Learn how to draw a leaf using this advanced tutorial featuring an illustration made with several cool effects! Indeed, I will show you how to draw this wonderful cartoon picture using a vector application and two simple effects to add life to your work.
Below you can see the final image. It would be possible to create something even more realistic, but the goal of this drawing lesson is to come up with an amazing cartoon leaf using only simple effects. Are you ready to draw? Let's start now! :)
First, you can draw the shape of the leaf using a long broken line. To speed up the process, you can create the left side, duplicate this one, then join both sides together to create the main shape. A long line can be used to illustrate the petiole.
Next, you can draw some lines inside the cartoon leaf to give some texture to the illustration. Most lines used here are pointed on each sides. Don't hesitate to use some references to get the pattern right.
In this step, you can add a solid color on the back of the outlines. Drawing the colors and the outlines separately can be a good habit since later in this tutorial, more shapes need to be added between these two elements.
All modern vector applications are able to create gradient fills. Use this wonderful tool to add a dark green color on the bottom of the leaf and a lighter one on top. This simple tool already add some depth and volume to the cartoon leaf.
Great! Now you can add more dark areas to increase this sensation of depth. In the illustration below, you can see that small shapes were added in strategic places to add more darkness on the image.
In each of these shapes, the area near the outline is darker while the area that is near the middle of the leaf is almost invisible.
Since it was a little bit hard to read on the previous illustration, here is the result once all dark shadows are added to the leaf. You can already see that the image has more depth, more volume. This could be it, but adding one last thing can make this cartoon leaf even better!
You can duplicate the main shape filled with a green color and scale down the new shape. You might need to adjust a few lines so that everything fits properly into the illustration.
Once again, to make sure that the process is easy to read, the shape was colored in pink. In your case, you must draw a bright green shape. You can make the left part completely invisible and the right section 100% visible.
This is the final cartoon leaf once the new shape is colored in green. Can you see the difference? The leaf is brighter on the right side and the depth is more obvious.
Great work! This is not easy to learn how to draw a leaf like this one, but with some practice you should be able to create something even more beautiful. Enjoy! :)