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How To Draw A Dahlia

how to draw a dahlia

Among the world of floral beauty, the dahlia stands out as a true marvel, boasting many types ranging from delicate and intricate to bold and show-stopping.

Coming to this tutorial on how to draw a dahlia, you’ll explore decorative dahlias – a popular category of dahlia cultivars known for their fully double blooms with layers of petals. The colors they flaunt are a painter’s dream, whether rich, velvety red, regal purple, or soft, romantic pink and radiant white.

Prepare your materials and delve into drawing this alluring bloom step-by-step. We’ll unravel its unique structure (from its blooming flower head to the serrated foliage) while offering essential tips about sketching and coloring that ensure your drawing will flourish.

Have you prepared yourself the best? Time to explore!

How To Draw A Dahlia Flower – Step by Step Tutorial

Draw A Dahlia

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Note: Click the slider arrow (or push arrow keys) to see step-by-step.

As we’ve stated earlier, decorative dahlias are renowned for their full bloom, consisting of multiple layers of petals that create a lush and voluminous appearance. The first step of this tutorial is focusing on how to sketch every petal and layer of this flower.

Refer to the pictures carefully and follow our guide to capture the beauty and elegance of the dahlia.

Step 1: Start at the middle of your canvas. Draw the first petal using curved lines. The shape can be slightly pointed and heading upwards.

Also, add subtle lines and curves to this petal. These lines mimic its natural texture and create a sense of dimension.

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Step 2: Next, add two more petals on each side of the first one. Vary their size and shape for a more natural look.

Remember that some petals may overlap, while others might be partially hidden behind others. Be sure to erase any unnecessary lines that the petals might cover.

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Step 3: Finish this first layer of petals by adding the rest using diverse “U” shapes. Due to the side of view, these will appear small and be partially hidden (The next step will explain why).

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Step 4: Inside that first layer you’ve just sketched, use extra curves to represent the inner petals around the flower center.

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Step 5: To complete this first part of the flower head, add gentle curves to the petals to give them a soft and organic look.

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Step 6: Then, move to a larger layer of petals. Draw the first petal, which is a bit longer.

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Step 7: Continue adding more petals to cover this layer. Again, sketch them in diverse sizes and shapes for a better effect. For petals partially hidden by the previous layers, decide how they’ll appear and vary your stroke.

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Step 8: Add details for each petal in this layer by sketching lines of different lengths extending from its base to the tip. These lines will mimic the natural contours of the petals.

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Step 9: Now that you’re pretty familiar with the technique for drawing the dahlia petals, finish its overall look by sketching the rest. These petals can be even larger and more open than the previous layers. They should also partially overlap to create a cascading effect that adds depth to the flower head.

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Step 10: Add dimension and texture to these petals using curved strokes of different lengths and hardness.

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Step 11: You’ve just mastered the flowerhead. To complete the sketch, let’s conquer the left parts of the decorative dahlia. Continue by adding a slender stem extending from the bottom of the flowerhead. To add a more realistic touch to the stem, lightly sketch curved lines along its length.

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Step 12: Determine where the leaves will be positioned along the stem. Decorative dahlia leaves are often placed alternately on opposite sides of the stem.

Draw the first leaf by sketching serrated lines to form a leaf shape attached to the stem. You can choose to let its tip be hidden by the petals.

Add the main vein to the leaf by drawing a thin line that radiates from the base to the tip. Then, draw smaller veins branching out toward the edges of the leaf to mimic the secondary veins. You can also add smaller veins branching out from the secondary veins for the tertiary veins, which are finer and more delicate than the previous ones.

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Step 13: Now, draw another leaf on the other side of the stem. Use the same guide and vary your stroke to give this leaf a diverse appearance.

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Step 14: Once you’ve successfully nailed every part of the dahlia, it’s time to make them dance in colors.

Start with the lightest color that corresponds to the base color of your dahlia’s petals. Apply this color from the center first, using smooth and even strokes.

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Step 15: Use a white or light-colored pencil to add highlights where the light hits the petals (usually at their tips). This will make your dahlia look more three-dimensional.

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Step 16: Use a darker shade to add shading to the areas that are in shadow or where the petals overlap.

Step 17: Moving to the stem, choose a green hue for this part and apply it evenly.

Step 18: You can use that same green for the leaves or pick another tone in your color palette for a varied look.

Step 19: Don’t forget to add shading and highlight the leaves’ edges to create a better look.

Conclusion

We hope you enjoyed this tutorial on how to draw a decorative dahlia. But your fantastic drawing is just the beginning. There are countless ways to develop this centerpiece further, and we’re sure you’ll enjoy any idea below to enhance your dahlia drawing and level up your skills.

Consider making this flower a different size or shape. How about creating a bouquet or vase of dahlias? This could be a fun way to experiment with different proportions and perspectives.

Explore different color palettes to give your dahlia a fresh and imaginative look. While the shade of pink is popular, yellow, orange, or purple will breathe a charming vibe into your drawing.

Have you ever considered incorporating a background (solid color, patterned, or landscape background, to name a few)? Or else, adding natural elements like dewdrops, butterflies, or bees is a great way to bring your dahlia to life and showcase its interaction with the environment. Try this idea, and you’ll be impressed by the result.

Don’t be afraid to experiment with any ideas. Have fun, and let your creativity run wild.

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