How to Draw > How to draw a wolf

how to draw a wolfI've gotten a lot of requests from people who want to learn how to draw a wolf, so I finally got around to making this page.

Once I got started it was really easy, and I kind of even went overboard - I have not just one wolf drawing lesson for you, but two.

The first tutorial shows you how to
draw the walking wolf shown here on the left. The other how to draw a wolfshows you how to draw a howling wolf that is sitting.

Both tutorials only take a few steps to finish. All you need is a pencil or pen and a bit of blank paper.

These are not quite as simple as some of the other animal drawing tutorials on this site, but I think you're up for the challenge. If you're feeling a little uncertain, start with the howling wolf. He's a bit easier to do.

How to draw a howling wolf

All you have to do to draw this wolf is make three triangles, an oval, and draw in some fur, a nose and an eye.

Step 1)
This triangle will create the top part of the wolf's head.
how to draw a wolf howling 1
Step 2)
The next triangle creates the wolf's shoulder.
how to draw a wolf howling 2
Step 3)
The big oval makes up the wolf's back, but mostly his hind legs folded up underneath him in the sitting position.
how to draw a wolf howling 3
Step 4)
Next you add a triangle or leaf shape at the back of the head to be the wolf's ears. You can make the ears pointing up, but most of the photographs I've seen of howling wolves show them with their ears back.

You also add the wolf's jaw.
how to draw a wolf howling 4
Step 5)
Now you start connecting the shapes. I made my connecting line a little bit shaggy to make it look like fur, but if you want to make it easier on yourself, just draw a simple line and add the fur in later.
how to draw a wolf howling 5
Step 6)
You add in the legs. The feet can be ovals laying on their sides. Later when you go in to add more detail, you can make them look like slanted boxes. Draw shorter slant lines to show each toe, and make a draw mark near the bottom of a couple of toes to show the wolf's claws. Don't get too crazy with the claws, though. Wolves have them, but their claws aren't anywhere near as big as, say, bear's or dragon's claws.
wolf howling 6
Here's a detail of the back leg and how to draw it. wolf howling leg detail
Step 7)
This is the wolf, mostly finished. The tail still needs to be filled in. Make your fur lines short, except maybe near the wolf's neck and back the fur can be a bit longer.
how to draw a wolf howling 7

How to draw a wolf walking

Actually, the with the wolf's head down, it is kind of slinking... like its sneaking up on prey. This wolf has paused a moment to take a direct look at us.

Step 1) First you make a very light triangle shape. This creates the shoulder and rib cage of the wolf - basically its belly.

The direction your triangle points will determine which way your wolf is walking. This wolf is walking right. Switch the triangle around if you want your wolf to walk in the other direction.
how to draw a wolf walking step 1
Step 2) This adds the basic shape of the wolf's head. Because the wolf is hunting, its head is down really low toward the ground. You can make the wolf's head by drawing two arcs that face each other and touch at the top of the wolf's head. Then you make a stroke like a very, very shallow bowl to create the bottom part of the somewhat round/oval shape that makes up the wolf's skull.

wolf walking step 2
Add the wolf's muzzle by drawing a circle that will be its nose and make a cone-like shape connecting this to the skull. Make that nose pretty large, and make sure that the cone you draw is not too skinny, of your wolf will end up looking like a fox.

One of my first wolf heads looked like this, like a fox, because I made the muzzle too pointed and the nose too small.

wolf whead that looks like a fox
Step 3) Add the legs of the wolf. This is easy to mess up, so maybe you should give yourself some extra drawing room to practice drawing the legs before you draw them on to the shapes you have already. wolf walking step 3
I did a few practice drawings of legs like the one here. wolf's leg
Step 4) I've blocked out the tail and added the neck and the first bit of shagginess of the fur on the neck. Wolves get really shaggy, thick fur around the top of their necks down to about the middle of their backs. wolf walking step 4

Step 5) This is the finished wolf. It looks a lot different from the last drawing, but really this is just the same wolf with all the fur added, plus the eyes have been filled in. Notice that there's a bit of pencil shading/coloring just below the wolf's eyes. Wolves have a mask of dark fur on their faces, and if you don't draw the mask in properly, suddenly your wolf drawings don't look like wolves.

wolf walking step 5

I also shaded in the two far legs. Unfortunately, this finished wolf has a couple of flaws that I would have liked to have fixed. The worse mistake is that the ears are too far apart, and the whole shape of the head is a bit too wide.

The other mistake I made was drawing the line that makes the belly a bit too low. Wolves are typically really lanky - almost skinny, and the line of the belly, especially near this wolf's back legs is so low that it makes him look almost chubby. It makes him look a bit too much like a bear.

by Pam Neely

Practice how to draw wolves here:

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