how to draw graffiti letters

How to Draw Graffiti Letters – A Fun and Dynamic Drawing Tutorial

Learning how to draw graffiti lettering is a great way to learn how to make all sorts of unique letters. Graffiti is quite abstract, drawing graffiti words is always up to interpretation, which means there are all different kinds of directions we can take when drawing graffiti words. Graffiti-style letters can come in all sorts of forms and shapes, we will play around with a few simple ideas in this tutorial. In this easy beginner graffiti letters tutorial, we will draw ideas from various elements, which will give us good direction and inspiration for a few graffiti letters drawings. We will also find that graffiti is a self-expressive way of writing, that being said, sometimes it can be difficult to start the process. This tutorial will break down a few simple skills to help get the creative ideas flowing, which you can take and utilize in your graffiti letters drawing.



Understanding How to Drawing Graffiti

In this easy beginner graffiti letters tutorial, we will be looking at a three-step process that helps us create simple line text into unique graffiti-style letters. This tutorial is a simple and fun guide that gives you insight into the process of drawing graffiti words within a doable method. Graffiti can often seem so difficult to draw at first glance, as the words can often be very intricate and abstract, making it seem impossible to do ourselves. However, you will find that graffiti is a very simple task. It requires a three-step rule, which can transform the text into all sorts of graffiti-style letters. Learning how to draw graffiti in this tutorial will provide you with the skill set to create unique and interesting graffiti styles, allowing you to create your own interesting and unique graffiti letter drawing.

How to Draw Graffiti


Necessary Materials

In this tutorial, as we learn how to write graffiti letters, we will first develop the foundation of our graffiti-style letters with a pencil. So perhaps we will want to have an eraser on hand for any mistakes as well. We will also be using some markers, preferably Copic markers, however, you can use any kind of marker. As we learn how to write graffiti letters, try to have an assortment of at least three different colors. We will also be using some micron pens, again, we want to have at least two different colors. We also want a thick black marker, as well as a thinner black marker for outlining and detailing in the graffiti words. 

  • 300 GSM paper
  • Copic markers
  • Micron pens
  • Pencil

Now that we have all our materials ready for the tutorial, we want to proceed by placing ourselves within an environment that is going to help us concentrate throughout the whole tutorial. Learning how to draw graffiti letters is not difficult. To make the process more fun, you could listen to some music or a podcast as you go through the different parts of the tutorial. As we learn how to do graffiti words through a few simple steps. Try to have fun with the process. This tutorial is an easy beginner graffiti letters tutorial, giving you the basics on how to draw graffiti letters, using some simple and easy tricks. That being said let us see what we are to expect.



Step-by-Step Instructions on How to Draw Graffiti Letters

 In this tutorial on how to draw graffiti, we will be going through a few simple steps that describe the process of transforming letters into graffiti-style letters. We will begin by writing a word or phrase called ‘brown fox’. The reason we will use ‘brown fox’ is that there is a good variety of shapes within this assortment of letters. We will proceed to write this phrase on our page with our pencils. From there we will go through the three essential steps that will transform the text into graffiti. These three essential steps are body, dimension, and details.

With these three steps, you can turn any text into a graffiti letters drawing. Now that we know what to expect, let us go through the process of learning how to draw graffiti.


Step 1: Writing the Text

This step is really simple; however, we do want to make sure we place our text within a reasonable scale on our paper. Since we will be making the text three-dimensional you can also space the letters out a bit. A good suggestion is to also keep the letters closer toward one side of a page. This is so that as we add three-dimensionality to the drawing later we have space on the page for adding dimension to the letters.

graffiti letters drawing 01


Step 2: Adding Body to the Text

This is where we begin to thicken our text by drawing lines around our written text. The intention here is to draw around the written text, keeping space between these lines and the text itself. By doing this we will begin to thicken the letters.

graffiti letters drawing 02

As we proceed to draw these lines around the letters, we will find that they might intersect. This is okay, what you want is for them to collide, which you can then, stop drawing the lines. By doing this we will create an overlapping of the letters, making them cluttered and on top of one another. This will create a cool and interesting effect within our graffiti letters drawing.

We want to carry on with this process, drawing lines around each letter.

Remember to keep space between the lines you are drawing and the lines of the letters. We want to create a series of letters that look thick and have mass to them, which is the intention. Again, as you proceed withdrawing around each letter, if you find the lines meet, you can stop drawing the lines every time they intersect. We want the text to have an overlapping quality.

graffiti letters drawing 04

We should be left with a text that looks thick and full, where each letter overlaps over the next letter. By doing this we are already starting to see how the plain text turns into graffiti-style letters. Again, as you draw these lines around each letter, you can stop every time the lines intersect. We should see that as we go through all the letters, we are left with a thicker text. From here, we can proceed to erase the line-text within the body of the thicker lettering that we have drawn around the original text. As we do this, we will see that the graffiti letters drawing starts to become more visible.

graffiti letters drawing 06

We now want to finalize the thicker-body text with the lines that contextualize the open letters more clearly. We do this for any letters that have holes in them, such as the letters B, R, and O’. We can also decide whether we want these holes to be small or large, which will result in a thicker or thinner letter. Consider this when adding in these circle lines within each of these letters.


Step 3: Adding Dimension to the Text

Let us begin by outlining the text with a colored-micron pen, you can use any color for this. We are going to add some three-dimensionality to the text. We do this by choosing which perspective we would be looking at the text from. We want to consider which side of the page has more space, for instance, let us give dimensionality on the right side of the text as there is more space on the right side of the page.

graffiti letters drawing 09

We will proceed with adding three-dimensionality on the right side of each letter. We do this by drawing lines that begin at the edges of each letter, which we then draw alongside and parallel to the right side of each letter. For this, we can use our micron pens. We can also allow the lines to go over the next letter in the text as these parts of the letter will be colored in completely.

We want to go through the text starting from the left side moving along the text to the right side.

By doing it this way we are going to make sure we, for one, add dimension to each letter, and secondly, we will keep consistency in adding dimension to one side of the text. Again, allow these lines to overlap over the next text. By doing so, it will help you to understand how each letter sits over or on top of the next letter.

graffiti letters drawing 10

Once we have added the three-dimensional lines for each letter, we will proceed to color in each of the three-dimensional sections of each letter. You can use any color for this, perhaps a red or blue, however, you want to color in the sides of each letter that are indicative of their three-dimensional part. Take your time as you color in the side dimensional parts of the text. We want to proceed with this process until we have colored in the side aspects of each letter. You can play around with different colors, again this tutorial is just a basic guide that gives you the tools which you can use in all sorts of ways. However, for the sake of this tutorial, let us perhaps stick with a single color for our graffiti letters drawing. Making it easier for us as we learn how to draw graffiti.

graffiti letters drawing 12

From here, we want to take a thin black marker and proceed to outline the text. We want to outline both the letter and its three-dimensional sides. Again, it is always a good idea to start from the left side of the text and move through the whole text. Take your time and go gently, as using materials like markers and pens are permanent and we do not want to make any unnecessary mistakes. We want to make sure we outline all aspects of the text. Again, make sure you outline both the two-dimensional and three-dimensional aspects of the text. By outlining the text, we are giving it a more vivid quality, as the black marker contrasts the color of the text.

graffiti letters drawing 14


Step 4: Adding Details to the Text

There are all kinds of details one can add to a graffiti text. However, in this tutorial, we will add a detail that gives the text a liquid feel. We do this by taking our black markers and proceeding to draw a shape that fits in the bottom half of each letter. We want the shape to have a negative space between the lining of the letter and the shape itself, giving a highlight quality to the text.

This shape can be squiggly and curvy; however, we want to keep it in the bottom half of the letter.

We want to do this for each letter, as we draw these liquid-like shapes within each letter we want to draw one or two little circular shapes within the larger liquid-like shape in the bottom half of each letter. These little circular shapes will be left out, giving the liquid-like shape highlights once we color them in. You can make the liquid-like shape run along the inner lining of each letter, however, keep them predominantly at the bottom half of each letter.

graffiti letters drawing 16

We then can proceed to take a larger black marker and color in the liquid shapes completely. However, we want to keep the little circular shapes within the larger liquid-like shape untouched. By doing so, these little shapes will seem like bubbles or highlights that give the liquid-like shape more dimension. As we color in each of the liquid-like shapes we should see the text is turned into a more unique and graphic drawing. There are all sorts of ways to add details to a graffiti drawing, however, the intention is to always create a vivid and pop-like quality on the text. We do this by adding details that have maximum contrast. For instance, creating a vivid black liquid-like detail that contrasts against the color of the text.

How to Write Graffiti Letters

Once we have colored in the black liquid-like detail in the bottom half of each letter, we want to take a new color and fill in the rest of the upper half of each letter. By doing so we provide the graffiti text with vivid color contrast that makes the text more of a drawing rather than a simple boring text. We want to leave a little gap between these details and the inner lining of each letter and the bottom liquid-like detail. By doing so we give the text more highlights and contrast. We can proceed to fill in the upper parts of each letter with a new color, making sure we leave a little gap between this detail and the bottom liquid detail of each letter.

We also want to leave a gap between this detail and the inner lining of each letter, the same way we did for the bottom liquid detail.

We can proceed to color in these shapes of each upper section of the letters. This provides the text with more vivid contrast and interesting features. Once we have completely colored in the upper section detail of each letter, we can proceed to add character lines. These are lines we draw with a black marker, running along with the shape and lines of each letter. These lines give the letters more character, making them seem more object-like and giving them a cartoony quality. This is a fun way to enhance graffiti letter drawing.

Graffiti Style Letters

We want to carry on with adding in these character lines within each letter. We can play around with the thickness and length of each line. We want to use the shape of the letters, to guide how we draw these lines. We want to add a few in each text, however, not too many as to overwhelm the text and the previous details added within the graffiti letters drawing.

Drawing Graffiti Words

Once that is complete, we will then proceed to add in one last feature which is to highlight the text with a new color. Highlighting the text is a great way to create more contrast and pop within your graffiti letters drawing. As you add highlights around the text, we will see that the text is pulled into the foreground, adding another dimension of perspective.

Graffiti Letters Drawing

Make sure you fill in that highlight completely. Try to choose a color that complements the other colors that you have added to the text. Using a combination of three colors is also a great amount that provides the graffiti letters drawing with balance. Sometimes using too many colors can be overwhelming. However, this is a guide for you to use and adapt to your graffiti-style drawings in the future.

How to Draw Graffiti

There you have it, an easy beginner graffiti letter tutorial, giving you the basic tools and concepts to transform your texts and words into cool and funky graffiti-style letters. This basic three-step rule of body, dimension, and detail can transform any text into a graffiti letters drawing.

Those are the basic steps on how to draw graffiti.



Tips to Remember

  • Take your time with each step. By doing this you will give yourself the best chance of creating a beautiful drawing.
  • Use the materials you have. These steps can be done using a variety of alternative materials. You don’t need the most expensive tools for graffiti.
  • Spend time on adding dimension. Creating the three-dimensional quality can be tricky so take your time trying to get it right.
  • Most importantly have fun. Explore color combinations and different text sizes. Use this tutorial as a guide to creating your own unique graffiti letter drawing

how to draw graffiti letters


Graffiti-style letters are not difficult once you know the few simple steps that adapt a simple text into a more unique graffiti letter drawing. Learning how to write graffiti letters is about finding the right phrase or letter combo, then learning how to add body, dimension, and details to those letters. In this easy beginner graffiti letter tutorial, we go through each of those concepts and we see how it transforms the text showing us the process of drawing graffiti words.  Now you have a guide on how to draw graffiti. To help you create all kinds of interesting graffiti-style letters.



Frequently Asked Questions


How Can I Improve My Graffiti Letters?

The best way to improve your graffiti skills is by practicing. Perhaps keep a notebook or journal, where you can write down different words and phrases. You then can practice turning each of those phrases into a unique text, using the body, dimension, and detail concepts. Constantly playing around with different text, and turning them into different styles of graffiti can enhance your skills when it comes to drawing graffiti words. Another good suggestion is to draw inspiration from the environment around you. Often the objects within our immediate environments come in all sorts of shapes. Try to notice the variety of shapes found in various objects. By taking note of such patterns, you will find that this can influence your graffiti-style letters.


How Do You Make Graffiti Three-dimensional?

Making an object three-dimensional is not difficult. We start by analyzing the shape of a letter, the shape of the letter is always indicative of how to make that letter into a three-dimensional structure. Generally, you would want to use the concept of a cube as a means of mentally guiding you as you make a letter three-dimensional. Similar to how a cube is made of lines moving in the length, width, and height direction so it will be for letters. If we are dealing with a curved letter, for instance, we want to create a line that moves parallel along the curvature of the letter. If we have a more rigid letter, we can create these three-dimensional lines using the edges of the letter to indicate where they would start. Lastly, we want to consider from which point of view we are looking at these letters, this will define how thick or thin the visible width of the letter will be. As a rule of thumb, you would draw a perpendicular line from the edges of a letter, which you will proceed to draw alongside or parallel to the rest of the sides of the letters.


What Kind of Details Can Enhance Your Graffiti?

There are so many different features to add to a graffiti word or phrase. One major concept that can enhance the quality of a graffiti word is to consider the texture. If we are drawing graffiti words and want them to look shiny, we can play around with how we utilize color and negative space within our drawing. Another suggestion is to consider the shape of each letter, this can be sharp edges or rounded edges. These are some examples that can enhance your graffiti-style letters. However, another good exercise is to draw inspiration from your surroundings and consider how your graffiti letters can be turned into an object that is inspired by organic material, industrial objects, or whatever else that can form the visual quality of your graffiti letters drawing.


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