Can you draw rectangles? Because if you can draw rectangles then you can draw braids. In this post I will show you how to draw braids easily and without needing much drawing experience. Learning how to draw braids may seem a bit of a challenge, however, using my tips you will find them really easy to draw. The reason is, I like to break hard tasks down into simple steps so that they are easy to follow.
I tried most of the tutorials i found online and they were too hard to follow, so I came up with my own!
In this tutorial, we will be using either normal pencils on paper or an iPad app called Procreate.
Either method will be exactly the same process to follow.
The method I will teach you involves following a simple pattern made up of rectangles laid next to each other in a row that will make up braids.
My daughter has braided hair which her mom braids almost every day as it is long and hard to manage.
One thing you notice when you braid actual hair is that it’s is a simple pattern repeated over and over.
So I will follow the braid pattern that she has in our tutorial – see the photo below.
While it’s not that clear from the photo above, the pattern we will follow is quite easy to copy.
Once you understand and master the first pattern then the entire braid becomes easy and you will be learn quite quickly how to draw braids.
Grab your drawing materials and let’s get started!
Let us start with the drawing materials you will need. I like to keep things really simple so just grab any pencil and paper you may also have.
Most common pencils are HB but you can also do this with colored pencils, markers, crayons etc. You may also want an eraser handy just in case you make a mistake.
For those of you who are using the Procreate app to draw braids, open a new page on the app, I chose paper and select HB pencil from the Sketching Brush library.
From here on, whether you are using pencil and paper or Procreate, the steps will be exactly the same.
Hopefully by the time you have completed this tutorial your braids will look something like this.
Step 1 – Draw a simple line
You will use this line to guide you where your braid will flow.
Try to make it go on a slight angle but if you want to just draw a straight line that is also ok, especially if you want to draw a simple straight braid.
Step 2 – Draw a Rectangle
Remember when i said if you could draw rectangles you could draw braids? Well now you can draw your first rectangle.
It does not need to be a perfect rectangle with perfectly straight sides or angles.
One thing you need to do is make sure one of the bottom corners of the rectangle touches the line we just drew.
It does not have to be perfect, we just do this to make it easy to add the next rectangle and follow the flow of the braid.
Super simple hey! You just started your first step on how to draw braids.
Step 3 – Draw another Rectangle!
When I said rectangles I meant we are going to draw a lot of them!
Now before you draw lots and lots of rectangles, you need to make sure that the start of the next rectangle is drawn half way down the first rectangle and it needs to be around the same size as the first rectangle.
The reason we do this is because braids are usually the same size until we get towards the end and they then get smaller as they taper off.
Step 4 – Now Draw more Rectangles
Told you it would be all about rectangles!
Now in this step we will draw more and more rectangles.
I have highlighted in the drawing the points (in red) where each of the same corner comes close to touching the line we drew in step 1.
I also zoomed in a bit in the picture so you can see it does not have to be perfectly touching the line but close to.
You will also see that each rectangle is almost the same size as the one before it. Its okay if they size isn’t perfectly the same but close enough is good enough.
Step 5 – We draw even more Rectangles (but at a different angle)
Now for the next row of rectangles.
Start at the top where we drew the first row of rectangle.
Now draw a rectangle, similar in size to the first one but draw it at a perpendicular angle.
See how it starts at the start of the first rectangle and half of it should be where the second rectangle is.
The end of this first rectangle will also show you where the third rectangle should have started (look at the dotted line in the drawing).
You do not need to draw the dotted line if you don’t need it.
Step 6 – Draw more rectangles as needed
Now we will repeat the rectangle we draw all the way down the line.
These rectangles will each fit in the gap of the previously drawn rectangles as shown above.
Again, they don’t need to be perfect.
Step 7 – Grab your eraser
This step is super simple. Just erase the guideline we drew in Step 1.
Step 8 – Round off corners
In this step we want to round off the outer corners of the rectangles we drew.
We just draw a rounded line inside each corner (see the drawing).
Step 9 – Erase the corners
Again, this is another super easy step using just an eraser.
You want to now erase the angle corners we drew when we drew the rectangles so that all we see are the rounded corners we drew in Step 8.
Can you see that we are starting to draw something that actually looks like a braid? How awesome is that!
Step 10 – Add some shaded detail
In this step we want to add a slightly darker line between the rectangles we draw.
Make one side a little thicker than the other.
This line will give the braids the impression that there are some shadows makes the braids look a little more realistic.
Do this for each one.
Step 11 – Start drawing hair lines
Now you can roughly or carefully draw hair lines.
I like to use rough lines but if you want your braids to look more perfect you can take your time doing these lines.
All you have to remember is that the hair lines need to follow the same direction of the rectangle you drew.
An easy way to remember how to do this, is make your hair lines follow the longer side of the rectangle.
Step 12 – Draw hair lines for the rest of the rectangles
Now draw hair lines all the way down the braid. You will do the same hair lines to the other rectangles in the next step.
Step 13 – Draw the hair lines for the rest of the rectangles
Now draw hair lines for the remaining rectangles.
Remember that the hair direction needs to follow the long side of the rectangles.
Step 14 – Add finishing touches!
The last step!
Just add in some finishing touches to your braid.
I like to draw an elastic or bow at the end to show how a braid is tied together.
I then like to draw either random hair that is not tied up or bows etc.
For each rectangle in the braid, shade one end a little to make it look more 3D.
Leave some highlights at the middle where both rows of rectangles meet.
This makes it look like there’s light shining on the beautiful braid.
Add some whispers of hair here and there to make it look more realistic.
And now you’re done!
You managed to turn lots of little rectangles into a braid.
And that friends, is how to draw braids easy.
I hope you enjoyed this post How to draw braids and I hope you learned a new skill that you can apply to your drawings.
Who knew drawing braids would be so much fun!
I have other HowTo draw type posts if you are interested in learning more.
- What is Still Life Drawing: Why Every Artist Should Learn This Skill
- What is 3D Modeling and Rendering: Best Beginner’s Guide
- Can you use acrylic paint on polymer clay? Yes but there’s a catch!
- Brush Pen Drawing – Why These Are The Best Drawing Tools For Artists
- Drawing vs Painting: The Differences Explained Easy