365 Drawing Ideas For Your Sketchbook: A Year of Daily Drawing Prompts
We all know if you want to get better at drawing, we need to practice every day or so. This list of 365 doodling, sketching and drawing ideas for your sketchbook will make drawing an easy and fun part of your daily routine, whether you are a beginner or professional.
It sucks to crack open a sketchbook, all excited to draw, and then your mind goes blank. So then you feel like you need to draw something, ANYTHING, maybe scribble off a few little random doodles, and close your sketchbook, feeling defeated. Sound familiar?
I’ve been brainstorming these sketchbook ideas for years now, and some are simple, some are more advanced. Although for each idea on the list, feel free to modify to your skill level, time allotment, or even how you’re feeling for that day.
How to Use This List
You can approach the sketchbook ideas in different ways. Here are two approaches, but you may have a different sketchbook plan in mind, so don’t feel like there are set rules.
Some artists use drawing idea lists to stay in the habit of a sketchbook practice, to challenge themselves to draw things they wouldn’t have thought of, or to push them out of their comfort zone.
These are perfect for high school or college students who need to keep a sketchbook practice going for class.
Or you may simply not want to deal with coming up with ideas every day to draw. It’s so nice to look at a list and have someone else tell you what to draw!
Good Idea: Click this box to print out 80 silly drawing prompts for kids and have your wee ones draw along side you.
A Daily Sketchbook Practice
I challenge you to carve out a little time each day for drawing. The consistent practice will blow your mind at the end of the year to see how far you’ve come with your drawing skills. (Take a moment to picture how proud of yourself you’ll feel after you’ve completed this awesome challenge. But don’t worry if you miss a day here and there; pick up the next day where you left off!)
Trying your hand at different drawing styles and subject matter is the way to figure out what you like to draw, what you need to practice more, and even what your drawing style is.
Push yourself to go beyond drawing the same, easy, go-to things you usually draw, and you will discover pushing yourself to higher and higher levels of drawing!
Draw Just For Fun, Or When You’re Bored
Here’s an idea: Keep your sketchbook nearby at all times. That way when you have a little down time, you can train yourself to reach for your sketchbook and do a little drawing instead of automatically phone-scrolling. You’ll be amazed at how much drawing you end up doing when your sketchbook is readily available.
If you’re feeling bored or antsy, it’s so fun to immerse yourself in drawing, and you can simply choose any idea from this list that pops out at you. Some of them are intentionally more vague than others; interpret these however you wish, and feel free to do a few different drawings based on the same prompt.
For most of the prompts, you choose what supplies you want to use, but a few of them do specifically ask you to use a certain tool. If you want to skip or modify these, feel free. If you are being faithful to the list, or just want a more varied sketchbook experience, make sure you have on hand:
Erasers – these are my very favorite erasers
Black drawing pens
Small stick erasers with holder – for detailed erasing
Related: What is the best drawing pencil?
365 Drawing Ideas For a Daily Sketchbook Practice
1. Draw each of your hands, using the opposite hand
It’s fun and rather funny to attempt to draw using the non-dominant hand. When I do this I notice that I am concentrating harder on drawing, and I can feel a different part of my brain waking up.
2. Cover a page in pencil and erase a plant drawing out of it
Cover the page using the edge of your pencil to lay down a graphite layer. Erase-drawing is fun because you can be very loose and painterly with your drawing. It’s definitely a different way to draw since you’re drawing the highlights instead of the shadows.
You can draw regular glasses or sunglasses. Set them up at an interesting angle, maybe take into consideration the reflection in them, or add your own made-up reflection.
4. Your face, but from looking at an upside-down photo of you
This taps into the same part of your brain I mentioned in prompt #1 – drawing from an upside down reference makes you realllly look at the image and draw what you SEE, as opposed to the preconceived ideas you have in your mind of how to draw a face.
5. A scene from a favorite book
Hunger Games, anyone? Or maybe you are a Catcher in the Rye fan. Heck, pick a scene from The Very Hungry Caterpillar if you’d rather.
6. An egg
Eggs are the perfect little items to draw. Not only are they beautiful, there aren’t any harsh lines to them, so you are forced to focus on all of the subtle shading that goes along with drawing an egg.
7. Illustrate a dream you’ve had
Pick out a moment from a dream you’ve had – that split second you just can’t seem to forget – and see what comes out when you go to illustrate it.
8. Money – watch this video for inspiration:
9. A video game or cartoon character
This could be a simple drawing or something much more complex, depending on if you want to draw an entire background as well. Your choice!
10. The contents of a backpack or bag
Draw all the fun items you carry around every day, either with or without the bag.
11. Design some new pants
Pants are the coolest. Even if you hate to wear them, you could learn to love to draw them.
12. Perspective drawing looking down a road
Find a road, any road, snap a photo, or sit and draw right there. I wouldn’t recommend sitting in the middle of the road. I guess I’d be a little nervous to sit and draw right next to the road as well. Maybe if you can pull off into a little pulloff area, you would be safe. I’ve put far too much thought into this one. BE CAREFUL. Drawing can be deadly.
13. Draw a page of overlapping quick sketches of people moving
Hey this is fun! Quick, light gesture drawings overlapping all over a page looks really cool.
14. A bunched-up paper towel or piece of paper
Get ready for some good shading practice with this one!
15. A UFO
Make up your own UFO or go the traditional route – you know, with the lights and beam sucking something up into it.
Feathers are great to draw from life, so if you happen to find a big old goose feather lying around, grab it.
17. Organs in cross section of human body
I’m picturing a medical drawing sort of thing here – like you see in anatomy books, but go for however you want to interpret this one.
18. Design a playing card (or a whole deck!)
I’ve seen a drawing assignment where you draw a self portrait as a playing card, so that’s an option here if you want.
19. Your hand in a fist
Hold your fist in any direction you want to draw it. You could even do a series of drawings on the page of different angles of your fist.
20. A terrifying monster
Make it cartoony terrifying, or actually horrifying. Make this monster the best monster you’ve ever drawn.
21. Arrange a piece of fabric on a surface to make lots of folds
Set a bright light on the fabric at an angle to give you good shadows to draw.
22. Draw 9 circles on a sketchbook page, and fill each one in with a drawing of an animal portrait
Make the circles fancy or 3-d or designy if you want. Draw the animals realistically, abstractly, comic style. Artist’s choice. Actually all. of this is artist’s choice, you powerful artist.
23. A hoodie hanging from a hook or the back of a chair
Grab a hoodie, hang it from a hook, over the back of a chair, or even from a corner of a chair, and just draw that beautiful thing.
24. Your reflection in a window at night
This was one of my favorite drawing assignments at RISD. Even though I stayed up all night doing it and may or may not have started to hallucinate because I hadn’t gotten much sleep the night before, either.
25. A glass of water with a straw or utensil in it
Drawing water is challenging, my friends! Especially when you add something into it so you get that fun refraction.
26. Many quick sketches of birds on one page
27. A forest, but using only straight lines
I am curious to see how people interpret this one, so tag me on Instagram @artmakespeople if you post yours. That goes for any of these, I want to seeeeee them.
28. A corner of your home
Pick a corner, plop yourself down, crank the jams, draw away.
Draw some balloons in a bunch, separate, flying away, popping, barely hovering over the floor, whatevs.
30. The view out of one of your windows
What goes on out there? Draw it.
31. A still life of shoes, either arranged or tossed into a pile
Shoes are the classic items to draw. Here’s your chance to draw several.
32. Design a candy bar wrapper
What would be your ultimate, amazing tastiest candy bar ever? Design its wrapper. Mine would be dark chocolate, peanut butter, a cookie almost as crunchy as a biscotti, and probably 3-4 peanuts under the top of the chocolate.
33. Find images of beetles and draw a page of them
Aren’t beetles so cool looking? There are some stunning beetles out there, just begging to be drawn.
34. A scene from your favorite movie
I guess this will look a lot different if your favorite film is animae opposed to Pulp Fiction.
Draw yourself a fantastic octopus. If you haven’t watched the documentary, My Octopus Teacher yet, do so. It’s so good.
36. A page of robots
Robots are just always fun to draw. I mean, you can go regular old beep boop robot, or you could make up your own.
37. Illustrate a favorite song
38. A plate of tacos (or another favorite food)
Tacos just have that fun shape that makes you want to eat them AND draw them.
39. A quick, light sketch of a human figure, with a more detailed drawing over it
I was thinking another human figure over the first one, but really, you could draw anything you want. A face, an animal, a building, flowers…
40. Flowers, either from observation or memory
Get in there and draw those beautiful, fascinating odiferous wonders.
41. Doodled, abstract flowers
Now focus on lines and shapes and even colors if you want to.
42. I love those drawings that look like they are defying the rules of lined paper! Try this one:
Chairs are the perfect drawing models since they tend to not move on their own, they come in all sorts of shapes, and you can arrange them however you want before you draw them. Set a few up, or just draw one at a table.
44. Tattoo designs
Come up with brand new tattoo designs. Make a page of drawings, or draw a human figure and tat it up.
45. A house – as simple or detailed as you want
This is a fun one – draw your dream house, sit and draw your own house, or sit in your front yard and draw the house across the street.
Buy 2-3 lemons, set them on a surface and draw them. Or! Draw a whole bowl of lemons. Or! Or! Buy a couple lemons, chop them up, and draw the wedges or slices. So many lemon options here.
47. A flat lay of some of your favorite treasures
Fun! Gather a few of your favorite things, and spend some time arranging them into a flat lay – probably on the floor – and draw away.
48. Roses in a bunch
You can either splurge on a dozen full, sumptuous roses and draw them, or draw from a photo, but get in there and spend some time rendering these beauties. Short on time for this one? Try a blind contour drawing of roses, or even a quick sketch using as few lines as possible to get the point across.
49. A page full of a pattern
Aimlessly doodle a pattern, or go research patterns and find a favorite to draw.
50. A cell phone
Ya got a cell phone? Draw that bad boy.
51. Draw the cover art from an album you love
Scroll Spotify or the Googles for some cover art to draw. Reinterpret it if you like.
52. Microscopic items
This post has super-cool photos of items under a microscope. Go pick your favorite and draw it. Like this grass! (photo credit: © lvvlDellyBellylvvl / reddit)
Related: The best colored pencils for black paper
53. Magazine Transfers
Using pencil, trace images from book or magazine covers (or elsewhere) onto tracing paper (printer paper works fine for this in some cases), lay your drawings face down onto a sketchbook page, and go over the lines with your pencil to transfer them to the page. Shade or add lines or erase to create new sketchbook drawings. Tip: Softer, darker pencils transfer more easily than hard pencils.
Clouds. Have fun turning them into cloud creatures or recognizable objects in cloud form if you so desire.
55. Your pet
If you don’t have a pet, draw someone else’s or an internet pet. I highly recommend Boobie Billie, both to draw, and to follow on Insta. 💙
56. Draw a hanging piece of clothing and shade using crosshatching
Do you love crosshatching? Now is your time to practice the hatching.
57. Toothbrush and toothpaste
Another classic duo to draw, since most of us own these items.
Draw some snowflake doodles or cut some out and draw them from observation. Or even shoot some snowflakes with a macro lens and draw your own!
59. An undiscovered sea creature
Make up a sea creature even weirder than everybody’s favorite Angler Fish.
60. A bike or closeup on a bike part
A cool wheel close-up would be fun to draw, or turn this into a long drawing by drawing the whole bike in an environment.
61. Draw frames in your sketchbook and fill them with portraits
Fancy, ornate frames, or simple ovals – your choice.
62. Your hand flat on the table
More hand-drawing practice! Don’t skip the hand drawings!
63. The silhouette side view of an animal with its skeleton drawn over it
Draw the outline of an animal, and draw the skeleton inside. Or shade a very loose pencil shadow of an animal and erase or draw the skeleton inside. Or ink a dark silhouette and draw the skeleton with white pen.
64. Your bed
65. 1 cow, 2 pigs, 3 goats
Ha ha, I’m picturing them in a stack for some reason. You definitely DO NOT need to draw them in a stack.
66. Copy a Degas painting
Any time you copy a painting by a master like Degas, you’ll get a lesson in light and composition. So good.
67. Draw the passage out of a book
Draw the actual words. Try to copy the typeface perfectly or use your own style of letters.
68. Stack objects from your home into a tall tower and draw it
Here’s where I make you actually draw a stack of items.
69. Fill an entire page with one long, slow scribble
This is fun and relaxing. Listen to music or a podcast, and draw the scribble as slowly as you want.
70. A celebrity portrait
Who will you choose?
71. Make up a comic book page
Just one page – the comic can be a scene from your own life, a dream, a story you heard, have fun with it!
Draw bowls set up on a table, in your cabinet, in the sink, the dishwasher. Find the bowls and draw the bowls.
73. A quote or word in bubble letters and then doodled in
I mean, bubble letters are super fun, but if that’s not your thing, block letters will suffice. And if doodling isn’t your thing, practice drawing textures or shading.
74. Your bathtub or shower
Preferably not while taking a shower. Come to think of it, a relaxing bath while drawing might be fun.
75. Equipment from your favorite sport or activity
Anything goes here. If your favorite activity is meditating, use your cool imagination for what to draw here. 🙂
76. Magazine Starters
Cut out parts of humans from a catalog or magazine, glue them into your sketchbook and draw back in any parts you cut out. You can make this funny or realistic.
77. A skeleton from memory
Try to draw al the bones in a human skeleton, without looking at any references.
78. A skeleton from a photo
Now you can look a skeleton up and draw it.
79. Candy hearts with messages
Draw some of those cute Valentine’s hearts with any little messages you like.
80. Draw your grocery list
Draw all the things you need to buy at the grocery store. If you don’t do the grocery shopping, make up a quick list without overthinking whether or not you want to draw it.
81. A landscape drawing without lifting your pen/pencil from the paper
No cheating! Don’t let your drawing utensil leave the page.
82. A stairway
Going up or going down; draw a stairway.
83. Design a new automobile as cool or wildly unrealistic as you like
You could even reimagine the Batmobile. That would be fun.
84. Wrapped gifts
You can save this one for a holiday, draw from imagination, or actually just wrap up some items for the sole reason of drawing.
85. Write a letter to a friend using only drawing – don’t forget to mail it!
You could draw out interpretations of words, draw scenes, ideas, feelings, or even drawn words.
87. Draw the first image you see when you Google ‘beautiful mountain’
There are some beauties to draw.
88. 3 different pieces of food with bites taken out of them
I mean, you can take bites out of as many different foods as you feel you need to to find those perfect 3.
89. Any type of boat
Anything from a tiny rowboat to a grand cruise ship!
90. Watch a show, and every once in a while pause it to do a quick sketch of a scene
I immediately just thought of Dexter, but that could be a little intense for some people. Blues Clues, anyone?
91. Make a t-shirt design that you would actually want to wear
Bonus points if you actually scan it, clean it up, and make a real t-shirt for yourself.
92. Drop 3 raw eggs onto a table (or a tray 🙂 – protect the surface) and draw them
You thought you got a thrill from drawing whole eggs. Broken eggshells and innards are a whole new ballgame.
93. A person diving
You could even make a series of little sketches of different diving positions.
Draw. a vegetable still life, patterns, personified veggies, spiralized, whatever floats your veggie boat.
95. Look up prehistoric tools and draw them
There are some really beautiful old tools to be drawn.
96. Draw a scene in the style of a 6 year old
Just try to make a drawing as cool as 6 year olds do.
97. Design a new book cover for a book you love
This could be super fun. You can go minimal or throw in all sorts of references to the story. ooh – maybe your favorite book is a comic or a cookbook!
Got any Amazon boxes lying around? I know you do. Draw them either arranged neatly, or kicked into a random setup.
99. A favorite toy from childhood
Mr. Bunny Boo Boo Face needs you to immortalize him on paper.
100. Tree branches
Yay! Branches are so beautiful. draw them spooky, draw them full of leaves, draw them broken, hanging, full of birds, or even in a big old vase.
101. A lamp or hanging light
To make this extra challenging, you can draw the light on in a semi-dim room. Or even draw it with light shining on some objects.
102. Slice an apple in half and draw it by only shading with the edge of a pencil (no actual lines)
Let’s practice shading spheres with this apple drawing prompt.
103. Combine 2 animals
Draw one or several of these; they’re fun to create!
104. Create a fantastical underground world that you might see if you could lift a slice out of the earth
Oh my goodness. Let your imagination run wild with this one.
105. Vines taking over a tree or another object
You’ll get your leaf-drawing practice in with this one.
Draw different makeup containers, from life or from photos
107. Design a dress
Channel your inner fashion designer and design a knockout dress. For a guy or a girl. For a kid or an adult. For a human or an animal. Or an alien.
108. Grab your HB and 2B pencils and follow this video on drawing 3 different textures:
109. A page full of fish
Fish are absolutely wonderful to draw. Go black and white and focus on your linework, or go all full, beautiful color.
110. Separate your page with 8 lines, and draw patterns in each section
Lines can be wavy or straight, all across the page or not.
111. Your keychain and everything on it.
I have 2 keys on mine, so it’s pretty boring, but I know people who have TONS of keys, little toys, id’s, etc.
112. Do a pointillism drawing of your foot in any position
113. Snap a photo of the inside of your refrigerator and draw it – Bonus points for full color
Refrigerators hold so many secrets. This will be fun to look back on in a few years to see what was in your fridge.
114. Draw some snacks like pretzels or potato chips – Pringles would be fun, or Cheetos
Snacks are good drawing practice, and you can munch while you draw.
115. A stack of books
Books are good drawing practice. You can focus on the stack of books as a color study, hone in on the lines, treat them as an object in a larger scene, or go abstract with them.
116. Draw just the tops of trees
I saw a cool photo of only the tops of trees popping up through the bottom of the print, and thought this would be a great drawing challenge.
117. A person tripping over something
If you look up ‘people tripping’, you will get some really funny images to draw.
Sushi is just a perfect, beautiful food to draw.
119. A Halloween scene, or just a jack-o-lantern setup
So many options here. Halloween is fun to draw.
120. A campsite
You either love camping or hate it. Your campsite could be all fun and perfect, or maybe it’s a horror scene?
121. The profile of a horse drawn with scribbles
Just a side view of a horse – or even a horse’s head, maybe – but you can only use scribbles.
122. Runway Fashion
Design something over-the-top that you might see on the runway, but that no one would ever wear in real life. Need some inspiration?
123. Draw donuts
Either a page full or stacked on a plate. MMMMM you might have to go buy some, you know, for observational purposes
124. Something in motion
Like a frog jumping, a top spinning, a person dancing. Try to show the motion.
Ew, worms. These things are quite interesting when you look closely at them.
126. A Recipe
Write out a simple recipe (can be extremely simple) and add little drawings of the ingredients to the page.
127. A baseball cap
Do what you will with this one.
128. Negative Space
Draw chairs or tables by just drawing in the negative spaces. Example:
129. Things that fly – all together
Butterflies, birds, dragons, insects, planes, etc all together in a very crowded sky.
130. A tea party
Tea parties are fun! Draw one of your choosing.
131. Make up some new emojis
There are plenty of emojis that we don’t have the pleasure of being able to use. What are some that you can think of that you would like to design. Or redesign a current emoji you feel could be improved upon.
132. Someone laughing
This will give you practice drawing the face when it’s not at rest. Listen to some comedy while you’re drawing!
133. A whole bunch of hairstyles
Draw from hairdo pictures or make up your own.
134. A city scene of skyscrapers
Again, follow a photo, draw from life if you live near a city, or make up a fantastic city, full of the tallest skyscrapers ever.
135. A leopard print or zebra print design
Who knew drawing animal prints could be good drawing practice? Try your hand at different animal prints if you enjoy this one.
136. A sleeping baby
Draw a sleepy little baby. That cute little drooly mouth will be fun to draw.
137. A lizard tank
Complete with lizard(s) of your choice, and all decked out with lizardy toys, etc. Sub a snake or turtle if you prefer those reptiles. Heck, if you really want to, make a tiny dinosaur or dragon tank!
138. Smudgy Marks
Make marks and lines with your pencil and smudge them with your finger. Go massively smudgy or just smudge little bits here and there, but have fun experimenting with moving the graphite around the page.
139. Shopping carts
Shopping carts are intricate and interesting – draw them however you see fit.
140. An African mask
Draw more than one if you get inspired – there are some beautiful examples of African masks to get you started here.
141. Turn 3 everyday objects into living beings
Personifying inanimate objects is fun!
142. A cake
Draw anything from a simple cake to a decked out wedding cake masterpiece.
143. A balloon animal
This will be a good way to practice highlights feel free to twist up your own balloon creations if you want to draw from life.
144. A seahorse
Seahorses are so fascinating, and you can get really detailed or just make a few line drawings.
If you’re drawing from life, really pay attention to the subtleties in shading here.
146. A front door to a building
This would be a fun one to scout out and draw from life.
147. Someone crying
I don’t recommend making someone cry just to draw them, but do what you gotta do.
Hand-letter your family’s names in different styles – or all the same if you would rather.
Lots of turtles, a few turtles, turtles swallowing turtles, turtles breakdancing. Anything turtle.
150. Tree stumps
This could be a good one for practicing colored pencils.
151. A mandala design or doodles in a bullseye
152. Cute wrapped or unwrapped candies
This one practically demands you use color, but could also be a really interesting pencil study.
153. A page full of bubbles
Enjoy drawing bubbles.
154. Old fashioned roller skates
You know, the old metal kind that you needed a key to expand. Or you can go with the cool sneaker-style 1980’s skates like these. (I may or may not have owned a pair of these, and totally rocked them.)
155. A page of leaves
Leaves of all shapes and colors, or just keep it simple with one leaf style.
156. Tools and screws or nails
Make a little still life if you have these items in your home.
157. A paper airplane
Ya gotta fold your own planes for this drawing prompt.
158. Funny characters
Dive into your imagination and draw some characters of your own design.
There is endless visual inspiration to be had with seashells.
160. Tiny Square Numbers
Separate your page into a grid, and in each square draw a number in different styles.
161. Draw a long, winding river or stream
Draw a real one if you have one near you.
162. Logos for cars, sports apparel, or other businesses
Draw existing logos or make up brand new cool logos.
163. Ribbons or rope or string
Try your hand at drawing undulating ribbons, a coil of rope, or a messy pile of string. This is definitely good observational practice.
164. Impromptu Still Life
Grab 5 things you see just by looking around, place them together in front of you, and draw them.
165. A train
Choo! Choo! Feel free to give your train a face. You know, sometimes it needs to happen.
166. Illustrate a children’s song
Listen to a happy kid’s song over and over and over again at full volume while you draw. Or save your sanity and listen once or twice before drawing.
167. Take an old electronic item apart and draw the innards
Got anything old and broken to take apart? There are some fun things inside to draw.
168. Scissors, slightly open, pointing toward you (that’s a challenging angle!)
This is good foreshortening practice. Plus, scissors are fun to draw.
169. A pile of pencils or pens or markers or paint brushes
Drawing your drawing tools is so meta.
170. A big, wide open mouth
Discover the mysteries of the wide-open mouth while you draw. Don’t hurt your jaw if you are drawing your own mouth. Maybe alternate between life and a photo…
171. A page full of connected triangles
This is very doodly. Keep it simple or vary your shading, triangle sizes, etc.
172. This is so cool! Draw this ladder optical illusion:
173. Water droplets
Try dripping water on different surfaces to see what makes them look best.
174. Draw a whole playground
Draw the playground from one point of view, or split it up and draw the pieces separately.
175. Make a toilet tube drawing
Draw a little scene as seen through a toilet paper tube.
176. Draw a map
Of your neighborhood, school, or workplace, complete with little illustrations.
177. Design a postage stamp
Draw it the size of a real stamp or enlarged.
178. Set up a scene of different bottles and draw them
Focus on the shadows and highlights, and set the bottles up in an interesting composition. You can even crop in on the bottles so parts of them are off the page.
Either in a bowl or closeups of a few popped kernels.
180. Design an ugly Christmas sweater
Pet ugly Christmas sweaters are not off limits here. 🙂
181. Draw a fancy Polynesian drink
This is your chance to draw a tiny, colorful paper umbrella.
182. Underwear! Draw underwear!
Nothing more fun than drawing a page full of undies.
183. Your hand, palm up, fingers curled slightly
Another hand pose to give you more practice.
184. Your favorite stuffed animal
Yours from childhood, a child’s, or make up your own brand new super stuffie.
185. Open an umbrella and draw it
You can do a few sketches of the umbrella in different poses if you’d like.
186. A page full of mushrooms or other fungi
There’s a whole world full of interesting mushrooms and fungi to draw.
187. Larger-than-life fingernails
Draw some or all of your fingernails enlarged.
188. Drip Drawings
Drip ink, coffee, any drops onto your page and make a design from it.
189. A room framed
A technique that photographers use sometimes to frame a photo is to place a curtain or open door on the edge of the photo. Try emulating this when drawing part of a room in your home:
190. An open banana
Peel it mostly or just part way and draw that yellow fruit.
191. A hanging towel
More fabric folds to draw!
192. Draw your toilet
2 days in a row spent drawing in the bathroom.
193. Strangers in public
Go to a coffee shop or park and draw a person (or people).
194. Spaceships and planets
Draw space. The final frontier.
195. A doorknob
Feel free to draw your self portrait in the doorknob if you can see it.
196. Sports balls – one or different kinds
Sporty still life
197. You as a child
Draw yourself from a photo, a video, or draw a strong memory of yourself doing something from your childhood.
Look up Stonehenge and practice drawing that cool, mysterious monument.
199. Write an outlined word and doodle/Zentangle around it on the page
If drawing letters isn’t your thing, you can washi tape a word to tangle around.
Marbles are a nice little challenge to draw.
201. A pine tree
Or lots of pine trees.
Set a table and draw it – or just one place setting.
203. Follow this drawing video:
204. An open book
Face up or face down, or one of each.
Boots are good to draw – try a single boot, part of a boot, or a boot pile.
206. Doodle Tracing
Trace around some random objects, overlapping them, and doodle in the spaces. Again, if you hate doodling, try to perfectly draw a pattern, or make the objects look like they are 3d.
207. Half leaves
Cut some leaves in half and lay them on your page. Draw the other half of the leaves – you can then draw the first half if you wish, or not.
All that amazing wrinkly skin will push you. Unless you go the cartoony, flat grey illustration route.
209. Copy a Rembrandt painting using pencil
I had this as an assignment in college, but we had to draw it larger than life with charcoal. It was a mess, but really fun.
210. A plastic grocery bag
Do you ever feel like a plastic bag? Draw one doing something.
211. Lily pads
Such great shapes- just draw the pads themselves or in a pond.
212. A person from the back
No faces to distract you, but you can still challenge yourself to find a really interesting pose.
213. Car tires
Super close-up car tire texture would be cool, or maybe a pile of tires.
214. A close up of a jeans pocket
Any jeans pocket, full or empty, color or not.
215. A tree, but only using short flicks of a pen or pencil to make your lines
This will give you license to be expressionistic with your tree drawing. Have fun with the marks.
216. A dinosaur
217. A cowboy hat
Cowboy hats are a great shape – feel free to draw it on a head if you wish.
218. A favorite cartoon character from childhood
Who was your favorite? How old are you? Are you the Jetsons generation, Spongebob, or all about Paw Patrol?
219. The end of a plug cord
Draw the cord, too, but the focus should be on the plug.
220. A broken pencil
All those shards will look lovely in a drawing.
Draw as many or as few as you want. Draw them on a game board if you want.
222. Be inspired by this artwork by Willie Hsu:
223. A self portrait filled with patterns or shapes
So many opportunities for this one. I’m picturing going in lots of different directions – have fun!
224. A small, secret fairy door at the base of a tree
This can be really cool and mysterious.
225. A bird skull
Skulls and skeletons are just good to draw.
226. A very loose landscape sketch from memory
Or just make one up. Make it loose and easy.
You have so many butterflies to choose from, flying or at rest.
228. A Halloween mask
Will you go terrifyingly scary or cutey cute?
229. A page full of circle doodles
Loops and circles all over the page.
230. A scene with a horizon line very low on the page, and the sky full of clouds
This can look beautiful and serene, or really ominous, or even puffy and adorable.
231. A person from the shoulders down
No neck, no head!
232. A truck
Draw a truck, any truck.
233. A hand holding a piece of fruit
Photo your hand at different angles holding fruit and see which one you like most.
234. An item from a celebration from another culture
Have you been curious about Dia de los Muertos? Or maybe some Thai lanterns seem more interesting to draw.
235. A funny selfie with a Snapchat filter
Don’t forget to actually get off of Snapchat and draw…
236. A close-up of an animal’s eye
Get really detailed with this one and then make everyone you know guess the animal.
237. An animal dressed in human clothes
Ah more fun with personifying non-human things. Or this can be a dog dressed up in your t-shirt.
238. An abstract shape tower
Play with shapes and forms.
239. Draw the side view of someone’s face
Look for different interesting photos or draw from life.
Sharks are fascinating creatures and you can draw all sorts of different types if you want.
241. Flowers in the ground and show the roots underground
Imagine the roots of the flowers underground – what might they look like?
242. A sandwich
Any kind of sandwich you want to draw.
243. One object morphing into another object (source: Eddie Kisosondi)
244. A crowd of people
This one can be as detailed or as loose and sketchy as you want.
245. Draw what’s on your nightstand
Mine is a mess. Feel free to make yours look lovely if you want to, before you draw it.
246. Draw something that symbolizes a place you want to visit
An object, a building, nature. Your choice.
247. Dried pasta – preferably different shapes
These are great to
248. A bear lying down
Big old sleepy bear wants you to draw him.
249. A page of succulents in pots
Succulents make amazing drawing subject matter.
250. A restaurant
From a scene in a busy restaurant to a server serving someone to people leaving, or people at the bar.
251. A page full of 3-d cubes
Remember learning to draw 3-d cubes? Perfect them.
252. A movie screen with a movie scene on it
Will you draw the movie of your life? Or a movie you’ve seem before?
Skateboards being used, propped up against the wall, in a shop, what else can you think of?
254. Street signs or traffic lights
Either or both.
255. A Greek God
Yeah! Take some time to draw from a statue or a photo, or from your imagination.
256. Someone blowing a bubble
A small bubble will give you more face practice, or you can hide the face with a giant bubble. Fun!
257. A scene through a rain storm
Day or night, wherever you want, but focus on making it look like rain.
258. Ducks on a pond
Want to try color? Or black and white for this one?
259. Blind contour drawings of objects around you
Really look at what you are drawing and concentrate on drawing what you see.
260. Design a cereal box
I feel like it wouldn’t be that hard to design a much better cereal box than what is currently out there.
261. The Impossible Rectangle!
262. A fox
Foxes are lovely little creatures. Draw one.
263. Paisley designs
Practice your paisley.
264. Glue a few fragments of magazine images to a page and incorporate them into a drawing
This can be an abstract drawing or something recognizable.
265. Draw a large spiral on your page and make a little creature journeying through the whole spiral
Eek, what will happen during the journey to the center of the spiral?
266. Your feet
Draw both of your feet propped up and crossed at the ankle in front of you
267. Listen to your favorite music and doodle aimlessly
268. A stack of plates
From above, straight on, or maybe draw them from slightly below them, looking up at them.
269. Sketch everything you eat for an entire day on one page
These can be quick sketches if you want.
270. Shadow drawings
Hold up items between your sketchbook and a bright light (try your cell phone flashlight) and trace the shadow outlines.
271. Draw your couch
Then sit on it for a while. You’ve earned it.
272. A pinecone
Pinecones have all those cool darks and lights and so much great texture.
273. A page full of quick little faces with different expressions
Practice drawing expressions.
274. Make a maze
It doesn’t have to be a regular old maze….
275. An ear
Aren’t ears weird looking? Draw one.
Draw many bats or just a few.
277. A brand new superhero
Ooh, what sort of superhero will you make up?
278. A castle
I immediately think of a Medieval castle, but maybe you’ll want to draw another castle entirely.
279. Pots and pans
All that metal will be fun to draw.
280. A stack of rocks
See how high you can make the stack.
281. Geometric Animal
An animal face or the entire animal made up of only geometric shapes
282. A watch
There are so many shapes, surfaces, materials that can go into one watch.
283. A page full of rocks or crystals
Set them up however you want, or scatter them around a table.
284. The inside view of a car
If you sit in a car and look around, there are endless views to draw.
285. A view from a drone
What could a drone see? Draw whatever you can imagine, or of course, photograph if you have a drone of your own.
286. A large ant
You can make it simple or cute if you’re grossed out by ants, or very detailed and realistic.
287. An arm in a cast
I have no idea why I thought this one up, but I guess it sounded like an interesting subject.
288. A flower in a vase
This is a good excuse to go buy flowers – or nab them from your neighbor. No, jk, I don’t condone that.
289. A volcano
I’m sure an exploding volcano would be fun to draw, but you can draw a sleepy quiet one if you’d rather.
290. A plate of french fries
Buy one to eat, and one to draw 🙂
291. Items flying around in a tornado
Cars! People! Furniture! Hats!
292. A tardigrade
293. Fill the page with small squares and connect as many corners as you can with any kind of lines
This is one of those mindless drawing prompts where you can end up with a really cool design.
294. Draw a recurring dream
I love dreams as drawing prompts – if you have a recurring dream, draw it out. Otherwise, any dream will do.
295. Grab the items you use to style your hair and draw them
Not much of a hair stylist? Draw any other tools. Or your shampoo.
296. The entire alphabet, and play with different letter designs
Alphabet letters are great little starter shapes that can take you in a million different directions.
297. A plant growing out of a sidewalk
Don’t you love when little plants just decide to shoot up through sidewalk cracks because they are awesome? Draw it.
298. Combine a flower pattern on the page with a lettered quote or saying
Maybe this is overdone nowadays, but feel free to put whatever twist on it you want to. Make it as lavish and lush or as minimal and stark as you like.
299. Draw a self portrait, but give yourself completely different hair
Now is your chance to play hair stylist.
300. A person on stilts
Stilts always seem to add a surreal twist to people, so se what you want to do with this drawing idea.
301. Heads of garlic
Garlic is beautiful, really. The shape, texture, matte silvery whiteness.
302. Paper lanterns
Choose what kind of paper lanterns you want to draw, and whether you want to draw them in the day or night.
303. Easter Island heads
These heads are so cool, and must be drawn.
304. A view through a window, including the window
Windows make lovely frames to the outside world, so find an interesting scene.
305. Shading practice
Separate your page up into many random, slightly undulating lines, then shade in some of the spaces to make it look like they are recessing, to different degrees
306. A jar full of something
Lights? Worms and dirt? jellybeans? Moonshine? Sand and shells? So many options.
307. 2 Hands holding
308. Use a page to try to draw a perfect circle – freehand
If you get a perfect circle, I must see it. @artmakespeople
309. Family portrait
Have fun and be creative with interpreting this prompt.
310. Different types of bees
There are so many bees. Bees are cool. Let’s celebrate bees by drawing them.
311. A person floating on water
Ahhhh I first thought of this as a soothing, relaxing water-floating pose, but get all dark and murdery if you’d rather.
312. A fence
Yes. A fence.
313. Draw siphonophores
Do we know what siphonophores are? No? Go look here.
Aren’t cacti weird and interesting? They’ll be fun to draw.
315. An empty country road
Draw all kinds of country road emptiness.
316. An empty city road
Draw all kinds of city road fullness.
317. An ant’s view looking up at something
I mean, anything bigger than an ant is fair game.
318. A plaid design
There are so many plaids- they’re actually really interesting. Just choose your favorite and emulate it.
319. Your favorite junk food
French fries, onion rings, Doritos, Funyons?
320. Blind contour drawings of your face
Blind contour drawings are the best.
Draw brooms in utter detail or simply the outlines.
322. Pick one object and draw it in pencil and then in ink
How does your drawing differ with different media?
323. Spider web(s)
This will be an exercise in patience. Spiderwebs are perfect little gossamer creations, aren’t they?
324. An egg carton
(Feel free to drop some more eggs on the table), but just draw the carton. 🙂
325. Pants laying flat on the ground
Choose your angle. You can draw them from any perspective.
326. Rolls of toilet paper
Make a toilet paper still life and draw away.
327. Design an interesting barcode for a product
328. Make a Google Doodle
Go check out previous Google Doodles for ideas.
329. Circle art
Draw overlapping circles on your page using a drinking glass and doodle or color in spaces.
330. Swapped Sizes
Draw a large object and small object next to each other, but make the large object tiny and the tiny object HUGE.
331. Paper Curl
Cut a piece of paper into a strip, curl it around something, set it on the table, and draw it.
332. Draw your hand with fingertips coming at you
Okay, last hand-drawing prompt, I promise. Drawing from this perspective is a great challenge!
333. Smudgy Portrait
Draw a portrait in pencil or charcoal and the make tiny smudge marks in the whole thing with an eraser.
334. Layered Drawing
Do a texture-rubbing on your page and draw something over it (you can draw the textured object if you want, or an animal, something in front of you, even yourself.)
335. Negative Space Creatures
Draw a big, full-page scribble and then turn the negative spaces into creatures.
336. An old, wrinkly face
Practice drawing those beautiful skin wrinkles.
Muffins are a fun food to draw – shoutout to those people who bake their own first.
338. The bottom of a shoe
Draw the bottom of the shoe straight on, or at an angle. You can choose one perspective, or a few sketches.
339. A spoon, a fork, and a knife
However you want to set them up.
340. A scene from your favorite vacation
Got a favorite vacation? What do you want to remember by drawing it?
341. Something on fire
I don’t recommend actually lighting anything on fire here, unless you are at a bonfire, and you’re the edgy person with the sketchbook.
342. Comic Panel
One square from a comic strip – make up your own or copy one.
343. Close your eyes and draw slowly and deliberately on a page
This is a cool way to draw by simply feeling and thinking about where your pen(cil) might be moving.
344. Ancient symbols, real or imagined
Look them up or create your own.
345. Yourself as a vampire or werewolf or Frankenstein
Reimagine yourself as a classic monster.
346. The inside of a box
It might be fun to play around with pointing a bright light at the box the see what kinds of shadows you get.
347. A backhoe
Big old trucks are so interesting-looking.
348. Lie on your back and draw your view in front of you
I’m just assuming here you can find something above you to draw besides the blank ceiling…
349. The floor plan of your dream home
Ahhhh grab a ruler and plan out your dream home.
350. Exercise equipment
Treadmill, weights, medicine ball, you choose.
Unwrap some things and draw the wrappers. I would personally choose candy.
352. Your initials as different animals
Turn you initials into animal friends.
353. Crushed cans
Try to get cans in different levels of crushedness, so you have some variation to draw.
354. Calendar Doodles
Draw this calendar month on a page and fill in each square with a tiny drawing.
Draw some gloves off or on hands.
356. A weapon from history
It doesn’t necessarily need to be from far off history, but there are some fascinating Medieval weapons that would be fun to draw.
357. A giant ground sloth next to a tree (image source: Sci News)
Practice cookie drawing. You’ll obviously need several packs of cookies for this, or make your own.
359. A lifeguard in a lifeguard chair
Drawing by the pool sounds fun.
Hopefully you’ll get some good reflections to draw.
361. Personify a food or product
Pick a favorite food or product to turn into something living.
362. Peanuts in the shell
Draw that peanut shell texture while snacking on peanuts. If you have a nut allergy, draw from a photo or sub out for something else to draw.
363. Baskets with things in them
Prop baskets with interesting items and draw.
364. A treasure map
Arrgh, will your treasure map be detailed or simple?
365. 2 puppets talking to each other
What would puppets look like if they were having a conversation?
Once you’ve made your awesome drawings, why don’t you share them on social media with these arty Instagram captions! (Don’t forget to tag me @artmakespeople)
What Sketchbook Should I Buy?
Oh, goodness. I love sketchbooks with my whole heart. There’s nothing better than cracking open a fresh sketchbook and running your hands over that blank page. Especially when you have all these cool drawing ideas to choose from!!
For now, here’s a list of the best sketchbooks based on different criteria. Look for a whole deep dive sketchbook post coming soon!
Inexpensive sketchbook for sketches – this is perfect for students or someone who just wants to dash off pencil sketches to keep warmed up. This links to the 2-pack of this sketchbook.
Good everyday sketchbook for mixed media – This is a hardbound, 8.5×11 sketchbook with paper that is more heavyweight than the first sketchbook. It’s a great book if you want to be able to draw in different media, although I wouldn’t go all watercolory with this one.
High end sketchbook for serious drawings – Moleskine of course is an artist favorite, and has been for years. Moleskines are super high quality and contain some magical dust that makes you draw better. Or maybe not. But every artist should try a Moleskine once to see if you love it or not.
This is the “large” size, which is 5″x8.25″, and what many artists prefer to carry around with them.
Another wonderful sketchbook choice would be from Fabriano – I like this 9×9″ square sketchbook, but I really want to try out this one, it’s adorable!
Related: Gift guide for your favorite artist
- Image #26 credit: Alex Stanton
- Image #64 bed drawing credit: Todnar Bonya
- Image #86 credit: Deposit Photos
- Image #97 credit: The Arty Teacher – this is a wonderful post on looking at negative space in drawing.
- image #151 credit: Rishi Kasingh
- Image #189 credit: Popham Designs – See my post featuring them here.
- Image #222 credit: Willie Hsu
- Image #292 credit: The Guardian
- Image #327 credit: D-Designs
Doodle something odd if you’re stuck. Draw an unusual form or squiggle to use as inspiration. Another option is to use colored paper as a starting point and rip or cut it into random shapes. Then, on one page of your notebook, scribble two or three forms. I often do this, and I frequently like the results so much that I had them made into temporary tattoo patterns