A Step-By-Step Guide on Drawing a Majestic Sea Turtle

how to draw a sea turtle


The sea turtle is a fascinating and majestic creature that inhabits our world’s oceans. Drawing one of these magnificent reptiles can be a rewarding and educational experience. In this step-by-step guide, we will explore how to draw a sea turtle in a simple and accessible way. Whether you are an experienced artist or a beginner, you can follow along and create a beautiful sea turtle drawing with just a few tools and some patience.

Materials Needed

Before we begin, gather your materials. You’ll need

1. Paper: A good-quality drawing paper or sketchbook is recommended.

2. Pencils: You’ll need a range of pencils, from 2H for light lines to 6B for darker shading.

3. Eraser: A kneaded eraser is ideal for making corrections.

4. Blending Tools: Tortillons or blending stumps for creating smooth transitions in shading.

5. Reference Image: Find a high-quality image of a sea turtle to use as a reference.

Start with the Basic Shape

Begin by lightly sketching the basic shape of the sea turtle. We’ll start with an oval for the body and a rounded triangle for the head. Position the head slightly to the side, as if the turtle is looking upward or swimming.

Add Flippers and Tail

Extend four flippers from the sides of the oval body, two on each side. These should be long, gently curved shapes. The front flippers are usually shorter and wider, while the hind flippers are longer and narrower. Add a short, pointed tail to the rear of the body.

Define the Shell

Draw the shell on the turtle’s back. Sea turtle shells are often a bit flattened, so make sure it’s not too rounded. The shell consists of many scutes (large, flat scales), which can be represented by drawing a series of curved lines radiating from the center of the shell outward.

Outline the Head and Eyes

Refine the head’s shape and add the eyes. Sea turtles have large, round eyes on the sides of their heads. Draw these eyes, leaving a small highlight in each to give them a lifelike appearance. Then, add a small, curved line to represent the mouth.

Draw the Beak

Sea turtles have a distinctive beak-like structure that’s used for grasping and tearing their food. Draw this beak as a pointed, slightly curved structure that extends from the mouth area.

Detail the Flippers

Add some detail to the flippers by drawing the segments and webbing between the fingers. Start by drawing the main segments of the flippers and then connect them with curved lines to suggest the webbing.

Work on the Shell’s Texture

To make the turtle’s shell look realistic, add texture. This can be achieved by drawing smaller, irregularly shaped scutes across the shell’s surface. Vary the size and spacing of these scutes for a more natural appearance.

Shade the Body

Begin shading the turtle’s body to give it depth and dimension. Use a range of pencils to create different levels of darkness. Start with a light layer of shading and gradually build up the darker areas, such as the bottom side of the turtle and the shadow areas under the flippers.

Add Shadow and Depth

To make the drawing more three-dimensional, add shadow and depth to the head, eyes, and beak. Pay attention to the shadows cast by the flippers on the body and the underside of the head.

Blending and Smoothing

Use blending tools like tortillons or blending stumps to smooth out the shading and create a more even, realistic texture on the turtle’s skin and shell. This step is crucial for achieving a polished look in your drawing.

Fine-Tune Details

Go back to the turtle’s features, like the eyes and beak, and add finer details. Highlight reflections in the eyes, add subtle textures to the beak, and refine any areas that need extra attention.

Final Touches

As a final step, assess your drawing and make any necessary adjustments or corrections. Ensure that your sea turtle looks balanced, proportionate, and lifelike.


What shapes can turtles draw?

Turtle graphics can create common shapes like circles, squares, rectangles, polygons and lines. You can also add text as well.

How do you draw a turtle in pencil code?

To make a Turtle, use t = new Turtle . (Here t can be any variable name we choose). A Turtle is always created at the center home position, so you may not notice the new Turtle if there is already a turtle at that spot: they pile on top of each other perfectly.


Drawing a sea turtle can be a captivating and educational experience, allowing you to appreciate the beauty and complexity of these marvelous creatures. With some basic materials, patience, and a step-by-step approach, you can create a stunning sea turtle drawing that showcases your artistic skills. Remember that practice makes perfect, so don’t be discouraged if your first attempt isn’t perfect – keep refining your technique, and soon, you’ll be creating even more impressive sea turtle drawings.

Read Also : A Step-by-Step Guide – How to Draw a Deer