Learn How to Draw a Tiger in This Step-by-Step Tutorial
With a little patience and some illustrated guidance, you, too, can draw the tiger of your dreams. In this tutorial, we’ll walk you through the steps of sketching a tiger walking through a forest.
Step 1: Do your research
Trimby’s tutorial will focus on how to draw a Siberian tiger for beginners. Remember that tigers have long, muscular bodies with powerful legs, and their anatomy differs from that of other big cats like lions and leopards.
Step 2: Draw the basic shapes
To begin, we’ll draw the basic shapes for the tiger: one small circle for the head, a larger circle for the chest, and a mid-size circle for the hindquarters a little further down.
Step 3: Connect the shapes
Connect the shapes you’ve just drawn until you have a long body. Art: Margherita Cole | My Modern Met
Step 4: Add the ears and muzzle
Now we’ll turn our attention to the head, and add a pair of triangle-shaped ears to the top of the circle and a smaller circle to the bottom; at this point, you can also lightly sketch some guidelines to indicate where the facial features will go, but it’s not necessary just yet.
Step 5: Sketch the legs
Returning to the tiger’s body, sketch the upper part of the forelimbs and hind legs as thick rectangular shapes, then connect the lower legs at the joints, ending in large rectangular paws. Keep the legs fairly thick, as tigers are muscular animals with heavy coats of fur. Art: Margherita Cole | My Modern Met
Step 6: Add detail to the face
With the legs in place, return to the head and add more detail. First, lightly sketch a pair of small circular eyes. Then, using the eye that is further away, draw the bridge of the nose, ending at the muzzle. Add a triangle-shaped nose and two whisker pads. The tiger’s mouth is open in this drawing, so below the nose, sketch a pair of small circular eyes.
Step 7: Give the tiger more definition
Now that we’ve drawn all of the elements, it’s time to give our tiger some definition. Starting at the top, find the tiger’s shoulder blade and raise it a little to show that it’s moving. Add a long curling tail behind the back legs and sketch the individual toes in the tiger’s paws.
Step 8: Erase the guidelines
Once you’re happy with your basic sketch, go ahead and erase any unnecessary marks until you have a clean outline of your tiger. Art: Margherita Cole | My Modern Met
Step 9: Add the stripes
Finally, add what makes tigers so uniqueu2014 stripes! While it may be tempting to try this freehand, there are some basic patterns to follow, so make sure you have a few reference photos of tigers on hand. Remember to keep the stripes around the head shorter, and the ones on the body fairly long.
Optional: Draw a background
If you’re going to the trouble of drawing a noble tiger, why not make it a full illustration by adding a background? It’s a great way to give your animal a story. In this case, the tiger is walking through a snowy forest, so I’ve added a sloping horizontal line and a variety of trees in the back.
Step 10: Go over the drawing in ink
Finally, we’ll go over our drawing in ink. Place a scrap of paper under your drawing hand and slowly go over the sketch with a pen. Once you’ve gone over all of the marks, you can begin filling in the stripes and other select areas with black. It’s important to leave this step until last, or you risk smearing the ink.
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How do you draw a tiger step by step?
- Draw the round head and mouth.
- Add the nose line, eyes, and ears.
- Attach one front and one back leg.
- Draw the two remaining legs. Erase the gray lines.
- Add a nice, thick tail.
- Draw LOTS of triangles and stripes on the tail.
How do you draw a baby tiger?
Draw two ovals for the eyes, a “u” shape for the nose, and a large curved line across the face for the jawline. Step 2: Next, draw the face. Start by drawing two ovals for the eyes, a “u” shape for the nose, and a large curved line across the face for the jawline.