How to Draw Flames

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When drawing flames, start at the base and work up while drawing zig zaggy lines until they comes to a point. Sketch flames with tips from a professional cartoonist and illustrator in this free video on drawing.

Part of the Video Series: Illustration & Drawing Tips
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Video Transcript

O.k. folks, in this clip I'm going to teach you how to draw flames. Now flames are relatively simple if you're drawing them in cartoon form. If you really wanted to go in to graphic detail that would take a great deal of time and practice. But just about anybody can draw flames. And one of the main ways we do it is to go like this. You're going to start with the outer edge of the flame. Start at the base and kind of just work your way up in zig zaggy lines and always kind of come to a point. One thing to do is to always keep the zig zaggy pattern consistent. And you're obviously going to build on this as you draw this fire. But just kind of work your way up and almost like little horns, come in and draw these fingers kind of licking toward the sky like flames would do. Something like that. And then what you will do, at this point, is to create sort of a three dimensional look to the flames, you would kind of come in and sort of lightly now follow your lines up. Now the outer line again should be the thickest. The inner line's just kind of lightly traced where you were on the outer edge. You follow them up a little bit, you see how I'm doing this? And just follow the line right around like that. And you're going to do two or three layers like this. And then you're going to come in, and this would be if you were to draw them in color, you'd draw a few different shades. You would make this inner portion yellow or almost white, to show like the white heat of the flame. And you'd make the outer portion the most orange. Orange, slightly less orange, yellow or white just to show the intensity. And then if you really want to make the flames kind of licking, like a lot of folks do, You would draw up some extra little bursts of flame kind of coming up. And make sure they kind of marry the motion of the outer line that you've drawn already. Like if you were to take this bit right here, you kind of come up and swoop along side it and follow it up just like that. Almost as if it's kind of an extension of the one you've drawn already. Kind of fire, little licks of fire kind of coming off. You can even draw a few. And that is a very good way to draw a fire, or flames for that matter.

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