Want to draw mammal noses? Learn to see the similarities of structure across species and then the nuance of the details of the particular species you are drawing. Practice drawing noses from the front, side and three-quarter view. Start with a light ghost drawing to block in the basic shape. Notice that the nostrils make a “dyslexic 66” with the second 6 reversed. Fill up a page with drawing of noses from photographs you find in close-up photographs online. In each example, click the first image to start a step-by-step slideshow.
Dog Family Noses
Block in the basic shape. Note that the top surface of the nose forms a roof over the end of the snout instead of just inserting into the front. The center line is a useful reference line.
Observe the change in the shape of the far nostril. Because it faces away from the viewer, it will appear more eliptical in a 3/4 view.
Cat Family Noses
Cat noses are a sharp T on the front plane of the snout. Look for “wings” on the sides of the nostrils.
The bottom of the nose makes a crisp arrow pointing down toward the mouth. The suture between the two sides of the nostril is right on the center line and may be less clear toward the top of the nose.
Block in the swelling of the nose area with a ball.
The nostrils will change shape as they flare with each breath. Suggest the ridge of tissue around the nose with a small curved line below and lightly above the nostril. This suggests the edge of the raised area around the nose.
Shade the area around the raised ridge. This helps to show the contour of the nose. Note where a line is used at the edge of the nostril and where the ridge is only suggested with shadow and highlight.