your way down. Right now you should only be worried about defining features (eyes, nostrils, lips), don’t add any shading yet.

Step 4.

Define the frog’s left legs and pectoral area. Again don’t get caught up in detail just yet.

Step 5.

Define the frog’s other front leg. Remember this leg will appear larger than the other due to perspective; objects on the closer side always appear larger.

Step 6.

Now define the back and hind leg. I shaved the back down a bit to keep my frog from looking like Quasimodo. If you see anything wonky on your sketch at this point erase it and fix it!

Step 7.

Here I used an 8b pencil to roughly shade in the background and the wood that the frog is chilling on. Play close attention to line direction here. It doesn’t matter so much for the background but make sure that your lines run parallel with the wood’s edge.

Step 8.

Now I used the same 8B pencil to roughly shade in the frog’s head and the surrounding background. You want to make sure that your shading is very light. This layer is meant to be built upon. You should be able to easily shade over, erase, and blend this layer.

Step 9.

This step looks like a hug jump but it really isn’t. Start out by defining the head’s outline with a B pencil then building up the background with an 8B pencil. I started by detailing the frog’s eyes. Start by using a B pencil on the darkest lines/shading. If you need to go any darker use an 8B pencil. I relied on a 4H pencil for the eyelids and skin. If you a 4H pencil fails to make an area dark enough use a B pencil. The easiest way to create the skin’s bumpy texture is to make circular strokes. You can use a kneaded eraser to pick out highlights or lightly blend.

Step 10.

Now use an 8B pencil to roughly shade in the bottom right quadrant of the drawing. Build up on the wood, background, frog legs, and pectoral area.

Step 11.

Use a 4H pencil to define the legs and pectoral area a bit. Instead of pressing down too hard with the 4H to create dark values, try switching to the B pencil and shading lightly. Don’t forget the shadows! As for the wood, start hinting at the shadow that the frog is casting using a B pencil. Build up on the wood grain using a 4H pencil. Remember to pay attention to line direction!

Step 12.

Use an 8B pencil to roughly shade in the front leg and rear foot. Build up on the wood as well.

Step 13.

Build up your shading a bit using 4H and B pencils again. Pay attention to where your shadows are as well. Don’t go into too much detail with your shading just yet.

Step 14.

Build up your background using your softest pencil. This is the main reason why I chose an 8B pencil for this drawing. I wanted to have a very dark value in the background to make the frog pop out a bit more. You can also use the same pencil to roughly shade in the frog’s back and hind leg. Build up the wood grain as well.

Step 15.

Hear I build up my shading on the frog’s back and hind leg using B and 4H pencils. Do your best to emulate the bumpy texture on the frog’s side.

Step 16.

Now it’s time for finishing touches. Figure out if where you want to start from and work from there. I started by defining the outlines of the frog’s legs and its shadow. I then used a 4H pencil to build up my wood some more. You can use a B pencil on the wood as well to add some variation. After finishing up the wood I added final shading to the frog’s legs. This mainly involved the 4H pencil. I used a B pencil only on the darker areas. After that I worked my frog’s outline with a B pencil and finalized my background with B and 8B pencils. From there I just added finishing touches to the body using mainly a B pencil. If you find your shading too rough or varied on an area you can use a bit of paper towel to lightly blend it. Once you’ve added all of the details you can stand call the drawing done! I hope you all have fun with this one. Let me know how it goes for you!

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Uploaded: June 6, 2012
Artist: Finalprodigy
Difficulty: Advanced  Advanced Skill Level
Steps: 16
Updated: June 6, 2012
P.O.V: 3/4
Favourited: 24 times
Artist comments

Hey guys, here’s a tutorial on how to draw a white-lipped tree frog; the largest type of tree frog. This drawing made me realize that I’ve been neglecting amphibians and reptiles. I’ll definitely be drawing more slimy and scaly creatures as the year progresses!