Learn how to draw a larva cartoon that looks realistic ... which might not be a good thing if you don't like worms or any other similar insects. The larva you are about to illustrate is covered with simple shadows, beautiful reflections and complex textures that are easy to create. Just follow all steps available below using a vector application and you are done! Ready? Let's proceed with this lesson ...
First, we need to draw this cartoon insect using several small curved lines made with pointed ends. This particular character is made from twelve different sections (including the head). Between all sections, a small narrow line is also drawn. You can add two tiny triangles near the end of the head. Notice the shape of the character (shown in "S").
You can now add plain colors inside the illustration as shown below. All sections are colored in yellow and the rest of the character is filled with a light brown color. Outlines and strokes can be filled with a dark brown color. Now that we have a nice 2D image to work with, let's try to add more depth and volume using a series of simple tips.
If you are using a vector illustration to create this character, then you know that adding color gradients to a shape is a simple task to accomplish. Our goal is to make each shape darker on the bottom and brighter on top. All body parts are affected by this digital effect.
When you are done playing with colors, you can start sketching new shapes on areas that are not affected by the light source. These new shapes must be darker and filled with brown colors. You can see these new shapes below (surrounded by thick and temporary green outlines).
It's also important to play with the opacity of these new elements so that we can end up with a very subtle result. Once all shapes are drawn, you can move on with the next step.
To make this larva cartoon illustration even more interesting, you can draw large white shapes all over the body as shown below. Once again, it's important to play with the opacity of these new shapes. The bottom of all shapes must be 100% transparent while the top remains barely visible.
All over the body, you can draw small patches to make the larva cartoon character even more gross and realistic. These small patterns are also partially transparent. You can see these new elements below with the red outlines. Have fun and draw patterns that are irregular and visually appealing.
Finally, you can draw a few textures on the character using a simple technique that involves a few basic shapes. First, draw a diamond with round corners as shown below (the blue one on the right). Below the corner, you can see another version that is partially transparent (and the bottom is invisible). Use this exact shape to create the pattern found below both shapes.
Then, apply this pattern on all sections of the larva cartoon. Once again, make sure that all patterns are partially transparent. Textures were all shown in blue in this example (for better readability), but you should really use a white color to complete this step.
Once all effects are applied, you should end up with something like this. Pretty cool, don't you think? Although this cartoon insect looks realistic and visually appealing, it is quite simple to achieved. Once you are familiar with all steps and are able to use a vector software, drawing more insects like this one will be relatively easy.
Above, all steps are shown in one single illustration. Hope you had fun working with this character and don't forget to practice using more fun insects below. :)