Drawing can be a lot of fun. Whether you are a skilled illustrator or you are just starting out, grabbing a pencil and putting your vision on paper will stimulate your creativity. You can get ideas for drawing anywhere, but the easiest way to find inspiration is to look at the things you love. If you own a cat or just love the extra special, fluffy and cute pets then learning how to draw a cat is the right thing to do.
But how do you approach this the best way? There are many ways to go about it. If you want to draw a cat in a naturalistic way, you need to hone your observation skills. You will also need a lot of patience. If you want to draw a stylized feline friend, you can achieve a great result with only a few basic forms.
In this tutorial you will learn how to draw a stylized cat and how to paint it in the colours of your choice.
Material needed for the tutorial
- Kneaded Eraser
- Drawing paper
- A reference image
Step by Step Tutorial on how to draw a cat
In this tutorial we draw a sitting cat in a frontal view.
1. Draw the head and front legs
Draw the head of the cat in the shape of an ellipse. You can already draw the ears to the head in the shape of two triangles. The triangles should not be perfectly symmetrical, because usually the ears of a cat are not symmetrical either.
The neck and the front pair of legs are completely visible from this position. Draw those shapes in the first step and you are on your way to a beautiful cat.
2. Draw the torso and tail
Now you should draw the torso of the cat and the rear legs. Since the rear legs rest directly under the torso when sitting, only the paws stick out on the sides. I have indicated the paws with a few lines.
The tail of the cat is wagging over the floor while sitting. Decide what side of the body you want to draw the tail.
3. Adjust the ears of the cat
If you have drawn the ears like two closed triangles on the head of the cat in the first step, it is now time to erase this hard edge. After all, in reality the ears are connected to the head and not only clipped onto it.
4. How to draw a cat and its face
In step 4 you can continue to work on the face and the ears. The exact facial proportions of course depend largely on the perspective you have chosen. In a frontal perspective, start by drawing the nose slightly below the center of the face. You can indicate the mouth with two strokes starting from the nose.
The lower end of the eyes sits slightly above the middle plane of the face. The inner corners of the eyes are located slightly below the outside compared to the outer points of the nose. From there you can construct the eye perfectly according to the breed you want to draw.
Then you can draw in some whiskers.
The ears will basically be bordered once in the inner area. Several vertical lines indicate the contours of the ears.
5. Draw the details
Now it is time to design the outlines. There is no limit to your creativity.
The pupils are crucial to enhance the visual expression of the cat’s gaze. It is also important to indicate the direction of the fur. Think about how the fur runs in different directions at different parts of its body.
If you are learning how to draw a cat in a stylized way you don’t have to spend too much time on the details. It is enough to indicate the fur in some places.
Tips for perfecting the cat motif
Drawing the cat in a flat, stylized manner is done in a similar way to a realistic drawing. Even if you plan to deliberately exaggerate a part of the cat – for example in a comic drawing – you should still familiarize yourself with the basic shapes. Break the drawing down into the most basic shapes as simple as possible, such as a circle for the head and triangles for the ears, before you start working out the details.
Then you can consider how you want to personalize the cat. Do you want to lengthen the neck or give it a smile like Alice in Wonderland’s Cheshire Cat? When you have decided how you want the cat to look, you can adapt the basic forms according to your ideas.
The best way to learn how to draw a cat is to practice the motif frequently. Especially a naturalistic drawing with a detailed fur needs some practice. Correct your mistakes, but do not despair. If you are stuck, it helps to distance yourself a little from the drawing to release the creative barrier.
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