Please PAUSE the video after each step to draw at your own pace.
For the first few steps, don't press down too hard with your pencil. Use light, smooth strokes to begin.
Step 1: Draw two circles as guides for the capybara's body. The circles don't have to be perfect. They're just guides. The hind part of the capybara is bigger than the front, so draw the circle on the right almost twice as big. The edges of the two circles should graze each other slightly.
Step 2: Draw a circle about one-fourth the size of the first circle on the upper left side as a guide for the capybara's head. Don't place the circle too high, otherwise the capybara will end up with a long neck.
Step 3: Draw an arc on the left side of the head as a guide for the capybara's muzzle.
Step 4: Draw a small arc on top of the head as guides for the capybara's ears.
Step 6: Draw two lines under the capybara's body (one below each circle) as guides for the legs. Bend the lines a bit to indicate where the joints in the legs are.
That's it for the initial sketch! From this point on, press harder with your pencil to get a more defined sketch.
Step 7: Draw the eye inside the small circle on the top part. First lightly draw a shape similar to a football, then darken the shape using thicker lines. Shade the inside of the shape except for a tiny spot to represent glare. Draw a few lines around the eye for extra detail. Draw longer lines above the eye for the half-closed eyelids.
Step 8: Use the big arc on the left as a guide to draw the muzzle. Capybaras' muzzles are somewhat square-shaped, so draw the front part kind of flat. Use quick, short strokes near the bottom to form the mouth and add a small line under the mouth for the chin.
Step 9: Draw a small oval near the tip of the muzzle and shade it in for the nose. Add a few quick, short strokes to the right of the nose for the fur around the muzzle.
Step 10: Use the small arc on the capybara's head as a guide to draw the ears. Bend the shape of the ear a bit as you darken the lines. Add a few quick, short strokes inside the ear for fur. Draw a curved line on the left for the tip of the ear on the other side.
Step 11: Use the original circle as a guide to draw the rest of the capybara's head. Draw the head using quick, short strokes as you follow the basic path of the circle.
Step 12: Use the line on the left as a guide to draw the capybara's front feet. Lightly sketch the shape of the leg as you follow the path of the line. When you get the structure of the leg right, darken the lines. Capybaras have four toes in front, but only draw the visible three using a series of curved lines. Draw the nails at the tips. Draw the foot on the other side using the same technique. Most of it is hiding behind the first leg, so only draw the front portion.
Step 13: Use the line on the right as a guide to draw the capybara's hind legs the same way. Remember to sketch lightly as you follow the path of the guide and only darken the lines when you have the structure right. The top part of the hind legs is thicker and gets thinner toward the bottom. Use quick, short strokes to represent the fur. Capybaras have three toes on their hind legs. Draw them using a series of curved lines and draw the nails at the tips. Draw the hind leg on the other side as well. Only draw the front part of it because most of it is behind the first leg.
Step 14: Use the remaining lines as guides to draw the rest of the capybara's body.
Step 15 (optional): You can stop here for a sketchy look or erase as much as you can of the initial guide lines for a cleaner look. Don't worry about erasing all of the guides. It's okay to leave some behind. Also re-draw any final sketch lines that you may have accidentally erased.
Step 16 (optional): Add some shading to your capybara drawing to give it more dimension and volume. Pick the direction of the light source when shading so that the shadows are consistent with it. Vary the pressure on your pencil to get different degrees of tonal value.
Step 17 (optional): Add a cast shadow underneath. This helps ground the capybara so it doesn't appear to be floating.
Step 18 (optional): You can add more value throughout your capybara drawing for extra detail. Add the value by using strokes that go in the general direction of the capybara's fur. Don't add the value too smoothly. Capybaras have coarse fur, so add some texture to your value. It's always a good idea to use reference for accuracy. Don't forget to pause the video to draw at your own pace.
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