How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

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Learn how to draw a cute cartoon pet (a dog) using these simple drawing techniques. If you own a vector application, then creating this character will be even easier. I will show you how to add simple digital effects to create shadows and highlights to end up with a fun illustration filled with volume and depth. 

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

Step 1

Great! Let's start by sketching the animal using simple pointed lines. I love using irregular pointed lines to create the outlines. Bold lines are fun, but maybe a little bit overused. For this cartoon dog, I have created a side version of a sitting dog which should be easier to duplicate. 

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

Step 2

Next, you can add solid shapes filled with plain colors behind the outlines. I like to keep these solid shapes independent from the outlines. This way, I can add simple shadows between the outlines and solid shapes to create a more interesting illustration. 

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

Step 3

If you are using a vector application, then you can select the gradient fill tool to add some shadows on the cartoon dog. For example, you can see that the top of the tongue is darker while the bottom is brighter. Repeat the same technique on all solid shapes. 

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

Step 4

It's now time to draw additional shapes to create more shadows (and see why separating the outlines from the solid shapes was a good idea). Draw new shadows around the eye, below the ear, below the nose, on the tongue, the collar and the body of the animal.

These new shapes must be placed over the solid shapes, but behind the outlines. Doing so will prevent these new elements from partially hiding the outlines. You can also play with the opacity of these new shadows to create something soft and subtle. 

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

Step 5

Nice job! This is the result now that all shapes are added. The cartoon animal looks great, but we can do one more thing to make it even more interesting. 

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

Step 6

Draw new shapes on the pupil, the ear, the nose, the tongue, the collar and the legs of the dog. These new shapes must be filled with a white color. You can also make these shapes partially transparent to create a subtle effect. 

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet

Nice work! This fun cartoon pet is now completed! :)

Great work! This cartoon pet looks amazing. As you can see, adding more shadows and highlights can create some interesting effects. The illustration looks like a 3D picture and is visually more appealing. Don't hesitate to draw more animals using these simple tips! :)

How to Draw A Cartoon Pet


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