Step-by-Step Dragon Drawing: Fire Breathing Tips
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 8 min read


  1. Gather your materials
  2. Draw the basic shape
  3. Add details to the head
  4. Sketch the body and wings
  5. Refine the dragon body
  6. Add textures and scales
  7. Sketch the fire
  8. Refine the fire drawing
  9. Ink your drawing
  10. Add color and shading

Are you on a quest to learn how to draw a dragon breathing fire? Welcome! This blog breaks down the process into manageable steps, making it easy and fun. Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned artist looking for a refresher, you'll find these tips both practical and relatable. Let's dive into the world of dragon drawing.

Gather your materials

Before we begin our dragon drawing journey, let's ensure you have all the necessary tools. Here's what you'll need:

  • Pencil: A standard HB pencil is perfect for the initial sketching phase. It's easy to erase and adjust as needed.
  • Eraser: Everyone makes mistakes — even experienced artists! An eraser lets you fix those little mishaps along the way.
  • Drawing paper: Any type of drawing paper will do. However, a medium-weight paper can withstand erasing and inking without tearing.
  • Colored pencils, markers, or watercolors: These are for adding color and bringing your dragon to life. Use whatever medium you're comfortable with or have on hand.
  • Ink pens: For the final outlining and detailing, ink pens give a clean, defined look. You can use a black marker or a fine liner, depending on your preference.

Now that you have your art supplies ready, it's time for the exciting part: learning how to draw a dragon breathing fire. Let's start by sketching the basic shape of the dragon.

Draw the basic shape

Think of the dragon's shape as a combination of simpler, familiar shapes. This will make it easier to get your dragon's proportions right. Here's how:

  1. Head: Start by drawing a circle for the dragon's head. It doesn't have to be perfect — remember, you'll refine this later.
  2. Body: Draw an elongated oval shape for the body. Again, don't worry about making it perfect. The idea is to get the basic shape down.
  3. Wings: Sketch two triangle-like shapes on either side of the body for the wings. Keep them simple for now.
  4. Tail: Draw a long, slightly curved line for the tail. Make it as long or as short as you like — it's your dragon, after all!

Congratulations! You've just sketched the basic shape of your dragon. But how to draw a dragon breathing fire, you ask? Don't worry, we're getting there. Next, we'll add some details to the dragon's head.

Add details to the head

Now that you have your dragon's basic shape, let's dive into the fascinating world of dragon facial features. This is where your dragon starts to come alive, and it's also the first step in learning how to draw a dragon breathing fire. Here's what to do:

  1. Eyes: Dragons are known for their captivating eyes. Draw two oval shapes on the head circle for eyes. Remember, dragons often have slitted pupils, similar to cats, so you might want to include that detail.
  2. Mouth: Draw a slightly curved line for the mouth on the lower part of the face. Keep it closed for now - we'll add the fire-breathing touch later.
  3. Nostrils: Just above the mouth, add two small circles for nostrils. These are important for when your dragon starts breathing fire!
  4. Horns and Spikes: Lastly, give your dragon character by adding horns on the top of its head and spikes down its back. The size and shape of these are completely up to you.

Look at that! Your dragon now has a face. You're well on your way to mastering how to draw a dragon breathing fire. Next up: sketching the body and wings.

Sketch the body and wings

Now that we have a dragon head with character, let's move on to the body and wings. This is where your dragon starts to take flight! Let's work on that dragon silhouette, shall we?

  1. Body: Start by sketching a long, serpentine line that extends from the head. This line forms the backbone of your dragon. Remember, dragons are flexible creatures, so feel free to add some curves!
  2. Wings: Next, sketch the wings. Start with two large, curved lines extending from the body. Then, draw several smaller lines between them for the wing's structure. Don't worry about details right now - we're just getting the basic shape.
  3. Legs and Claws: Draw two pairs of lines extending from the body for the legs. At the end of each leg, add three pointed shapes for the claws. Dragons need those claws for all sorts of things - capturing prey, holding onto treasure, and more!
  4. Tail: At the end of the body line, sketch a long, thin tail. This can be as wavy or as straight as you like.

You're doing great! Now you've got a full dragon body and wings. Just wait until we add the textures and scales - that's when this dragon will truly come to life. But first, let's refine this dragon body a bit more.

Refine the dragon body

Alright, now that we've laid out the basic structure, let's refine our dragon's body. Don't worry, you've got this!

  1. Define the Body: Going back to the body, start giving it some volume. Thicken the line defining the belly and the back. Remember, a dragon's body isn't a straight line—it's more like a cylinder. Think of a snake!
  2. Shape the Wings: Next, let's add some depth to the wings. Draw curved lines between the structural lines we sketched earlier. This begins to form the skin of the wings. Dragons need strong wings for those high-flying adventures!
  3. Strengthen the Legs and Claws: Now, refine the legs and claws. Add some muscle to the legs using curved lines. Don't forget the claws! Make them sharp and menacing, just like you'd see on a real dragon.
  4. Twist the Tail: Finally, give the tail some depth. Like the body, it should be more cylindrical and sinuous. You can even add a spiky end if you'd like—it's your dragon after all!

Awesome job! Your dragon is starting to look pretty impressive, right? We've got the body in shape, now let's make it look like a dragon by adding textures and scales. That's how you draw a dragon breathing fire that looks truly realistic and exciting!

Add textures and scales

Now, let's bring your dragon to life by adding textures and scales. This might seem intimidating, but it's not as complex as it seems. Just follow these steps and you'll be adding textures in no time!

  1. Scales: Start by picking a part of the dragon's body, let's say the neck. Draw small "U" or "V" shaped marks closely together. Make sure they overlap a little. This is the basic pattern for your dragon's scales. Repeat this pattern all over the body, adjusting the size of the scales for different parts. For instance, scales on the tail should be smaller than those on the body.
  2. Textures: For a more detailed look, add texture to the wings and horns. For the wings, draw fine lines radiating from the base to the edge. For the horns, draw horizontal lines across the length of the horn to give it a rugged look.
  3. Details: Don't forget to add details like sharp teeth peeking from the mouth, and spikes running down the back and tail. This will add a touch of ferocity to your dragon!

Check out your progress! Your dragon is developing a character of its own, isn't it? Now that's how to draw a dragon breathing fire with a touch of realism. But wait, there's more! Our dragon is missing something important. Can you guess? Yes, it's fire! Let's move on and sketch that out.

Sketch the fire

Here we are, the moment you've been waiting for - how to draw a dragon breathing fire! Fire may seem difficult to draw, but with a little patience, you'll have it down in no time. Let's get started:

  1. Start Simple: Begin by sketching a simple, rough shape that resembles a flame. It should start at the dragon's mouth and extend outward. Think of it as drawing a wavy, elongated cloud.
  2. Define the Shape: Next, refine the shape of the fire. Fire is wild and unpredictable, so let your lines be the same. Make some areas wide and others thin, some areas smooth and others jagged.
  3. Details: Now, let's add some details. Draw smaller flames inside the large one, and maybe some sparks flying out. This will give your fire depth and make it look more realistic.

And there you have it! You've just taken a big step in learning how to draw a dragon breathing fire. But we're not done yet. Next, we'll refine the fire to make it even more lifelike. Stay tuned!

Refine the fire drawing

Now that we've sketched the fire, let's refine it to make it more realistic. This is a vital step in learning how to draw a dragon breathing fire. Here's what you need to do:

  1. Add Variation: Start by adding variation to the flames. Make some parts of the flame larger, and others smaller. Remember, fire is not uniform—it dances and flickers.
  2. Shade the Flames: Now, it's time to add some shading. Darken the areas of the flame that are closest to the dragon's mouth. This will create the illusion of depth and give your fire that 3D look.
  3. Highlight: Lastly, add some highlights to the tips of the flames. This will give your fire a glowing effect, making it look as though it's truly ablaze.

And voilà! You've successfully refined your dragon's fire. But don't put down your pencil just yet. We still have some final touches to add to this masterpiece. On to the next step!

Ink your drawing

The next step in learning how to draw a dragon breathing fire involves inking your drawing. This is what will make your dragon pop off the page and look professional. Here's how you can do it:

  1. Choose Your Pen: The first step is to pick the right pen for the job. A fine-tipped pen will help you capture all those small details we've painstakingly added. An ink pen is often a good choice here.
  2. Trace the Lines: Now, carefully trace over your pencil lines with your chosen pen. Steady hands are key in this stage — you don't want to ruin your hard work with a shaky line.
  3. Let it Dry: After you finish tracing, give your drawing some time to dry. This prevents any unwanted smudging. I'd suggest waiting at least 15 minutes, but the longer, the better.
  4. Erase Pencil Lines: Once the ink is dry, gently erase any visible pencil lines. This will give your drawing a clean, finished look.

Well done! You've just inked your dragon, and it's starting to look spectacular. But we're not quite finished yet — there's still color and shading to consider! Stay tuned for the next steps on how to draw a dragon breathing fire.

Add color and shading

Now, let's bring your fire-breathing dragon to life with some color and shading. This is the final touch in our guide on how to draw a dragon breathing fire. So grab your colored pencils, markers, or whatever your preferred coloring tools are, and let's get started:

  1. Select Your Colors: The first step is to decide on your dragon's color scheme. Will it be a classic green dragon or maybe something more exotic like a fiery red dragon? The choice is yours!
  2. Color the Dragon: Start by coloring in the dragon. Be careful to stay within the lines you've inked. For a more realistic look, try to blend different shades of the same color.
  3. Add Shading: Now, add some depth to your dragon by shading. Areas under the wings and belly are usually darker. Remember, the light source in your drawing will determine where the shadows go.
  4. Color the Fire: Finally, it's time to color the fire. Use a combination of red, orange, and yellow for a blazing effect.

And there you have it! You've just learned how to draw a dragon breathing fire. Remember, practice makes perfect, so don't be discouraged if your first few attempts don't turn out as you'd like. With each new dragon you draw, you'll see improvement. Happy drawing!

If you enjoyed this step-by-step guide on dragon drawing and are interested in learning more about digital drawing techniques, check out the workshop 'Learn How to Draw in Procreate' by Vicky Catalan. In this workshop, you'll discover how to make the most of the Procreate app, which can help you take your fire-breathing dragon illustrations to a whole new level!