Female hand drawing plant in sketchbook on wooden background

365 Drawing Ideas For Your Sketchbook: A Year of Daily Drawing Prompts

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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!

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.

Supplies Needed

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:

Drawing pencils

Erasers – these are my very favorite erasers

Good sharpener

Black drawing pens

Colored pencils


Small stick erasers with holder – for detailed erasing

Tortillon smudgers

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.

3. Eyeglasses

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.

16. Feathers

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
bird sketches in a sketchbook

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.

29. Balloons

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.

35. Octopus

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

That’s all.

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:

43. Chairs

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.

46. Lemons

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)
photo of cross section of grass under a microscope 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.

54. Clouds

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.

58. Snowflakes

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
drawing of a bed - close up on pillow and some sheets

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!

72. Bowls

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.

86. Shrimp
shrimp drawings

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.

94. Vegetables

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!

98. Boxes

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.

106. Makeup

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.

118. Sushi

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.

125. Earthworms

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:
examples of drawing ideas using negative space

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.

145. Lips

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.

148. Names

Hand-letter your family’s names in different styles – or all the same if you would rather.

149. Turtles

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
mandala drawing by Rishi Kasingh

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.

159. Seashells

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.

179. Popcorn

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:
photo showing perspective with doors framing it

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.

198. Stonehenge

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.

200. Marbles

Marbles are a nice little challenge to draw.

201. A pine tree

Or lots of pine trees.

202. Tablescape

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.

205. Boots

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.

208. Elephants

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.

221. Dice

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:
willie hsu drawing of dark hand shadows looking like they are pressed flat against a surface with a shadowy figure behind

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.

227. Butterflies

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.

240. Sharks

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)
drawing of a hot air balloon morphing into a jellyfish

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 eat draw.

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?

253. Skateboards

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!
impossible rectangle stepssteps for how to draw an 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

Have fun!

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.

276. Bats

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
tardigrade photo

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.

314. Cacti

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.

321. Brooms

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
cool barcode designs

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.

337. Muffins

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.

351. Wrappers

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.

355. Gloves

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)
illustrations of different sloths and human as size reference

358. Cookies

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.

360. Puddles

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

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  1. 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

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