Lions are called the "king of the jungle," but they don't actually live in the jungle. Most lions live in African grasslands.

Unlike solitary tigers and leopards,  lions live in social groups called "prides."  One male lion is the leader of the group. Female lions organize hunting parties, which allow them to tackle and kill much larger prey.

Lions have sharp senses. Their extraordinary night vision helps them hunt and protect the pride at night, and their keen sense of smell helps them to identify their own kin and territory.

In spite of their size, lions have a lot in common with your pet cat. They purr, for example. They also establish kinship with head butts and body rubs. This leaves a scent on an animal (or person) the cat considers family.

Follow the directions below to draw this lion, and you'll have a chance to see your artwork published in the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News on Sept. 1, 2018.

Details for submission are below. Happy drawing! We'll post another art lesson next week.

1. Start with the two ovals that form the lion’s hips and chest. The tail is “S” shaped. Carefully observe the shape of the head, which is rounded on the lower left corner. Did you notice how the lines that connect the head to the chest and the chest to the hips are gently curved?


2. The legs may be easier if you start with the center guidelines. All cats have digitigrade legs.  That is, they walk on their toes and their heels are off the ground. The mouth is a loop in a slight frown. The eyes are set high on the head. Our lion is standing on a rocky ledge.


3. Erase your unneeded guidelines, and begin to add texture and shadows. We know that our lion is a male because only male lions have a mane. The underside of the lion’s body, tail, and hindquarters are in shadow. We give a hint of muscle on the legs, rump, and ribs.

4. Now you are ready to add color. We’ve used watercolor, but you can use any medium. A lion has a tawny-brown coat. Its mane is a bit lighter than the short fur. Choose a color for the rocky ledge, and give your picture some African grassland in the distance below.

How to submit your artwork

Children are invited to send or email copies of their work to us at the address or the email below. Phone pictures are fine. One drawing weekly will be selected for
publication on Sept. 1 and the selected artists will receive a prize.

Be sure to include your name, age, mailing address, and email or phone number.

Send to:
Arts Editor Becky Batcha
Philadelphia Inquirer
801 Market St.
Phila., PA 19107
Email: batchab@phillynews.com