Drawing a bird illustration

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Creating a bird illustration that looks warm and appealing is easy using this simple lesson! Indeed, I will show you how to create this adorable character using irregular lines and shapes so that we can end up with an illustration that is far from being perfect, but beautiful to look at.

For this lesson, we will work on a simple cartoon bird filled with simple textures and colored in blue. As you can see below, this character almost felt like it was drawn by hand (although it wasn't). Ready to learn how to draw this cool animal? Great! Let's proceed with the first step now!

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 1

Let's begin this tutorial by creating a few basic shapes to help us illustrate this character properly. First, draw a large circle to form the head. Then, you can sketch and oval shape to create the body. The wings are made from curved lines and the legs from thin rectangles. Don't forget to draw the tail and the feet using more rectangles.

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 2

Excellent! We now have all we need to work on this cute bird illustration. Using mostly small pointed lines, you can draw the animal by following all shapes created previously. Notice the small hair on top of the head as well as the details required to create the feet properly.

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 3

Inside the head of the cartoon bird, draw the eyes using curved lines. As you can see below, only one line is required to sketch each eye. Then, you can work on the beak using the same technique. 

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 4

On the stomach of our simple bird illustration, draw a large patch using once again several small pointed lines. This new shape will be filled with a white color later in this tutorial to illustrate a patch found on the body of the character.

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 5

Great! It's now time to add colors inside the animal. In this case, our bird is mostly filled with a simple blue color. The pupils are darker, just like the wings and the tail. Finally, you can add a bright orange color inside the beak and the legs. As I said earlier, you can leave the patch inside the stomach white.

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 6

Can you see the difference between this illustration and the previous one? That's right! Outlines (or strokes) are now filled with colors instead of being black. I like to use this effect to create a more relaxing image, something visually more appealing ...

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 7

Until now, this bird illustration was rather simple. No special effects or digital enhancement to give depth to this image. Instead, let's just draw small shapes on specific areas to give a little bit of volume to this little fellow. See how adding shadows around the pupils, near the hair, inside the head, on the body and on the tail can make a huge difference.

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 8

Finally, why not add even more textures simply by adding small lines all over the body. It's another simple technique that is relatively easy to achieved, but results are quite interesting. You can see how these lines will look like with their real colors in the next step.

Drawing a bird illustration

Step 9

There you have it! A beautiful bird illustration made from simple lines, shapes and colors. I really like the simplicity of the character as well as the fact that nothing is perfect. Shapes and lines are irregular making this image warm and genuine.

Drawing a bird illustration

Good job working on this bird illustration!

You can see all nine steps required to create this beautiful cartoon bird below. Feel free to experiment and try new species by changing patterns, colors and shapes. Of course, this cute bird can be done using pencils, markers, paint or even while using a drawing application. The choice is yours! :)

Drawing a bird illustration

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