how to draw reptiles

How to Draw Reptiles

Reptiles offer a unique challenge for artists, because the anatomy and life-like form of these ancient creatures is quite different from other animals. With the right instruction, drawing a realistic reptile can help everyone from beginner artists to experienced masters. Although drawing reptiles can be intimidating, they can be surprisingly simple to learn!

What You’ll Need

  • Drawing paper
  • Pencil
  • Eraser
  • Drawing surface

Step 1: Block Out the Basic Form

Begin the drawing by lightly sketching in the basic form of the reptile. This might include the body shape, limbs, tail, and head. Make sure to keep all lines light and loose at this stage, so that you can easily adjust them later on.

Step 2: Add Features

Once you have the basic form blocked out, start adding the details.
The eyes of a reptile can be tricky since they are typically slitted and appear quite small. Make sure to draw the eyes with curved lines for a more natural feel.

Step 3: Flesh Out The Details

Once you have your reptile’s major features down, it’s time to add more detail and begin refining the form. Start with the legs and feet, which typically have a pattern of scales or spines. You can also add additional features like claws or ridges on the tail.

Step 4: Add Shading

Bring the drawing to life by adding shading to the scales or spines of the reptile. Begin by lightly shading in the spines or scales with a pencil and then use an eraser to blend the shading and create a smoother look.

Final Step: Finishing Touches

Give your reptile a finishing touch by adding small details, such as highlights and reflections. With a few carefully placed lines, you can give your drawing the perfect lifelike sparkle and shine!


Drawing reptiles can be a daunting task, but with patience and practice, it is possible to master the art of reptile drawing. Just remember to take your time, be creative, and have fun!

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