Hello everyone and welcome to another stunning tutorial from the Drawing Factory,  this time you will learn how to draw Fear from the Pixar movie Inside Out by Pixar Studios.

Fear is one of the five emotions controlling Riley Andersen’s mind. He lives in her brain and works with the other emotions.

For this tutorial, I used the drawing software SketchBook Pro and a drawing tablet.

If you are looking for a guide to buy a graphic tablet you can check out my top 10 favorite drawing tablets. Also if you want to try out SketchBook Pro, you can Download Free Autodesk Software Trials Now!

In this first step, I am showing an incredibly useful technique to reproduce with high fidelity one image you might want to use as a reference for your drawing. I called the technique the smart grid technique.

You might be familiar with the idea of using a grid on the original drawing to use as a reference to then reproduce the original drawing as closely as possible and that technique definitely works. However, I think that my smart grid is a better version of this traditional technique.

Basically, you draw a series of reference lines directly in contact with certain elements of the original drawing instead of just drawing a random square grid on it.

The main advantages of the star grid are that you can draw fewer lines than a normal grid and those lines are going to guide you with extreme precision on where to position the various elements of the drawing.

You can see here how I have drawn the smart grid on the reference image I used in such a way to pinpoint features such as the size of the head, the position of arms and hands and so on.

You do not have to copy my grid but you can certainly use mine as a reference to create your personal one.

How to Draw Fear

Here You can see where I started with my drawing and the reference image I used for this tutorial.

In this next step, you can see how the smart grid looks without the reference image underneath. I know it might seem a bit confusing however once you have gotten used to it you will never go back to using the traditional ‘old school’ grid.

Once you have laid down the smart grid on the reference image and reproduced it on your medium of choice you can start filling it with the main masses and elements of the drawing.

In this case, you can start with the head of Fear. See how the smart grid is helping me position the head and the eyeballs correctly?

Once that’s done you can draw the body of Fear and his legs. Again notice how useful is the smart grid in this case. I know precisely where the neck ends and where the body ends so my chances of making mistakes at this stage are reduced greatly.

You can now draw the arms and sketch the hands of Fear.

Again using the smart grid to my advantage here as I have drawn a couple of lines to position the elbows correctly as well as the wrists of Fear.

Now you can draw Fear’s mouth.

As you can see I used only one smart line here to signpost where the corner of the mouth is however there is no limit to the number of smart lines you can use.

However, you should try to use as few as possible to develop your ability to see and draw freehand and not to mess up too much your drawing with construction lines.

And this is where we are at after adding all the basic elements of Fear’s body. At this point, you can safely delete the smart grid and start working more freely on your drawing.

Learning how to draw Fear, moving on!

When it comes to adding details to your drawing always start from bigger elements and move to small elements further down the line.

In this case, I started cleaning my pencil work, added the eyelids onto the eyeballs and I have added a bit of detail to the hands of Fear which were just a sketch.

Plus I added a few details such as the necktie and added further detail at the waist level and shoes and trousers.

To finish the sketch off and prepare it for colouring I added the iris in both eyes and drew the eyebrows and the single hair poking out of Fear’s head.

Now we are ready to colour the drawing.

When it comes to colouring the initial step is always to add the flat colours first. I have explained this technique in more detail in my other tutorials in this series such as How to Draw Anger and How to Draw Sadness for example.

However, the general principle is that you lay down a flat mid-range (not too bright and not too dark) colour to establish the overall tint of the various part of the Fear character.

If you have any questions on this technique leave a comment in the comment section below.

Once the flat colours are down it’s a matter of adding shadows and lights to the drawing.

To exemplify this process in this tutorial on how to draw Fear, I have focussed on the head of the character first.

Here I have already added, firstly, shadows and subsequently lights to the various parts of the head.

Assuming light is coming from the right side of the scene, all the left side elements will be in shadow so I picked a darker version of the flat colour I used for the face and carefully painted the areas that are likely in the dark.

Subsequently, I picked a lighter version of the base colour I use for the head and painted the areas that are likely to be hit directly from the light, like to the top of the nose for example.

I want you to use the same approach for the rest of the drawing as I’ll show in the next images.

Here I wanted to show you the difference between the head that is already fully rendered and the rest of the body with only the flat colours applied.

As with the head, for each colour and body element pick a darker version of the base colour and paint the shadows in. Use your intuition and the reference image to achieve a consistent result.

Once the shadows are painted in, take your time and add the lights making sure to hit all the spots that are likely hit by direct light like for example the fingers, the kneels, the belly and so on.

Only when you are happy with the rendering you can start adding the various surface details that are going to take this drawing to the next level.

I used several of the features offered by SketchBook Pro in this case to achieve the effects you can see here for example on the sweater or on the sleeves of the shirt.

I used a combination of special paintbrush tips that I customised myself to achieve the final result. In your case it all depends on the medium you are using so it’s really up to you at this point.

Now for the final touches on this tutorial on how to draw Fear.

Before colouring the eyes I decided to hit the character with some darker shadows in small details and some lighter lights. You can probably notice it if you compare this panel with the previous one.

I have also painted the teeth and overall made sure the painting is looking nifty at this point, so I curated some minute details.

And there you have it! A glorious drawing/painting of the character Fear from the Pixar Movie Inside Out.

In this last step, the only thing I did was paint the eyes completely. I gave a bit of depth to the eyeballs by shadowing their bases and painted the iris and pupils.

It’s not difficult and I am sure that if you have been following so far you should know how to achieve a similar result.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial as much as I enjoyed making it for you! However, it would be incredibly important, if you like it, to share it with your friends cause that would help me enormously in creating more content and more tutorials for you.

Also, why don’t you let me know what you think about this type of tutorial? Do you like them or not? Would you like to see something different? Leave a comment in the comment section below if you can, that would be much appreciated!

For this week is all from me and I’ll see you all next week with a new tutorial.


  1. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! Why don’t you let me know what you think? I would really appreciate your feedback. Do you like this format? Would you like to see something different?


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