Introduction: How to Draw a Levitating Soccer Ball

This is a great drawing project to do, relatively easy to draw, it only requires a few skills such as shading. You can even customize your 3D soccer ball and draw your favorite team's logo on it.

Step 1: Materials

For this drawing you will need:

Some paper

8B pencil and a B pencil (I used Mont Marte graphite sketch pencils)



Sharpie permanent marker

Artline 200 Fineliner 0.4 mm

Colored pencils for the team logo

Tissue or your finger for smudging


Step 2: Drawing the Ball

Firstly, find the middle of the page, and mark a dot 14 cm from the bottom. Then set your compass to 9 cm wide, which will give our ball a diameter of 18 cm. Place the spike end of the compass on the marked dot, and draw the circle.

Step 3: Sketching the Hexagons and Pentagons

Now, we're going to draw the hexagons and pentagons on the soccer ball. It doesn't matter if you get it wrong, just draw lightly at first so it's easy to rub out, then when you're happy with what you've got press harder. Start by drawing 2 pentagons, almost symmetrical. Add a chopped off part of a pentagon at the top, and a pentagon at the bottom. *IMPORTANT* Make sure to curve some of the lines slightly, to replicate the curve of a real ball, making it more 3D.

Connect the lines from the pentagons, to form hexagons. Continue to make hexagons and make sure that each pentagon is surrounded by hexagons, before drawing another pentagon. This step can be a little tricky, and so if you get stuck, use the template. You should be able to save, and print off the template which you can use to help you draw it.

Step 4: The Light Points

This step is essential, this really makes it look 3D when it's finished. Use the pictures or template as a guide and mark some areas with the Artline 400 to NOT shade, until right near the end. Then go over the pencil lines with the Artline to really define the shapes.

Step 5: Coloring the Pentagons

For this step we're going to only use the Sharpie, with it color in all the pentagons. Making sure to NOT color in the areas you marked (middle right picture). You might need to go over the pentagons twice to make sure you get a solid black.

Step 6: Drawing the Team Logo

This step is personal, you can pick your favorite team to draw on the ball. I chose F.C Barcelona to draw on my soccer ball. I drew the outline with the Artline marker, and then did the details inside.

Step 7: Shading

This is a very important step, as it makes your soccer ball much more realistic and 3D. Start by marking off a few spots on the hexagons to keep lighter, this will add to the 3D effect. Next, lightly shade the light areas in the black pentagons, then smudge the shading with a tissue or your finger. Go over the whole soccer ball lightly, EXCEPT the middle top hex (the hexagon with the team logo in it). When shading darker areas go over lightly, then press a little harder and repeat until you get the desired tone. Shading multiple layers not only gives you the option to rub out areas to alter, but fills in the area better and gives smoother coverage. Keep doing layered shading until you're happy with the result, but make sure to keep the hexes near the top, lighter than the ones near the bottom.

Step 8: The Shadow

To shade the shadow, draw an oval like shape underneath the the ball. You want to draw the shadow almost to the edge of each side, and have the top of the shadow about 1 cm away from the bottom of the ball. When you're happy with the shape of the shadow, press harder to darken the shadow. Pretend you have a slightly smaller oval inside the shadow, and leave near the edges a little lighter to give the effect of it levitating. Once you're done with the shadow, use your ruler to mark a straight line just underneath the widest part of the soccer ball. Next, cut across the line, and around the top of the ball. This trick will make the ball seem as though it's hovering above the page.

Step 9: Final Touches

Lastly, rub around the ball to make really contrast the ball from the white background. Also, I found that after shading with the pencils, some graphite found its way onto my black pentagons. So to fix this I just went over my pentagons with the sharpie again.

Step 10: Admire

Now, you're done! You can try out all different angles and see what angle your 3D soccer ball drawing works best. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, if you have any questions about techniques i used, or just some tips, comment and i will try to get back to you. If you do draw this make sure to click the "I Made It" button to let me know, and post a picture of your drawing in the comments.

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