Drawing a big cat can seem daunting, but with some basic guidance and patience, it can be an enjoyable experience. Whether it is a fierce lion or sleek panther, the key is to break down the process into manageable steps. Here, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to draw a big cat.

First, it’s important to gather the right materials. A sketchpad, pencils of different grades, eraser, and reference images of the specific big cat you want to draw will be needed. Once you have your materials ready, start by sketching out the basic shape of the cat’s body. Remember that big cats have a muscular and lean build, so the outline should reflect that. Don’t worry about details at this stage, focus on getting the proportions right. Once you have the outline, you can start adding shapes for the head, legs, and tail. The next step will be to add more details and shading to bring the drawing to life.


Drawing big cats can be an exciting and fun experience, especially if you love animals. Whether it’s a lion, tiger, or cheetah, the process of sketching out your favorite big cat is both challenging and rewarding. However, if you’re a beginner artist or someone who wants to improve their drawing skills, you may wonder how to draw big cats step by step. Worry not! We’ve got you covered with this comprehensive guide that explains everything you need to know in simple terms.

1. Understand big cat anatomy

Before you even start drawing a big cat, it’s essential to have a good understanding of their anatomy. From their skull structure to their muscular system, understanding the basics of big cat anatomy is necessary to get the proportions right. You can find plenty of resources online that provide a detailed breakdown of big cat anatomy, or you can research individual animals for more specific information.

2. Sketch basic shapes

Once you have a basic understanding of big cat anatomy, you can start sketching out basic shapes. For example, you can start with a circle for the head, an oval for the body, and simple lines for the limbs. Focus on getting the proportions right at this stage rather than adding too much detail.

3. Refine the shapes

After sketching out the basic shapes, you can refine them by adding more details. You can start adding curves for the muscles or defining the shape of the paws and claws. Remember to maintain the proportions you created in the previous step.

4. Define the features

Next, you can start defining the big cat’s features such as their eyes, nose, and ears. You can add more detail to the face, including the whiskers and fur texture. Take your time with this step and try to capture the essence of your chosen big cat.

5. Draw the mane

If you’re drawing a lion, cheetah or any cat with a mane, now is the time to add it to your drawing. Pay attention to the direction and shape of the mane, and again, take your time to create a realistic texture.

6. Shade the drawing

With the basic lines and shapes in place, you can start shading your drawing. Shading adds depth and dimension to your artwork. You can use different pencils or shading techniques to create a range of tones.

7. Add highlights

To make your big cat drawing pop, you can add highlights. This entails erasing parts of the shaded area to create a subtle effect of light falling on the animal. So, find the light source, and start removing some of the shading where the light would hit.

8. Add finishing touches

At this point, you’re almost done with your big cat drawing. However, it’s time for the finishing touches. You can add more detail to the fur, eyes, and other areas to give a natural look.

9. Practice, practice, practice

They say practice makes perfect, and when it comes to drawing big cats, that’s true. The more you draw, the better you become. Try drawing different poses, angles, and perspectives to improve your skills.

10. Share your artwork

Finally, share your artwork with others. You can post it on social media, art forums, or even join groups dedicated to big cat art. Sharing your artwork can motivate you to keep practicing and improve your skills.


Drawing big cats is a fun and rewarding experience that requires patience and practice. With the help of this guide, you can draw big cats step by step, starting from the basic shapes to adding the finishing touches. Remember to be patient, enjoy the process, and have fun!

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Section Two: Step-by-Step Guide on how to Draw a Big Cat

Are you ready to learn how to draw a big cat? In this section, we will provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to draw a big cat that is sure to impress. From the simple shapes to the finer details, we will cover everything you need to know. So grab a pencil and paper and let’s get started!

1. Start with Basic Shapes

The first step for any drawing is to start with basic shapes. For a big cat, you’ll want to start with a large circle for the head, a smaller circle for the snout, and a pear shape for the body. You can use straight lines to connect these shapes to create the base for your big cat.

2. Outline and Define the Features

Now that you have your basic shape, it’s time to outline and define the features of your big cat. Begin by drawing its eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. For the eyes, draw two almond shapes with smaller circles inside for the pupils. The ears should be pointed with some tufts of fur at the top. The nose should be triangle-shaped with two small nostrils. The mouth should be curved down with two fangs visible.

3. Add in the Fur Detailing

The next step is to add in the fur detailing. Start by drawing short, curved lines around the face and head to create the illusion of fur. Continue adding these lines down the body, making them longer and thicker as you go. Be sure to pay attention to the direction of the fur to ensure your big cat looks realistic.

4. Work on the Eyes and Mouth

Now that you have some fur detailing, it’s time to work on the eyes and mouth further. Add shading and depth to the eyes by adding in some lighter and darker tones using your pencil. Shade in the nose by making it darker towards the bottom. For the mouth, add in more detail to the fangs by making them longer and sharper.

5. Draw the Legs and Paws

It’s time to draw the legs and paws of your big cat. Start by drawing the front legs first, making them thicker at the top and thinning out towards the paws. Draw the paws with small, curved toes and add in some fur detailing on the pads. Then draw the back legs, making them thicker at the top with a curved shape, and thinning out towards the paws.

6. Add Detail to the Claws

Now that you have the legs and paws drawn, it’s time to add some detail to the claws. Use your pencil to add in some shading and depth to the claws, making them look sharp and realistic. Draw some markings on the toes to give them more detail and add some fur detailing around the ankles.

7. Create the Tail

It’s now time to draw the tail of your big cat. Draw a long, curved line for the base of the tail, and then add in some fur detailing towards the tip. Make the tail thicker at the base and thinner towards the end.

8. Finalize your Drawing

Now that you have all of the pieces in place, it’s time to finalize your drawing of a big cat. Erase any extra lines and smudges on your paper and refine any areas that may need some extra shading or detail. Take a step back and admire your big cat drawing!

9. Experiment with Different Media

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different media for your drawing. You can try using charcoal pencils, pastels, or even watercolors to give your big cat drawing a unique look and feel. Experimenting with new media can help take your drawing to the next level.

10. Practice Makes Perfect

The more you practice drawing big cats, the better you will become. Keep practicing and trying new techniques until you feel confident in your abilities. Remember, drawing is all about having fun and expressing your creativity. So don’t be too hard on yourself if you make mistakes – simply learn from them and keep drawing!

Materials Needed for Drawing a Big Cat

Drawing a big cat is not only a fun-filled activity but also an excellent way to sharpen your artistic skills. Before you start, it’s essential to gather all the materials required for this process. Here are the basic materials that you will need for your drawing:

Drawing paperProvides a smooth and even surface for drawing big cat sketches
Pencils (2H, HB, 2B, 4B, 6B)Individual pencils with varying degrees of hardness for sketching different areas of the big cat with varying texture
Eraser (kneaded and gum)Used for removing unwanted lines, smudges, and highlighting the required details
Blending stumpsMade up of tightly-rolled paper used for blending different pencil textures and gives the big cat sketch the right texture and depth
SharpenerUsed for sharpening the pencils to get a fine point for more delicate feature details

Now that we have the materials let’s begin with the steps that are required to draw a big cat:

Step 1: Reference picture

The first step in drawing a big cat is to find a good reference picture. Ensure to use large and clear images that show the big cat’s details. You can either take the picture yourself, or use free images available online. Your reference picture will serve as a guide when drawing.

Step 2: Drawing guidelines

Drawing guidelines is the most important thing when it comes to drawing any type of animal. Start by making loose shapes with the pencil that show the basic anatomy of the big cat. Draw a circle for an outline of the head, connecting the head to the body with a slender neck. Then lightly sketch the body of your big cat, making sure to properly proportion the width and length.

Step 3: Add features

Now that you have made the guidelines, add the big cat’s details, starting with its facial features such as its eyes, nose, ears, and mouth. Ensure you keep your strokes light and smooth to get the correct dimensions. Remember to add detail to the fur and body of your big cat, ensuring it’s proportioned with the right features.

Step 4: Refining the drawing

When you are satisfied with the overall shape and details of your big cat drawing, use darker pencils (4B or 6B) to refine and add depth to the big cat’s fur. Use the blending stumps in any direction that imitates real fur. Highlight the areas you want light to catch with a kneaded and gum eraser.

Step 5: Finishing touches

After completing the fourth step, use a kneaded eraser to remove any unwanted lines and give the final touches to the sketch. Make sure that the drawing looks well-rounded, with highlights and shadows in the right spots, giving it a realistic look. And finally you have your very own Big Cat sketch that’s perfect for a frame!

In conclusion, drawing a big cat may seem challenging at first, but with the right tools, guidance, and these five steps, you can create an impressive sketch! Remember to have fun and enjoy the artistic process of creating. Happy sketching!

A Big Thank You for Joining Us

We hope you enjoyed following along with these simple steps and have created a stunning big cat drawing to be proud of. Don’t forget to practice, practice, practice and show off your new skills to your family and friends! And remember, there are plenty of other exciting drawing tutorials and tips waiting for you here, so be sure to visit us again soon. Happy drawing!