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How to Draw an Explosion

Easy, step by step Explosion drawing tutorial
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An explosion is defined as "a rapid increase in volume and release of energy in an extreme manner, usually with the generation of high temperatures and the release of gases."

Explosions can be caused by natural phenomena, such as volcanoes, stars that go supernova, or meteor impacts. They can also be man-made, either accidentally, for the purpose of construction and demolition, or as a weapon of war.

Explosions are a very common element of popular culture. Science fiction, action, and war films often feature explosions. The film director Michael Bay is especially noted for his use of explosions.

Explosions were also common in Looney Tunes cartoons, as when Yosemite Sam or Wile E Coyote attempted to use dynamite or TNT - which often backfired on them. Comic books may feature explosions when superheroes and villains collide, along with words like "boom" and "pow."

Did you know? In 1908, a mysterious explosion known as the Tunguska event occured in Russia. It is thought that "a stony meteoroid about 100 metres (330 feet) in size... disintegrated at an altitude of 5 to 10 kilometres (3 to 6 miles)" above the ground, flattening a forest of 80 million trees spanning over 2,000 square kilometers (over 800 square miles).

Scroll down for a downloadable PDF of this tutorial.

Would you like to draw a cartoon explosion? This easy, step-by-step cartoon drawing tutorial is here to show you how. All you will need is a pencil, an eraser, 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: Soldier, Tank, and Space and Planets.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing an Explosion

Explosion drawing - step 1
How to Draw an Explosion Step 01

1. Begin by drawing a cloud of dust. Craft the nebulous shape using a series of curved lines, some overlapping, to form a round shape.

Explosion drawing - step 2
How to Draw an Explosion Step 02

2. Give the cloud a fluffy texture by drawing "U" shaped lines and series of curved lines in its center.

Explosion drawing - step 3
How to Draw an Explosion Step 03

3. Enclose long, narrow triangular shapes extending from the inner lobes of the cloud. Enclose each using a pair of curved lines that meet at a very sharp point. Erase as necessary. These lines indicate the motion of the explosion.

Explosion drawing - step 4
How to Draw an Explosion Step 04

4. Draw more triangle shapes extending from the exterior of the cloud. Enclose each of these using a pair of curved lines that meet at a sharp point.

Explosion drawing - step 5
How to Draw an Explosion Step 05

5. Draw jagged, explosive shapes all around the outside of the cloud. For each, use many short straight lines that meet at jagged points. Within the cloud, draw additional curved lines and enclose jagged shapes of short straight lines emerging from these as well.

Explosion drawing - step 6
How to Draw an Explosion Step 06

6. Draw billows of smoke or dust coming from the explosive cloud. For each of these narrow, curved, triangular shapes, draw two sets of connected curved lines. Allow them to converge until they meet at a gentle point.

Explosion drawing - step 7
How to Draw an Explosion Step 07

7. Draw additional billows of smoke on the opposite side of the cloud. Again, use two sets of connected curved lines that meet to form curved, narrow, triangular shapes.

Explosion drawing - step 8
How to Draw an Explosion Step 08

8. Draw more debris coming from the cloud. Use curved lines to draw teardrop shapes on all sides.

Explosion drawing - step 9
How to Draw an Explosion Step 09

9. Draw rocks or other debris being thrown from the explosion. For each stone, enclose a circle, oval, or rounded shape. Then, draw two lines extending from it toward the explosion. These indicate the object's movement.

Complete Explosion drawing
How to Draw an Explosion Step 10

Color your cartoon explosion. Often, explosions have fiery colors like red, yellow, orange, and white, as well as smoky colors such as black, brown, or grey.

What caused this cartoon explosion? Was it the Death Star, a car crash, or asteroids colliding in outer space? The choice is yours.

Scroll down for a downloadable PDF of this tutorial.

The Complete Explosion Drawing Tutorial in One Image

How to draw: Explosion - all drawing steps
How to Draw an Explosion Step by Step Tutorial Image

Printable Drawing Tutorial

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