Learn how to illustrate a simple crab clip art using basic shapes and then see how to turn this cute character into a more complex cartoon picture! Of all sea animals available on this site, crabs are probably the most enjoyable cartoon characters to illustrate.
Made with a small oval body and large claws, these adorable creatures are visually impressive and adorable to look at. Let's use the image above to learn a little bit more about the animal we are about to draw ...
Cool. Now let's proceed to the first step of this tutorial: how to draw a simple crab clip art using basic shapes, simple lines and plain colors.
First, it's always a good idea to sketch a few basic shapes to help us draw the character more accurately. These elements are not part of the character, but just a few guidelines dedicated to make the whole process easier.
The body is done using a simple oval shape. Smaller legs on the bottom are made from tiny rectangles and triangles. Finally, both large claws are illustrate with several huge irregular shapes.
It's now time to create our crab clip art using long curved (and broken) lines. Notice how the head is not perfectly circular and how the claws are large and sharp. Once you are done drawing the animal, you can erase all orange shapes we have sketched in the previous step since they are not longer needed.
Inside the head (which is also the body in this case!) add both eyes and pupils using small circles. Then, draw a long curved line below the eyes as shown in the illustration below. Complete this step by creating the mouth using a medium curved line with both ends being pointed.
Let's add some colors inside our cartoon animal so that we can make this one visually more exciting. For now, only plain colors are needed. As you probably already know, crabs are often depicted in red when it comes to cartoon images. Make sure the area below and around the mouth is slightly brighter. Eyes can remain white and pupils are black.
Only four steps are needed to create this cartoon crab, but these four steps are definitely not that easy. Take your time to study all parts carefully and make sure you create a good template before proceeding with the polished version. You will save a lot of time by doing so!
It's now time to try the second part of this tutorial: adding shadows and reflections to make this crab clip art visually even more interesting. If you have access to a vector application, then this section should be even more accessible. If you don't, then don't worry! You can still use these tips to create an amazing character using traditional tools.
The first thing you can do to create more depth and volume inside the character is to use the gradient tool as shown below. By adding a second version of the same color inside each part of the character, you are adding simple digital effects that are effective and easy to achieved.
The body of the crab is bright, shiny and highly reflective. That's what we want to reflect by adding more shapes on the character. For this step, simply draw large white shapes on all parts of the body and use transparency to partially hide all these new elements.
It's also a good idea to add more shapes to form shadows on areas that are less affected by the (virtual) sun. These new shadows will help create even more depth and volume to the crab clip art when combined to the gradient effects and the reflections drawn earlier.
Black outlines (or strokes) are fine, but we can make this drawing even more professional by modifying the colors of all outlines to a dark red color. See below how the crab clip art looks more enjoyable as a whole.
I hope you had fun working on this fascinating cartoon animal. Turning a simple clip art illustration into a magnificent and colorful image can easily be done using the simple tips found above. You are also invited to try more adorable characters from the same series below and don't hesitate to sketch your own crab using simple lines and shapes once you are more familiar with these lessons.