How to Draw a Manga Girl

Learn how to draw a manga girl from art instructor Chris Hart in this Howcast video.

Here are some tips in drawing a Manga girl. Now, this Manga girl is in the Shojo genre, which means it’s kind of cute and perky and she happens to be a cat girl, which is a popular style, popular kind of character. So I’m going to give you some tips that I think will be helpful for you in learning how to draw the Manga girl.

Start with our construction. This is how she’s built. This is the construction that holds everything together. We have a solid head shape, we have the hair on top, and you give room, volume for the hair. Notice that the side of the head is very curvy on a girl. It’s a very appealing look.

Now, we’re going to give her an expression that is very popular in Manga, which is looking at the rear and winking. That’s a fun, playful expression for a girl, and especially cat girls. So what we’re going to do is start up high and go low. See, some people think that a wink goes like this, like an upside down U. Not exactly. It starts up high, like here, at the edge of the face, and then goes like this, very sharply down.

We’ll add some eye lashes and they brush back. They don’t go straight out they brush back. Then we add the eyebrow, but that’s not the same as the other eyebrow. This one is kind of pushing down; it’s kind of crunching the eye. So we’ll push it down a little bit like that.

And now we want to give her a gleaming smile. How do you do that? A gleaming smile. Well, what you do is first, this line right here goes down not up. You think a smile goes up but not down. You see, the top lip is stretched over the teeth so it goes down. So most of the smile, the real expression has to happen in the bottom lip, like this. Now, we’re going to leave this open, this area. And see, by leaving this open it makes it look like there’s a sheen, kind of like it’s glistening. Kind of bright.

Now, to give her some depth, instead of having all the hair in front of the girl, we’re going to add a layer behind her too. So we’ll take a strand of hair, kind of a nice, delicate strand of hair, and add it here. Then we’ll fill it out and thicken it with a few more strands. This is a popular look in Manga. Notice that it’s curving. It;s not straight.

And then we’re going to fill in the eye. We’re going to blacken it here. And this little part here is the pupil area and it’s connected to this big shine. Then we can also leave another shine down here, which we will outline more thickly, and then sort of lightly fill in the other areas so that it has two different tones. See?

Give it a little bit of a shadow under the lip. And this will be striped because she’s a Manga girl. Give her little zebra stripes, tiger stripes and shade the interior of it.

So as you can see, we come up with a Manga girl.