How to Draw a Braid
We’ll use just a couple of graphite pencils to create two drawings that illustrate different foreshortenings. Let’s complete a complex artistic task while having fun!
What You Will Need
To complete this interactive graphite drawing tutorial, you’ll need the following items:.
How do you draw a braid? A braid is made up of three long, interlacing segments, two of which I draw in the upper part of the outline and the third on the right side, with the remaining, central element forming naturally between them.
I draw the extension of the first segment of the braid with a dashed line to visualize how the elements are following and overlapping one another.
I’ve drawn a distinct zigzag line through the center of the braid for you to follow in the image below; at this point, the pattern becomes predictable and easy to repeat.
You can make your braid perfectly even or slightly irregular; allowing some imperfections may help you achieve a more natural look. I finish about two-thirds of the braid’s shape before braiding it into place, filling it with the familiar pattern.
To turn a graphite drawing into a realistic pencil sketch, first erase all unnecessary graphite lines, then use the HB pencil to mark the darkest areas with accurate hatching.
Please note that each element has a highlight, so don’t shade the middle parts too much. The pencil lines should follow the contours, imitating hair.
I use a 3B pencil to highlight the zigzag pattern of my braided hair in this sketch, leaving the top and bottom parts of the drawing almost untouched to ensure that our braid blends in with the background and the sketch looks balanced.
I soften the highlights with the HB pencil, making them more grey than white, and add some stray hairs with the HB pencil to make the drawing more credible; you can also make the light, wispy hairs with a sharp point of your eraser.
I draw the rough borders of the braid with the HB pencil, making the upper part of the braid much wider than its end to make it look natural. I also add two marks that divide the braid into three segments: the front view part, the bending part, and the side view part.
I start by drawing the foundation of the braid, as we did in the previous section of the tutorial, and then gradually add more elements to create the distinctive zigzag pattern.
I use basic perspective principles to draw the part where the braid bends to the side: the elements of the braid that are farther away from the viewer become smaller and narrower, but keep in mind that this part of the braid has some features of both the upper (front view) and lower (side view).
I draw the rest of the braid, paying special attention to the pattern of the elements closest to the vieweru2014they appear large and substantial; other elements appear smaller, but they must be included in the drawing.
Let’s add some shading by marking the darkest areas of the drawing with the HB pencil.
I use the HB pencil to add another layer of hatching, which intensifies the shading. Feel free to add stray hairs to make your drawing more organic.
I use the 3B pencil to emphasize the shadows at the braid’s sides and interweaving points, making sure to keep the central parts of the elements light!
I work on the braid’s curved section, making the closer elements darker and more contrasting than the farther ones.
Your Drawing Are Complete
I wish you much inspiration; just draw, experiment, and have fun! If you’re interested in learning more about how to draw a braid or how to apply it to a digital portrait, please check out the following tutorials.
How do you draw a simple brain?
Draw a horizontal oval that juts out along the bottom line, as large as you want the brain to be. Curve the top of the oval in the middle to make the rounded part of the brain, and make the bottom line bump out near the middle.
How do I learn to draw portraits?
Here are some portrait drawing tips:
- Start with the eyes and work your way down to the nose and mouth.
- Allow the darkness of the hair to aid in the creation of the lighter edge of the face.
What is the easiest way to draw a person?
Drawing a person may appear difficult, but it’s actually a simple process if you approach it methodically. The easiest way to draw people is with the ‘Ball-and-Socket’ technique, which involves sketching several conjoined ovals to form the human figure’s body parts and drafting the figure’s pose.