Drawing Tutorials - The proper way to stripe a Tiger
As simple as one might think placing tiger's stripes would be, some particular observations may be of help. The number, shape and thickness of the stripes vary on individual animals. On most tigers the general direction taken by the stripes on the sides conforms with the slant of the ribs beneath (see figs. 1, 3, 4 & 5). Yet a loose skinned, heavily-furred type may have lanky flanks and belly sag which tend to stretch out these curves,(see fig. 2)this does incline toward a 'flat' look, especially from a straight side view.
Fig.1 has a thick "boomerang" stripe angling under the stomach. On the spine are split stripes tapering off between `the side markings. No animal ever has continuous stripes going around the body. They are always broken somewhere; a few may be mere dashes. The thick side stripes of fig. 3 are like a bow (of a bow and arrow). Both 1 & 2 have the lower shoulders more or less devoid of stripes. If there is a plain area, that's where it will be, and many big tigers have it. Some huge tigers have little more than pin stripes (fig. 5). Fig. 4 widest stripes are a little like twisted teardrops.