Step-by-Step How to Draw a Jumping Horse

Updated April 17, 2017

As the world becomes more digitalised -- even art -- some people may want to stick to the basics with certain activities, such as drawing popular animals like horses. You may want to add animation to your horse, but not through computer programs. You can do that by showing a horse jumping, for example. Even though you may not think of yourself as an artist, by going step-by-step, you can draw a realistic-looking jumping horse.

Select between artist's pencil or pen, chalk or charcoal. Choose paper for your drawing.

Draw a horizontal line for the ground and maybe a fence your horse will be jumping over. Lightly draw in squares and triangles for various parts of the body. Draw large triangles for the head and neck, smaller triangles for legs and a large square for the chest, ribcage and belly. Note that the horse's head is about the same width as the neck, and the horse's body is about twice the combined length of the head and neck.

Sketch in details of the head first. Draw circles for the horse's cheek and muzzle (about half the size of the cheek).

Add further refinements to head. From your study of your pictures, you know what areas are basically hide-covered bone, such as the area between the eyes and muzzle. Other areas, such as around the eyes and nostrils, can be fleshed out.

Draw large and small ovals to round out sections of the body, such as the chest, rib cage, belly and rump.

Draw a long oval for the upper leg and a shorter oval for the lower leg. Front legs should be high off ground, positioned for jumping over the fence. Back legs can be just lifting off the ground.

Refine details by shading in some areas (depending on position of light source). To shade with pencil, chalk or charcoal, press down to darken areas, such as under the belly. Or use ink wash to shade.


Observe horses outside running and jumping if you can. Check online for videos of horse's movements or check out books on horses.

Things You'll Need

  • Artist's pencil or ink pen, charcoal or chalk
  • Ink, if needed
  • Drawing tablet or paper
  • Pictures of horses
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About the Author

Chuck Wanager is a writer/editor with more than 30 years experience. He has a bachelor's and master's degree in journalism from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. Wanager has also written free-lance articles published in Audubon, Atlanta, Editor & Publisher and others. A published poet, he is working on his second novel.