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How to Draw Manga Eyes

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


Here are some tips for drawing the manga eye. We're going to concentrate on the pupils, making them shiny, that glisteny look where the shines are. Here's your basic kimono type manga girl. As you can see, the eyes are arched here, the eyelashes brushed back to the sides. The upper eyelid is always thicker than the lower eyelid.

Now we'll focus on the pupil, that place where it's all glisteny and everything. It makes manga eyes famous. One thing that's important to keep in mind is that the light hits both pupils from the same direction. You see, the light is coming from here. We can tell that because the shine is here. It's like this. But you wouldn't want to put this shine over here, because that would mean the light would be coming this way. It comes this way for both sets of eyes.

So, we start off with the biggest shine. We're going to make it round like this. The reason it's a little round rather than square or just circular is because the eye is round. So, it's actually going around the eye. See that? Going around the eye. Then we add another shine which is often, you could do any shine you want but this is a classic way of doing it, diagonally to the first shine. This is the major one right here. This is a smaller one. Then, sometimes, you can add a third one which is the minor one. That can be a little circle, just a little circle of light.

Now we fill in around these areas. Be careful not to go over it. This is how to do a shine with one tone, one basic tone. If you erase something, like so, and you think it leaves a mark - like it has here - you can always use correcting white paint which is what I did. Just add it right here, and this will not show up when you scan. It will just look white even in large size. Just like that. Then, once it dries you can go mottle it again with your pencil. Go back over it and get all the edges to look right, like so. If you want you can just add a little bit of color here, or shading, just over the eyelids.

That's how you do a manga eye.

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