How to Draw a Paper Airplane

How To Draw A Paper Airplane Step by Step

Learning how to draw a paper airplane is easy. Learning to draw a paper airplane that looks interesting, well, that’s a little bit harder. Paper airplanes were a favorite form of childhood amusement for many of us, so the idea of drawing one should evoke memories of a simpler time in your life.

How to Draw a Paper Airplane
How to Draw a Paper Airplane

One of the great things about paper airplanes is that there are so many different varieties that you can choose from. You can go from the most straightforward design to one that is highly complex. Making things even easier means you won’t have to look for a model. If you have a sheet of paper, you can create your own model.

How to Draw a Paper Airplane
How to Draw a Paper Airplane

Basic Equipment For a Paper Airplane Drawing

When drawing something as simple as a paper airplane, it’s best to stick to the basics. Is there anything that prevents you from getting a canvas and oil paints? No, paper airplanes are a more straightforward subject that lacks the colors and textures that oils excel at producing. The bottom line is a pencil or pen, a straight edge, a sheet of drawing paper, and a piece of copy paper to make the paper airplane with.

You can find essential drawing equipment to complete this task here:  Click here to view my basic equipment list.

Step by Step Instructions

Draw a Triangular Outline

Draw a Triangular Outline
Draw a Triangular Outline

After creating your paper airplane model, it’s time to work. Start by drawing a triangular outline. Typically you would want to start sketching lightly, but the outline you’re creating now probably won’t need to be changed as you complete your drawing.

You should also make sure to use a straight edge to ensure that the outline of the paper airplane is straight. Of course, if you’re drawing a paper airplane that’s already been flown and crashed a few times, then you could get away with having the outline be uneven.

Draw a V Center of the Fold

When you draw the V center of the airplane, you’ll want to use a protractor to ensure you have each side of the V at the same angle, then use a straight edge to draw a nice, crisp line.

Draw the Right Wing of the Paper Airplane

Draw the Right Wing of the Paper Airplane
Draw the Right Wing of the Paper Airplane

Once you’ve finished drawing the body of the paper airplane, it’s time to get to the central part of it, the wings.

Every paper airplane is a little different, with some boasting a simple pair of triangular wings, while others will have multiple folds to create variations in the shape and structure of the wing.

No matter which way you choose to go, make sure you draw the edges straight. Again, unless you’re drawing a paper airplane that has already crashed a few times, having crooked or uneven edges will make your airplane look terrible.

Draw the Left Wing of the Paper Airplane

How to Draw a Paper Airplane
How to Draw a Paper Airplane

Depending on the angle you’re viewing and drawing your paper airplane, you may have to produce a wing with identical symmetry. If that’s the case, a straightforward trick would be to use some tracing paper to trace the outline of the right-wing you just drew.

Then, you can flip the tracing paper over, and you’ll have a perfect mirror reflection that will show you precisely what the left-wing should look like. You can scribble some graphite onto the back of the paper, and you’ll have a quick and easy way of producing a symmetrically identical left wing.

Drawing the Flight Trail of the Paper Airplanes

Drawing the Flight Trail of the Paper Airplanes
Drawing the Flight Trail of the Paper Airplanes

The final component of your paper airplane is the flight tail. Now, not all paper airplanes have flight tails. The simpler ones don’t, and if yours doesn’t, that’s fine.

But, if your paper airplane has a flight tail, then make sure that you follow the same procedures that you’ve used for the rest of the drawing. Straight edges need to be straight, and angles must be identical on each side.

Add Shadow to The Paper Airplane

Add Shadow to The Paper Airplane
Add Shadow to The Paper Airplane

The final step in drawing a paper airplane is to add shading. Paper airplanes are a simple subject, but they will have a range of values like anything else that you draw. Make sure that you accurately portray these values so that your drawing will have a more realistic, three-dimensional appearance.

Ian

Ian Walsh is the creator and author of improvedrawing.com and an Art teacher based in Merseyside in the United Kingdom. He holds a BA in Fine Art and a PGCE in teaching Art and Design. He has been teaching Art for over 24 Years in different parts of the UK. When not teaching Ian spending his time developing this website and creating content for the improvedrawing channel.

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