Sketchbook Drawing Ideas & Challenges

With a number of interesting household objects to chose from, Cyndi is captivated by the character of wilted flowers

Along with your usual enjoyment of drawing/doodling from imagination in your sketchbook, here’s a list of ideas for things to draw. How many can you complete in a week? In 4 weeks?

Try to spend at least 15 minutes on each study. And go for completing 1-2 drawings per week—you are a drawing machine!

Okay, here’s the list:

1. A book (turned at angle, so one corner is closer to you); then sketch the same book, open flat or standing up (special challenge: stack of books)
2. Bowl of fruit
3. A coffee cup
4. Pair of glasses (regular or sunglasses)
5. A chair
6. A paper bag: study sketch of it standing upright (open, turned at angle); then study of it on it’s side (turned at angle); then a study of it crumpled up—how fun! 🙂
7. A few kitchen utensils or woodshop tools laid out on a table
8. A plastic bottle (special challenge: have the bottle half full—or empty—of water)
9. A backpack (crazy fun, right?!)
10. A tree (or a lot of trees!) and/or a plants in the garden
11. Favorite object (toy, sports equipment, clothing, hat, etc.)
12. Self portrait (you can do this!)

Try filling the page with the drawing composition of your subject. Experiment with the Block, Sketch, Draw method we’ve been working on during class:

  • Blocking: Start with 2-3 dominant shapes and angles; measure for accuracy before moving to sketching stage—what we have *fun* practicing 🙂
  • Sketching: After blocking, sketch smaller shapes, contours, 3D form of your subject. Also, it’s important to mix it up by trying sketching without blocking; explore getting loose, expressive with your line work
  • Drawing: After you’ve blocked and sketched foundation, enjoy drawing contour edges of your subject’s form and adding details for texture. Also, experiment by skipping blocking and sketching stages and going right to drawing a total contour line drawing, like Nichole’s backpack contour line drawing, shown below.
Backpack contour line drawing by Nicole

Pencil or pen, watercolor (feeling brave?), colored pencils, ball point pens, or whatever drawing instruments you have around school.

Have fun playing, experimenting (that’s what sketchbooks are for). Sketch quickly, draw slowly, block in only an abstract design of your subject, turn mistakes and happy accidents into a whole new drawing (this can be really fun in a sketchbook), go abstract. I’d love to see your drawings and comment on them.

Draw on, intrepid sketcher!


Drawing For Work, School, Enjoyment