How to Draw Manga Speech Bubbles Tutorial

This tutorial demonstrates how to draw various types of comic book speech bubbles. This tutorial also explains when each type can be used.


Manga speech bubble drawing examples

You can use different types of speech bubbles to reinforce the message in the text. This tutorial will show you some of the most common types of these bubbles. This tutorial can help anyone who wants to draw or understand manga.

1 – Basic Bubble

Manga normal speech bubble

The “basic” bubble, which is usually oval in shape, is used for normal character speech in manga and comic books. The bubble’s “tail” should point towards the speaker, especially towards the mouth or area producing the sound.

2 – Vertical Bubble

Manga vertical speech bubble

When there isn’t enough horizontal space, vertical bubbles can be used. Although the example shows a normal speech bubble, the “vertical” option can be used for any type of bubble listed in this tutorial.

3 – Multi-Bubble

Manga split speech bubble

These bubbles can be used to break down speech into two parts. This can be used in the same way as the vertical option.

You can use this speech to illustrate a lack of confidence. A character might be shy or uneasy about what they are talking about.

4 – Inwards Pointing “Tail” Bubble

Manga off-panel character speech bubble

This bubble is used to speak characters not currently shown in the manga panel. The inverted tail should point in the same direction as the regular tail.

If a manga panel features a character talking to someone from the right side, the inverted tail should point towards the right.

5 – Jagged Edges Bubble

Manga yelling bubble

This bubble is used to display screaming or shouting. Visually, the “explosion-like” appearance reinforces the idea that it is loud.


6 – Wavy bubble

Manga weak speech bubble

Sometimes, a bubble with a wavy appearance is used to indicate weak or fading speech. This can be an example of a character who is tired or nearing fainting.

The outlining shape and the wavy tail communicate instability visually.

7 – Dashed Line Bubble

Manga whispering bubble

To signify whispering, a dashed bubble is used. This is more common for manga than comic books.

8 – “Blast” Bubble

Manga announcement bubble

This bubble is used to announce. These could be radios, televisions, loudspeakers, etc.

9 – No “Tail” Bubble

Manga thinking bubble

This simple bubble is often used to display a character’s thoughts. This bubble’s simple shape and absence of a tail help to show that it is not a sound.

Cloud Like Bubble 10

Manga daydreaming bubble

Similar to the previous example, a “cloud-looking” bubble can be used to daydream or have happy thoughts.

11 – Rectangular Bubble

Manga narrator bubble

For captions or narration, rectangular bubbles without tails are commonly used. These bubbles can be used to describe situations but not as characters. Take this example:

“After two weeks of traveling, the party reached the castle.”

12 – Inverted Bubble

Manga negative emotions bubble

This is a rare option, but it can sometimes be used for negative thoughts and emotions. This bubble can also be used to speak.


This tutorial will give you a basic overview of the most common styles of speech bubbles, though different comic book artists may use slightly different styles.


It’s a smart idea to choose one style and follow them through the whole story if you want to make your own comic books or manga.

You can find more information on making a manga here:

  • 9 Steps to Create Your Own Manga/Comic Book
  • Important Steps to Draw Your Manga or Anime 3dvkarts Character

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