how to draw a starling bird

The starling bird has always been mesmerizing to bird-watchers and artists. Here, we will learn how to draw one of these majestic creatures.

Firstly, get to know the features – its black, green and purple feathers, slender legs and sharp beak. Visualize the basic shapes of the body and gradually add details like wings and tail feathers. Pay attention to symmetry and proportion.

Then, capture the movement. Starlings are known for their acrobatics and synchronized formations. Depict it in mid-flight or various poses that show off its agility.

Lastly, have fun with it! Play around with different mediums and techniques to make your artwork more vivid.

Drawing a starling is no easy task. With patience and practice, you can create a captivating masterpiece that truly captures the spirit of this bird. Grab your sketchbook and begin this magical journey.

Materials Needed

For your art to capture the stunning beauty of a starling bird, you’ll need some supplies. Here’s the list:

  • High-grade colored pencils or watercolor paints.
  • Drawing or watercolor paper.
  • Paintbrushes of various shapes and sizes.
  • Reference images or photos.
  • Pencil, eraser, and sharpener.

You can also experiment with extra materials and techniques to add your own individual touch.

Did you know? Starlings have an incredible ability – they do murmurations! Thousands of birds fly in unison, creating an amazing show in the sky. (Source: National Audubon Society)

Step 1: Drawing the Basic Shape of the Starling Bird

  1. Draw an oval in the center for the body of the starling bird.
  2. Extend two curved lines from the top left and right corners of the oval for the wings.
  3. Add a small triangle at the bottom end of the oval for the tail feathers.
  4. Draw a circle near the top left side for the head and connect it to the body with a curved line.
  5. Enhance your drawing by adding details, such as the plumage and beak of the starling bird.

Did you know? The metallic colors of some species are created by light scattering off microscopic structures in their feathers. (Source: National Geographic)

Step 2: Adding Details to the Body and Wings

Bringing a starling bird to life in your drawing requires adding intricate details to the body and wings. Think feathers, patterns, and textures. Here are 5 steps for success:

  1. Start with a pencil. Sketch the basic shape of the body and wings.
  2. Look at a live starling bird or a reference image. Notice its unique patterns and markings.
  3. Use fine-tipped pens or colored pencils to draw individual feathers. Pay attention to direction, size, and placement.
  4. Shade to create depth and dimension. Light strokes for lighter areas, darker strokes for shadows.
  5. Take breaks to check your progress. Compare your drawing. Consult an ornithology book if needed.

Be patient and pay attention to detail. Remember, practice makes perfect. And here’s a fun fact: Starlings are highly social birds with great mimicry skills. They can imitate other bird sounds and even human-made sounds like car alarms and cell phone ringtones. (source: National Audubon Society).

Step 3: Drawing the Head and Facial Features

Creating a starling’s head & facial features is vital. Here are 4 easy steps to get it right:

  1. Use light, curved lines to outline the general shape of the head. Note the size & proportions, as starlings have small heads.
  2. Position the eyes just above the midline. Starlings have round, dark-colored eyes. Draw them using short, curved lines for a realistic look.
  3. Draw the slender & pointed beak. Start with a thin triangle for the upper part & another for the lower, then connect them with a smooth curve.
  4. Render the feather patterns around the eyes & head. Use small, curved strokes to add texture & depth. Look out for other characteristics, like eyebrow-like markings & eye patches, which vary by gender & age.

Now for a story: A bird enthusiast spent hours watching a flock of starlings at sunset. She was captivated by their beauty & so, captured their features on her canvas. She devotedly drew their graceful heads, expressive eyes & perfectly shaped beaks, bringing each bird alive. Her artwork was stunning, reflecting not only her skill but her connection with nature.

Remember, drawing is about capturing the essence of an image with every stroke. Doing so will let others view its beauty through your art.

Step 4: Adding Final Touches and Refining the Drawing

To make your starling drawing perfect, follow these 3 steps:

  1. Enhance details. Look closely at your sketch and identify areas that need more definition. Use shading to give depth to the feathers. Make sure you get the texture and patterns of the wings and body right.
  2. Refine lines. Go over your sketch and neaten any rough or uneven lines. Use a sharp pencil or pen to make the beak, eyes, and legs look perfect. Check the proportions and fix any mistakes.
  3. Add finishing touches. Add background and foreground to make your artwork come alive. Use colors to capture the plumage of these birds.

Admire your work and be proud of it. Share your masterpiece on social media with #StarlingDrawingChallenge and inspire others!


Drawing a starling bird takes attention to detail and a steady hand. Unique features like their sleek black feathers with iridescent blue and green highlights must be captured. Knowing the anatomy and proportions is key for an accurate representation. Shading techniques can add depth and bring the drawing to life.

Begin by sketching the basic outline of the body with light pencil strokes. Focus on the head, body, and tail shape. Then, add beak, eyes, and feathers. The beak should be sharp and pointed. The eyes should be small and round.

Next, capture the distinct patterns and colors of the feathers. Shade in darker areas, like the wings and tail. Use cross-hatching and blending techniques for texture and depth. Build layers of shading until desired effect is achieved. Take note of any unique details that make this species stand out. Starlings have a strong metallic sheen when they catch the light. Try using metallic or pearlescent colors to mimic this.

To create a realistic depiction, reference photos or live birds should be studied to observe posture, movement, and characteristics.

Additional Tips and Resources for Further Practice

Extra Tips and Resources for Enhancing your Bird Drawing Skills

To level-up your starling bird drawing skills, check out these ideas:

  1. Experiment with different shading techniques, like cross-hatching or stippling, to show off the glossy feathers of a starling.
  2. Reference photos or videos of starlings in flight to understand their wing shapes and patterns. This will help you show their graceful movement accurately.
  3. Don’t be afraid to use vibrant colors! Starlings have iridescent feathers that change in different lighting.
  4. Join online art communities or forums devoted to bird drawing. This can give valuable feedback, inspiration, and chances to grow.

Digging Deeper into the World of Starlings

Capturing the physical aspects of a starling is important, but understanding its behavior and habitat can take your drawings further. Here’s some cool info about these birds:

  • Did you know? Starlings create incredible murmurations, where thousands of them fly together in mesmerizing synchronized patterns. This is to protect themselves from predators.

(Source: National Geographic)

By using these tips and exploring resources, you’ll upgrade your drawing skills and bring starlings to life on paper!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What materials do I need to draw a starling bird?

A: To draw a starling bird, you will need a pencil or pen, paper or sketchbook, eraser, and coloring materials such as colored pencils or markers.

Q: What are the basic steps to draw a starling bird?

A: Start by sketching the outline of the bird, then add details such as feathers, beak, and eyes. Next, erase any unnecessary lines and refine the shape. Finally, color the bird using appropriate shades.

Q: How can I find a reference image to draw a starling bird?

A: You can find reference images by searching online platforms like Google Images or wildlife photography websites. Books and magazines that focus on birds may also provide excellent reference images.

Q: Are there any specific techniques I should use while drawing a starling bird?

A: Yes, some techniques that may help you in drawing a starling bird include shading to create depth and texture, using short, light strokes to depict feathers, and paying attention to the bird’s unique patterns and colors.

Q: Can I use a grid method to draw a starling bird?

A: Yes, the grid method can be helpful for getting proportions and placement right. Divide your reference image and drawing paper into small squares, and then draw what you see in each square, allowing for accurate scaling of the bird’s features.

Q: How long does it take to learn drawing a starling bird?

A: The time it takes to learn how to draw a starling bird can vary depending on your dedication, practice, and prior drawing experience. With consistent effort, you can start creating realistic representations of starling birds within a few weeks or months.

Julian Goldie - Owner of

Julian Goldie

I'm a bird enthusiast and creator of Chipper Birds, a blog sharing my experience caring for birds. I've traveled the world bird watching and I'm committed to helping others with bird care. Contact me at [email protected] for assistance.