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  1. Design & Illustration
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Design

How to Draw a Rabbit Step by Step

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Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

In this short tutorial, we’ll draw a cute bunny from scratch. To be precise, we’ll observe several parts of a rabbit's body that often cause questions: the nose, eyes, ears, and a fluffy tail in the front and side view.

For this project, we’ll use just a couple of graphite pencils. The foreshortening of the drawing is relatively complicated, but it’s even more interesting from the creative standpoint. Our process will be as quick and simple as possible!

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What You Will Need

To complete this project, you’ll need the following equipment:

  • an HB graphite pencil
  • a 3B graphite pencil
  • an eraser
  • a sheet of drawing paper
The art supplies for this project

1. How to Draw a Rabbit's Nose

Step 1

I start with a rough shape of the rabbit’s head, using the HB graphite pencil.

Drawing the shape of the head

Step 2

I construct the central part of the face. According to the foreshortening, only one side is fully visible to the viewer.

Designing the central part of the face

Step 3

I draw a triangular figure of the nose in the bottom part of the long central shape.

Adding the shape of the nose

Step 4

I mark the contours of the muzzle (without the lower jaw).

Working on the muzzle

Step 5

I add the shape of the lower jaw and refine the contours of the muzzle.

Adding the lower jaw

I also add the whiskers with long pencil lines. The whiskers may have slightly different directions.

Drawing the whiskers

Step 6

In the image below, you can see a stylized example of the rabbit's nose and muzzle.

The look of a bunny's nose may change because of the ability to close ("wiggling"). For the sake of our project, let’s agree that we have a narrow shape with a prominent central part.

A stylized illustration of rabbit nose and muzzle

I accentuate the shadows under the nose and emphasize its central part.

Accenting the nose

2. How to Draw a Rabbit's Eyes

Step 1

I draw a rounded shape for the bunny’s eye.

Sketching the shape of the eye

Step 2

I make the shape more elongated, and then add the inner corner of the eye.

Refining the eye

Step 3

I add the shapes of the highlights, just to be sure that I won’t cover them with the graphite strokes later.

Adding the highlights

Step 4

To create a credible eye, I’m going to darken the pupil and the inner contour of the eye, leaving the highlights almost white.

The eyes of a rabbit are usually dark, so the pupils aren't clearly visible, especially from a distance. The fur around the eye may resemble eyelashes; you can use it as a tool to add cuteness and expressiveness to your animal character.

An illustration of the rabbit eye

With the 3B graphite pencil, I darken the eyes, leaving the highlight and the rounded shape of the reflex.

Don’t overdo the drawing at this step; it’s better to add tone gradually.

Adding the shadows to the eye

Step 5

I apply more graphite strokes to the eye, using the 3B pencil.

The goal is to make the eye contrasting; try to emphasize its three-dimensionality with rounded hatches that repeat the contours of the eye.

Completing the eye

3. How to Draw a Rabbit's Ears

Step 1

With the HB pencil, I add two long shapes to the top of the bunny’s head. The shapes get wider as they go upwards and have rounded tips.

The ears can move independently, so we can choose a slightly different direction or look for each ear.

Drawing the rough shapes of the ears

Step 2

I draw the opening of the ear that is closer to the viewer. We can’t see the opening of the second ear due to its foreshortening.

I also refine the contour of the front ear, accentuating its irregular shape.

Adding the opening to the ear

Step 3

I darken the inner part of the ear to give it more volume, and then cover the object with long hatches that imitate fur.

The upper part of the ears may look semitransparent—the skin here is thin and transmits light. To accentuate this feature, avoid making the ears too dark.

I also add a light pattern of veins to the inner part of the ear.

Darkening the inner part of the ear

I add the graphite strokes to the other ear, applying the heavier hatching to its sides to accentuate the three-dimensional look.

I also add some strokes to the forehead of the bunny and darken the eye area.

Working on the second ear

Step 4

I add another layer of hatching to the head and the neck of the rabbit. Long lines are great for imitating fluffy fur.

I accentuate the sides of the head, using the 3B pencil. More hatches there give the drawing more volume and tonal harmony.

Completing the rabbits head

4. How to Draw a Rabbit's Tail

Step 1

The foreshortening of the rabbit that we were drawing in the previous sections didn’t allow us to see its tail. But this part of the rabbit’s body is also fascinating from the artistic standpoint. Let’s explore the ways to draw a tail both in the front and side view!

I mark the back of the bunny with a long pencil line.

Drawing the reference line for the animals back

I draw the directional line of the tail and encircle it with an egg-shaped contour. This contour is a rough border of the tail.

Adding the shape of the tail

Step 2

I erase the reference lines and add long hatches to the right side of the shape. The goal is to get an imitation of fur, so we don’t need any rigid contours.

Sketching the fur

Step 3

I work on the inner side of the tail; it usually is adjacent to the rabbit’s back. This part is generally darker than the external side; the only exceptions are rabbits with white fur all over them.

I accentuate the small gaps between the fur strands to make the tail more realistic.

Darkening the inner side of the tail

Step 4

In the same manner, I create the texture of fur on the external side of the tail.

By the way, there is an assumption that this contrasting, light coloring of the rabbit tail is a natural trick. When a predator is chasing a rabbit, it focuses on the bright spot of the tail. If the rabbit suddenly dodges, its pursuer will lose sight of this spot. Those moments of regaining focus can save the rabbit’s life!

Working on the lighter side of the tail

Step 5

Let’s draw the tail in the front view. I draw the directional line of the tail, and then surround it with an egg-shaped contour.

Drawing the initial shape of the tail

Step 6

I draw long, organic lines that imitate fur, covering the perimeter of the shape.

Adding the long curved lines

Step 7

I draw more lines, filling the whole shape of the tail.

Creating the texture of the tail

Step 8

I accentuate the gaps between the fur strands and darken the sides of the tail.

Here we see the external side of the rabbit’s tail; it usually is white, so it’s important not to overdo the drawing.

Completing the tail

Your Drawing Is Complete

Well done! The difficult part is over; now you can complete the drawing to your liking.

I’ve placed my bunny into a natural environment—it will be happy in the company of flowers and butterflies for sure!

I wish you inspiration and luck with your future projects! 

The result
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