The Sky Temple of
Lugia and Articuno

A Pokémon fan site dedicated to Lugia and Articuno

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How to Draw Lugia

Learn how to draw the Pokémon Lugia using this step-by-step tutorial.

Here is the original Blue Forest Lugia tutorial made by Calicougar in 2002, all in its original context too. Since I no longer have time to write a tutorial myself, I figured I would display the best one that sadly got taken down along with the Blue Forest website a few years back. Lots of effort was put into this so please visit the artist's deviantART page at

Written by Tracy Reynolds 2002

Things you will need:-

Nice soft pencil. Paper, and an eraser. I like Magic Rub erasers, they erase cleanly, with big, fluffy crumbs. Patience is also needed, no rushing ahead! I know you're excited, but covering the basics will help you a me on this.

Things you won't need:-

Rulers, light tables, computers, or any other fancy tools. Fancy Photoshop paint jobs won't improve a bad drawing. Everybody has to start with a pencil, so again no cheating. Time enough for that fancy stuff later!

Step 1: Start with a gesture

Lugia poses

Every drawing starts by breaking the form down into its most basic shapes. For the gesture stage, a ball for the head and chest, and sticks for the arms and legs will do you just fine. Don't be tempted to rush ahead, until you are absolutely satisfied with the gesture in stick figure mode.

Lugia pose

Something that will help you a lot is if you find the body parts and bones in Lugia that are just like your own body parts and bones. See how his 'wing' really looks like your arm and hand? His legs have the same bones that yours do, they are only shaped differently. Lugia has a neck just like you do, only it's longer.

Lugia wings

Lugia is a lot like a bird! If you want to get *really crazy*, next time your parents plan on cooking a whole chicken for dinner, take the bird before it's cooked and move the wings around. Ask permission first, of course! Take notes by drawing little sketches on how the wings look when they are folded tight against the body, when the wings are fully extended, what the wing looks like when it's up, and when it's down. This will help you a lot if you are confused by how a bird's wings work.

Also, because Lugia looks like a bird, you can look at drawings of birds that have big wings and long necks for ideas on what Lugia can be doing. Swans, herons and geese share certain characteristics with Lugia that can give your drawings that extra *plus* of realism. Doing homework was never this much fun :)

Lugia Pose

Something fun to try is to strike a pose, look at yourself in a mirror, and then try to draw the gesture you are making. Keep it simple; don't get overwhelmed by trying to draw your whole body. That's a big mouthful to choke on! Remember...ball for the skull and chest, sticks for the legs and hands. It's almost like you are trying to draw a diagram of yourself, rather than trying to draw yourself. You are explaining to another person, in the simplest and clearest possible way, what pose your body is taking. As if you were a Tinkertoy! 'Insert peg A into slot B'...

I may sound like a broken record with the rushing ahead thing, but that's only because I do it all the time. I get impatient with how long it's taking and then I can ruin what was turning out to be a good start at a drawing by rushing through the basics. Don't look at the clock! You may be frustrated by the amount of time it takes to get everything 'just right', but once you get it right more and more often, your speed will automatically increase. Don't try to draw faster, it will just happen.

Step 2: Fleshing in the forms

Lugia Pose

Now that you have your basic skeletal gesture down, it's time to 'put the clothing' on them. Think of soft, clay-like solid forms wrapping around those sticks that you have drawn. Try and get the forms as solid-looking as you possibly can. This is a difficult concept for new artists to grasp sometimes, but if you keep practicing you will begin to see it.
Really try and feel, in your mind and through your pencil, the solidity of the forms you are describing that exist in your mind. We are sculpting with the pencil. It's really quite an amazing feat!

Lugia Pose

Keep your forms simple, balls, tubes, and boxes. Notice I didn't say circles, lines, or rectangles. We are trying to make the drawing look as solid and three-dimensional as possible. You want the ball to look like you could pluck it off the paper, and I don't mean by shading it in. Are you really confused now? Don't be. :) Drawing solidly is a challenge but you WILL get it with enough practice and patience. I guarantee it.
Lugia's chest is an egg-shaped ball. His tail is a tapered tube that attaches to the end of that egg-shaped ball. His wings are flexible, long boxes that attach to that ball. His neck is another tube. And his head is another, smaller egg shape with bits added to it.

Another tip to help you learn to see mistakes: Try looking at your drawing in a mirror. Oops! Did something pop out at you that you didn't mean to have looking like that? Don't worry...your next drawing will be better. Keep going on that same drawing until you are absolutely sick of it, and then try again. You'll eventually learn when it would be better to keep trying, and when you can do the same thing better, in less time and trouble.
Lugia pose These are great tools for learning how to draw in general. And please don't get frustrated and do something silly like crumpling up, burning or ripping your drawings. There may be flaws in one part, but good things to learn from in others. Every artist has a million bad drawings inside of them, and the only way to make good drawings is to get those million bad ones out of your system and onto the paper. Beleive me, even the top animators at Disney had to do those million bad drawings first before they got where they are today. Keeping your bad drawings in a box will help you see how much better you've gotten.

Step 3: Adding the details

Now for the fun part. This is the part that all your friends think 'makes the picture complete', but now that you've sweated out the solid drawing lessons in Steps 1 and 2, this step will seem like a piece of cake. Remember, no skipping ahead.
Lugia Heads Lugia's head starts with a ball. His neck is attached to the back of his head, and he has a 'fin' that fits over the back of his head and neck. You can almost take that fin shape and use it again for his nose. Lugia's jaw is seperate from the skull, just like your own jaw is seperate from your skull. It hinges back behind his eye, about where his ears would be (if he had them). (Artist makes note, where are dolphin and whale ears located? Are they small holes somewhere?)
Lugia has two tiny teeth in his lower jaw, and two 'teeth' in his upper jaw. His tongue is big and flat, and takes up most of his lower mouth.

Lugia Wings

Lugia's wings fit on his body in the same way that your arms attach to your chest. His wings can be easily converted into 'arms' for a toonier effect. Break the arm down into three parts...upper arm, forearm, and hand.
His wingtips have four fingers and a thumb.

Lugia legs

Lugia's legs: He has legs and feet just like you do, but his feet are really long, and he walks on the balls of his feet like a dog's hind legs. When you are walking on your 'toes', you are actually walking on the balls of your feet. You wouldn't actually want to talk on your toes, that'd be pretty painful! That's okay.. Lugia doesn't walk around all that much. He might just hop like a crow. Mostly he flies though.

Five fins, three toes on each foot, and four fingers and a thumb on each hand. That's it! You're done! :) Have fun!

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