How to Draw a Snuffbox

In this quick tutorial you'll learn how to draw a Snuffbox in 3 easy steps - great for kids and novice artists.

The images above represents how your finished drawing is going to look and the steps involved.

Below are the individual steps - you can click on each one for a High Resolution printable PDF version.

At the bottom you can read some interesting facts about the Snuffbox.

Make sure you also check out any of the hundreds of drawing tutorials grouped by category.

How to Draw a Snuffbox - Step-by-Step Tutorial

Step 1: To make a snuffbox, first draw the front shell. It is a lumpy oval shape. It kind of looks like a rock!

Step 2: Draw a similar shape just behind that for the other shell.

Step 3: Lastly, make a pattern. The shells have lines that curve across in sideways C shapes, and vertical stripes. If you'd like to color these mussels, they are yellow-gold, with black/brown lines.

Interesting Facts about the Snuffbox

Found in the Great Lakes and Mississippi River systems, the Snuffbox is a severely endangered freshwater mussel. They usually have green or brown shells interrupted by green blotches or rays their shells become darker with age and the interruptions become lighter. They use the skin, gills, and fins of fish as hosts during their larval stage to gather nutrients.

Did you know?

  • Female Snuffboxes lure host fish for their young towards them then clamp onto their heads and pump their larvae into their gills.
  • Their primary host fish is the common logperch because it can survive being clamped onto by the Snuffbox.
  • The Snuffbox has disappeared from 62% of its original range and is only found in 79 streams and lakes in 14 lakes and Ontario.
  • Host fish allow the Snuffbox to move upstream to reach areas it couldn’t reach otherwise.
  • Snuffboxes can’t survive in slow moving water.

Lesson plan note: Snuffboxes are endangered by invasive species and pollution put into rivers by people. Have students come up with ideas to show people the impact polluting rivers and lakes has on the Snuffbox to raise awareness about its endangered status.