Ok, this is a pretty labor-intensive tutorial, but I've tried to break it down into easy-to-follow steps for everyone to follow along. To begin, we'll draw a simple guide drawing that will serve as the base for the detailed line art. The main shape is the head, spine and tail curve. After that's drawn, we can start blocking in the simple shapes of the body. Since there's a lot of scale plating on Godzilla, I've added extra base steps in Figures 5 & 6 to help us position the details later.
Let's zoom in and focus on the head for a bit. We'll continue to block in major shapes before getting to the final line art. First outline the shapes of the nose, eyebrows and the sides of the face. Then detail those shapes with the eyes and nostrils. Move down and draw the front of the lower jaw. Then carry the lines back toward the rear jaw bone beneath the cheek. Finally, add some simple teeth and the skin flap between the jaws.
Draw the tongue. Then fill in the opposite side of the mouth and teeth. Next we'll focus on the curves of the neck. Each section has a different texture or scale pattern, so we'll separate them now.
Lighten your guide drawing and we'll begin the final line art for the head. I like to begin with the eyebrows because they let us give the character some emotion right off the bat. The lines we're using are much thinner now, but we want to keep the outline of the figure a bit bolder than the interior lines. The tricky part here is laying down scales and wrinkles in perspective as the planes of his head and body flatten out. Keep your lines thin and smooth. Try to add a curve to even the small dash lines.
Moving on to the lower jaw, try to focus on keeping that square shape to the front of the snout and mouth. That's one feature that distinguishes this version of Godzilla from most of the others. Little spikes sticking out from the jawbone are a fun detail. I've given Godzilla some uneven teeth. Begin by drawing some tiny teeth at outward angles. Then fill in the main row of larger teeth. You can fit some extra teeth in the spaces between those for a really busy, ferocious appearance.
To begin the neck, focus on just one small part of the scales. Then we'll move on to the next segment, which reaches down a bit more. The third segment reaches even further down, and shows us a different texture pattern on the bottom. We'll use these shapes as a reference for the remaining scales. Follow the curve of the guide drawing to place the two rows of spikes. Then you can start to fill in the larger scale shapes.
Continue the spikey shapes on the top of the head and neck. Then we'll start adding some fine wrinkles beneath the jaw. From there, we add a column of large scales going down toward the base of the neck. Fill in the softer center area of the neck. Then mirror these details on the opposite side.
Now we'll start to repeat the texture patterns down the length of the neck. Near the bottom, things start to wrinkle as the neck meets the body. With that, the head is complete.
Let's now jump to the arm. We want to break down the big shapes of the first guide drawing into smaller shapes. This is another set of guide lines, so keep your lines light if you're drawing with paper and pencil. Start with the main shapes of the forearm. Then add the upper arm muscles. We can use cartoony rectangle shapes to build the fingers and then add the claws.
Lighten those secondary guide lines, and we'll move on to the final line art for the arm. I chose to begin with the claw and then start laying in the ribbed scales of the back of the finger. On the two other fingers, I started with the round knuckle shapes, building them up with open wrinkle lines. The thumb sticks out at a different angle and has some heavy shadow on the underside. The palm of the hand is partly visible from this angle. Add wrinkles to the back of the hand to show the bend of the wrist.
From this angle, we can build the outline of the forearm using overlapping curves. Keep these fluid and very wrinkled. Use different lengths to make it look natural and organic. We're going to outline the rectangular armor plates of the forearm using lots of open lines. This gives his arm a softer look. If you want a more armored feel, you can use bolder, straighter lines. Change up the texture pattern for the outer ridge of the arm and elbow. Then fill in the underside of the arm.
Use the same basic techniques to outline the upper arm and start to fill in the shapes. Add lots of wrinkles in the armpit area that spread out across the side of the body. On the shoulder, we want to draw a bunch of tiny spikes, kind of like rock salt sticking out of his skin. A tiny squiggle curve acts as a rough center line for each spike. Use tiny, thin dashes to add shadow to the underside of the larger spikes. Then use thin lines to add a wrinkle texture in the skin around the spikes, and add larger wrinkles where the arm meets the body.
For these steps, I've drawn a more detailed guide drawing for each section of the leg. The knee and lower leg are basically cylinders with a ribbed pattern. I don't want that pattern to be too obvious, so the open wrinkle lines return to build up these shapes in the final line art. Draw the claws on the toes first, and then add the armor plates one at a time going up each toe. The cross pattern of the upper leg helps us place the diamond-shaped spikes. Use the rock salt detailing again to add shadows and surrounding detail.
I had trouble getting good reference for the chest and belly of this new Godzilla design, so I've opted for this V-curve pattern. For the final line art, I've used both thick and thin overlapping curves. The thick parts of the lines give us a crease between the large wrinkles of flesh.
Moving on to the second leg, we want to use the same steps as in Step 13. The main differences from this viewing angle are the heel of the foot being visible, and the fatty portion of the underside of the leg. That fatty section has a simpler cross pattern, and the scales are more like flat squares. Check out the underside of an alligator and you'll see what I mean.
Take care in drawing the guide for the second hand. Use your own hand for reference if you have trouble. As before, we want to block in the basic muscle shapes. From there, I've added the ribbed pattern we'll use to place the scales. Following the same steps from the previous arm, let's bust out this bad boy.
Between the legs, we see the belly transition into the tail as it curves back and around to the side. Draw the center line of the body as our main curve. The tail can be drawn very fleshy on the underside. Notice the deeper wrinkles as the tail bends right under the leg.
Our original guide drawing will work for the tail. Let's just add some rows of spikes growing smaller toward the tip of the tail. In the final line art, we can an angrier shape to the segments of the tail. The spikes and scales almost appear as sections of jaw and teeth. Even though we're using lots of open lines and wrinkles, try to retain all the main curves from our guide drawing.
Now we can finally close in the body by continuing the neck pattern down the side and back.
Godzilla has multiple rows of large spikes running down his back and tail. They're almost like the armor plates on a Stegosaurus, but much more spiky and aggressive-looking. Over the year, the spike pattern has changed. What I've drawn is sort of a mix of various types of spikes I've seen on Godzilla in more recent years. For this step we'll draw the smaller side row of spikes.
Next we'll outline the main row of large spikes that runs down the center of the back. There's usually one very large spike, and the others grow smaller toward the neck and tail. I've used lots of bold curves and sharp points to build these spike plates. Overlapping the curves helps to add a bit of dimension and keep the shapes from looking too flat.
Now we can add some detailing to the sides of the spikes. I wanted these to have a wild feel, almost like fire.
Now let's zoom out and take a look at the entire picture. Man, that's a lot of detail! The bold outline here gives us a nice cartoony look -- especially on the head. If I were to draw this again, I would try to keep the line weight more even around the entire outline.
Here's a more refined take on the line art. Finer lines and detail throughout. Lots of detail on the face and around the eye. Perhaps a little too much. With a drawing this detailed, it's important to make sure the overall shape reads from far away, and that each main body part is easy to read.
Finally, here's the fully colored version of the artwork, with a bit of additional scenery added. This was a real monster to color, but I think it turned out pretty nicely in the end. At first the legs were too dark and shaded, so I added some bounce light from some flames. I think it added some nice dimension to the legs and tail, and it prevented the line art from totally disappearing into the shadows. So with that, the Godzilla 2014 tutorial comes to a close. Many hours went into drawing this, and I hope each section of the tutorial offers something for everyone who views it. If you have any questions, post them in the comments section below. Thanks for viewing!
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