How to Draw a Bat
Bats get a bad rap for being a bit spooky, but we think the nocturnal animals are just misunderstood.
Bats are awesome! They pollinate some of our favorite fruits such as bananas, avocados and mangoes. And since they also help spread seeds for cacao, we have them to thank for chocolate, too!
Despite the fact bats are associated with Halloween, we think they’re worth celebrating all-year-round. And when you come to think of it, they’re actually pretty cute.
Vectornator designer Aysel brilliantly captures the charm of the bat in this drawing tutorial. Look at the adorable little guy!
Want to learn how to draw a bat like this? Fangtastic! All it takes is following few manageable steps.
To get started, watch the video above or follow the step-by-step guide below.
• Apple Pencil
• The latest version of Vectornator
• How to import your sketch into Vectornator
• How to adjust Layers
• How to use gradients
• How to use the Pen Tool
• How to use the Shape Tool
Import Your Sketch
You can always free-style your drawing inside Vectornator, but for this tutorial, Aysel imported her own sketch as a base.
Her drawing will act as a guide that she will draw on top of.
Take some time to sketch a bat character on paper. Once you’re happy with your fanged friend, it’s time to add it to a new canvas in Vectornator.
To do this, simply import it into Vectornator using the Camera Import option.
Alternatively, since we support iCloud, you can also import sketches you’ve created in another drawing app, like Procreate.
Select Your Colors and Adjust the Layers
To create a midnight-blue bat like Aysel’s, set up a linear gradient with the following hex codes: #03000C - #592FC7.
Next, lower opacity on all layers. This will make it possible to see your base sketch throughout the entire drawing process.
Trace the Head Shape With the Pen Tool
Now it’s time to draw the bat’s face.
Select the Pen Tool and start tracing the outline of your sketch.
Just draw one half of the face, and remember to close the shape. We will complete the full face in the next step.
Duplicate and Flip
Select the shape you just drew and duplicate it. Then, flip it by tapping the setting in the Arrange Tab. Next, activate Multi-Select, and unite the two shapes into one.
Refine the shape using the Node Tool so that there aren’t any unwanted nodes where the two shapes joined.
Adjust your gradient using the Gradient Handle so that the lightest color is at the top of the bat’s head.
Draw the Eyes
Create a yellow, radial gradient for the iris of the bat’s eye (#B7840F - #FFDD8A).
Draw one perfect circle using the Shape Tool and duplicate it for the other eye.
To draw the iris, duplicate the circle again and resize it so that it’s smaller than the first circle. Place it in the center of the eye and give it a deep purple radial gradient (#03000C - #592FC7).
As Aysel explains in the video, yellow and purple are opposing colors on the color wheel. This means they complement each other and create a beautiful contrast.
Next, draw two white circular shapes with the Shape Tool and a moon shape with the Pen Tool. These are the reflections in the eye.
Duplicate the iris and reflection shapes and arrange them over the other eye.
Now your bat is starting to come to life!
Draw the Nose With the Pen Tool
Now, draw the nose shape with the Pen Tool and fill it with a pink-purple radial gradient (#9400FC - #FF00D5).
You can do this the same way you drew the head—draw half of the nose, duplicate it, flip it, create a united shape. This helps to keep it symmetrical.
Use the Node Tool to refine the shape.
Add the Nostrils With the Oval Tool
Draw two oval shapes with the Oval Tool and fill them with black.
Draw the Mouth With the Pen Tool
Trace the contour of the mouth using the Pen Tool.
Change the path stroke from Regular to Brush mode. This is a clever way to achieve precision in your shape, while still keeping the tapering quality of a brushstroke.
In this tutorial, Aysel uses a custom brush she created herself. It’s wider in the middle and thinner towards the end.
You can also create your own brush, or select a brush style from our preset brushes.
Learn more about using the Brush Tool in Vectornator here.
Draw the Bat Fangs With the Pen Tool
Draw the two fangs with the Pen Tool and fill them with a linear gradient (#B7840F - #FFDD8A).
Move both teeth under the mouth layer.
Draw the Fur Around the Ears
Select the purple gradient you previous used for the eyes (#03000C - #592FC7) and use the Pen Tool to draw the fur around the ears.
You can free-style this part to create a jagged shape that looks like tufts of hair.
Draw the Ear Ridges
Now for a fun detail. If you search for a reference image, you'll notice ridges on the bat's ear.
Aysel explains that these ear ridges give them the ability of echolocation. See—we told you bats were cool!
Use the Pen Tool to draw a few darker, curved lines over the ears.
Rather than duplicate the ear for the other side, repeat steps 10 and 11 so that the two ears are slightly different. This gives your illustration more interest!
Bring Up the Opacity
Finally, turn the opacity to 100% on all layers to reveal the true vibrant colors.
You’re done! Conbatulations!
We hope it’s love at first bite for you and your amazing bat drawing.
If you want to add a body and wings, go for it! You can draw the simple shapes with the Pen Tool or free-hand draw them with the Brush Tool.
Make sure to share your bat illustrations with us on social media.