Illustrator Shares Step-By-Step Process to Create a Realistic Drawing of an Octopus

Realistic Octopus Drawing

Capturing an animal's likeness in realistic drawings is an enviable skill. For those that want to create their own renderings of different creatures, it may even feel daunting. Fortunately, there are talented artists who share their tips and tricks on how to draw an animal with three-dimensional depth. Japanese artist Yuki Tokuda shares his step-by-step process on how to create a realistic illustration of an octopus.

His stunning drawing of a gray cephalopod glistens with life, as though it just crawled out of the water. Tokuda shared images of his complete process on the Japanese site LINE BLOG, including what materials he used to create the illustration. He begins by drawing a sketch of the octopus with a pale gray colored pencil. Then, the artist fills in the outline with a gray Copic marker—giving it a slightly watery texture.

Next, Tokuda retrieves the same gray colored pencil and begins adding texture and shading to the octopus. He mixes in a few other darker gray pencils to add depth to the finer details of the drawing. Afterward, the artist goes over the octopus in Copic marker to blend the layers of colored pencils and give it a watercolor-like appearance. Finally, Tokuda adds spots of opaque white paint on the octopus so that it completes the wet and shiny look.

Scroll down to see how Tokuda draws this stunning octopus from start to finish, and follow the artist on Instagram and Twitter to keep up to date with his latest creations.

Japanese artist Yuki Tokuda shares his step-by-step process on how to create a realistic octopus illustration. He begins by making an initial sketch of the octopus in gray colored pencil.

Octopus Drawing Outline

Then, he fills in the outline using a gray Copic marker.

Realistic Octopus Drawing by Yukito Kuda

He goes over the drawing again with colored pencils, adding details to the octopus's skin.

Octopus Drawing by Yukito KudaOctopus Drawing by Yukito KudaRealistic Octopus DrawingDrawing an OctopusOctopus Drawing by Yukito KudaDrawing an OctopusOctopus Drawing by Yukito KudaOctopus Drawing by Yukito KudaOctopus Drawing by Yukito Kuda

Finally, Tekuda applies opaque white paint to the drawing to give the octopus a wet and shiny appearance.

Octopus Drawing by Yukito KudaOctopus Drawing DetailRealistic Octopus DrawingOctopus Drawing by Yukito Kuda

And here's the final image:

Octopus Drawing by Yukito KudaYuki Tokuda: Website | Instagram | Twitter | LINE

All images via Yuki Tokuda.

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Margherita Cole

Margherita Cole is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met and illustrator based in Southern California. She holds a BA in Art History with a minor in Studio Art from Wofford College, and an MA in Illustration: Authorial Practice from Falmouth University in the UK. She wrote and illustrated an instructional art book about how to draw cartoons titled 'Cartooning Made Easy: Circle, Triangle, Square' that was published by Walter Foster in 2022.
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