How To Draw A Dolphin

It is strange. When started to I draw a dolphin I’ve got similar feeling like when I was drawing an elephant.

No doubt that both animals are highly intelligent. There is some special aura around them, even if you just draw them on a paper.

Some people still have tendency to compare dolphins with sharks although we all consciously understand that dolphins are totally different species.

My guess is that this is caused by similarity in shapes of dorsal fin and pectoral fins (AKA: pectoral flippers)

If you could see only the tails of both; dolphin and shark, the difference would become clear immediately.

Shark’s tail fin (AKA: caudal fin) is shaped vertically while dolphin’s tail fin (AKA: tail fluke) is horizontal.

When shark swims below the water level you can easily see both dorsal and caudal fins at the same time.

Dolphins can show only dorsal fin if they swim right below the water level. Horizontal tail fluke remains under the water level.

Today we will draw a dolphin in one of its most natural - jumping pose.

click the image to enlarge

Before you begin to draw this jumping dolphin take a little time and observe your object.

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Comparing to the previous exercises of shark drawing. or fish drawing., dolphin drawing is a bit different.

I picked this jumping bended body position purposely, to make the drawing process a little bit difficult and thus a good drawing exercise.

click the image to enlarge

Hold your pencil loose or tilted and sketch the approximate outline contour of dolphin’s body.

click the image to enlarge

Sketch the fins in the following order: Start with the dorsal fin if possible and sketch the pectoral flippers as last.

I recommend this sequence because it helps you to capture best total balance when you draw a dolphin.

Observe well the length of dolphin’s distinctive beak. Compare the length of the beak to the head.

Pay a little more attention to this important detail. We are drawing a bottlenose dolphin.

click the image to enlarge

As every animal has its feature, what makes dolphin look like a dolphin is mainly its rounded head, distinctive beak and a smiling expression.

We can call it the dolphin’s face. If you work diligently on this one detail, the rest of the dolphin drawing will be very easy.

On the contrary, if you cannot capture well the face expression, your dolphin drawing despite your great effort will not resemble much to a dolphin.

It is perfectly OK if you practice drawing only the head on a separate paper first.

Do not mind about the extra little time it takes. If you are serious about to learn how to draw a dolphin, this will be a very good investment.

click the image to enlarge

Draw sharper pencil line over the initial body contours marking out the finalized shape.

Gradually begin erase all unnecessary and excess pencil cluster.

Draw clear pencil line but not too strong in case you need to make some corrections that you will probably do. Outline the mouth opening and draw the eye.

Pay special attention to capture good balance of eyes and mouth. Now you have your dolphin drawing virtually ready.

The following is coloring.

click the image to enlarge

Hold your graphite pencil tilted and cover gently the body in grey. The opposite side pectoral flipper is dark (in the shade).

Mark out the blowhole on dolphin’s head. Keep that in mind when you draw a dolphin or whale, because these animals have blowholes.

click the image to enlarge

You can use also grey colored pencil over the graphite pencil. It will create a good texture.

click the image to enlarge

Finally you can also add some – only very little and gentle touch – blue color over the basic grey layer.

Be careful when you shade the dolphin with blue color not to over saturate it.

Make a color-mixing test first on a separate paper or on the margin of your drawing sheet.

Blue color should be really just a delicate surface finish. Almost invisible.

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What Other Visitors Have Said

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i love it

This is amazing! The outcome at the end is beautiful! It was extremly fun but the thing I found most difficult was the first outline. I couldn't get it …

This person has talented drawings i wish i can draw like this. Thank you for helping me out with drawing dolphins i learned so much with drawing dolphins …

hard dolphin 
I think it should go a little slower with the steps like there was a big jump from 4 to 5 and 6 to 7. I want to say im good at drawing myself but Im more …

This has really helped me. Thanks for doing this. I am thankful that u did it

thank you  
I think it was easy but had a great effect

The drawings helped me a lot. At first I had no Idea how to draw a dolphin but now I do!

i do a lot of drawing here... :)) 
Took me about 10 minutes to draw it! :) it isn't that pretty like your's but it's nice!:)

Well I love Dolphins, they're one of my favorite animals, but sadly I have never bee able to draw them. But now I can, the drawing instructions on here …

Helpful and Great! 
I think its perfect, but only one little thing bothered me, you MUST be more detailed and not jump from step 1 to step 3. no, you need to show it more …

My dolphin 
My dolphin turned out amazing because of you guys! You are awesome people! Thank you so much!!!!!! :D

This drawing is so wonderful and beautiful! This shows the work of a professional artist!!!!!!!! Can't wait to start drawing! I absolutely love dolphins. …

at lasst :O 
it took me 3 hrs to do at last im finished 
Well recently i made this dolphin, It turned out too be nice.. And but because of this website I copied the dolphin from this it has been drawn quite nice, …

Love what i came out with!! 
I love the dolphin! My drawing came out nicer than I thought!

i got an A on my arts drawing i was ask to draw that for everyone thanks so muchhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh MWAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

thank you 
thank you for making a dolphin it is beatiful. at our school I am in extension art and we got a challenge we had to draw a dolphin and i won thank you …

This is great! My dolphins finally look lifelike! Thank you SO MUCH!

good drawing it made me get a 100% on my report

awesome! perfect! beautiful! thnx! Thank you! Thank you! 
you are amazing i culd never tell some1 how 2 draw i can just draw. i love the way u explain it you have inspired me to start drawing again. the demonstrations …


dolphin crazy 
OMG ! ugly to draw cause my drawing is rubbish LOL!! but the dolphin is adorable awwwww cute

To hard 
When a kid needs to know how to draw a dolphins the want to know.I am a kid and this is to hard so make it a little easier.Please

I drew a dolphin it looks a lot like this. I drew it just from remembering a picture. I think this might be easy to draw then. Im only 12.....

Click here to write your own.

it helped me but mind didnt trun out as well

amazing dolphins 
i think this is really great and i wish you could bring pictures of other types of dolphins aswell so that i got learn to draw them aswell.anyway thnx!!!!! …

You think i am american, i am from ESSEX! 
Hello, It was great. I done it perfectly I love animals and especally the social animals; dolphins and that it was sooooooo easy.

love it i really do 
that was good but you need to play a movie but it was good thanxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Live it Love it you gotta have it  
i think this is a good page because i have a project due and this helped me learn how to draw a dolphin thanx a million

Ginny Davis 
cool!!! helped me alot!!!!!! now i can draw a dolphin!!!!!!!!!! <3

the dolphin was relly help full but you could make it a bit simpler because if there rally yung then there gonna need more help because im only 11 lol …

Thank you for this easy to interpret drawing guide 
I am trying to make a glass dolphin without any experience in drawing one. Your guide made a 2D understanding possible and will really aid in building …

you are so good at drawing! you should draw more cause i love to draw! thank you for the tutorial!

2 Thumbs Up 
Dolphins are my favorite animals and I've always wanted to draw them but I couldn't find a good resource but this really helped me as an artist and as …

cant draw as well as you 
can i just say.....YOUR DOLPHIN was AMAZING! I needed to draw a dolphin, and i followed your was a poor substitution.

Its my first trying out drawing I love it. I have a best friend that I call Dolphin so I drew it for him and He loved it...Its posted up in his office. …

Very Good!!! :D 
It is was very easy to follow with a good outcome, and this and many more of your animals and flowers on my art exam. ;)

can you do a close up picture of a dolphin smiling?

this was really helpful! thanks :)

dolphin trainer 
this was awesome! I'm used to seeing dolphins every day so you would think it would have been easier for me but it wasn't. It took some time but it came …

dolphin pic.... 
it is quite helpful!!!!!!! its not that easy though!!!!!!!! my drawing was acceptable enough to hand in for my design homework!!!???!!!

Boyer Sadkfje 
I loved this explanations of How to draw a dolfin THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING!

Thank YOu 
It is just very helpful :D thanks


about to draw dophin 

So Helpful :] 
I tought this page was very helpful.The shading is fantastis and the dolphin to me looks so realistic.I find drawing dolphins hard and find this an easy …

cool kat 
verry good website

I like it! I have a little talent and am very interested in drawing. I have a question: What kind of pencils' did you use in the first picture? You must …

i love dolphins i wish you had pics of snakes

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That was awesome. I drew a pic of me and a boy i like facing each other (as dolphins. on the sunset. THIS SITE IS AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! …

The Help 
I want dolphins to go free and live a good life.That dolphin in DOLPHIN TALE. her`s tale came off! She had to swim side to side which was hurting her …

im only 12 and i was not ever that good at drawing dolfins but this time it felt easy and my family were amased so thanks. :)your drawing was gr8

great tutorial... 
great tutorial but what color should i make it??

It was hard becues it had way to much detail and it was soposed to be easy the reson is because itbhas very complecated curves and I surched up easy

cute dolphin 
dolphins are cute you all did a good job but can you put a jelly fish

the dolphin 
the first part is very easy. the second part is very hard. the third part is very harder. fourth part is very easy.

very good

thats cool u need a charcoal pencil for the first two pics and charcoal pencils can be hard to use but this is very helpful thanks so much!!!!!!!1

I tried 

yes i do liker this drawing who did it it looks good

wow that is so cool love it i love drawing them thank you so much

a bit hard 
i think that this dolphin was a bit hard to shape

i could not do it

geometric shapes =) 
i liked it, but you need to do the construction scheme you know? do the geometric shapes before and than do the artwork

I wasn't interested in art before had had a go. Now I love it. Thank you

this worked out get and my dolphin looks awesome

i think this page is really cool.


thanks so much for teaching me how to draw a dolphin. It was so easy! it was extremely helpful. 
thanks you very help me ;]

it is soooooo easy to draw i am 10 years old and drew it pretty good but yours is amazing. i drew the dolphin jumping in the sunset!!!!!!!!!

It took me forever to finally fine a website that would actually help me draw a dolphin!! Thank You! My dolphin came out amazing

Lottie Park 
This particular method of drawing is good for all levels of artists, from beginners to the highly advanced. I use this method all the time, and most of …

This is great 
I tried this drawing following all the didn't really work out at first but after drawing it a couple of times it actually looked like a dolphin …

Click here to write your own.

My Comments 
It took me a while but after half an hour, I got a masterpiece. What a great way to learn how to draw.

:) helpful 
This drawing was very helpful for a poster I did in school!! I loved it and how it was so easy to follow. The product turned out to be a pretty masterpiece. …

the dolphin is is is soooooo cute.

the dolphin is is is soooooo cute.


So Helpful! 
This is such an amazing drawing and I love that you go through the drawing process step-by-step; it makes it so much easier to follow! Thank you so much …

I thought it was gr8t 1st time drawing a dolphin and it was really easy at first I thought it isn't going to look right but my dolphins turned out ace …

i ? that they are AWSOME!

kylie thinks 
it was preety good but do beater then that dddddddooooooooollllllllppppppphhhhhhiiiinnnnn.

u guys shuld put more option in choosing which sketch people wanna do.......... i reli like the dolphin odea but i hope to see more sketch of realistic …

Dippy Dolphin 
I love this drawing! Its shaded so nicely!!!!!!!!


The Dolphin Looks So Realistic!

all i can say is omg this is great wow!!!

This was wonderful! I drew the best dolphin I have ever drawn before! Hey, your turn to shine!

Well, where do I start. This drawing is wonerfull, congrats to the artist, but this series of drawings really don't show or tell or even give away much …

Well, where do I start. This drawing is wonerfull, congrats to the artist, but this series of drawings really don't show or tell or even give away much …

jumping in the sunset 
this is a good website to show how to draw a dolphin

only da vinci can draw this dolphin! i hate it!

tayaabs answers 
i really like this drawing, because it has different shades in different corners. It was helpful, because if i want to become an artist i can use this …

it was helpful 
I thought it was very helpful. It showed me step by step of how to give texture to a drawing. I like that it did little by little. It really helped me. …

Click here to write your own.

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