How To Draw a Butterfly

Time to recreate one of nature's most spectacularlly-coloured animals on the planet... it's the butterfly. Sketching this insect is pure joy if you appreciate the wonders of nature. When learning to draw a butterfly there are only two rules to know: there's no such thing as perfection so be as unique as you like; and have fun! Follow Quickdraw's butterfly illustration guide and video tutorial below.

Art materials needed:

A plain sketchpad to draw on, a sharp pencil to draw with, an eraser to rub out messy lines, a black marker pen to go over pencil lines, and a bunch of colouring pencils or felt tip pens to add a splash of colour!

  • Ok, where to begin. 

    How about with our butterfly’s head? Which is going to be a small circle.

  • Now for some facial features: two wide eyes and a half-moon smile. 

    Oh, don’t forget those nostril holes too. 

    Here come the antennas. Butterflies have two of these on their head to sense what’s around them in their environment. 

    They can be straight or curly, like this. 

  • How about some wings? 

    Butterflies’ wings come in all shapes and sizes. For this drawing we can keep it simple. Here are some ways you can do this. 

    Option 1: Draw out the capital letter B. 

    Option 2: You can also have an upside down capital B. 

    Option 3: Or a funky looking B. 

    Option 4: The capital letter D. 

    Now the trick here is, once you’ve drawn the right wing you need to do the same shape facing the other direction for the left wing. You could say that it’s a back-to-front letter B. 

    It’s starting to come alive now. 

    You can even add a frilly outside layer like this if you like. 

  • And onto the insides. This is where you can really let your creative instincts fly. Go with any shapes or patterns you feel will make your butterfly look incredibly beautiful and breathtaking. 

    If you’re stuck for pattern ideas, how about some of these awesome suggestions: small and large circles, hearts, diamonds, swirls, checks, dots, stripes, crosses. 

    Oh boy, the list is endless. 

    And if you can, try to keep the pattern symmetrical - this means whatever pattern you have on one wing looks the same on the other wing. 

  • Alrighty, the next step in creating this work of art is taking our black marker pen and tracing over the pencil lines. 

    We want to make these lines stand out nice and clean, and it;’s going to look great against the bright colours you use later on. 

    Guys, it’s all plain sailing from here. Just gently and relaxing inking and colouring. So great to see your butterfly drawing coming to life! 

    And before we get colouring, just a quick once over with our faithful eraser. 

    To get rid of all those pencil lines underneath. 

  • Step 3: Colouring in

    Great work, now go crazy with colour. You can colour in your butterfly artwork any shade you like. The brighter and wacker, the better! 

    We are using a bunch of different colours for this butterfly - beige for the head and body; black for the very outer layer of its wings; and then a pick and mix of oranges, blues, greens, yellows, and more for the individual shapes on each wing. 

    Ok, so whilst we colour how about 5 super useful butterfly facts to share with your friends and family? 

    Did you know that, butterflies can’t fly if they’re cold

    Butterflies taste with their feet 

    Butterflies don’t actually eat anything

    It’s really easy to attract butterflies to your garden 

    And 5. Butterflies don't actually sleep. Instead they rest. 

    How about that? 

    Now we’re almost done learning how to draw a butterfly. Congratulate yourself on such a fantastic job! 

    Don’t forget to tell all of your friends about learning how to draw with Quickdraw - and see you next time!