How to Make a Drawn Character Masculine or Feminine

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When looking at people, it is easy to determine the characteristics that make them look masculine or feminine. Often this is not just seen in the actual physical sex characteristics (generally a slighter build and breasts for women, a wider build and thicker neck for men). When drawing a character as feminine or masculine, it is helpful to consider the more subtle characteristics that determine femininity or masculinity.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper
  • Pen or pencil

The Face

Consider the face shape. This can be a big determinant in sexual characteristics. Women generally have smoother and more rounded lines for their face. Men should typically be drawn with sharper and more angular facial features.

Consider the eyes. Both males and females have eyelashes, but when drawing to enhance masculinity or femininity, women typically have darker and more curled eyelashes. Male eyelashes are lighter and less defined, if drawn at all.

Draw the eyebrows. Women’s eyebrows are typically thinner and follow a more defined shape. Masculine eyebrows are often more unruly, wider and bushier. Often the individual brow hairs are drawn in men’s eyebrows.

Consider the lips. While it is not always the case in real life that men have smaller lips and women’s are more full, it is easy to draw them that way to distinguish masculinity and femininity.

Consider facial hair. All mammals have some sort of hair, but to give more masculine features, consider adding stubble, or even a mustache or beard.

The Body

Consider the shoulder frame. In general, men are broader and more angularly shaped. Women are slighter and curvier.

Consider the waist. Men generally follow a boxier shape without a very well-defined waist. Women are usually drawn with a more hourglass shape, with the smallest part of the waist beneath the breasts.

Consider clothing. This can say so much about masculinity and femininity when drawing. Women can wear pants, but draw the thighs as longer and leaner than you would draw a man’s.

Consider the legs. Women’s legs are often drawn shapely and curved with defined calf muscles. The same is said for men, but the tone of the calf muscle is more athletic than a female’s.

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