How to Draw Cave Art

Handprints are popular in cave art.
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Cave art consist of animals, figures, symbols and handprints. Animal species include non-hunted animals such as rhinoceros and mammoths and hunted animals such as wild cattle, horses and deer. Cave artists used their fingers, animal hairbrushes, sticks of charcoal or spray to create their art. Although it is unknown how they created their palette, it consists of earthly shades of red, brown, yellow and black. The mix was probably of animal blood and fat, mixed in with powered minerals. (See Reference 1&2)

Things You'll Need

  • Charcoal
  • Brown Parcel Paper
  • Oil Pastels In Red, Brown And Yellow

Choose a background such as brown parcel paper. Crumple the parcel paper into a ball and then straighten it out. This will give it a coarse texture. (See Reference 3)

Use charcoal to sketch out the artwork such as animals, figures, symbols or handprints. Most of the animals are in profile view. Symbols include red dots, cross shapes and geometric signs that resemble insects.


Add color such as red, yellow and brown within the outline by using a medium like oil pastels.