In this tutorial, I will show you how to create a black cat clipart that is visually appealing and not so difficult to achieve. All effects are added using a vector application and once you are familiar with some of the techniques used for this character, drawing beautiful images won't be a secret anymore!
Since we are working with an animal mostly filled with grey and black colors, adding relevant shadows, highlights and reflections is even more important. Our goal is to create some depth and make this cartoon cat easy to read using mostly a few basic shapes. Ready? Let's proceed with the first step now!
First, let's create this beautiful animal using various lines. Notice the singular shape of the head as well as the long and thin body. Eyes are large and made from simple curved lines while the nose is tiny and created from a triangle. The mouth is really small (a good trick to give more volume to the eyes) and the ears are short and drawn using triangles. Don't forget to add hair on both sides of the head and on top of this one.
I know. We are working on a black cat. However, we need to fill in this one with a dark grey color for now. Patches found inside the ears must be grey while the eyes are yellow and pupils are orange. If you really want to use black colors, then use it inside the nose and on all outlines and strokes. ;)
The simple thing we can do to create more depth to this black cat clipart is to work with color gradients. This magical tool can add a second color to a shape and give the impression of volume almost instantly.
In this case, notice how the bottom of the head seems darker while the top is definitely brighter. Using this simple recipe on all shapes can really improve the drawing quickly and easily.
Great! Now we can draw more shadows manually and create more volume inside this black cat clipart as shown in the illustration below. These new shapes are added inside the eyes, below the eyes, on the left side of the head and on the neck. You can also draw more shadows on left side of the body, on the legs and on the bottom of the tail. All these new elements must be dark and partially transparent to create a subtle effect.
Like I said earlier, this black animal won't be filled only with dark colors if we want something visually appealing and realistic. That's why drawing bright reflections and highlights can be a good idea. These new shapes are all colored in white. You can also make them partially transparent for a better result.
You can draw highlights on top of the head, inside the eyes, on the body, the tail and the legs. In all cases, the bottom is invisible and the top is partially hidden.
This is the result once all basic effects are added. See how the shadows and the highlights are creating volume all over the character? This simple recipe can be applied on all your future work. Whether you want to draw more animals, funny characters, buildings, food ... all you need to do is repeat all steps above and enjoy the results.
Now that we are done with this fun cartoon cat, don't hesitate to try more cute characters from this series below. Have fun drawing and don't forget to practice often. :)
External resources: How to draw a cat