This step by step tutorial explains the specifics of drawing male anime or manga eyes by going over some of the more common elements of the style.
Specifics Common to Male Anime Eyes
Anime eyes of older male characters tend to be drawn narrower than those of younger characters (bigger and wider eyes can make characters look younger). Anime eyes of younger male characters are often drawn very similar to or exactly the same as those of female characters.
This tutorial will focus on drawing the eyes of a young adult male character (age of about 20-30).
Placing Anime Male Eyes on the Head
For placing anime eyes on the head draw a horizontal line through the middle of the head and draw the eyes below that line. Real eyes would be drawn directly on that line or even above it but anime eyes tend to be drawn lower down.
If you are drawing squinted eyes you may want to draw them a little further down from the halfway line as the top of the eyes will be covered by the eyelids.
These placement guidelines can also change based on style. If you are going for a very realistic look you may want to place the eyes further up as you would with real eyes.
Drawing Anime Male Eyes
For spacing the eyes draw them far enough apart that another eye can fit in between them.
Draw the eyebrows after drawing the eyes. Usually the eyebrows tend to be slightly wider then the eyes.
Optionally you can also give a hint of the upper part of the eyelids. More realistic anime styles tend to show eyelids while the more simplified don’t
After you draw all the major shapes of the eyes draw the inner details of the eyes.
Drawing a Male Anime Eye Step by Step
If you are going to draw both eyes then you should draw both at the same time. Draw each step for each eye before moving on to the next step.
Step 1 – Shape of The Eye
Draw the overall shape of the eye. The outline of the eye will basically be the eyelashes.
As already mentioned the eyes of male characters (especially older males) tend to be narrower than those of female characters.
Step 2 – Iris
The pupils in anime are often drawn as ovals (though sometimes they can also be drawn round like real eyes). You can see that for this particular example much of the pupil is covered by the eyelids.
Step 3 – Pupil
Draw the pupil close to the shape of the iris but smaller and narrower.
Step 4 – Shadow
There will usually be a shadow at the top of the eyes or a reflection of the eyelashes making the top darker. You can indicate this area to shade it later.
Step 5 – Combined Pupil & Shadow Shape
You can treat the pupil and the top shadow/reflection as one shape as they can be shaded in with the same color.
Step 6 – Main Reflection
The main reflection of the main light source. The shape of the reflection will be based on the shape of the light source (the sun or in indoor lighting for example) but generally you can just draw a round or oval shape.
Step 7 – Secondary Reflection
The secondary reflection in the eye usually comes from the light emitted by the reflection of the main light source (for example the sun reflecting from a shiny surface).
Step 8 – Pupil Shape
Draw a darker line to indicate the pupil as the rest will be guidelines that will disappear when shaded.
Step 9 – Shading & Color
Shade and color the eye. As mentioned earlier you can use the same color for the pupil and the shadow. Keep the reflections white unless the light source is of a particular color (for example a red sunrise).
This concludes the anime male eyes drawing tutorial. If you want to draw different styles of male anime eyes then you can simply tweak the shape accordingly or simply leave out certain steps/parts of the eye for more simplified styles.
For examples of different styles of male anime eyes see:
For more on drawing anime eyes in general you can see:
There may be some overlapping information in these tutorials but each one still has it’s own focus.