How to Sketch Anime Heads?

01 October 2009

How to sketch a simple, anime-style head that is facing you in 8 steps.

If you love to draw, but your drawing sucks, don't worry! Practice makes perfect, and here is a short guide on how to sketch a simple anime head that anyone can do if you follow closely.

What You Need
- Pencil
- Eraser
- Compass
- Paper


1. Use a compass to draw a circle on a piece of paper.

2. At about the edge of the circle, draw two lines down which are pointing slightly inwards.

3. Join the lines together by drawing another 2 lines down inwards where it connects at a point in-line with the centre of the circle.

4. At the intersection between the added lines and the circle, draw a horizontal curved line across, it doesn't have to be perfect, just a guideline.

5. Start the eyes on the line you've just drawn like this. The nostrils is located at the end of the circle below, and you can just draw the mouth in-line with the intersection of the 2 lines below.

6. Draw the bangs in whatever style you like. I prefer sharp and spiky.

7. Remember that hair is spoofy, it doesn't stick to the head flat. So draw along the head with a slight distance.

8. Erase the lines you are not supposed to see, add whatever you like. This is a completed version with longer hair just by adding extra 2 lines.

Yes, I'm using my phone camera, very bad quality. This is just a simple guide to get anyone to be able to start sketching anime heads, because sketching is simple and quick. Front view will be your easiest sketch and getting your proportions right before you work on persepective. You can vary the height of the face, the eye positions, nose, size of the eyes, size of mouth and so on to create many different characters. Don't forget to add eyebrows and ears if your character's hair isn't blocking them unlike mine.

Every person's drawing style differs from the other, as long as it looks okay, you won't have a problem. Some of us won't notice proportion and perspective mistakes, sometimes our drawings are exaggerated, but as long as it looks alright, people will still like it. Keep up the good work!

Eye Shading?
I don't have time to make this but there are many kinds of shading, it's just how you want to do it. Here's how I did for the one above.

1. Draw two little balls at one corner in the eyes, top and bottom for the gloss/reflection.
2. Divide the eyes into 3 sections by drawing 3 horizontal lines equally.
3. Shade from darkest to lightest from top to bottom.
4. Draw an oval at the middle and shade it darkest.