How to Draw a Unicorn — A Step-by-Step Drawing Tutorial
There’s something truly whimsical about a cute baby unicorn jumping and dancing her way through her happy life! Join me in this exercise as you learn to draw with simple shapes and have fun along the way.
In this step-by-step drawing tutorial, you’ll learn how to draw a baby unicorn in two parts.
- First, you’ll begin by drawing some simple shapes. I’ll show you how to draw your shapes in the correctly proportioned sizes and positions by using a simple grid.
- To finish, you’ll have fun as you draw around the shapes adding curves and lines to complete the drawing’s detail.
You’ll be absolutely delighted as you watch your baby unicorn drawing come to life before your eyes!
Gather your art materials
- 1 piece of paper
- 1 metric ruler
- 1 standard eraser
- 1 pencil
- Optional: If you are printing the image provided, then you will also need a printer.
A step-by-step guide to drawing a baby unicorn
Now it’s time to get started!
Step 1: How to draw a basic grid
To begin, take your ruler and draw a large square measuring 18cm x 18cm.
Next, divide your square into 16 smaller squares at 4.5cm each by halving the square into quarters, then halving the quarters again.
Then write the letters A, B, C, and D on the left (or on the right side if you’re left-handed), followed by the numbers 1, 2, 3, and 4 along the top.
Now your grid is ready!
Tip: You can skip this step by simply printing out this image. The first shape from step 2 is already drawn in to get you started, and you can simply trace over the funky bean shape for extra practice.
Step 2: Draw a bean shape to create the body
Next, draw a funky, bean shape on an angle. It should travel through the squares in B2, B3, and C2, and C3. See the image above.
This bean shape is your baby unicorn’s little, chubby tummy.
Step 3: Draw a circle for the unicorn’s head
This time you will add a circle for the beginning of your baby unicorn’s head shape. It should be placed in A1, A2, B1, and B2. Carefully notice how the circle is more in some of the grid- squares than others. Can you tell how much more?
Tip: Did you notice that the circle is a little tiny bit away from the body? This will allow us to add a very short neck later on when we draw the outline around the shapes.
A baby unicorn’s short neck is all a part of its cuteness factor.
Step 4: Use rectangles to draw the front legs
Now we’ll draw your baby unicorn’s first leg. It’s just a rectangle. Can you see this rectangle has been drawn on a steep angle? It’s not completely vertical, or horizontal. Most of the rectangle is drawn into C1, and just a little bit of the rectangle is drawn into C2.
Then add another rectangle for the other front leg. Notice this rectangle is almost horizontal, but not quite. Can you see the slight angle? Or how the shape is drawn mostly in C1, with only a tiny bit in C2? Draw what you see in the image below.
Tip: Remember to ask yourself questions before you draw such as: Which grid-boxes contain the drawn rectangle? That way, you will have the best chance of getting your shapes drawn the correct size and in the right place.
Step 5: How to draw the curved back legs
Uh oh! This shape has a curve. Did you know it’s a bit trickier to draw curves than angles? Luckily this step-by-step tutorial will help you discover that there is an easy way to draw curves.
Let’s start by looking at where the curved line begins at grid-square C2. It’s over halfway down C2 and then extends slightly from the center vertical grid line bending towards the left.
Our curved line then crosses through the corner of the grid-squares and travels into D3.
Look where that big curve ends in D3. Compare its final position to all four sides of the D3 square. It certainly looks to be below halfway, doesn’t it?
These are the questions and discussions you must have with yourself while you draw within the grid method. Always think about where your drawn shape is within the grid-square compared to halfway along the sides or top and bottom of the grid-square.
Tip: The secret to drawing curves is to always draw one curve at a time. Let’s draw the curve on the left side of this shape first. Take very careful notice of the direction of the curve, and ask yourself where the curve begins.
Keep going, you’re doing great!
Now let’s move onto the next back leg. Use your brand new curve-drawing superpowers to finish this! Complete the shape by joining each set of parallel curved lines with a straight line to the top and bottom of the two legs.
Step 6: Add a small circle for the unicorn’s muzzle
With your new grid-method skills, you can draw a smaller circle for your baby unicorn’s muzzle. She has a cute little smile on her face, and you’ll be drawing that in later. For now, focus on getting this circle in the right place. Remember everything you have learned so far about size and position within the grid-squares.
Step 7: Shaping the unicorn’s head
Now you’re going to join the smaller circle and the larger circle by adding two curved lines. This will form the head shape into a giant, upside-down egg. Can you see the egg shape after you’ve added the two curves?
Step 8: Outline the unicorn’s ears and horn using triangles
Can you believe how far you’ve come? You’ve almost completed all the beautiful shapes that form the foundation of your drawing. Now you just need to add some triangles, two small ones for ears and then a larger, thinner triangle in between. That’s for the super special baby unicorn’s horn.
Have you noticed that the ear on the left is smaller than the ear on the right? That’s because when we draw things in perspective, we must draw them a bit smaller as they go back into the distance to make them look more realistic.
That’s it for the shapes! You’ve learned the basics of how to draw a unicorn!
Now that you’ve completed all the construction drawing shapes, you can enjoy a wonderful time drawing the outline around these shapes.
Step 9: Drawing the unicorn’s outline
To draw your outline, begin by noticing if a line or curve is drawn around the outside of our shapes or within them. Press softly because we still haven’t finished yet.
Tip: Make sure you don’t erase your shapes yet, we will need them when we add your unicorn ears, mane, tail, horn, and saddle with bridle in the next step.
Step 10: Adding the details and completing your Unicorn
Now, look at the outline drawing below. Your unicorn has ears, eyes, little nostrils, a horn, flowing mane and a saddle with a bridle too. What fun!
Can you still see all the shapes drawn lightly underneath? I hope you can. They’re all still there because they are valuable guides for you to follow. You can erase the shapes later, once you’ve finished your outline.
To complete your unicorn look carefully at the curves and angles. You can check to see which letter of the alphabet and which number box you are drawing in.
Notice if you are drawing the shape tiny, medium-sized, or large by checking to see if the shape stays in one of the boxes of the grid. Is it as big as halfway up the box or is it much less. What if it travels from one box into another and maybe even another again? That’s what the mane is doing. The little tip is in box B4.
I hope you had a fun time drawing this cute, little, baby unicorn. Now it’s a great idea to try this exercise again, but this time without the grid.
With enough practice, you’ll be drawing baby unicorns from memory in no time! Once you’ve mastered the unicorn, join us in learning how to draw a dog.
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