In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to draw anime eyes to help you build a solid foundation in manga art style. Drawing expressive and believable eyes for your anime or manga characters is essential in creating an authentic and appealing look.
Gather your tools — whether it’s paper, pencils, and erasers, or digital tools like Procreate and an iPad Pro — and let’s get drawing!
Before we start drawing anime eyes, we need to have a plan of action. This involves two stages of drawing: a rough stage and a clean-up stage. In the rough stage, we draw loose, messy, and free, building strong foundations on our paper.
In the clean-up stage, we focus on making the foundations look clean and professional. If you’re working on paper, draw your rough stage as lightly as you can. If you’re working digitally, use two layers within your art software, one for rough and one for clean-up. You can always lighten the rough layer using the opacity slider later.
Also necessary to draw human features is understanding how we approach drawing. First, we draw the basic forms or 3D shapes, then we bend the forms into pleasing shapes, and lastly, we add our details. We use this ‘drawing workflow’ mainly for the rough stage and keep it in mind when we are doing the clean-up step. That said, for the most part, anime eyes are typically not drawn from a 3D sphere foundation. Rather, they’re drawn as “stickers” and flat like paper. We will keep this flatform in mind as we approach the concept of form in drawing.
Here we can see an elementary diagram showing the 3D form differences between a real eye based on a sphere and an anime eye which is essentially like a flat sticker.
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