How to Doodle

I love doodling and I'd like to share my "How to Doodle" tips with you, so that you can love it as much as I do.

The First rule of Doodling is that there are no rules. That is the wonderful part of Doodling. You can do anything. You don't even need to know your end result. You just need the confidence and motivation to start.

Over the years I learned that a few simple tricks that can help you if you get stuck or have a lack of creative imagination. I have them separated into 4 categories.


Some people might say you need a special workplace, an organized desk with all the right tools and no distractions. If you work better this way, by all means go right ahead. However, considering the nature of the doodle, I believe the best doodles come from a more relaxed atmosphere. There is no law against watching TV while you doodle. Personally, If I'm concentrating too hard, I mess up--there is too much pressure.

1. A pencil. Any will do as long as it's nice and sharp.
2. Two Black sharpies. A Fine Tip and an Extra Fine Tip. I like to use both in a drawing to add texture. There are also some Scrapbooking pens out there that are really nice to use.
3. Paper (unless you're using a more creative median). Regular white copy paper is fine for those more relaxing/habit producing doodles. For my big projects, I like to use a big sheet of drawing paper that you can buy from any art supply store.
4. Misc. Materials. Anything that might assist in your doodling--Ruler, eraser, protractor, a glass (for those "perfect circles"). You'll be amazed at how many around-the-house items can help with your drawing.

Doodle Art is fun and enjoyable. If you find yourself getting stressed out, you're no longer doodling. My tips should only encourage your free artistic expression.

Doodling Time

How to doodle?  Just begin! Don't think about your end product. Just let the Doodle create itself. Now we can all get stuck--artist block if you will. However you can always fall back on your "How to Doodle" Basics. I like to call them the Doodling Triad.

The swirl is one of the basic designs that I constantly fall back on. You can never go wrong with a good swirl especially if you mix it up a little. Have them go opposite ways, change the thickness, make patterns. It's up to you to decide how you use this mark.

Now the line may seem a little obvious. But it is one of the easiest marks to use when it comes to doodling. You can create nice checkerboards or rays for the sun. With a little curve added you turn a line into flower vines or ocean waves. Don't be scared to use something this simple.

The Last of the Doodling Triad is Shape. Shapes are a doodler's best friend. There's dozens of different shapes out there that can add to your drawing. If you're afraid of drawing realistic objects,use shapes. Presto--you have a modern art piece. Shapes are wonderful to use. The possibilities are endless when it comes to the Shape.
Put all your basics together and you can have a pretty cool looking doodle.

Finishing Up

When you feel you're done, WALK AWAY!! Don't look back. Put the cap on your marker and leave the room. Give yourself at least 30 minutes before looking at it again. I can't tell you how many art projects I messed up because I didn't walk away when I should have.

How to Doodle Coloring Tips

Ask yourself, does this doodle need to be colored? I love colorful pictures, but there are times when a picture can be complete being just black and white. Have some idea of the colors you want to use. There are lots of ways you can go: random, warm colors, shades of blue, pastels, etc. It may be a good idea to plan out your color scheme first before you dive in with your colors. I enjoy using high quality markers as opposed to colored pencils or crayons. However, when coloring with kids, I choose to go with quality sharpened colored pencils, to avoid permanent marker disaster. When coloring in your art work, remember to be patient. You will be so happy with the end result if you really take your time.

Return from How to Doodle to Doodle Art Alley Homepage