How To Draw A Fish

You may have been trying to figure out how to draw a fish and feel a little puzzled. Generally, fish really looks very simple, yet many people experience some difficulties while drawing a fish.


It also depends what kind of fish you want to draw. It is totally different to draw a shark or common carp than drawing a tropical fish.

If you are still unsure, I would recommend to play first with simple cartoon fish drawing because there you are free to create any shape or even new species.

Yet almost every fish as we all perceive it has a long spindle-shaped body (fuselage), usually covered by scales and, has a couple of fins.

The first example, is a very simple and easy fish drawing, almost cartoonish, which you can accomplish in less 2 minutes.

If you learn and memorize this simple example you can make a quick sketches or illustrations into your memos or draw such fish on the postcard. In any case this is a good exercise to learn how to draw a fish from a scratch.

Draw two slightly curved lines intersecting near the end, as you see on the picture. Follow the arrows and the drawing will be easier. Now, body of the fish is almost ready.

Connect the first two lines on the tail and draw a half circle, which will be the gill opening.

Add the fins as you see on the picture. You can play with the shape and size as you wish. Make some on a separate paper also, because such exercise will greatly contribute to your fish drawings. Do not forget to draw the mouth and the eye!

Hold your pencil tilted and shade the body gently and gradually. Notice that the fish is always darker on the top and the belly is of very light color. Make some pencil strokes on every fin so that the fins will look more like fins. Please keep the direction of the strokes as seen on the picture.

You can slightly mark the scales on the body of the fish by gentle crossing pencil strokes.

Good, now you know the basic technique of how to draw a fish - a simple one.

Let's Learn How To Draw A Fish


click the image to enlarge




The second example is a little more realistic and may take a little more time to finish than the previous one, but it is definitely worth of trying.

To learn and memorize this way of drawing may come handy when you would like to draw a fish from a photo or maybe a real one.

First, enlarge the above image (print out if necessary) and observe it for a while.

click the image to enlarge

This initial sketch resembles to a kind of deformed banana. If you observed well enough the previous drawing, you’ll notice that it is the outline of the fish, the contours of the fish.

In order to capture the outline as exact as possible I would recommend holding the pencil tilted and, as close as possible to the graphite.

You will feel more confidence and your first pencil strokes will be very accurate. Notice that the top back of the fish is rather flat and the belly is round.

click the image to enlarge

Draw the fins, the mouth and the gill opening. Do it still with tilted pencil if possible.

click the image to enlarge

Now, you can gradually start erasing the excess pencil lines. Since the initial lines were drawn wider it is easier and less painful to match the real shape and body proportion of the fish.

Draw the eye, only a weak single circle. Do it by very weak pencil line. Remember; when you draw a fish it is important where you position the eyes.

Draw a line on the upper third of the fish’s body. This line is a part of the pattern of this fish’s back.

click the image to enlarge

You can now complete the eye. Mark out the slits in lower part of the gills and specify shape of the mouth with short teeth.

click the image to enlarge

It is time to shade the body. Use tilted hold of the pencil so that the shading lines will be wider and seamless, at least in the beginning. You can make additional pencil strokes later.

When you draw a fish the point is to shade the body properly and make it more 3-dimensional.

Draw straight pencil strokes across the length of every fin. Before doing so, observe the ready picture again. Every detail counts!

click the image to enlarge

Blackish dots in upper part are the most important in the pattern on fish’s back. Notice that these dots literally determine the outlook of the fish. Line up the dots in about 3 rows.

By weak and quick pencil cross strokes mark out the scales on the body.

click the image to enlarge

Put some final touch on the fins and erase excess lines. Finish the shading, add more where you feel necessary and your fish drawing is ready.


Some Interesting Drawings


See Visitor's Newest Drawings

  1. Absalon new hero

    Feb 04, 16 05:09 AM

    The new hero of gear city.

    See The Drawing

  2. Absalon

    Feb 04, 16 05:08 AM

    the story of a boy looking for reception. Note im not falling down with the first chapter

    See The Drawing

  3. My first flower drawing

    Feb 04, 16 04:52 AM

    I was board in ELA(english language arts) when a pic came to me...after a couple of minutes my work was done :) You should make a superhero section;

    See The Drawing

  4. First Manga Drawing

    Jan 31, 16 08:23 PM

    Well i've been watching Anime and reading manga since i was young and always secretly wanted to be a mangaka, so recently i decided to learn how to draw.

    See The Drawing

  5. My drawing and the real one

    Jan 26, 16 12:54 AM

    As i was browsing i saw Nagi's pic so felt like drawing and took my pencil and started to draw..it came out nice!!!!!

    See The Drawing

  6. my imagination anime character

    Jan 26, 16 12:52 AM

    though i've drawn many anime pictures..this is my first time uploading a picture so im quite nervous.............

    See The Drawing

  7. The prince who is not a prince

    Jan 26, 16 12:34 AM

    Kyouta a prince of stetolia kingdom lives a normal high school life at konotsuki high school but not as normal as it seems, after all he is a prince...one

    See The Drawing

  8. thought and drew

    Jan 26, 16 12:19 AM

    i was just making different hairstyles ......i came up wit this one and felt like it would be good on anime character so i drew and it really turn out

    See The Drawing

  9. My Crying Anime Boy

    Jan 25, 16 11:52 PM

    It's a anime boy that's crying because he has severe depression and social anxiety. This anime boy is my friend Alex that passed away on August the 10th

    See The Drawing

  10. pencil portrait

    Jan 25, 16 06:48 AM

    Finally got to draw a quick pencil drawing. I think this one will soon have a poem to go with it.It's my first drawing of 2016, looking forward to many

    See The Drawing

Return From How To Draw A Fish To Home Page