Learning how to draw manga – cartoons based on Japanese-style comic books – is tons of fun.
The first anime (manga-style movies/series) I ever saw was Record of Lodoss War (OVA) – and to this day, it’s still my favorite.
Berserk actually, is a very close second. It was series like these that inspired me to try out a totally different drawing style some time ago.
Unique from ‘Western-style’ cartoons, manga characters differ (in one way) in that they are usually seen to have abnormally large shiny eyes.
A common question that often comes up is… why?
Why do manga cartoon characters have eyes that big anyway? Sure – some do have smaller eyes… but for the majority – big and shiny seems to be the way to go.
A couple reasons for this might be that larger eyes come across as more attractive and/or that manga and anime were inspired by some of the earlier Disney movies/characters.
Bambi and Betty Boop would be two good examples of this.
Still, I’m convinced manga characters have large shiny eyes because with larger eyes – it becomes easier for the artist to convey a sense of emotion in a character.
As I’m sure you’re aware – many manga characters come across as ‘cute & innocent’ – a look that’s much easier to achieve when you’re drawing bigger eyes.
Of course – learning how to draw manga isn’t just about the eyes. With this unique style comes an assortment of different ‘looks’ – ones I think would be really neat to explore in the form of simple cartoon drawing lessons.
And on that note – let’s get to it!
Select one of the manga drawing lessons from the list below to begin…
The creature that will either make or break the future of the Valley of the Wind – a baby Ohmu.
Learn to draw a neat take on the Radish Spirit – one of many spirits, in the bath house of Spirited Away.
Learn how to draw anime hair. Use a color and style, along with some randomness to make it unique.
Learn how to draw No Face. Use a color and style, along with some randomness to make it unique.
In Princess Mononoke, the Forest Spirit transforms into this – the ‘Night Walker’ – when the sun goes down.
Learn how to draw your very own unique chibi character – big head, little body, shiny eyes, and all!
In this lesson, learn how to draw four different sets of manga-style eyes – both male and female versions.
Learn how to draw Eva Unit 01 from the anime series – Neon Genesis Evangelion.