Learn to Draw Conan The Barbarian in 7 Easy Steps

In Art, Artists, Tutorials by Toni Justamante Jacobs

Hi art lovers. So we would consent that when it comes to books, movies, and comics, the Conan The Barbarian saga has some of the coolest action books in the whole fantasy genre. The protagonist of these books, Conan, has become an iconic figure in the fantasy world.

So, for this tutorial, we would be stepping into the universe created by Robert E. Howard to draw none other than Conan The Barbarian in 7 easy steps. Each of these steps should be followed strictly if you hope to get the best results. Before we get on with it, you should know that we would first sketch out a dummy. This is to serve as a base upon which we would create a flawlessly detailed final sketch.

For each step, I would be providing you with the necessary tips and tricks so you can have the best results. Now that we’ve laid that out, let’s go on to put together a masterpiece. Ready?! Let’s draw ourselves a stunner!.

STEP 1: DRAWING THE TORSO 

Our character rib cage would be drawn using the 3/4 drawing scale. This simply means that the left side facing the viewers would be bigger than the right side of the torso. Also, you should note that our character is well-built. So, using the above image as a guide, he should be drawn with broad shoulders and chest and a small waistline. Going on, Conan’s rib cage should be divided into 2 horizontal curved lines. The first should connect from shoulder to shoulder and the second should run directly beneath his chest.

Next, you should draw 2 vertical arches connecting the sides of the top line with the corresponding side right below. Once the main shape of the rib cage is drawn you should draw some lines inside to divide the different planes. The first curve line will be the one separating the front chest from the side of the rib cage. The next one will be the one dividing the chest, separating the two pectoral muscles.

For the abdomen, you should draw two pretty short vertical lines that extend down from the rib cage. Then an outwardly curved horizontal line should connect those vertical lines. For the hips, you should draw them to take the form of a man’s underpants as depicted in the image. This is where the legs of our character would emerge.

STEP 2: DRAWING THE LEGS

Our Conan would be drawn on his feet with his legs slightly apart. Also, remember to use the 3/4 perspective. That said, from the base created for the legs, start off each leg as though drawing a big tube. The leg should reduce gradually as you get to the knee region. From there, extend them out again and gradually reduce their size as they get to the ankles. Then draw the feet as seen in the image.

Lastly, refer to the picture and outline the knees by drawing two horizontal lines on the knee region of each leg. In the middle of the lines, draw an elipse to depict the knee caps.

STEP 3: DRAWING THE ARMS 

The arms would be drawn using the 3/4 perspective. This means that the left arm would be way more visible than the right arm. Emerging from the shoulders, the arms would take the form of a tube and it should gradually reduce as it gets to the dividing line between the upper arm and the lower arm( the elbow). They should then extend out again and gradually get slimmer as they get to the wrist.

You can then draw the hands and fingers, like clenched fists, as seen in the above image. Check how the hand on the left is drawn with the thumb hidden by what in the next steps will be the bulk of the handle and guard of Conan´s sword. The right hand on the left will be drawn with the index finger and the thumb facing the viewer, and the rest of the fingers only partially visible.

STEP 4: DRAWING THE HEAD

From the base created for the head, two short vertical lines should be drawn. This should serve as Conan´s neck. Having drawn that, our character’s head will be drawn in the form of a medium-sized oval that sits on the neck and would be drawn frontally and from a slightly down view. The head should then be divided by a vertical line and a horizontal line that intersects in the middle( forming a cross).

If you are interested in developing your anatomy drawing skills and learn how to draw characters digitally, you should check my drawing video course. You can find more information clicking the image below:

STEP 5: DRAWING THE WEAPONS

At this stage, the main shapes of our character’s weapons would be sketched out. The right hand will be holding an axe. This axe should be quite easy to draw if you first draw it using simple shares as I did in my drawing.

The left hand will be holding Conan´s sword. The pommel of the sword will be drawn as a small circular shape. The guard will be drawn as a curved shape. The blade of the sword will be drawn as you see in the image above.

STEP 6: DRAWING THE HAIR AND CLOTHES

Conan´s clothes are quite easy to draw. On the arms, Conan´s wears two bracelets, one larger than the other. The one of the left forearm should cover from the wrist to almost the elbow. The one on the right arm will be shorter, with a gem in the center.

Conan also wears high boots that cover the shins almost completely. The top part of the boots will be decorated with animal fur and the whole boot will we tight with leather straps around the shins.

Another clothing piece that is quite emblematic is the loincloth Conan wears. You should draw it like an inverted triangle, with the borders torn and worn. Around the waist and holding the loincloth Conan wears a big leather belt.

Finally, regarding Conan´s hair, you should draw it long and a little bit curved to the right, with some tufts of hair coming out and creating long and wavy shapes. The long hair in general works better if you draw it like fluid curved lines. This helps to convey the idea of dynamism and movement in general.

STEP 7: DRAWING THE FINAL LINEART

Now, we are about to start off our final sketch, so the unnecessary lines of the dummy we have drawn this far would be faded out. Next up, the muscles, clothes, and weapons details we have sketched out in the previous steps would be made bolder.

 Using traces lefts of the original character´s sketch, you would then go on to draw the final lines. It should comprise of well-detailed features, well-drawn facial features, weapons, and clothes. With that done, you should then throw in some shading effects to your drawing. Shading has an easy of making drawings appear so real and flawless. So go on and make the strokes of your drawing darker. You can then shade places like our character’s belt, underarms, and his neck region. If you are interested in knowing more about how to shade with a pencil, you can check my free tutorial clicking here.

Also, another important detail is to draw wrinkles and foldings coming from tension areas, like the loincloth where the fabric is being pulled and stretched by the belt.

CONCLUSION

We have successfully put together a commendable drawing of the Conan and you should feel proud. However, don’t put away your tools just yet. Go over the tutorial a couple of times more and soon you will be able to draw any character without needing a tutorial.

For more tutorials click on the Drawing Tutorials section on the menu bar on top.

Toni Justamante Jacobs

About the author: Hi, I’m Toni Justamante Jacobs. I´m a professional Concept Artist and Illustrator with more than 10 years of experience in the industry. Some of my clients are Gameloft, Fantasy Flight Games, Kunlun Games and Games Workshop. Currently, I´m working at Socialpoint as an in-house Senior Concept Artist.