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How to Draw Chrome

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You Can Learn How to Draw Chrome by Following These Simple Steps

Over the years, I have had the privilege of teaching many students the basic fundamentals of drawing. One thing I always see when an aspiring art student first starts coming to my classes is their decreased self-image and confidence in their own abilities.

I don't know why but artists, and creative types of all stripes, seem to have developed an attitude of not being certain or secure in their talents and abilities. If this describes you, then you are in the right place.

In my own teaching experience, I have observed that every one of my students had some level of skill, talent or ability to create. Sure, some had a bit more than others, but every one of my students has had some raw talent. I truly believe that all people are "gifted" with the desire and ability to create.

YOU can draw. The ability is already inside you. All you need to do is bring it out.

SO - grab a pencil and paper. Let's begin...



The Basic Tools for Drawing Chrome

First, you need to have the right tools for the job. Now it is true, you can do this without these specific tools, but if you can get your hands on them, your drawing will go a whole lot easier. All of these can be picked up from your local office supply store except for the MONO Zero which may be ordered at

From right to left:

• Pentel Clic Eraser (Blue) ZE22

• MONO Zero Elastomer Eraser

• EBONY Jet Black Extra Smooth pencil #14470

• Pentel 0.9mm P209 Mechanical Pencil.

• Large Circle Template



Step 1: Draw Some Circles

The first step in drawing that round, reflective metal sphere at the top of the page is to draw two circles.

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Using your circle template, find two circles that are close in diameter.

Use a light touch when drawing the inner, slightly smaller circle.

For the slightly larger outer circle, you want to create a strong, heavy line.

The inner circle is going to be used as a guide to show you where the shading will be added.

If you look closely at the second drawing there to the right, you can see that I have drawn the heavy, darker outer circle and left the inner, slightly smaller inner circle lighter.



Step 2: Add the Lower Reflective Elements

For this step, simply draw a hard, dark line that curves ever so slightly as it crosses over form one side of the sphere to the other.

Note that the line starts and finishes as a vertical line curving sharply upward on each end. Think of this first line as a sort of smile line that curves up on either end.

It's very important to draw this line precisely as you see it there in order to give your drawing a sense of dimension and depth.



Step 3: Add Gradated Shading to the Lower Area

Starting just under the upper edge of the line you just drew, start adding some shading.

This shading starts as black as you can get it right up next to the line and gradually gets lighter closer to the bottom edge of the sphere.

Study the shading in the drawing to the right.

Note how the lighter, inner circle line is now serving as the lower edge of the gradated shading.



Step 4: Add Gradated Shading to the Upper Area

Once you have completed the gradated shading on the lower portion, it's time to add the shading to this upper area of the sphere.

Note that this shading is noticeably lighter than the lower, darker shading.

Using your pencil and a light touch, make small circles to create a uniform pattern of lines.

Don't cover over the thin area between the inner and outer circles. This area needs to remain clean and white in order to create the illusion of a reflective - or chrome surface.

Also, make sure the upper reaches of this area are a bit darker than the shading closer to the middle of the sphere.



Step 5: Use Your Finger to Blend the Shaded Area

After you have completed the shaded areas and they look like the shading in my drawing to the right, use your fingertip to blend the circular pencil marks.

To accomplish this, simply press down firmly and rub your fingertip in a circular motion.

This will create a very smooth blend of gray and should get rid of all your circular pencil marks.



Step 6: Add the Final Touch

The trick to creating a realistic looking reflective surface is to create areas of sharp contrast and gradual blended areas from dark to light.

For the final touch, use the MONO eraser to remove just a bit of pencil marks from the shaded area. This will add the final touch to your reflective sphere and create a realistic looking reflective surface.

The MONO is also good for cleaning up any areas between the inner and outer circles.



I have drawn a few other items with a reflective - or chrome - surface.

If you look closely, you can see the blended areas that go from dark to light along with the sharp dark black right next to the stark, clean white areas.

Drawing in this way, you can draw anything with a chrome-looking surface.

SO - How did you do? Remember, if you didn't get it just right the first time, keep trying. Each drawing is a teacher for the next drawing. Keep drawing and you will improve your skill and ability as an artist - GOOD LUCK!


© 2013 MKayo


MKayo (author) from Texas on February 26, 2014:

Thanks, Seven Blades!

Seven Blades on February 26, 2014:

Thanks, this is very useful information. Excellent way to explain it :)

MKayo (author) from Texas on November 01, 2013:

Virginia - Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to go through my tutorial. I appreciate your kind comments! M

Virginia Kearney from United States on November 01, 2013:

Terrific instructions! I love the way you show the step by step process. Your art lessons are just a great way for anyone to learn to draw and feel successful.

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