How to Draw a Duck Step by Step

This tutorial shows how to draw a cartoon duck sitting on water in six steps. It includes basic drawing and coloring examples along with simple explanations.

Duck drawing step by step
Duck drawing step by step

Drawing a duck like the one in this example is fairly easy. As it’s being viewed from the side you only need to add one eye and one wing. Also as the duck is floating on water you don’t need to worry about drawing the feet at all.

Start the tutorial using a pencil and make thin and light lines as you will need to erase small parts of the drawing in some of the step. You can darken the line after you are almost finished.

Step 1 – Draw the Outline of the Duck’s Head & Body

Duck body outline drawing
Duck body outline drawing

Begin by making an outline drawing of the duck’s head and body without any of the smaller details. The head should be somewhat round towards the top transitioning into the slightly narrower neck. Draw the body with smooth curves but make it slightly flatter at the very bottom as part of it will be submerged in water. You can also draw a small hint of the feathers to show the tail.

Step 2 – Draw the Beak

Duck bill drawing
Duck bill drawing

Add the bill towards the lower part of the front of the head. You can erase the tiny portion of the head outline where the beak is attached.

Also be sure to draw the top part of the bill larger and slightly longer than the bottom.

Step 3 – Draw the Wing

Duck wing drawing
Duck wing drawing

In the middle/top of the body draw the wing with some clumps on it’s end (similar to the tail) to give a hint of the feathers.

Erase the part of the body outline overlapped by the feathers.

Step 4 – Draw the Eye & Nostril

Duck eye drawing
Duck eye drawing

Towards the bottom/front side of the head (near the bill) draw the eye. As this is a cartoon looking duck make the eye quite large shaped somewhat like an oval but with an almost flat bottom.

Inside the eye draw the iris shapes almost exactly like the outline of the eye but smaller. Also inside the eye overlapping the iris draw a small oval highlight (light reflecting from the eye).

As this is a cartoon duck you can also add a hint of an eyebrow above the eye with a tiny curve.

Finally also add a small oval shaped nostril to the upper part of the beak (close to the head).

Step 5 – Draw the Feather Pattern & Water

Duck line drawing
Duck line drawing

To finish the line drawing add some water ripples around the duck to show that it’s floating and afterwards draw the pattern of it’s feathers.

Draw the water ripples as though they are sort of “wrapping around” the duck.

For the feather pattern you can add a little band like part around the neck along with a curve along the bottom chest area.

Once done go over your drawing with darker pencil lines, a black pen or marker.

Step 6 – Color the Duck

Duck drawing
Duck drawing

To color the duck you can use paints, colored pencils, makers or a combination of any of them.

Color each area as follows:

  • Bill – orange
  • Eye – dark brown
  • Head – green
  • Neck band – white
  • Chest – dark brown
  • Wing – light brown
  • Body – grey

If you are coloring the whole drawing with markers you may not have a light/dark brown option so you can simply use the one you have for everything.

Conclusion

It’s fairly easy to draw a duck from the side view, especially a simplified cartoon looking duck like the one in this tutorial.

For more simple tutorial on drawing birds also see: