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Submitted on
May 19, 2011
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1.9 MB


52,679 (8 today)
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Scale Tutorial by Droemar Scale Tutorial by Droemar
When I was in my woolgathering stage for my dinosaur stuff, I was completely stymied by the scale tutorials offered here on DA. Almost all of them used the same technique, and almost all of them were for dragons. So I had to do my own research and look at how folks like Gary S. Paul and Luis Rey did their stuff. (And James Gurney, for that matter.) Looking into the wide, wide variety of scales and how they work made a lot of the tutorials kind of insulting, since they broke things down into a icon instead of examining how one would draw a whole frickin' dragon without drawing every single forsaken scale.

So here's what I've learned, and I thought I'd share it. Wanting to draw things with scales should not ever mean that you have to draw EVERY single scale it grows. You don't draw every hair on a horse, or every bit of fur on a dog. The rule of implication can apply to dragons, too.

EDIT: Wow, a DD? Seriously? That is so awesome! Thanks to everyone who faved or commented; I'm really glad this has helped so many folks.
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Daily Deviation

Given 2011-08-01
Suggester's words: I'd like to suggest Scale Tutorial by *Droemar due to its excellent dispelling of the common myth on how to shade scales, and its detailed explanation on where to draw in scales and when to not. ( Suggested by Quanyails and Featured by FantasyStock )
Dr-Platinum Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I always knew that Dragons drawn with full scales didn't always looked right.
This is awesome 
drakora5588 Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2014
Thank you!!!
chip667 Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh my!! This tutorial is very helpful. Thanks for sharin it with us ^ ^

I used it to make this…
PublicReign Featured By Owner Aug 29, 2013  Student General Artist
Thank god this exists. man no matter how many times i review scales i cant seem to grasp it but this is great 
Lucky757 Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
Thank you =D
Mad-Dog-Neuro Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2013  Student General Artist
If you do dragons based on snakes you will have that "garden hose" look. Make the garden hose look like a snake. Glossy dragons are good dragons.
CoralArts Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is very good tutorial, and very useful too! :)
dracostarhome Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2013
I saw this a while ago and I guess I forgot to save it, this is a pretty good jumping point as far as tutorials go.
Chlorophylltheleaf Featured By Owner Jun 1, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Oouuhh...I understand now what this tutorial mean.
Not all scales must be draw. Because, if it has a full/too many scales, it looks flat and unrealistic.....many professional artist did this mistake too, to be honest. I've seen like this a lot.
Drawing the full/too many scales only eat a lot of time, but the result is unsatisfying. That what the lessons I got from this tutorials. ^^ Thank a lot for this tutorial. C: Of course, this tutorial is very rare, for me. ^v^
kchikage Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
wow! thank you for posting this tutorial. there's so much logic in drawing scales!
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