HOW TO DRAW EYES
In order to draw eyes, simply draw the outline first using a pencil and then add a base layer of shading in the pupil area of the eye, after that, you need to work on the Iris area using light pencil strokes, add some spokes to the Iris by keeping the pencil straight and sharp tip. Now it is time to finish the outline to achieve the overall shape of the eye, plus some of the basic tools can really help in achieving more realistic looks.
LIST OF MATERIAL FOR DRAWING:
- FABER-CASTELL 0.5 Mechanical PENCIL
- FABER-CASTELL Graphite pencil 3B-7B
- Gelly Roll Pen by SAKURA/Pen corrector
- Craft knife
- DIY Graphite Powder
- Blending stump
- Faber Castell classic BLACK Pencil
- Pencil Eraser by Staedtler
- Dry Brush -TISSUE -Bristol Smooth Paper (Best for smooth drawings)
Here, I will show you How to Draw Eyes using the Step by Step Method. I am keeping the approach for this drawing the easiest, therefore it will not be difficult at all for you to draw this hyper-realistic eye, also I am going to use the above material.
Please note, you can use any pencil if you don’t have the different varieties.
BEFORE YOU START DRAWING
Few things you need to REMEMBER before you start drawing
- Always Start with an overall sketch of the eye in order to avoid disproportions.
- Never Press your pencil too hard. Use Light/gentle strokes. so that you can erase them easily later. Try to use a Soft, gradual transition between shades/values.
- Remember – the Eye is a three-dimensional object. It sits deep in the eye socket. Try to establish a light source and manage the dark and lights
- Reference Photo should be in High Quality so you won’t missout on any of the detail while drawing.
If it is your first attempt to draw an eye, don’t get stressed, just relax and follow the instructions as below, don’t go for perfection instead, go for an attempt.
Please, note there is a step-by-step tutorial for you to follow at the end, you can always watch the video for better understanding of this drawing.
CHOOSE A REFERENCE PHOTO TO DRAW THE EYE
Here is the reference picture I’ll be using. I chose this one because the eye in it is wide open and you can see the entire iris which makes explaining some steps easier. If you want, you can choose your own photo and follow my directions
STEP 01 | DRAW OUTLINE OF AN EYE
Drawing Eyes Contour Drawing is a basic fundamental I’m starting off with.
In order to Draw an eye, simply use the freehand Method and Draw an outline using Mechanical Pencil.
We only need an outline at this stage.
STEP 02 | SHADING; ADD BASE LAYER OF SHADING
As you can see the basic structure is there, now use the blending stump to contour out, also start filling the Pupil, using 5B or 6B pencils.
Try to stay gentle as you adding the base layer of graphite in the pupil of the eye so you can always do the correction and improvement later on, but if you do it using hard pressure over the paper in the beginning it will be tough to eliminate unwanted darker areas or also to get the mid-tone from the shading. So keep your Shading Values Subtle to get every single Value evenly smudged,
STEP 03| DRAW IRIS
Now I’m starting off with the Shading using a 3B Pencil with the lighter pencil strokes in the area of Pupil or Iris. Don’t worry too much if it is not a good-looking outcome at the moment. This Basic Shading will work out for overall eye shape. Keep the highlighted area unfilled to Stand out the Iris more realistically. You can also use an eraser in the iris to create some smooth highlights; this will enhance the Iris bit more narrated and 3 dimensional.
- Pro tip: Use an eraser in the form of a pencil, or an eraser pen, to rub out little details precisely.
STEP 04| DRAW SPOKES TO THE IRIS
Using a black pencil or any darker grade pencil-like 8 B or 9 B; add some irregular spokes in the Iris.
Try to keep the Pencil lighter as you go towards the outer edges that will help the spokes thinner from the edge of the stroke. Add darker spokes so later on will smudge it to get the spokes naturally subtle.
STEP 05| ADD SOME DEPTH IN BETWEEN THE SPOKES
Using a mechanical pencil; I’m going to create fine details in between the spokes to really get the iris well-detailed and super realistic.
The purpose is to create more depth to pop up the Iris so remember to leave some highlighted areas unfilled in Pupil to make the iris and out more visibly, therefore don’t fill out all at once, keep the empty spaces in there, but as we said in beginning, don’t care for perfection go for the attempt.
You can also add a drop shadow of upper eyelashes in the pupil, but don’t worry if that seems difficult at the moment.
STEP 06| ADD SHADOW TO THE WHITE OF THE EYE
Take your Blending Brush and blend what you’ve just drawn. Begin with the brighter parts and continue towards the dark corner. This way you avoid dragging graphite residue to the areas that don’t need it.
Use some Graphite Powder with the brush to add some shadows in the white of the eye. Make sure you do not dip too much of the brush in the powder, keep it lighter, try testing on blank white paper to see, in case, the brush contains too much. Graphite powder is the best blending material for the wider areas and helps you to get your shading well blended.
You can check out the link of the video In which I discussed the 4 BEST BLENDING TOOLS FOR GRAPHITE PENCIL DRAWING
STEP 07| DRAW EYELASHES
Drawing eyelashes is quiet complicated if you’re an absolute beginner but if you pause the video and check how easily I drew the eyelashes; you’d love drawing them.
STEP 08| SHADE A TEAR DUCT AREA OF AN EYE
I’m now using a Blending stump over here to apply the base layer of graphite around the Tear Duct Area of an Eye or use tissue paper where there is extra weight in darkness.
STEP 09| ADDING THE DETAIL OF RETINA
let’s add some veins on the eyeball. Draw Retina in the white of an eye using 4 B Pencil. The retina is a sensory layer of the eye that has millions of Photoreceptors called and Rods and Cones. So Draw a few irregular lines varying in the shade. They have to be really thin, so use a sharp pencil or a mechanical pencil to draw these veins. Just don’t push too hard and draw subtle veins but remember not to overshadow the iris.
STEP 10| EXTEND THE EYELASHES
Now use a 6 B Pencil and darken up the upper eyelid of an eye; this needs to be slightly darker, please Remember to not put heavy pressure over the paper while you’re building up some details.
Now use a Black pencil by Fabercastlle to extend the Eyelashes and make them darker. keep a suitable length ratio in your mind to achieve a realistic look of the drawing. Lashes are easy to draw if you first build them with the lighter pencil and then go with the darker one for further lashes.
I personally sample the eyelashes area with the mechanical pencil and then glaze the Eyelashes with the BLACK COLORED PENCIL or Any BLACK PEN. This technique will give your drawing more quality and stand out realistically.
- PRO TIP : keep the Eyelashes thicker from the base and thinner from outer edges, just do not press hard the Pencil.
STEP 12| SHADE THE UPPER LID AND A BROW RIDGE
Here for the Upper lid and a brow ridge – I’m going to refine the crease line and make it dark and really thick.
Also, I’m going to add some in-depth texture of the realistic skin. Fill the whole area of the upper eyelid with the graphite as a base layer then start in the inner corner and finish at the line connecting the crease with the brow. Follow the Reference image and you’ll notice that the crease-brow line is a bit darker than the other part of the eye. So Follow along with me to learn how I’m going to add the texture in the upper lid area.
- PRO TIP : The outline of an Eye line area which should be darker, hence use that as a guide line to keep the skin tone halfway darker so use Black Pen or Colored pencil over the Graphite to Glaze it.
STEP 13| BLEND THE AREA ABOVE THE EYE
Blend Everything with the Dry brush using a graphite powder.
- Pro tip: Using a soft brush (preferably a makeup brush) can help you achieve better results than a blending stump, especially with bright shades and you will be able to smooth the transition of the skin.
Now use Eraser to craft the overall Skin texture so using this method we are going to add wrinkles around the eye.
STEP 14| REFINE SHADOWS AND HIGHLIGHTS
Simply look at your overall drawing and Notice whether it needs more contrast or highlights. So I’m using all of the highlights tools here like Eraser, Gelly Roll Pen to add up some soft and brighter highlights combined together over the upper lid area of the eye.
- Pro tip: You can also use the Craft knife to Get more texture around the skin area. Craft knife helps to scrape out the details in the drawing.
If you want to know more about the Highlights tool and the use of these tools and I highly recommend watching this Video on 6 TOOLS for Drawing HIGHLIGHTS. It’ll help you understand how highlights actually work in making your drawing super realistic.
STEP 15| ADD LAYERS BELOW THE LOWER EYELID
Fill the Lower Eyelid area with gentle strokes. Continue adding layers in the areas that need more shade.
See all those tiny wrinkles in the eye corner? It’s drawing with eraser time again! Tweak with the details using 5 B pencil and Eraser. Create some skin texture below the lower eyelashes of the eyelid and some highlights along with texture around the inner area of the eye.
The Skin Texture may look complicated but I created it with the easiest technique by simply stroking the area in one direction first and add up some details over that using random lines.
The goal is to Create a hyper-realistic pattern that will look like natural skin cells – a net of tiny lozenges and triangles.
- PRO TIP: If you don’t have any tool to create Detail of Skin. Use Eraser; you can use any Ordinary eraser. Simply cut the edge of any ordinary eraser diagonally and use the Sharpe edge to create the skin texture detail. wink, wink.
STEP 15| FINALIZE LEFTOVER ENHANCEMENT
It is entirely up to you to now add more depth and enhancement to your drawing, such as thickening the eyelashes, skin texture, eyelid wrinkles as well. As a final touch, let’s add more skin texture.
Do it with a tip of a blending stump(For darker areas) and a highlights tool (for white spot). Just balance the transition of your eye drawing. This way you’ll create pores and tiny skin reflections that will help you to achieve realism in your drawing. Just be gentle with the dark spots. Try to go with the Patience unless you’ll ruin the drawing.
That was my in-depth guide on how to draw an Eyes sketch to a realistic eye drawing.
If you feel like something was too complicated or not explained clearly enough, leave a comment – I want to make these lessons as helpful and fun as possible.
Do you have any questions about how to draw eyes? What other tutorials would you like to see here? Let me know!
Watch the Complete Guide tutorial Video below.
Here is the Tutorial on how to draw eyes step by step for beginners, you can watch detail drawing in the following video.
Nothing would make me happier than seeing your finished drawing made with this guide. Don’t hesitate to attach your masterpiece to a comment!