how to sketch a dragon

How to Sketch a Dragon

Step 1.

Alright, these are the basic tools I used for the dragon you'll be drawing in this lesson. I used the 'ghetto-made' tortillion most of the time whenever I lightly sketched an area, and then blending it outwards to drag out shadows. The 2H pencil was used for minor shading since shading with 2H pencils can be difficult due to it's light graphite output. 6B was used for very dark shadows, seen in the dark part of the dragon. I used this occasionally on some of the outlining that need darkening. H was used for various shading around the dragon, like the nose and outline for the eye. 8B were used to create more depth in the shadows for a more black tone. The whole sketch was drawn with my O.7 M mechanical pencil before I made any type of shadows on the image. A light preliminary sketch is key before you jump into major work.

Step 2.

Hatching is an important technique used even if you don't know about it. Hatching is more often used to quickly shade something or add depth and distance to a drawing. When you 'Crosshatch', you're basically sketching a series of lines at different angles to cover as much white as possible. Therefore, you result with more depth/value.

Step 3.

Alright, let me show you a few examples of dragon heads you can use on your very own dragon drawing. The very first is a baby dragon; they have very short snouts (depending on age) and larger eyes. The smaller and longer the snout/eyes get, the more older the dragon will appear. Blocky dragons go well with enormous beasts that height in giant sizes. They are more beastly looking than slender/baby creatures. The 'Eastern' dragons are very slender and almost snake like. They have whiskers that can range extensive lengths. Lastly, the slender/bird type dragons are common everywhere. They almost resemble birds which is where these creatures originated. Experiment with your drawings and see what you scramble up. It takes a lot of experimenting to create a unique dragon.

Step 4.

These are just two types of basic dragon eyes. I've drawn the most common eyes which is the 'Mystic', 'Void', and 'Typical' which calls for just a simple slit similar to reptiles. Again, experiment with different eye types for uniqueness.

Step 5.

A few simple examples on how I go about drawing the teeth of these majestic beasts. Teeth can range in lengths and widths depending on your dragon. Mix and match your creatures so you'll have something very unique and awesome!

Step 6.

Begin by drawing out the shapes and lines that will eventually form a head for your dragon sketch. Make a circle first and then draw in the shapes of the roaring mouth, and then the neck.

Step 7.

Now you will start sketching out the actual shape of the dragons snout which kind of resembles a crocodile. Notice how the chin has some frills hanging on a curled flow. Take your time so you get a perfect opening.

Step 8.

Here you will finish sketching out the dragons head like you see here. The jaw line has many angles which also forms the horn. Sketch in the teeth, eye, nostril holes and add some detailing and definition on the inner part of the eye which will add depth, and the crease lines will add skin texture.

Step 9.

Sketch out the tongue like so, and then continue the sketching for the neck. You will also need to draw in the horn lines which defines and adds a texture base for the dragon. There are some stretch lines that need to be sketched in on the tissue that is attached to the corner of the mouth so be sure you do that as well.

Step 10.

All you will be doing here is sketching out the detail and definition for the neck of the dragon. This not only gives texture to the dragon, but it also adds a skin like base for realism and detailing. There is also lining that needs to be sketched in along the bridge of the nose and forehead like you see here. Get that done before moving to the next step.

Step 11.

Before finishing off the dragon sketch you will sketch in some really cool falmes that almost engulf the dragon. These falmes should be drawn in a loose, condensed style. It was a hard choice deciding what to cover the dragon sketch with, but in th end flames was the best choice. I mean after all, they do breath fire right? When you are satisfied that your sketch is perfect, you can erase some of those guidelines that you drew in step one.

Step 12.

Here is what the dragon sketch comes out looking like after you have added the shading, highlighting, detailing. If you are not sure what type of shading needs to be done, just look at the finished sketch and shade in the areas that are shaded in here. I know you did a great job, and if your dragon sketch didn't turn out good enough for you, try it again until it does. Remember gang, practice makes perfect. There is no such thing as an overnight artist.

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Uploaded: January 1, 2011
Artist: Dawn
Difficulty: Intermediate  Intermediate Skill Level
Steps: 12
Updated: January 1, 2011
P.O.V: Side
Favourited: 69 times
Artist comments

I have so many different cool lessons going up today that are really going to start the New Year off just right. To start what do you say I show you "how to sketch a dragon", step by step? Now since it is now 2011, I thought making and submitting a hand sketched drawing on a really cool dragon would make things just right. This sketch took me almost five hours to complete and in the end I am in love with the art. There is so many helpful tips and tricks that will show you the right way to sketch when you want to create a wonderful and epic drawing of a dragon. The best thing about sketching dragons is the fact that you get a fully detailed drawing just by using a pencil, and some drawing techniques. I had an absolute blast sketching out my version of a dragon and because it may be complex for some of you novice artists out there, I thought I would include more tips and examples than usual. It may be a struggle for you to get the sketch completed, but if you try your best, stay patient, and follow the steps, I am confident that you will create such an awesome drawing that everyone will be left in awe when displayed. Well that’s all I have to say for this description guys I think it’s time that you get busy and start teaching yourself once and for all "how to sketch a dragon". I will return with some other cool lessons to kick off the New Year so hang tight and keep those pencils ready.