Clouds are made of billions and billions of tiny water droplets suspended in the earth’s atmosphere. There are many different types of clouds. Stratus clouds are long, low lying clouds. Cirrus clouds are found high in the sky and are often wispy in appearance. Cumulonimbus are recognizable as storm clouds; they can stack on top of one another and become very tall. The most commonly drawn cloud type, and the one used in this tutorial, is the fluffy cloud known as a cumulus cloud.
The word cloud comes from the Old English words clod and clud, which mean “hill” or “boulder.” The term was used for rain clouds forming low on the horizon, which might resemble mountains or hills themselves. Many people throughout history have enjoyed looking at clouds and picking out shapes within them. Have you ever looked at a cloud and thought it resembled a horse, a rabbit, a dragon, or a person? Today, scientists study clouds and other weather features in order to keep people safe. These scientists are known as meteorologists. Nephology is the branch of meteorology specific to the study of clouds.
Clouds are used in art and other areas of popular culture to describe a wide range of human emotions. Someone unfortunate or depressed may be depicted as having a rain cloud above his head, and to be on Cloud 9 indicates a state of extreme happiness or euphoria. Dark clouds with lightning can be used as a metaphor for anger. Clouds are also background elements in countless paintings, drawings, and animations.
Would you like to draw your very own cloud? All you will need is a pencil, a piece of paper, and the help of this simple, step-by-step cloud drawing tutorial. Notice in each step that new lines are highlighted in blue, and explanatory text is available. You may want to use markers, colored pencils, crayons, or paints to shade your finished drawing. Will you draw storm clouds or fluffy white clouds on a sunny day? The choice is yours.
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Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing Clouds
1. Begin by drawing a curved line to form a half circle. This will be the top of your cloud.
2. Draw a smaller curved line overlapping the first. In so doing, you begin to give your cloud a fluffy shape.
3. Draw another short, curved line overlapping the first.
4. Draw a series of connected, curved lines from one side of the cloud and across its bottom.
5. Continue drawing short, curved, connected lines. Enclose the shape of the cloud by connecting the bottom of the cloud to its remaining side.
6. Erase guide lines from where the lobes of the cloud overlap.
7. Add detail to your cloud, giving it texture and depth. Draw several sets of connected, curved lines within the interior of the cloud, causing a fluffy appearance. Allow some of the lines to curl into spirals.
8. Draw another small cloud behind the first. Use overlapping, curved lines to enclose an irregular, fluffy shape.
9. Use short, connected, curved lines to add detail to the interior of the smaller cloud drawn in the previous step. Then, draw yet another cloud behind the first, using connected, curved lines.
10. Color your cloud. Clouds are typically depicted as being white or light blue, but those aren’t the only colors they can be. Storm clouds may be black, grey, brown, or even green. At sunrise or sunset, clouds may reflect shades of pink, purple, orange, or red.
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