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How to Draw Barbed Wire

Easy, step by step Barbed Wire drawing tutorial
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"Oh, give me land, lots of land under starry skies above - don't fence me in; let me ride through the wide-open country that I love - don't fence me in." - "Don't Fence Me In" by Bing Crosby.

Whatever you're fencing, you can learn how to draw barbed wire with the help of this easy, step-by-step drawing guide.

What is barbed wire? It consists of "two longitudinal wires twisted together to form cable and having wire barbs wound around either or both of the cable wires at regular intervals."

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Barbed wire was invented in the United States in 1867. It was used to keep farm animals in an enclosure and predators out.

Barbed wire thus changed the face of the American West. "By 1890," reports the Encyclopedia Britannica, "fenced pasture land had virtually replaced the open range in the western United States." Barbed wire is often associated with cowboy culture, farms, and rural life.

Barbed wire's symbolism also has a dark side. Barbed wire has been used to keep people imprisoned, including in prisoner of war (POW) camps and in concentration camps during the Holocaust. The image may be associated with extreme injustice, cruelty, and human suffering.

Some people get tattoos of barbed wire. To them, barbed wire symbolizes the "resilience, courage, strength, and indomitability of the human spirit." The idea is that the wearer has successfully overcome barbed wire-like obstacles in life.

If you liked this tutorial, see also the following drawing guides: Cross with a Rose, Sugar Skull, and Yin Yang Symbol.

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Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing Barbed Wire

Barbed Wire drawing - step 1
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 01

1. Begin by drawing three small, narrow, overlapping ovals. These are the first of the coiled barbs. Then, extend two pairs of curved lines from each side of the barb. On one side, allow the lines to cross over one another, disappearing behind one another. Notice the twisted pattern of the lines.

Barbed Wire drawing - step 2
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 02

2. Enclose the ends of the lines by drawing another barb - three small, narrow ovals. Then, draw another barb a short distance from the previous, set at a different angle. Draw two sets of curved lines between them.

Notice how the pairs of lines twist and coil around one another. Then, extend two pairs of lines downward from the last barb.

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Barbed Wire drawing - step 3
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 03

3. Continue the curved lines until they meet the length of barbed wire already drawn. Then, extend them on the opposite side of the wire. Enclose the ends of the lines by drawing a barb, three small ovals. Draw another barb beside it, and connect them with two sets of curved lines. See how the lines twist around one another. Extend two pairs of curved lines beyond the last barb.

Barbed Wire drawing - step 4
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 04

4. Continue to extend the pairs of lines, causing them to coil around one another. Then draw another barb, three narrow ovals. Extend curved lines upward from it.

Barbed Wire drawing - step 5
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 05

5. Continue to draw the twisting curved lines, and enclose the ends with a barb - three narrow ovals. Draw another barb above it, and connect them by drawing more twisted lines. Then, extend a pair of lines upward from the uppermost barb.

Barbed Wire drawing - step 6
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 06

6. Double the barbed wire back upon itself. Draw two more barbs and the twisted curved lines between and extending beyond them.

Barbed Wire drawing - step 7
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 07

7. Draw two more barbs, and connect them with pairs of twisted, curving lines. Extend a pair of curved lines beyond the last barb.

Barbed Wire drawing - step 8
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 08

8. Draw two more barbs and connect them with pairs of curved lines. You've now formed the second loop in the wire.

Barbed Wire drawing - step 9
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 09

9. Draw a final barb and the twisted strands of wire extending beyond it. Then draw two small, curved triangles on each barb to indicate the sharp points that give barbed wire its name.

Complete Barbed Wire drawing
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step 10

Color your drawing.

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The Complete Barbed Wire Drawing Tutorial in One Image

How to draw: Barbed Wire - all drawing steps
How to Draw Barbed Wire Step by Step Tutorial Image

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