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Canine Drawing Tutorial - GS

354 65 35K (6 Today)
By roseofaurora   |   
Published: March 16, 2004
© 2004 - 2020 roseofaurora
Here we go, my first ever tutorial. Hope this gives you some idea as to how I go about making a drawing to some extent, maybe it might give insight into what you could do with your own work.
I don't claim to be a pro, and I must admit this is the very first time I've ever drawn this subject. So lets get started.

First of all, after picking your subject, you need to find referance for what you're going to draw. I usualy use Corbis.com for the more common pictures since they have a very large variety to chose from. Always remember that your referance picture does not have to look like your drawing, nor does your drawing require that it looks exactly like the referance picture.

Once you have chosen your referance, or referances (you can use differant pictures for differant angles, proportions, shading, background, foreground, anything you can think of) it is time to plan out your drawing. I will be adding to this as I go, but I wanted to post up what I have so far. This drawing was done with a regular 2b mechanical pencil, feel free to try other types of pencils that better suite your needs or technical style.

Step 1. This is how all my drawings begin. With a circle where the head is, and scribbles for where the other major body parts are. I'm trying to go for a very quick sketck to organize the space and think about proportion and positioning. As you can see I often go over lines trying to figure out the right place to place them. I'm also already thinking about the general silhouette and positioning of eyes, nose/ears etc. Very little time and detail is required and it is not imperative that you be exact at this point. About 5 minutes

Step 2. Here I've gone and taken the outline and made it more detailed. As you can tell the ears are still a bit off, but I'm not concerned with that now. I've also drawin in guide lines for myself as to where the facial pattern will change and what direction fur will grow in. Once you're done your main outline and you're happy enough with the anatomy, its time to move to filling in. This part took a bit of erasing but took no longer than half an hour.

Step 3. Since this particular dog has a mainly black fur pattern I've started to shade and sketch in the darker areas around the eyes and on the muzzle in layers. Always keeping in mine the direction of fur growth and basing the strokes of my pencil on that. I often find myself turning the page or canvas over on its side to get a better angle on regular strokes with the pencil. As you can see I have fixed the anatomy problem with the ears as well as began to detail the eyes. I usualy If you try drawing against the growth of the fur, or parallel to it might give you and interesting effect as well, by all means, give it a try. I find that going with the growth of the fur gives a more realistic feel. Of course you can always try cross hatching to give depth and and illustrated feel to the work. I keep working in this way, layer by layer, gradualy growing darker and more detailed until I've reached step 4. Step 3 took me about two hours, on and off due to running around.

Step 4. Here you can see where my layering has brought me to. The fur is textured by making the lines curve a bit in places to imply longer fur. Also the darkest areas of the muzzle and mouth are completely bathed in shadow which saves a lot of time/effort on detailing. Only do this when your lightsource calls for it. As you can tell I have added considerable detailing to the eyes. The most important thing to remember about eyes is that they almost always have a little light reflected in them This light makes them appear lively and realistic. More fur and effort in the shading, but I'm having some trouble with the ears.

Step 5. More detail, and we're getting close to the final finish. Its a messy job and I find I keep having the erase smudges from my hand pressing on the paper. Over all I'm happy with the face but the ears are giving me no small amount of trouble because they don't have a fur texture and are multi coloured. I realize now that I probably should have grey-scaled my referance picture to save heartache over colours. Lesson learned.

Thats all I have so far, hopefully that was interesting, I'll add more soon!
Image size
610x1638px 635.05 KB
Comments65
anonymous's avatar
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Cas117's avatar
Cas117Student Traditional Artist
thx! I will try this !
IgnisDrakos's avatar
IgnisDrakosStudent Filmographer
wow this really helps me thanks alot
roseofaurora's avatar
Thanks for checking it out!
IgnisDrakos's avatar
IgnisDrakosStudent Filmographer
our very welcome i really like the face its in stages. really helps ^_^ im really trying to improve my drawing skills and i think your very talented
IndieKryptonite's avatar
this is very help full, thanks so much!
you're a great artist!
roseofaurora's avatar
Thank you for the kind words and for stopping by!
MysticMagick's avatar
MysticMagickHobbyist General Artist
I used your tutorial to draw this:[link]
Hope it looks good :ashamed:
roseofaurora's avatar
I'll check it out, thank you!
Furby-Nicci's avatar
what pencil do you use? x3
roseofaurora's avatar
To be perfectly honest I use mechanical pencil .05mm and .07mm, I find I have more control. I switch to the thicker one when I need thicker lines. Hope that helps. Thank you for stopping by!
EvilDarkSide's avatar
OMG german shepherd! just my fav dog, and it happens to be in this tutorial too! you've given me lots of helps! thank you!!! :XD:
roseofaurora's avatar
It's nice when things work out like that! Glad you like it and thank you so much for stopping by!
Cappocat's avatar
I love seeing the process, this is lovely : D
roseofaurora's avatar
Thank you! I wish I had finished it but that sketch book got lost somewhere =(.
hhorsieart's avatar
um WOW! not pro yeah right, i probably couldn't even draw the first step... lol...
roseofaurora's avatar
Hey! Don't say that, of course you can! Just keep trying and practice practice practice!

I'm glad you like it though and thanks for stopping by! :hug:
hhorsieart's avatar
welcome... ^^ if i ever become a brillant artist out of thin air i'll let you know... lol... maybe i can get to step two some day... :D
AnjiruOokami's avatar
...I'm just gonna go ahead and steal your fur technique xD
roseofaurora's avatar
Oh like I owned it to begin with?!! Go for it! Glad it helps! =D Sorry for the late reply!
xgina's avatar
It's just.. I can't even find the words. I'm going to try it because I really need help with shading and just drawing in general. Amazing drawing and GREATTT tutorial.
roseofaurora's avatar
Hey thank you very much!
I hope it helps!
Black-Wolf-1992's avatar
noooo...it aint showing up....man ive tried to make it work 6 times *sniff*...i even bookmarked that page...eh maybe its just the computer :( .... anyways i like the dog on the front before u put it onto full view its so cute and realistic :D i wish this tutorial would show up...
roseofaurora's avatar
I uploaded it again as a JPG with no preview image. For some reason it wasn't reading the GIF.

Stupid DA. Take a look if you're still interested! Thanks.
roseofaurora's avatar
WTF? It's not working for me either!

Thankyou for taking the time to look and try and try again.

If I can fidn the original file somewhere I'll upload it somewhere else and link it to you but can't make any promises since I don't even know what computer its on at this point. :(
anonymous's avatar
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