How to Draw a Wanted Poster

Easy, step by step Wanted Poster drawing tutorial
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Our perception of the American West has largely been shaped by literature and Western films. Stereotypical symbols of the West include vast cactus-clad deserts, cowboys riding a horse into the sunset, and wanted posters on saloon walls.

A wanted poster was - and occasionally still is - posted in public places to help people recognize and report a wanted criminal. It typically included a sketch or photo, the crimes committed, and a reward for information.

The wanted poster in our illustration includes the words "Dead or Alive." Historically, this actually happened. It allowed vigilantes or bounty hunters to use deadly force if the outlaw resisted arrest.

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Would you like to draw a cartoon wanted poster from the wild, wild West? This easy, step-by-step cartoon drawing tutorial is here to show you how.

All you will need is a pencil, pen, or marker and a sheet of paper. You may also wish to color your finished drawing.

If you liked this tutorial, see also the following drawing guides: Cowboy Hat, Cartoon Horse, and Desert.

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Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing a Wanted Poster

Wanted Poster drawing - step 1
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 1

1. Begin by drawing the outline of the poster. Draw a nearly rectangular shape. On the sides, draw wavy and "V" shaped lines to indicate crumpled edges. Round off one of the bottom corners of the rectangle. Draw a "V" shaped line to enclose a curved triangle to indicate a curled corner. Draw circles in the top corners to form the nails holding up the poster.

Wanted Poster drawing - step 2
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 2

2. Begin drawing the letters "W," "A," and "N." Draw the letters using short straight lines. Notice that the letters are classically a serif font - there are small rectangles at the top or bottom edges of the letters.

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Wanted Poster drawing - step 3
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 3

3. Complete the word "WANTED" by outlining the letters "T," "E," and "D."

Wanted Poster drawing - step 4
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 4

4. Underline the word "WANTED" with a straight line. Beneath this line, write the words "DEAD or ALIVE." Notice that two of the words are written in capital letters.

Wanted Poster drawing - step 5
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 5

5. Begin drawing the cowboy hat. Outline the crown of the hat with a loosely "M" shaped line, and the brim with a long curved line in an open banana shape. Draw a curved line for the front of the brim, and another to indicate the hatband.

Wanted Poster drawing - step 6
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 6

6. Begin drawing the cowboy's face. Use curved lines to outline the pointed, curved shapes of the eyebrows. Beneath each, use a pair of curved lines to outline the eyes, pointed on each side. Shade a large round pupil within each eye. Then, draw a curved line to contour the bridge of the nose, and use another curved line for the tip of the nose.

Wanted Poster drawing - step 7
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 7

7. Extend curved lines from the nose, and connect them with a wide "W" shaped line. This forms the mustache. Use curved lines and "C" shaped lines to draw the sides of the face and the ears between the hat and mustache. Draw another line from the hat to the ear on each side to enclose the hair. Detail the inner ears with curved lines, and contour the chin with a short line.

Wanted Poster drawing - step 8
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 8

8. Enclose the chin with a curved line. Beneath one cheek, enclose an irregular rounded shape and two partial teardrop shapes. Draw a long curved line from the opposite side of the face to this set of shapes. This forms the bandana, tied in a knot at one side. Contour the fabric of the bandana and the knot with curved lines. Then, extend lines on each side of the bandana to form the shoulders.

Wanted Poster drawing - step 9
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 9

9. Below the character, outline a dollar sign ($) and the number 100.000.

Complete Wanted Poster drawing
How to Draw Wanted Poster: Step 10

Color your cartoon wanted poster. You can make it look old and weathered by coloring the paper tan, yellow, or cream.

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The Complete Wanted Poster Drawing Tutorial in One Image

How to draw: Wanted Poster - all drawing steps
How to Draw Wanted Poster

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