Want to learn how to draw butterflies? Then you have come to the right place
Butterflies are some of the most beautiful animals in nature. Their wings can have pretty much all the colors of the rainbow, and every butterfly has a slightly different pattern as well.
Not surprisingly drawing a super realistic butterfly is very difficult.
In this tutorial you will learn how to draw a butterfly in a simple way that even young kids can follow.
Let’s start drawing!
Today’s tutorial will focus on drawing. So all you will need is a sharp pencil and some paper.
However, when you finish drawing your butterfly you probably want to color it as well. So you might want to prepare some colored pencils, art markers, or paint as well.
How to draw a butterfly
Step 1: body
Start off by drawing a long oval shape.
This will be the body of your butterfly.
You want to aim for an oval that is pretty stretched out.
If you draw an oval that looks similar to a circle, you will end up with a very chubby butterfly.
Step 2: head & antennae
For the head you want to draw a circle above your oval.
Try to make the radius of your circle equal or smaller to the small radius of the oval.
Meaning you don’t want your head to be wider than the body.
Then add two antennae on the head.
In reality, these antennae are nearly straight. But I always like to draw them with a curl add the end.
Doesn’t that make them much cuter?
Step 3: wing outline
The wings are the most distinct feature of a butterfly. And to be honest, you can draw them however you want!
For this example, I drew 4 distinct wings. Normally the upper wings are bigger than the lower wings.
The butterfly wings I drew are pretty easy because they are similar to rectangles.
The tricky part is drawing both the left and right side similarly. This might take a few tries. So start out with thin lines!
Step 4: decorating your first wing
Ok, now it’s time for the fun part: drawing the pattern on the wings.
In nature the butterfly wing pattern is often made up out of lines, circles and dark edges.
So for my butterfly I made sure to use lots of circles.
But for your butterfly, you can use anything you want.
Step 5: mirror your design
Now that you finished your first wing, you have arrived at the most difficult part.
You will have to make the same pattern on the opposing wing.
Depending on how complex your first wing is, this might be pretty easy or super difficult.
You might want to use a ruler to make some guidelines to help indicate where everything should go.
Step 6: decorate the lower wings
Now you can repeat the process for the lower wings.
The upper wings and lower wings don’t need to be identical. But normally they do look pretty similar.
That’s why I chose to use some more circles.
Now that you finished drawing your butterfly, you can color it however you want.
Although this is a tutorial, I encourage you to be creative and actually not follow all the steps exactly.
Especially when coming up with a pattern for the wings, you have the perfect opportunity to show your creativity.
You can use a photo as a reference or you can draw what every you like.
Below are some other butterfly wings I drew. As you can see swirls, hearts, or even yin-yang signs look pretty cool on their wings.
What can you come up with?
Drawing realistic butterfly wings
For simplicity, in this tutorial I drew wings that are almost rectangular.
However, just a simple Google search will show you that not only the pattern on the wings but even the shape of the wings themselves can differ a lot.
So feel free to experiment with your wings. Change the size. Change the shape. Change the pattern.
I drew three more realistic butterfly wings using reference photos.
These patterns look much more complex than simple circles. But I promise you, with a little practice and patience, you can do it too!
How to draw a cute butterfly cartoon
If you want to make a cute cartoon version of your butterfly I can do so be following the same steps in this tutorial!
Just change the following things:
- Make the body smaller
- Make the head and wings bigger
- Add two big eyes to the head
If you follow these steps, you might end up with a cute butterfly like this:
Also try one of our other how to draw tutorials: