Tutorial on How to Draw a Bird

Every single bird -- from soaring eagles to cooing doves, strutting peacocks to showy flamingos -- share a few common traits. And it's not just feathers and a beak. Bird-loving artists know that the secret to drawing realistic birds is to master a few basic shapes. By learning how to "find" the bird on the empty page, you will be using a basic technique that even Audubon himself used for his masterpieces. With a bit of practice, your drawings will take flight in no time.

Things You'll Need

  • Drawing paper
  • Pencil
  • Eraser

Instructions

    • 1

      Lightly sketch the outline of an egg, or oval, horizontally across the sheet of paper. This is the bird's body.

    • 2

      Sketch a circle which overlaps the egg. The circle should be about one third the size of the egg shape. This is the bird's head.

    • 3

      On the side of the circle which faces away from the egg, sketch a sideways, or horizontal "V," with the open side facing the circle. You have just created the beak.

    • 4

      Add an eye at the open end of the sideways "V" by making a small, dark circle. Fill in the circle completely with your pencil.

    • 5

      At the end of the egg shape opposite the head, draw a fan shape to create a tail. Make the fan point downward if drawing jays or similar birds, straight up for birds like wrens.

    • 6

      Now that you have your basic shape laid out, carefully erase the lines of the circle, or the head, which overlap the egg shape, or body, of your bird.

    • 7

      Sketch a wing on the side of the egg, by drawing a simple, upside down arc.

    • 8

      Fill in the wing with a pattern of overlapping "U" shapes, similar to shingles on a roof.

    • 9

      Add feet at the bottom of the egg shape by drawing two upside-down stick figures similar to rakes.

    • 10

      Go back over your drawing and add any details or shading that you want, such as additional feather shapes on the tail or atop the head.

Tips & Warnings

  • Don't worry about getting the bird to look perfectly at first. Go over the bird and make changes, or start all over again.
  • Draw from nature itself by viewing photos of birds, or directly observing birds at the park or your back yard.
Related Searches

References

Resources

  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images

You May Also Like

  • How to Draw a Bird

    A simple project for beginning artists is learning how to draw a bird. Birds have clean lines that even young children can...

  • How to Draw Decorative Birds

    Birds of a feather flock together as the saying goes, but if you wish to draw faux decorative birds, you will have...

  • How to Draw a Realistic Egg With Pencil

    While you may not find an egg to be the most exciting image to draw, it is a very good subject to...

  • How to Identify Canadian Paper Money

    The Canadian dollar is the official currency of Canada. Dollar paper notes from Canada were issued in different periods starting in the...

  • How to Draw a Cardinal Bird

    Art is a crucial part of one's education as it gives you not only a means of expressing hard-to-verbalize thoughts and feelings,...

  • How to Draw a Bird's Wing

    Whether sketching for a wildlife painting or drawing for a decorative painting of an angel, drawing a bird's wing accurately is a...

  • How to Face Paint Birds

    Whether it's for a play, a Halloween costume or a new addition to your face-painting repertoire, learning how to create a bird-inspired...

  • How to Draw Tweety Bird

    Many people love Tweety Bird. It's hard not to adore the seemingly innocent and wide-eyed Warner Bros. bird that torments Sylvester the...

  • How to Draw Sea Birds

    Sea birds provide a fixture of coastal art . They are popular studies for a naturalist's diary. They accent beach horizons in...

Related Ads

View Blog Post

Last-Minute Halloween Costume: 9 Ds/90s