How to Draw a Cartoon Bear

Cartoon bear standing straight up with its paws in the air.

A friendly cartoon bear? Sure – why not! I know… grizzlies aren’t exactly known to be all that nice. But then again, this is a drawing… so draw yours to have whichever temperament you like!

And yes – this particular bear is a Grizzly — big, brown, and as you can see on the right… standing tall. Using a very simple guideline of only a few shapes and lines – drawing a bear standing upright, is no problem at all.

Notice the spiky lines I used to sketch the outline. In the actual lesson, I don’t draw these lines – but instead, keep them simple and straight. First time through, I recommend you keep your lines straight. Second time though… definitely give the spiky lines a shot.

And of course, any other adjustments you’d like to make, do so. Color, details, etc. – see what you can come up with on your own as you progress.

OK – let’s get to it!…

Framework for drawing a cartoon bear.

First Step – Draw a Simple Cartoon Bear Framework

First thing then, go ahead and reproduce a framework of basic shapes and lines… similar to the one you see on the left.

Note the cross and how it extends below the head circle… this’ll be very helpful in balancing the left and right sides of your cartoon bear.

As for the the legs, the lines as you can see, are a lot shorter than the arms. No – the legs aren’t really that short… but then again, you could probably get away with it if you like. As an extension to this framework, I’ll be sure to add the feet at the bottom, below these lines.

Oh and one more thing…

…because bears have so much fur – and because of the simple shapes they’re bodies are composed of (circles & ovals), you can get away with focusing less on details. Compare the shape of a bear with the shapes of other animals – tiger, shark, alligator, giraffe, elephant… and right away you can see – bears really do have a more simplified form in comparison. Makes them all the more easy to draw! 🙂

Alright, time for the actual drawing!…

Second Step – Draw the Head and Arms

Same with other lessons – using a cross and a circle to map out the head of your cartoon bear is quite helpful. Begin by drawing the face, and after — sketch in the outline of the bear’s head.

Here’s how the head of my bear looks, followed by the arms. Will yours look different? If so – great! See what you can come up with!…

Drawing the head of the cartoon bear. Drawing the arms of the cartoon bear.

The arms as you can see, are not that difficult to draw. Simply follow along on either side of the lines that compose the arm areas of your framework.

Not much left to do now… let’s go ahead and finish it off!

Last Step – Finish Off Your Cartoon Bear

With the head and arms drawn out, go ahead and move on down the page, drawing in the body, legs and feet. Use the big oval to guide you.

In three simple phases, here’s how it goes…

Drawing the body of the cartoon bear. Drawing the legs of the cartoon bear. Drawing of a cartoon bear.

Not too difficult at all… drawing a character like this one really is a ‘snap’ when you take your time, and use a simple guideline to help you along.

Before we wrap things up, have a look at the top of the page once again and note the ‘spiky’ lines I used for the fur of my cartoon bear. See if you can draw the bear again (no it doesn’t have to be the same…), except this time – with a spiky fur coat! Just remember to pay closer attention to ensure you’re pencil is keeping along the intended path.

And that’s it. Good stuff! The cartoon bear lesson is officially under your belt! 🙂