How to Draw Dragon Wings

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STEP 1. References - When an artist wants to draw something from imagination, he/she will seek out references in order to achieve the most believable design. With that being said, to draw dragon wings in the most accurate form, you will need to reference real life animals and observe their features carefully. In the pictures I present to you from a quick Google Image search for 'Bats', observe how the wings are cupping onto the channels of wind and air in order to fly. Look how each wing finger serves as an active tool. A great artist always has their references by their side!   STEP 2. Wing Anatomy - For the first rule of advice, it's best to understand the anatomy of a wing. Here you have the basic underbelly or 'front' of the wing, and the back of the wing. Notice the many differences between the two. The 'Front' wing, has more detailing as well as clear visibility of the wing fingers. You can also tell that the biceps and forearm connect differently from the Front than they do from the 'Back'. Also notice that the wing thumb has a change depending on its view. Spend at least 20 minutes a day drawing various wing poses!   STEP 3. Wing Breakdown - The best way to break down a wing for accuracy, is to dismantle the wing in basic familiar shapes. Imagine the wing as an anatomical whole; it's formed by muscles, bone, and connecting membranes. Here, you can see I've broken down the wing into sections that serve as the various muscle groups as well as the individual spurs of the wing finger bones.   STEP 4. Flight Cycle - The most important part about drawing dragon wings, is understanding the wings in various positions during its flight cycle. Here I've drawn very basic stages of what the wings would look like from the side during this flight process. Observe the details and how the wing is formed during each individual movement. For me to draw these, I used a few bat in flight references from Google Images.   STEP 5. Wing Forearms - Another important part about the dragon wing, is the forearm, which supports the hand, which then precedes into the wing fingers. Again, I have given you three types of forearms, varying in sizes depending on the body composition of the dragon (lanky,thick, and bulky).   STEP 6. Wing Biceps - Alright first things first, you will need to practice a few times at drawing the various sizes/types of biceps for your wing. Know that, biceps of the wing are the 'key' supporting area of the entire wing; so this part has to be the 'thickest' since it's the base. Here, I've given you three types of the biceps ranging in sizes depending on the body type of the dragon.   STEP 7. Let's begin our full bodied dragons in flight examination with a frontal view of a dragon. Observe how the wings are only seen from at the tips, with a bit of the larger connecting membranes attached to the sides of the body visible. To aid my vision for drawing a dragon in this particular pose, I used a reference of a flying fruit bat (flying fox). See how important references are? Now, for years, I've had so many problems drawing dragons flying at this angle. After those many years of practicing, I've gotten somewhere I've always wanted to be. To help aid you to draw a dragon pose from the front view, I'm going to break down in easy steps on 'how to draw a dragon flying from the front'. Let's begin!   STEP 8. Here is how you can draw your own dragon in flight. Start with the small head and torso. Add the lines for the wings, then begin sketching out the head and neck. Once that is done begin tackling the step where you will draw the torso and front arms and talons. Draw in the rest of the body along with the hind legs and tail. Sketch out the arms of the wings, then draw in the skin tissue. Add detailing where needed like you see here.   STEP 9. This is the view of the dragon from behind. We will also learn how to draw a dragon from the back view as well. Start with the guides for the whole body, then draw in the guidelines for the wings. Sketch out the arms, then draw the outlined shape for the wings as well. Next, cap off the ends of the wings likes o, then draw in the detailing from the finger bones. Dragon wings never looked so good.   STEP 10. For the first step we will need to make the basic guides and shapes. This dragon is on top of a mountain and is looking downward. You will have to draw the body pose to show this position. Make the small shape for the head first, then draw the egg shape for the torso. Draw the lining for the winged limbs, then proceed to step two.   STEP 11. Sketch out the shape of the head for this dragon. The mouth of the beast should be wide open and there should also be points along the lining of the mouth.   STEP 12. Continue to work on the head by sketching out the frills along the sides of the head and or face, then draw in the other horn. When that is done draw the tongue, teeth and eye. Don't forget to add detailing to the head as well.   STEP 13. Now we will draw out the long skinny neck, followed by the hunched over body. The arms should also be on the slender side and it should also be defined to show the muscle tone.   STEP 14. This dragon has arm limbs as well as wing limbs. Begin sketching out the long slender arms for the wings. Add detailing by making muscle definition.   STEP 15. Then, to start drawing the wing membranes, you will need to keep in mind of your guides you've drawn previously in order to sketch them accurately. First, begin with the right wing, so you don't have to draw the left wing's under lapping features. Sketch the rips and tears as you draw the membranes, then proceed onto the definition of the individual fingers.   STEP 16. Next, let's jump into sketching the detailing of the torso as well as the leg and arm overlapped by the head. Use thin lines for the definition of smaller details, and thick lines for areas that have lots of depth.   STEP 17. Now that your dragon is completely drawn, you can sketch in the rock that it is sitting on. Add detailing throughout and be sure to make the rock look rough.   STEP 18. Next, draw the sharp pointed spine bones like so, then erase all the mistakes and guides.   STEP 19. Now you're done. Color in your dragon and show off the hard work you just did.   Step 1. Step 2. Step 3. Step 4. Step 5. Step 6. Step 7. Step 8. Step 9. Step 10. Step 11. Step 12. Step 13. Step 14. Step 15. Step 16. Step 17. Step 18. Step 19.