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March 17, 2007
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How to Draw Black People by Nubia06 How to Draw Black People by Nubia06
There are probably lots of people that would like to draw black people but don't know how. That can't be helped since many of us began by getting or ideas from existing anime/manga, who rarely have black characters. I couldn't help but share my knowledge with others. This is my first ever tutorial so please don't hunt me down if it's not perfect. If you have any valid suggestions or comments, please feel free to make them.

Now that that's out of the way, let me just say this. If anyone has a problem with me using the term black instead of something more politically correct (i.e. African American) I'm sorry about that. The reason I use that term is because it includes anyone of African descent whether they be American, Brazilian, English, or actually African. Not only that but that's what I grew up with and I'm not very politically correct.
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BlackKopGirl Featured By Owner Dec 7, 2014  New member Hobbyist Digital Artist
I love this. 
robertsloan2 Featured By Owner Edited Nov 19, 2014
Thank you for an excellent tutorial! The one manga idea that I have must be diversity oriented and this is an enormous help. You've shown me ways to handle every one of my characters. Thank you!

And thanks for the genre point about unnatural colors. Out in the real world I see people using fanciful hair dyes all the time, it's migrated out of the stories into reality where hair is concerned. 

How to translate stylized features and still convey ethnic features is very interesting and relevant. I think there are probably ways to do this with Hispanic and native South American people too. Also sometimes face shape can be altered from the standard manga shape to show more specific ethnic backgrounds. 

I remember a fellow student from Kenya when I was in college, who wasn't just dark brown, he was literally black, so dark it was a neutral tone. He had gorgeous blue highlights on his skin in the sun and distinctive Masai features. He was all a study in angles. Translating him to anime style I'd have to draw him more like the older characters in Ninja Scroll and get the highlights in on him, to convey that. Shadows were more matte and oddly warmer, but that also depended on what he wore because reflected color is quite strong on very dark skin. I think he was dark even for pure African descent. His complexion has stuck in my mind ever since. 

He dated a blue eyed, ice blonde and slightly plump girl from Finland, they both spoke about 8 or 9 languages in common and had many shared interests. They both belonged to a club for foreign exchange students. The girl was horrified at the racism in the USA and frankly confused by it. 
EmberRain319 Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2014
Thank you for this. I'm not a good artist but i want to draw my own super hero. She's going to be a mix between African and Native American and this tutorial is more then helpful. Again Thank You!!!
trueLuminus Featured By Owner Edited Sep 5, 2014
Excellent tutorial.  I'm having trouble finding artists that can do black characters.  MANY artists need to see this, stat!  Oh, yeah, you could just say Ethnic.  African American carries it's own set of problems.  European American?  Asian American?  Jewish American?  I think you see where the problem lies.
SecretsEtcetera Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Would you say Papa Mbaye Siki (… of Kuroko no Basuke is a good or bad example?
singer-of-songs Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Really helpful! Thanks so much!
castformrain Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm so glad somebody made a tutorial like this! Especially the section about hair.
Blizky Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2014
Thank you. It seems to be some kind of taboo about black people. (I'm not American so I  don't really get it)) I want to include a big bad ass black general and his beautiful daughter on my comic and is hard to find references. Any comment about eyes would be appreciated :) thank you
Kebiru Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Hobbyist Filmographer
Have to save to my studies folder.
princessofvernon Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2014
Its very helpful 
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