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How to Draw an Orangutan

The intelligent orangutans belong to the family of apes and are the natives of Southeast Asia. Primarily, they inhabit the rainforests of Malaysia and Indonesia. They are herbivores that mostly feed on sugary fruits. These animals are large, but peaceful in nature. On an average, orangutans grow to about 4 ft. to 5 ft. in height, with the males being taller than the females. Their mouths are visibly protruding like the other apes. There are two species of orangutans – Bornean Orangutan and Sumatran Orangutan. The latter one is more social and interacts easily with human beings. However, both the varieties are known for their intelligent use of tools, nesting, etc. Follow the instructions below to draw an orangutan:

•Model: Apart from being solitary, the Bornean Orangutans possess heavier bodies than their Sumatran counterparts. Their cheek pads and throat pouches are also much bigger. Therefore, you have to choose beforehand regarding the species you want to cover. Search in science magazines, journals, newspapers, books, etc for an appropriate picture to be used as a model for work. The internet also has a large collection of orangutan images.

•Basic structure: The framework design will depend much on the posture you want to capture in the animal. The size and other characteristic differences will also affect the skeletal sketch. Take a circle for the head portion. Draw another smaller circle for the mouth area, keeping the two circles slightly overlapping. Depict the central body with a large oval. Draw angular lines for the limbs. Use small circles for the joints. In the next stage, the size of these circles will determine the thickness of the limbs. Similarly, small ovals will be used for the hands and feet areas.

•Details: Refinement of the frame will also depend upon the species chosen. Starting with the head, the mouth region and the cheek pads of a Bornean Orangutan are so striking that the eyes appear to be low-set or hollow. The Sumatrans have sleek faces with more visible eyes. The central body does not pose much challenge in drawing. Next, add thickness to the limbs. The hands of an orangutan closely resemble those of humans, but the feet differ in their clasping ability.

•Finishing: The final stage of creating an orangutan involves making its fur coat. The fur has a slightly coarse texture and is usually rusty red in color. However, the two varieties of orangutans vary greatly in terms of the thickness of fur. The Sumatran subspecies contains more sparse fur, while the Bornean variety has such thick coat that often appears like a robe. Mostly straight pencil or brush strokes can do the job.