The term manga (pronounced mon-ga) refers to a Japanese art form similar to the American comic book. Manga originated in the late 1700s, and since the 1950s, manga has made up a large portion of the Japanese publishing industry, and are popular throughout the world.
Manga comics are not just for children. Many are produced with adults specifically in mind, as are novels in many other parts of the world. Manga cover a wide range of topics, including children’s stories, drama, mysteries, detective stories, fantasy, science fiction, supernatural fiction, and historical fiction. Most are originally published in black and white as magazine serials. If popular enough, the stories will be collected together in volumes called tankōbon.
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Manga is set apart from other, similar comics by its distinctive drawing style. Manga characters typically have large, often rectangular eyes, and other features may be exaggerated as well.
For example, male characters often have spiky hair and enormous muscles. Females may be drawn with an exaggerated figure, short dresses, long legs, and intricate hairstyles. At times, human characteristics are combined with those of animals, for example, Inuyasha’s feline ears and Goku’s primate-like tail. This style is shared by Japanese animation, referred to as anime.
If you are drawing your own manga characters, you likely want to get their hair just right. Doing so is easy with the help of this simple, step-by-step manga hair drawing tutorial.
To draw your manga character, you will need only a pencil, a sheet of paper, and a good eraser. In each step, illustrations and explanatory text are provided to guide you through adding or removing lines. Soon, your manga character will be ready for action!
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Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing Manga Hair
1. Begin by drawing a circle. This will form the basic shape of the character’s face.
2. Outline the face. Draw a series of nearly straight lines, forming corners at the jaw and chin. Enclose the figure by using a short, curved line to outline the ear.
3. Enclose an irregular form within the circle using two curved lines. Notice how the lines meet in a downward facing point, off centered to one side of the head. This outlines the character’s hairline.
4. Erase the guide line from the face, left over from the original circle. You now have a clean outline of the head from which to work.
5. Manga hair is well known for its spiky appearance. Using a series of curved lines, enclose a form in the shape of the letter “M.” Its midpoint should align with the downward facing point in the hairline.
6. Outline the hair above the head using a series of short, curved lines that meet in jagged points. Notice that the lines extend from the crown at the back of the head; one set of lines connects to the ear, while the other encircles the head to meet at the hairline.
7. Erase the guide line that had been used to determine the hairline.
8. Enclose the hair between the “M” shaped tuft and the side of the head using several long, curved lines that meet in jagged points, creating tufts of hair that overhang the face.
9. Add texture and detail to the hair. Extending from the crown outwards, draw several sets of connected, curved lines that meet in spiky points.
10. Color your character. Will his hair be blonde like Naruto’s or black like Goku’s? It is up to you to decide. But why stop there? Check out our other easy drawing tutorials to complete your character with a nose, eyes, and mouth.
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