How to Draw a Dragon

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STEP 1. In this step, you want to establish a ground plane; this will be very useful to make your dragon feel like its on a surface. You will then want to create your spine line which will run from the base of its skull to the tip of its tail. This will be crucial to showing what kind of dragon yours will be, i went for a more regal and proud look.   STEP 2. Next you will start to build off your spinal column with geometric shapes. Using this technique you will start to see your dragon take form. Now is when you should start to have a clear idea of what you want your dragon to look like.   STEP 3. Now i have built on the extremities or, limbs, onto the dragon. This is when i decided on what shape i wanted its wings to take, which can be important in creating your dragon's identity.   STEP 4. I have now added in the limbs on its far side. You will want to do this to make it appear to have a bit more depth. Not that i took care to lighten the shapes that are further away; this tricks the eye into believing the line is further away.   STEP 5. After all of my shapes have been firmly created and i feel good about the shape, i move on into the flesh of the beast. Im really just focusing on building its form over the foundation that ive laid down. In this stage, i cannot possible emphasize enough how important reference is. I urge you to go look at real animal anatomy to make your dragon have much more believability to it. In this case, i used crocodiles, horses, dogs, bats, and dinosaurs as my primary inspiration.   STEP 6. Next i start adding scales and character to a pretty boring looking body. There are many different methods for drawing scales, this is just my preferred style. Also notice how i have the eye facing forward, this would give it bifocal vision which would increase its vision capacity for hunting.   STEP 7. Just showing other types of scales on his body. No creature has one type of scale throughout its body. Variety is the spice of life as they say; the more variety you have in scales, the more believable it becomes.   STEP 8. Notice how i pattern all the scales to move in one direction; towards the tail. This gives it a sense of false movement, thus making it appear to be moving forward.   STEP 9. Now all the scales are done and pretty. Though it almost feels as if somethings missing doesnt it?....   STEP 10. There we go! Adding a human sized figure(around 6') really gives the creature some life. Now we can identify with its mass, make it more grounded in reality. I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial, and i hope to have helped some of you. Remember, i always love to see when my work helps out; please show me any dragons you draw.   Step 1. Step 2. Step 3. Step 4. Step 5. Step 6. Step 7. Step 8. Step 9. Step 10.