Here is an easy-to-follow, step by step tutorial for drawing a realistic female eye. You can use a normal pencil or graphite drawing pencils. Drawing eyes is not an easy thing to do, that’s why I broke down the tutorial into 27 steps. Hopefully, by seeing how I drew it, you will be able to do so as well. Follow along with the tutorial below.
(1) Graphite pencils are optional but preferred. I got this cheaper set of graphite pencils and I actually like them a lot.
(2) Gray paper is optional. It is much easier to draw a tinted paper when it comes to facial features. Here is a good gray-toned drawing pad.
Learn How to Draw an Eye (Realistic Female Eye) Step by Step Drawing Tutorial
Written-Out Step by Step Drawing Instructions
I find that it is easier to draw people’s faces and facial features on gray or tan paper. You don’t have to though. This is optional.
(Step 1) Draw all the lines lightly. Start by drawing a circle.
(Step 2) Draw a partial leaf shape.
(Step 3) Now erase the parts of the circle that overlap with the leaf shape.
(Step 4) Draw a sideways “A” shape.
(Step 5) Draw curved lines around the eye.
(Step 6) Draw a circle and a line.
(Step 7) Erase a part of the circle and then draw an irregular shape (for the highlight of the eye). This doesn’t have to look like mine.
(Step 8) Fill in the center of the eye (pupil). I like to use crosshatched lines. Also, darken the outside of the iris.
(Steps 9 + 10) Add a tint to the iris. Lighter for blue/green eyes. Darker for brown. I like to draw lines around the circle. Erase the outline of the highlight. Draw little peaked mountains all around the outer iris. Fill them in.
(Step 11) Darken the pupil. Then darken the right side of the eye (on an angle). Start adding shadow to the lids.
(Step 12a) When going from dark to light or vice versa, try to make a gradient by getting the values to almost match up. Do this by lightly drawing more lines until it is almost as dark as the line next to it.
(Step 12b) On the upper lid: Add shadow that is darker and then gets lighter as it goes downwards. Add more shadows to the inner lining of the eye.
(Step 13) Add shading above the upper lid. Start with the shadow dark at the bottom and as you go up, get lighter. Add a dark shadow on the upper part of the whites of the eye. Add some shading in the inner eye.
(Step 14) Add some shading around the iris, on the whites of the eye. You want to try to make it look like the outer outline doesn’t look smooth or crisp. Add shading around the eye.
(Step 15) Add more shading around the iris on the whites of the eye. Add shading around the lower lid. etc. etc.
(Step 16) Add shadows to the upper lid and above the upper lid. Also, add more to the shadow on the top of whites of the eye.
(Step 17) Draw some lines on the bottom of the top lid to make it look like lashes. Draw some more shading of the top lid. Add shading to the whites of the eye. Add dark shadow to the bottom of the whites of the eye.
(Steps 18 + 19) Continue shading.
(Step 20) Start adding eyelashes. I only put a few in at this point to show you what direction they should be drawn in.
(Steps 21-23) Continue drawing lashes.
(Step 24) Darken the lower part of the eyelashes.
(Step 25) Darken the shading on the top right side of the eye. Draw some lines in the highlight for the reflection of the lashes. Fill in the lower lashes.
(Step 26) I used a white pencil to add some highlights to the center of the nose. I started with gray paper, so I can do that. If you have white paper, just use an eraser to erase out a highlight.
(Step 27) Draw some white lashes, it will make them stand out. Draw some more white highlights.
Now you are done. I hope that your eye turned out great!
If you want all of the steps in one picture, find it below