A pig cartoon drawing is easily recognizable with its fat round body and spiral tail. This guide will go through the simple steps to create a cartoon pig easily that have simple shading to make it stand out.
A neat trivia of a pig is that the thick neck limits a lot of movements of the head. That means that a pig can't look up at the sky and, therefore, most of the movement comes from swinging left, right, and down.
In all cartoon drawings, there is a line art that needs to be completed first. Aside from the visual style, this line art also does one important thing: it creates usable boundaries for quick selection of zones for quick coloring.
Therefore, take a moment to plan coloring zones mentally while drawing out the pig. It is a simple step to consider but will save a lot of time. It is also a good time to plan how the entire pig cartoon drawing will look in regards to altering the proportions.
All drawings will begin with a sketch to look at multiple variations of the animal. Cartoon drawings will benefit well with a larger head in relation to the body. As the pig has a large head already, increasing the size will not fundamentally alter the proportions that much.
As for the shapes, the head and body are sketched in with simple circles and ovals. This shape is also responsible for the snout. Draw it in accordingly on the front of the face and connect it to the rest of the head by turning it into a cylinder.
Other unique shapes to build up the animal are triangles for the ears, long rectangles for the limbs, and a signature spiral shape to quickly block in the tail. Details like the hooves, eyes, and nostril openings can be added in this step.
When most of the shapes are in place, clean up the sketch. Start with erasing juxtaposing lines caused by multiple shapes overlapping one another. Then, thicken up the outline to further define all the important anatomical parts.
After the sketch is done, a clean line art of the pig cartoon drawing can now be worked on. There are basic tools like the airbrush or the eraser tool to create the fine lines. The trick is to use brushes that have hard edges.
When cleaning up the lines, the objective of this line drawing is to split the body in separated zones (as mentioned before). For the head, the inner ears will have its own zone separated from the outer rim of the ears. This applies to the snout as well.
One important factor to keep in mind is the types of lines available. A pig is not truly naked and will have short hair all over its body. On a cartoon, it's not necessary to draw hair. However, jagged lines around the selected areas like the inner ears will help convey these short hairs.
The toes will have its own unique zones centered on the hooves whereas the background limbs will have its own zones separated by the belly. The final area will be the line that separated the tail from the rest of the rear.
The initial coloring step is very easy and straight forward. Using the magic wand tool, select the zone outside of the pig cartoon line art to lasso everything outside of the pig's shape in one click.
On the ribbon, go to Select > Inverse to literally reverse the lassoed void area into the shape of the pig. With this selection still active, create a new layer and then go to Edit > Fill to fill in the entire shape of the pig with a pink color.
If the initial selection of the area is not working whereby the tool is not selecting the shape properly, double check the line drawing. There are 'holes' in the line drawing that will need to be patched up.
Aside from the pink body, repeat this step with other zones like the inner ear, snout, and hooves. The inner ear and snout can be filled in with a deeper pink while the hooves can be filled in with a bright brown color.
While having just the flat colors are often enough to finish the cartoon, texturing in the background colors will have more visual impact. The textures can be done directly on this background layer.
To get the most control out of coloring, lock the layer down first as it is a prerequisite step needed to contain the textures within the pig cartoon drawing lines. Only unlock the layer if there is a reason to change the entire shape of the object.
The initial texturing will be to add in shadows under the belly, the chin, parts of the legs, and other applicable areas. This is to create some muscle tone to identify major anatomical areas. Use the chalk brush for this step.
After that, switch over to a very large soft round brush. Use the surface area of the brush to blend in the colors as well as to lighten up some of the areas on the back, forehead, and the side belly areas.
The final step would be to add in a faint outline. This outline is called a rim light, which is often used to show that light is bouncing off a surface and back onto the animal. A Photoshop layer style called 'Inner glow' can quickly make one. However, areas that it can't touch will have to be painted in manually.
Any fine tuning can be done user adjustment layers. For example, a gradient adjustment layer will further smoothen out the colors on a global scale without touching the original art. It is just one of many ways to finish the pig cartoon drawing!