How to Draw an Adorable Elephant in Inkscape

In this drawing tutorial, we’ll be creating an absolutely adorable pink elephant using fairly simple tools in Inkscape. Let’s jump right in!

The Final Result

pink elephant cartoon

1. Drawing the Head

Step 1

I’m working with a 400px by 400px document, so let’s start by drawing a perfect circle (control+drag) with the Ellipse tool. Mine is about 220px and I made it a nice pink color.

draw a circle

Step 2

Now grab the Spiral tool and draw a spiral with the following settings: Turns 5.45, Divergence 8.180, Inner radius 0.095. Also, I set the stroke at 5px with round caps and a slightly darker pink color.

spiral tool elephant trunk

Step 3

To draw an ear, let’s use the Pencil tool with Smoothing 50 and just freehand it like I have below. You can of course adjust the nodes afterwards to fine tune your ear.

draw an ear

Step 4

Once you’ve got your ear all drawn up, copy and paste it. Then flip it horizontally and position it on the other side of the head. You’ll have to use Object > Lower or the Page Down key to adjust the z-index.

copy ear

Step 5

For some more detail, let’s copy and paste the first ear again and shrink it down a bit. This will make a nice inner ear after we darken the pink fill a bit.

create inner ear

Step 6

To draw some simple eyes, just draw a couple of black circles and position/scale them accordingly.

draw eyes

Step 7

And of course, a couple more white dots to add some reflection on those eyes.

eye reflection

2. Drawing the Body

Step 1

For the body, we’ll just be drawing another perfect circle at about 285px.

draw circle

Step 2

Now we need to draw some stubby legs with the Pen tool. Adjust the nodes to make them look their best, or just follow what I have below. I gave this leg the exact same colors we’ve been using.

draw a leg

Step 3

Then we’ll need to copy and paste another leg. We’ll also flip it horizontally and rotate it a bit to make it look right.

copy legs

Step 4

And we’ll do this once more, but this time we’ll need to place the leg behind the elephant.

copy another leg

3. Doing Some Shading

Step 1

We’ll start shading the ear, so copy and paste a couple of that inner ear shape we drew earlier.

copy and paste inner ear

Step 2

Now take one of the shapes and stretch it a bit larger over the other one. With both of them selected, head up to Path > Difference.

position and scale

Step 3

What you’ll end up with is a nice shape to use for shading.

shading shape

Step 4

With our new shape, we’ll be able to color it and position it appropriately for shading that inner ear. This is the technique we’ll be using for shading this elephant.

position and color

Step 5

Now we’ll work on the head shading, so go ahead and copy a couple of those.

head shading

Step 6

Repeat the same technique we used for the ear and put the shading in place.

position head shading

Step 7

Since the body is just another circle, we can do the exact same thing. Don’t forget to position the shading behind the legs.

body shading

Step 8

Finally, we’ll shade the legs. Start by copying a couple of the leg shapes.

copy legs

Step 9

Scale and rotate them to something similar to what I have below. Then let’s Path > Difference.

position and difference

Step 10

Now go ahead and put the shading into place.

position the shading

Step 11

Finally, let’s just darken that leg a bit for some final shading.

shade entire leg

Step 12

All that’s left to do is add some sort of background or something, then you’re done!

add background

Look How Cute!

So there’s our adorable pink elephant. As you can see, it was really easy to do because of the simple shapes, but we also went over some cool techniques in Inkscape. Hopefully you learned a thing or two – thanks for reading!

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