How to Draw Anime and Manga Eyes to Show Mood & Personality

This short tutorial focuses on how to draw anime and manga eyes to give a sense of a characters mood or personality.

This is similar to the How to Draw Anime Eyes and Eye Expressions but with a slightly different examples and purpose.

Drawing Anime & Manga Eyes to Show a Characters Personality

Anime eyes showing different types of personalities
Anime eyes showing different types of personalities

Wile eye expressions are great for showing a characters immediate emotions a character can also have a more permanent or semi-permanent expression.

Here are a few tricks you can use to make a character’s eyes portray a certain personality.

Please note that the examples are only recommendations.

Friendly Anime & Manga Eyes

Friendly anime eyes
Friendly anime eyes

Big eyes generally are more expressive and friendlier looking. To make eyes look even friendlier you can draw the bottom eyelids very slightly raised and curving downwards. This will give the eyes a light squint as though the they are smiling and create a friendlier appearance.

Innocent Anime & Manga Eyes

Innocent anime eyes
Innocent anime eyes

Adding a lot of reflections especially to large eyes can give a character an innocent, exited or even an “in love” appearance.

Serious Anime & Manga Eyes

Serious anime eyes
Serious anime eyes

For a serious looking anime character you can draw the eyes vertically narrower with the top eyelids and eyebrows lowering down towards the middle of the face.

Crazy Anime & Manga Eyes

Crazy anime eyes
Crazy anime eyes

If you want a character have crazy or scared looking eyes draw them wide open with small irises and small pupils. Leave white space between the irises and the eyelids/eyelashes.

Uncaring Anime & Manga Eyes

Blank anime eyes
Blank anime eyes

For “empty eyes” draw the eyes with no pupils and no reflections. This can make a character look uncaring or even unconscious.

Villain Anime & Manga Eyes

Villain anime eyes
Villain anime eyes

To draw eyes for a villain anime character you can use a combination of two or all three of the serious, crazy and empty anime eyes. The overall shape of the eyes should be similar to the serious eyes (squinting with lowered eyelids and eyebrows), the irises can be drawn smaller like in crazy anime eyes and a lot of the inner details can be left out (similar to the uncaring eyes).

Conclusion

There are a lot of personalities and eye types in anime. This tutorial is meant to give you some basic ideas of how to draw eyes to portray a character in a certain way. If you need more reference you can always pause a certain scene of an anime, look at a panel of a manga or even look in the mirror and try and make the expression you want to draw.

For drawing different types of anime and manga eyes see:

How to Draw Different Types of Anime Eyes