This in depth tutorial explains how to draw a beautiful anime girl in 15 steps. In particular it looks at drawing the face of such a character from the front view.
As the title states the focus of this tutorial is on drawing a beautiful female anime character. In anime and manga these often have roles such as the “pretty girl” at school and may not necessarily be the protagonist. However drawing an anime girl to look beautiful is actually a bit of a challenge as most of them are drawn to be fairly cute by default. To help this tutorial gives a through guide on how to draw and position the head and facial features for a “pretty girl” character archetype.
Please note that if you’ve seen other similar tutorials here on AnimeOutline there may be a few overlapping or similar information. However this particular character does have slightly different proportions so read carefully.
Also note that while the proportions in this tutorial can help achieve the “beautiful girl” look, this is just one example and there are many more ways to draw such a character.
Overall the tutorial combines good drawing practices that can apply to art in general with tips on getting a particular anime/manga style look.
Step 1 – Draw the Center Guide Line & The Top of the Head
Star by drawing a vertical line through the middle of your drawing area. In this case it will be tall enough to accommodate the height of the head, neck, and the top part of the shoulders.
The purpose of this line is to act as a guide that helps make sure that both halves of the head/neck/shoulders are of relatively even width. Later it can also help with spacing and positioning the facial features.
At the top of this line draw a circle that will represent the top of the head.
Step 2 – Draw the Bottom of the Head
From the lower half of the circle project two lines downwards and angled towards the center line. These should then transition into curves and then go on an even sharper angles to finally join at the curve of the chin.
You can see the break down in the illustration above.
Step 3 – Draw the Neck/Shoulders
Make the neck fairly thin in relation to the head and fairly long. It should eventually transitioning into the shoulder muscles which should then transition into the shoulders.
A slender and long neck will help emphasize a beautiful character.
As this tutorial mainly focuses on the face we won’t go into too much detail on drawing these.
For more information on drawing anime necks see:
Step 4 – Position the Eyes Vertically
To position the eyes you can horizontally divide the head in two as shown with the example above. For the “beautiful girl” character you can then place the eyes slightly below this halfway point. the large forehead will add to the “cuteness”.
Step 5 – Space the Eyes Horizontally & Draw Their Basic Outlines
When spacing the eyes horizontally you will want to leave about enough room between them that you can fit in another eye.
When actually drawing the eyes make them fairly narrow with relatively thick sets of top eyelashes.
At this stage you can simply outline the basic shape of the eyes without drawing all of the smaller details such as the eyelashes.
The goal is to first correctly place all the facial features.
For more good drawing practices and explanations as to why you want to draw a certain way see:
Step 6 – Position & Draw the Eyebrows
Fairly high up above the eyes draw the eyelashes with thicker and slightly raised inner ends. This will help give the character a certain personality.
For more examples of various types of anime/manga eyelashes see:
Step 7 – Position & Draw the Nose
The nose will be slightly above the halfway point between the horizontal line for the middle of the head and the bottom of the chin.
Draw the nose itself close to a tiny oval in shape with the side closer to the center of the face slightly flatter.
Step 8 – Position & Draw the Mouth
Place the mouth where it’s bottom lip (not actually drawn) would be about halfway between the bottom of the nose and the bottom of the chin.
Make the mouth fairly small with a very slight downwards curve. It’s very important not to draw too much of a curve or the character can get an unhappy looking expression.
Step 9 – Position & Draw the Ears
Position the ears with their tops slightly below the top of the eyes and their bottoms slightly below the bottom of the nose. For this particular character the ears will be drawn slightly smaller and slightly lower down than is recommended for other character types here on AnimeOutline.
For the other placement example as well as more information on drawing ears see:
In this case most of the ears will be covered by the hair so there is not much need for drawing their inner details.
Step 10 – Draw the Sides of the Hair
After placing all of the facial features you can move on to drawing the hair.
To emphasize that the character is beautiful (takes care of herself) we will give her a fairly neat hair style.
When drawing the hair you can think of it as being split into the sides, front and back/top sections. For a more detailed explanation of this as well as examples of other hair styles see:
Begin by drawing the “sides” part of the hair. In this case these will be two fairly long “clumps” that begin from around the top of the head and end with a pair of splits slightly below the shoulders.
Make these slightly curved as though they are hugging the head/face and also make them slightly wider towards the bottom.
Step 11 – Draw the Front of the Hair
Draw the front portion of the hair split down the middle and tucked under the sides.
Step 12 – Draw the Back/Top of the Hair
Draw the back/top section also split down the middle. The hair should first stick slightly farther up from the head towards it’s very top, then get a little closer towards it near the upper end of the sides of the head. Finally it should again curve away from the head towards the middle/bottom of the head.
After you finish drawing the hair you can erase the parts of the head/and ears that are covered by it.
In case you are wondering why you needed to fully draw out the head and ears and not just start with the hair there are several reasons for this. One is that seeing the exact size of the head makes it easier to place the facial features (as was shown in the previous steps). Another is that drawing in such a way helps to avoid many potential mistakes.
For a list of common mistakes when drawing in the anime style and drawing in general see:
Step 13 – Add the Small Details
After you finish drawing the outlines of the hair and placing all of the facial features you can then draw all of the small details.
In this case those will be:
- Inner details of the eyes
- Hair folds
- Mole/Beauty Mark
For a very detailed breakdown of drawing the eyes you can see:
While the eyes in that example are slightly different all of the drawing steps can be applied to the example in this tutorial.
You can see a basic step by step drawing of the details of the eyes above. Also please note that the irises are shaded grey just to make the highlights in the final drawing a bit easier to see. If you are going to be coloring the eyes you may wish to make them a different color.
When done with the eyes you can add a few extra hair folds as shown in the first example.
Finally you can also add a little beauty mark/mole just slightly below one of the eyes (or other places). This will again help emphasize that the girl is beautiful as some famous models have these.
You can see a slightly larger version of the face above to make it a little bit easier to see.
Step 14 – Color the Drawing
Before you begin coloring the character it’s important to note that if doing so on paper you may want to leave some white spots for the highlights in the hair (see next step). If coloring digitally it’s easier to add the highlights in at the end.
For the actual color selection you can go with many potential options. In this case we will give her fairly light blonde hair and complimentary colored blue eyes.
For an explanation of which colors go well together see:
Step 15 – Shade & Finish the Drawing
For some very basic shading you can add shadows in the most common places. In this case they will be as follows:
- Tiny shadows around the eyelids
- Small shadows below the eyelashes (cast by the eyelashes)
- Very tiny shadow to one side of the nose
- Fully shaded ears
- Large shadow on the neck in the shape o the chin (cast by the head)
- Fully shaded inner part of the hair between the head/neck and the side hair
As mentioned earlier you can also add some hair highlights as sort of white zigzag lines across the hair. As suggested earlier you can simply leave this area white and then color around it. Alternatively you can use a white correction pen to add them in over top or do it digitally.
As mentioned at the start of the tutorial, female anime characters tend to be cute by default so it can be hard to draw one that is supposed to be beautiful. However using the proportions and facial feature placement in this tutorial can help create such a character.
The large forehead adds to the “cuteness” while the big but slightly narrower (than common in anime) eyes give her a bit of a more mature face. The raised eyebrows with the downwards curved mouth gives just a tiny bit of “condescending” look (not necessarily negative), sort of like a queen or someone of the upper class. At the same time it’s still a fairly relaxed and natural looking expression.
As mentioned this is only one way to draw such a character. For more on drawing different anime character archetypes see: