Drawing Butterflies - The Definitive Guide for Procreate Beginners

You'll get everything you need to draw realistic butterflies in Procreate. For beginners and pros.

This is a complete guide on how to draw a butterfly.

Butterflies are such beautiful creatures with intricate and interesting wings. 

You might think they will be hard to draw, but you’ll find out in this tutorial just how easy it can be to draw a realistic butterfly, even if you’re a beginner.

In this tutorial, we’ll go through:

Let’s begin!

Tools needed for this tutorial

For this tutorial you’ll need:

  • iPad Pro
  • Apple Pencil
  • Procreate

You could follow this article without having an iPad or Procreate, however, procreate will make the process a bit faster.

Without further-ado, let’s get to drawing!

How to Draw Butterflies: The Basics

How to draw butterflies for beginners

How to Draw the Body of a butterfly (Base)

Step 1. Draw a vertical line

Start by opening a new canvas and on it, draw a vertical line to determine the center of your butterfly.

Draw a vertical line

Step 2. Let’s get some assistance

In this tutorial, we’ll be using an amazing tool in Procreate a lot.

The Drawing guides.

To find them, go to the small wrench on the top left of your screen.

Go to canvas and turn on “Drawing Guide”.

After that, go to “Edit Drawing Guide”.

use the drawing guides

In this menu, you’ll find different types of drawing guides.

For this tutorial, we’ll use Symmetry.

turn on the symmetry tool

Place the line on top of the vertical line you drew at the beginning.

Press “done” and that’s it.

Now everything you draw on one side will appear as well on the other side!

Just a small little trick to save you time!

Step 3. Draw the head

Start to draw a small circle on the top of the line you drew at the beginning for the head of the butterfly.

draw the head

Step 4. Divide the body

Use the size of the small circle to divide the line using 5 small lines.

divide the body

Two of these sections will determine the length of the thorax.

draw the thorax

And the remaining 3 will be the abdomen.

draw the abdomen

Draw two small curved lines to join the thorax to the abdomen

join the thorax and the abdomen

Step 5. It’s a hairy thorax

The thorax is furry for almost all butterflies.

Using small lines, make the thorax hairy.

add hairs to the thorax

Step 6. How’s your head?

I haven’t got any complaints.

Sorry about that.

Draw a smaller circle inside the circle you drew for the head.

draw a smaller circle inside the head

Using oval shapes, draw the eyes.

add eyes to your illustration

Draw two small mountains in between the eyes.

Add the palpi to your butterfly

This will be your butterfly’s palpi, sort of a butterfly sensory mustache that helps it know if something is food or not.

On the outside of the palpi, draw the antennae.

draw antennae for your butterfly

Step 7. Are those butterfly abs?

Go to the abdomen of your butterfly.

Using the first of the three divisions, make a line to mark out the first division of the abdomen.

start to divide the abdomen

Cut the second section in half.

continue to divide the abdomen

Use those marks to create two more sections.

divide the abdomen more

Divide the last section into 3 parts.

continue to divide the abdomen of the butterfly

Draw lines to finish the abdomen base.

finish the abdomen

Step 8. Clean it up

Make a new layer and place it on top of what you just drew.

Click the layer again to open the menu.

Press “drawing assist” to have the symmetry tool activated on this new layer.

turn on the drawing assist

Use the guides you created, clean up your butterfly body illustration.

clean up the body of your illustration

How to draw butterfly wings (base)

Step 1. Where do the wings go?

Make a new layer.

Use the size of the head to make a mark in the thorax, divide that section in half.

where do the butterfly wings go

Find the center between that point and the end of the thorax.

butterfly wing location

This is the point where the butterfly wings will starts.

Step 2. Top wing guidelines

Don’t worry about following this step on both sides, later on, we’ll turn on the symmetry tool again, for now, let’s do the guidelines for the wings.

Use the size of the body of the butterfly without the antennae to create a horizontal line from the point you created in step 1.

draw a horizontal line to start the wings

Using the same measurement as before, draw a diagonal line from the same point.

draw a diagonal line

Draw a curved line to join these two lines you just created.

add a curved line to join those two lines

Follow that curved line to create the sides of the top wing.

finish the curve of the top wing

For the final part, let’s create the tip of the top wing.

Draw a small “shark fin” shape at the end to create the tip of the wing.

draw the tip of the top wing

Step 3. Bottom wing guidelines

From the same initial point and with the same measurement as before, draw two diagonal lines to start with the bottom wing.

start the bottom wing

Join these two lines with a curved line.

join those lines with a curved line

Continue this curved line on both sides to create the bottom wing base.

finish the curve of the bottom wing

Step 4. Draw both wings

Ok, now that you’ve done the guidelines for the top and bottom wing, it’s time to draw them for real.

To do this, make a new layer and place it on top of the guidelines.

Clink on the new layer to open the layer menu.

Just as we did before, press “drawing assist” to turn on the symmetry tool.

turn on the drawing assist

Once you’ve done that, start tracing the guidelines to create the base of the wings of your butterfly. 

use symmetry to trace the wings

Remember that from the top view, the top wing is always on top of the bottom wing.

Step 5. Basic wing veining - Guidelines

Every species of butterfly had different veinings on its wings.

Right now, we’ll work on a basic set of veins but later in the tutorial, we’ll get to specific butterfly species and the veins on their wings.

Step 6. Top wing basic veining

To start divide the outer side of the upper wing in 6 sections.

Each section should be a bit bigger than the past one as they go down.

Once you’ve done this, draw lines from the marks to the point where the wing comes out.

divide the top wing

Divide the top section in 4 parts and make 4 curved lines.

add 4 lines to the top section

After this, divide the bottom section in half.

add one more line

Now, let’s mark a point on 5 of those lines like this.

create the inner wing cell for the top wing

Join the dots and erase the extra lines.

To finish the top wing, add some folds in between the first marks you made.

add folds to the top wing

Step 7. Bottom wing veining base

Now for the bottom wing.

Make 7 marks on the bottom wing.

start dividing the bottom wing

Now, count 3 of those points, and on the 4th line of the bottom wing, make a mark.

draw the inner cell for the bottom wing

Make marks on the 2 lines surrounding each side of the line you made the first mark on.

After you make the 5 markings, join the dots using curved lines.

To finish the bottom wing, draw some folds in between the first lines you drew.

add some extra folds to the bottom wing

Step 8. Trace the guidelines!

Make a new layer and place it on top of everything you just made.

Click the layer to open the layer menu and turn on “drawing assist”

use the drawing assist

Start tracing the veining so both sets of wings have them.

trace the veins for the butterfly wings

And there you go! The basic body and wings of your butterfly.

You could get creative with this and add any color or marks you want but if you want to learn to draw real butterflies, let’s continue our journey.

Different wing shapes and veins

In this weird, wild world of ours, there’s so many different butterflies.

Each with its own specific wing shape.

there’s so many different butterflies

Each specie of butterfly has its own distinct set of veins and markings.

Each specie of butterfly has its own distinct set of veins and markings.

And some of them are pretty insane if you ask me.

Let’s get to some specific butterfly species!

How to draw a Monarch Butterfly

How to draw a monarch butterfly with procreate for beginners

For these tutorials we’ll use the basic butterfly we drew before.

If you weren’t following along and are all about the specific butterflies, here’s a ready to use procreate file of the basic butterfly for you.

Step 1. Fix those wings

Make a new layer and add some small curves at the ends of the wings to create the shape of the monarch’s butterfly wings.

Change the shape of the wings

Step 2. Monarch markings - top wing

Start by making an arched and curvy line.

start to draw the marks on the top wing

Add an extra line at the bottom of the top wing.

add an extra line to the top wing

Next, make 4 big shapes on the top of the top wing and 4 smaller shapes more toward the inside of the top wing.

add 4 big shapes and 4 smaller shapes for the top wing

Add some extra spots toward the bottom of the top wing.

add some extra spots for the top wing

Make smaller dots and marks toward the outer edge of the upper wing.

Make smaller dots and marks toward the outer edge of the upper wing.

Now add some marks on the edge of the wing.

To finish the marks on the upper wing, make the veins darker.

make the veins darker

Step 3. Monarch markings - bottom wing

Let’s move on to the bottom wing.

Make sort of a wiggly reverse “c” shape.

start to add marks for the bottom wing

Draw small dots on each of the divisions.

add spots tothe bottom wing

Add some extra marks toward the inner side of the wing.

continue adding details to the bottom wing

Now, make some marks on the edge of the wing.

make some marks on the edge of the wing

Darken the veins.

Darken the veins.

And there you go, those are the guidelines for the monarch butterfly markings.

Step 4. Make it double

Make a new layer and place it on top.

Click on the layer to open the layer menu and press “Drawing Assist” to tun on the symmetry tool.

Freebie alert: here’s a link to the color palette I used for the Monarch Butterfly

Using the darkest color, fill in the guidelines you made for the marks on the top wing.

fill in the guidelines you made for the guidelines

When you’re filling this part, try to carefully color around the veins instead of just coloring everything in one go.

Once that’s done, continue to darken the remaining veins of the top wing.

continue to darken the remaining veins of the top wing

Now, make the edges of the marks a bit “dirty”.

make the edges of the marks a bit “dirty”

Using the same color, fill in the marks of the bottom wing.

fill in the marks of the bottom wing

Darken the veins of the bottom wing.

Darken the veins of the bottom wing

Add some light shadows and mess up the edges of the marks a bit to make your illustration look more realistic.

Add some light shadows

Add some light shadows

Step 5. Marks on the body

Let’s continue by making the markings on the body of you butterfly.

add the marks for the body

Now make the head dark.

fill the head

Continue by making the thorax dark as well, remember that the thorax is furry.

fill the thorax

To finish this step, add some shadows to the abdomen.

add some shadows to the butterfly abdomen

Step 6. Bring in the color to the wings!

Make a new layer and place it underneath the layers you were just working on.

Using a dark orange, start to fill in the darker areas of the butterfly wings.

start to add color

Fill in the rest of the wings with a lighter version of that orange.

continue to fill the wings with orange

Using a lighter, more yellowish orange, add some shine to the wings.

add a brighter color to add dimension to your illustration

If your drawing will be on a background that’s not white, make a new layer and place it underneath everything and fill in the spots on the tips of the wings with white.

Step 7. Color the body

On the layer where you where coloring the wings, start to add some orange to the body.

color the body

Darken the head and thorax a bit

Step 8. Finishing touches

You can continue to add some light orange tones where there is light and darker tones for the shadows until you are happy with your illustration.

continue to add some finishing touches

And you just drew a monarch butterfly!

that's how you draw a monarch butterfly using procreate


How to draw a Morpho Menelaus Butterfly

How to draw a morpho menelaus butterfly with procreate for beginners

This is a large and in charge, blue, shiny, magical one.

Let’s begin.

Step 1. Make the body smaller

Starting from the base butterfly.

start with the base butterfly

The wings of this butterfly are bigger in comparison to its body than the monarch butterfly’s.

So, select the body and make it smaller.

make the body smaller

Step 2. Change the wing shape

Not much changes when it comes to the wing shape in comparison to the base.

The top wing is a bit straighter and the bottom one has a bigger inner curve.

change the shape of the wings

Step 3. Morpho Menelau veins

Using the base butterfly, let’s work on the veins of this butterfly species.

This is how the top wing will be.

these are the veins of the top wing

And this will be the bottom wing veins.

these are the veins for the bottom wing

Using the symmetry tool trace the guidelines you created before.

trace the veins for both sides

Step 4. Wing markings

Start by making an initial mark on the top of the top wing.

start to add marks to the top wing

Add 5 marks on top of the line you just created.

add some marks to the top section of the top wing

For the bottom wing make another wiggly line that's thicker on the lower side.

add more marks for the bottom wing

Using the symmetry tool, trace this markings on a new layer to make the markings for both sets of wings.

use the drawing assist
Free color palette alert: Here’s the color palette I used for the Morpho Menelaus Butterfly.
trace the marks for both wings

Step 5. Color them wings

Make a new layer and place it underneath everything you just drew.

Using a dark brownish color, fill in the mark on the top wings.

start to color the top wings

While you’re doing this, remember to carefully color around the veins to make your butterfly look more tridimensional.

Using a lighter version of that color, start to fill in the top of the marking on the bottom wing.

add some color to the bottom wing

Go back to the darker color and continue to fill in the marks on the bottom wings.

continue adding color to the bottom wings

Using the lighter color finish filling in the marks on the bottom wing.

add more color

Using this colors, mess up the edges of the marks a bit to make them look more realistic.

mess up the edges of the marks a bit

Using a dark blue, add a bit of shadows on the inner sides of the wings and at the edges of the markings.

start to add some blue

Make a new layer and place it underneath the one you were working on.

Using a medium tone blue, fill in the wings.

add a base blue

Step 6. Category is: Iridescence 

This is one shiny butterfly, let’s determine where the light will be hitting its wings.

where is the light source

Don’t use the symmetry tool for this part since each wing will shine differently.

Now that you’ve determined the light source, start to slowly lighten the wings accordingly.

start to add brightness

Continue by using a lighter version of this blue that feels a bit more “greenish”

add a brighter color

Use this color to create the highlights of each wing.

continue to make the wings iridescent

Continue to add this colors to the highlights keeping in mind where your light source is.

add even a brighter color

Bring on even a lighter blue color and add more light to this shiny beast.

add a lighter color

Now that the lights are in place, use a darker blue color to the areas in the shadows.

add some shadows to the wings

Step 7. Color the body.

Using the brownish colors you used on the markings, color the body.

color the body

Step 8. Final details

Continue to add light and dark versions of blue on the wings until you’re happy with your butterfly.

work on the final details

And there you have it, you drew a large and in charge, iridescent, blue butterfly!

that's how you draw a blue morpho menelaus butterfly

How to draw a Zebra Swallowtail

How to draw a zebra swallowtail with procreate

Let’s move to a more “angular” butterfly.

Step 1. Fix the body shape

The Zebra Swallowtail is a bit less round that the previous butterflies we’s made.

Let’s begin from the base and change the body a bit to make it more angular.

start with the base butterfly

This butterfly is fluffy all over its body, not only the thorax.

change the body of the butterfly

Step 2. The wing shape

The top wing of the Zebra Swallowtail is more triangular.

fix the top wing

The bottom wing is very different than the ones we’ve drawn so far.

fix the bottom wing

Make a new layer and turn on the symmetry tool.

turn on the drawing assist feature

On this new layer, trace the wing shape we just did.

draw both wings

Step 3. Wing veins

The veins of this butterfly don’t change much from the base butterfly drawing.

Here are the main differences for the top wing.

veins for the top wing

And here are the main differences for the bottom wing.

draw the veins of the bottom wing

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool tuned on and draw the veins of your butterfly.

draw both wings

Step 4. The wild marks

Let’s begin by sketching out the marks of the top wing.

add the markings for the top wing

Now the bottom wing.

add the marks for the bottom wing

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool on and draw the markings for both sets of wings.

draw both wings
Quick side note: Here’s the color palette I used for the Zebra Swallowtail 

Step 5. Bring in the color

Using the darkest color in that color palette, fill in the marks on the top wing.

begin to add color to the top wings

Remember to carefully color around the veins.

With a lighter version of that color, start to fill in the marks on the bottom wings.

start to color the bottom wing

Go back to the darker color and fill in the rest.

finish the bottom wing

Now make a new layer, using the symmetry tool still, and place it underneath everything you just made.

Use a light cream color to fill in the wings.

add a cream base color

Pick a red color and fill in the two of the marks on the bottom wing on both sides.

add red spots to the bottom wing

You can use a darker version of that red to add a bit of dimension to the marks.

add red shadows to the red spots

With a light blue, fill in the other marks on the bottom wing.

add blue marks to the bottom wing

Use a darker version of that color to add some shadow to those marks.

add shadows to the blue marks

Let’s add some shine to the wings.

Choose the lightest color and add some light to the cream section of the wing.

add some shine to the wings

Use this color to add some details on the bottom wing.

add some extra details to the bottom wings

Step 6. Color the body

Use the darker color to fill the center section of the body and the light cream to fill the edges of the body.

color the body

And there you have it! 

A Zebra Swallowtail Butterfly.

this is how you draw a zebra swallowtail butterfly with procreate for beginners

How to draw an Emerald Swallowtail butterfly

Even though the Zebra and the Emerald belong to the swallowtail family, they’re a bit different.

how to draw an emerald swallowtail butterfly with procreate

You can see that if we use the Zebra Swallowtail body to begin this illustration there’s some mild changes.

start with the base body

Let’s begin.

Step 1. Fix the body

The body of the Emerald Swallowtail in less “angular” than the Zebra Swallowtail.

fix the body of the butterfly

Step 2. The wing shape

There’s not so many changes in this department, the only thing is that the bottom wing has more of a tear shape on the part that stands out.

fix the bottom wing

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool turned on and draw both wings using those guides.

trace both wings of the butterfly

Step 3. The markings

This butterfly is more about the colors than the markings.

Let’s begin with the mark on the top wing.

Make two wiggly lines to create the mark on the top wing.

add the marks for the top wing

These are the markings on the bottom wing.

start the marks on the bottom wing

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool turned on.

Draw the markings on both sides.

retrace the marks of the wings

Let’s move to color.

This is the color palette I used for the Emerald Swallowtail

Step 4. Fill in the marks

Using a brownish color, start to fill in the top wings.

fill in the marks

Remember to carefully color around the veins to make your butterfly more realistic.

Do the same for the bottom wings.

fill the marks for the bottom wings

Step 5. Hulk it up!

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool on and place it underneath the layer you were just working on.

Using a medium tone green, fill in the top wing.

start to add green

Do the same for the bottom wing.

fill the wings using a green color

Using an orange color, fill the small mark on the bottom wing.

add orange marks

With a lighter green, make a line on top of the orange mark.

add extra details

Step 6. Shadows, lights and sparkles.

Use a lighter green and add some light to the top wings

add lights and shadows to the wings

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool turned on and place it on top of everything you’ve done so far.

With a more saturated green, start to add some sparkle to the top wing.

start to add green sparkles to the top wing

Continue to do this with different shades of green.

continue adding green sparkles to the top wing

Do the same for the bottom wings.

add green details to the bottom wing

Continue to add details.

continue to add details

Step 7. Define the veins

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool turned on and place it on top.

Use a dark color to go over the being of the butterfly.

darken the veins of the butterfly's wings

Add a bit more of the green sparkle on the center.

add ma bit more sparkle to the center of the wings

Step 8. Color the body

Use a dark color to fill in the body.

color the body

Use the same tones of green as before to add some green sparkle to the body.

add green details to the body of the butterfly

And that’s it! You drew an Emerald Swallowtail butterfly!

this is how you draw an emerald swallowtail butterfly with procreate for beginners

How to draw a Ulysses Butterfly

how to draw a ulysses butterfly with procreate for beginnners

This is another beautiful, shiny, blue, and weird shaped one!

We’ll begin from the Base Butterfly once again.

start from the base butterfly

Step 1. Make the body smaller

Select the body and make it a bit smaller.

make the body smaller

Step 2. Change the wing shape

The Ulysses butterfly has more of the wing shape of a swallowtail, so the top wing is a bit more triangular.

change the shape of the top wing

And the bottom wing is smaller than the top one, it also looks a bit like melted wax.

fix the shape of the bottom wing

Once you’ve done the guideline, make a new layer and place it on top of everything.

Click the layer to open the layer menu, click “drawing assist” to turn on the symmetry tool and trace the wings.

trace both wings

Step 3. Change the wing veins

This is how the top wing veins look for the Ulysses butterfly.

this is how the veins of the top wing look like

And this is how the bottom wing veins look. 

this is how the bottom wing veins looks like

Remember that you can do the guides for this only on one side and then make a new layer with the symmetry tool to make both wings and save time.

trace the wings for both sides

Step 4. The Marks

Let’s begin with the marks for the top wings.

start to add marks for the top wings

These butterflies have a bright blue color toward the center of the wings and a sort of black-brown color on the edges.

Let’s add some more detail where the black color will be.

continue adding marks for the top wing

As for the bottom wing, this is how the markings are.

start to add marks for the bottom wing

Add some extra dots on the edge of the bottom wing. 

add some spots at the edge of the bottom wing

Make a new layer and using the symmetry tool, retrace the markings.

retrace the marks for both sides
Freebie for you: Here’s the color palette I used for the Ulysses butterfly

Step 5. Bring in the color

Using a dark, almost black color, fill in the outside of the wings using the symmetry tool to save you time.

start to fill in the marks

With a lighter brown color, fill in the rest of the outer part of the top wing.

continue to fill the top wings

Return to the darker color and fill in the marks on the bottom wing.

fill in the bottom wings

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool on and place it underneath everything you just did.

Use a medium-light blue to fill the center of the wings.

add a blue base color to the wings

Choose a lighter and brighter blue to add some shine towards the center of the wings.

add a lighter version of the blue

Now, add some mild freckles on the center with a bright green color.

add a bit of green details to the center of the wings

Make a new layer and place it on top of everything.

With a light blue color, start to add some sparkle and freckles to the wings.

continue to add details

Step 6. Color the body

Use a brownish color to lay a base on the body of your butterfly.

color the body

With a lighter version of that color, add some detail.

add some details to the body

To finish you butterfly, choose the green you used on the wings and add some freckles to the body.

add some finishing touches to the body

And there you have it, the Ulysses butterfly!

that's how to draw a ulysses butterfly with procreate

How to draw a Paperkite Butterfly

Let’s continue with a butterfly that has a different shape as the ones we’ve done before.

The Paperkite Butterfly.

how to draw a paperkite butterfly with procreate for beginners

Step 1. Make the body longer

If we take our base butterfly, we’ll notice that the body is a bit too short to be the body of a Paperkite butterfly, so let’s make it a bit longer.

make the body longer

Around 5 sections longer.

Step 2. Change the shape of the wings

The wings of a Paperkite butterfly are way longer than the base we have.

Let’s make the top wing longer.

make the top wing longer

The bottom wing is almost the same as our base, it just has a bit more of a square end.

fix the bottom wing

Make a new layer and place it on top with the symmetry tool on and trace the wings.

trace both wings

Step 3. Top wing veins

Let’s begin with the veins on the top wing.

Draw a line that splits at the end in two.

start to make the veins

Next, divide the wing using 6 marks, each of them a bit bigger than the previous one.

divide the top wings

Elongate the marks by drawing some lines.

make lines for the top wings

Mark a point in 5 of those lines.

mark 5 points

Join the dots with curved lines to create another wing cell.

join the points to draw the inner cell of the top wings

Divide the top section with 3 lines.

divide the top section

To finish the veins of the top wing, add some extra lines to create folds.

add folds to finish the top wing

Step 4. Bottom wing veins

Let’s start by making two lines where the top and bottom wing meet to create sort of a square.

start the bottom wing veins

Next, divide the bottom wing in 3 sections.

Draw two lines to create the 3 sections.

draw to lines

On the inside on the middle section, make 4 points that create an arch.

add four points to the bottom wing

Join these dots.

join the 4 points to create a wing cell for the bottom wing

From those dots, draw 6 lines that fan out.

draw 6 lines that fan out

To finish, add extra lines in the last section of the bottom wing.

add an extra line for the bottom wing

Make a new layer with the “drawing assist” turned on.

turn on the drawing assist

Trace the veins for both wings.

finish both wings

Step 5. Wing Marks

These marks are fun and wiggly!

Let’s start by creating these shapes on the inner cell of the top wing.

start to add the marks for the top wing

After that, darken the veins.

darken the veins of the top wing

Add some spots at the outer edge of the top wing.

start to add dots to the edges of the top wing

Now, make a wiggly line to surround those dots.

continue adding the marks for the top wing

Draw another wiggly section in the center.

finish the marks for the top wings

Now, the bottom wing marks.

Start by darkening the veins around the middle cell of the bottom wing.

start the marks of the bottom wing

Darken the veins and add two small marks on the top.

start to darken the veins of the bottom wing

Add some spots on the edge of the bottom wing.

add some extra dots to the edges of the bottom wing

Surround those dots with a wiggly line.

continue adding marks to the bottom wings

Add some extra details in the center of the bottom wing.

finish the marks of the bottom wing

Trace the marks on a new layer using the symmetry tool.

use the drawing assist

Step 6. Color time

Make a new layer with the drawing assist on and place it on top.

Here is the color palette I used for the Paperkite butterfly.

Using the darkest color, go over the marks you made in the previous step.

start to add color to the wings

Do the same for the bottom wings.

add color to the bottom wings

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool on and place it underneath everything.

Use a medium cream color to fill in the wings.

add a cream base color

Use a lighter version if that color to add some dimension to the wings.

add dimension to the wings

Add a bit of shadows with a more saturated color and continue adding colors to create dimension.

Step 7. Color the body

With a light grey color, fill in the body.

start to add color to the body

Go to a darker color and make some mark son the body of the butterfly.

add darker marks to the body of your butterfly

WIth a lighter color, add some light to the body.

finishing details to the body

And that’s it! You drew a Paperkite Butterfly!

this is how you draw a paperkite butterfly with procreate for a beginner

How to draw a Goliath Birdwing Butterfly

Let’s finish this tutorial with the second largest butterfly in the world.

how to draw a goliath birdwing butterfly with procreate as a beginner

This thing looks like an acid butterfly and I here for it!

Let’s begin.

Step 1. Different body shape

Let’s start with the base.

start from the base butterfly

The Goliath’s body is a bit different.

fix the body

It’s longer and thicker in the bottom.

That’s what she said.

Ok, moving on.

Step 2. Wing shape

The top wing of the Goliath is bigger and more angular than the base.

redraw the top wing

The bottom wing is sort of similar but it has a small bump.

change the bottom wing

Once you’ve done the base, make a new layer and with the symmetry tool on, trace the wings.

trace both wings for your butterfly

Step 3. Completely different wing veins y’all

So, for the veins of the Goliath, we’ll have to start from scratch.

Make 8 marks all along the outer and under side of the top wing.

start to divide the top wing

Make sure that each mark is bigger than the previous one.

From those marks, draw some lines until it looks like this.

draw the veins of the top wing

Add some folds to finish the veins of the top wing.

add folds to the top wing

Now, to the bottom wing.

Make 6 marks on the bottom wing.

divide the bottom wing

Elongate those marks to make lines.

draw lines on the bottom wing

Join the ends to make another wing cell.

draw the inner cell of the bottom wing

Add fold only to the bottom 2 sections of the wing.

add the folds of the bottom wing

Make a new layer and place it on top of the drawing with the drawing assist on.

use the drawing assist tool

Trace the veins on both wings.

draw both wings

Step 4. Wing marks

The marks of this butterfly aren’t super complex.

This is how the top wings marks are.

draw the marks of the top wing

The bottom wing markings start out like this.

start the bottom wing marks

Then, make a section around the veins that are inside the line you made before.

finish the bottom wing marks

Make a new layer and place it on top of the drawing with the drawing assist on.

turn on drawing assist

Trace the marks lightly on both wings.

Step 5. Color time, acid edition

Here’s the color palette I used for the Goliath Birdwing.

Ok! The funnest part has arrived.

WIth the darkest color of the color palette, start filling in the marks in the top wings.

start to add color to the top wing

Remember to color carefully around the veins to make your butterfly drawing look more realistic.

Do the same for the bottom wings.

start to add color to the bottom wing

Make a new layer with the symmetry tool on and place it underneath everything you just made.

Using a bright green color to fill in the wings.

add green to the wings

With a darker color, start to add some shadows.

start to add shadows to the wings

Continue to do this with different versions of green.

add details to the wings

Take a bright yellow and go over the markings on the bottom wings.

add yellow to the bottom wings

Take a darker yellow and start to add some shadows to with it more dimension.

add yellow shadows to the bottom wings

Make a new layer with symmetry and place it on top of everything.

Start to add some details were the black and the green meet.

add finishing details to the wings

Step 6. Color the body

Take a dark color and fill the head and the thorax, leaving a few marks.

add black to the head and thorax

Use a bright yellow to add some color to the abdomen.

add yellow to the abdomen

Add some shadows and you’re done!

That’s how you draw a Goliath Birdwing Butterfly.

Extra Tutorial: How to draw a butterfly from the side

I’ll be drawing a Morpho Menelaus butterfly from the side.

how to draw a butterfly from the side as a beginner

I really like this butterfly, both the upper and the underside of its wings are so beautiful!

Let’s get into it.

Step 1: Begin at the beginning

Let’s start this butterfly illustration with some rough guidelines.

start with the guidelines

I recommend to focus on the shapes and not the details for this part.

For this part, remember that, from this view, the bottom wind is on top of the top wing.

Step 2: A bit more detail

Start to create the folds at the end of the wings of your butterfly.

fix the shades of the wings

Once you like how it’s looking, it’s time to clean the lines of your illustration a bit.

clean the lines

Step 3: The thorax

Start to gently map out where the thorax will be.

draw the thorax

Step 4: The legs

Almost all butterflies have 3 pairs of legs.

Let’s add those in.

Start with the 3 legs that are closer to you.

start to draw the legs of the buttefly

Now the legs that are further from you.

add the legs that are further from you

Step 5: The head

Draw a small bean for the head.

draw the head

Draw another one inside of it to create the eye.

draw the eyes

Now, draw a small oval for the palpi.

draw the palpi

Make a small circle under the head to create the proboscis (The nectar sipping thingy)

draw the proboscis

To finish the head, draw to curved lines to create the antenna.

draw the antennas

And that’s the base to draw a butterfly from the side.

Let’s turn this base body into a morpho menelaus butterfly.

Step 6. Details on the body

Start to add some small details to the thorax.

add marks to the thorax

Step 7. The veins

Start by creating a line that, halfway, divides into 5 smaller lines on the top wing.

start to draw the veins of the top wing

Under this line, divide the to wing with 4 marks.

divide the top wing

Elongate these marks to create lines.

add lines to the top wing

Join the ends of those lines to create the inner cell of the top wing.

add the inner wing cell of the top wing

To finish the veins of the top wing, add some folds.

add folds to the top wing

Now for the bottom wing.

Add 10 dots to the edge of the bottom wing.

divide the bottom wing

Expand the first 7 of those dots and the 10th one into lines to create the veins of the bottom wing.

draw the veins of the bottom wing

To finish, add some folds.

add some folds to the bottom wing

Step 8. The marks

Start by creating an edge on the wings.

start to add marks to the wings

Do another line following the first you made closer to the edge.

continue with the marks of the butterfly wings

Repeat that twice for the top wing and once for the bottom wing.

Fill in the first section and add some small dots on the edge.

continue the marks of the wings

Step 9. The eyes

This mark is one of my favorite butterfly marks.

It looks like there’s some eyes on the wings, this is a way that the butterfly has to defend itself and confuse its predators.

Let’s draw them.

Do 3 on the top wings and 4 on the bottom wing.

add eye marks to the wings

Once you’ve done that, add some final details.

add some final details to the marks of the wings

Step 10. Time to color

Here’s the color palette I used to make the Morpho Menelaus butterfly from the side.

Make a new layer, place it underneath everything you just drew, and start to fill in everything with a medium brown color.

add a brown color base

With a darker version of that color, start to add some shadows to the wings.

start to add shadows

Now, with a lighter version of the first color, add some highlights.

add some light to the wings

Pick a medium cream color to work on the marks of the wings.

add a cream color to the marks of the wings

Start to add a bit of light with a lighter version of that color.

add some light details to the wings

Pick a dark brown and add some details on the eyes and on the rest of the marks on the wings.

add some dark colored details to the butterfly wings

Pick a more saturated brown, almost red, and add some color to the markings.

add some color to the wings

Continue to add detail switch a light cream color.

continue to add details to the wings

Add some details on the wings with a lighter brown to give them a bit more dimension. 

add some finishing details to the wings

Step 11. Color the body

With a darker brown, add some shadows to the body.

color the body

With the more saturated brown, add some color to the legs.

add some details to the body

Finish it up by adding a bit of cream color to the body.

add a bit of cream color to the butterfly body

And you’re done!

That’s how to draw a Morpho Menelaus from the side.

that's how to draw a butterfly from the side if you're a procreate beginner

 Final words

We’ve reached the end, my friends, the end.

This is how you draw a bunch of different butterflies with procreate, even if you’re a beginner.

how to draw butterflies with procreate as a beginner

I hope you enjoyed this beast of a tutorial and that it was helpful for you!

It was a blast for me to make.

I would love to hear from you!

Which was your favorite butterfly?

Let me know in the comments.

Until next time, stay awesome!

Claudia.


Written by Claudia Riveros