Doodling Tips

1. You can draw every pose in lines. To practice, you draw lines over a picture of a posed person to understand how the body is behaving and where the line of action is. The more dynamic the lines, the more interesting the pose. So when creating your own poses, curve the lines to give the pose more life.

2. Visualize your subject in the most basic form. For example, a person’s head as a circle, torso as a rectangle, and hands as a square. This is how you can first draw it on paper (lightly or with a drafting pencil) to get the pose and proportions correct.

3. Keep the weight centered over wherever the character makes contact with the ground. Otherwise it will look unbalanced.

4. Regarding proportions: Think of halves. The eyes are at the middle line of the head, the nose is at the middle line between the eyes and the chin, and the mouth is at the middle line of the nose and the chin. The hips are at the half way point of the body, the elbow is the halfway point of the arm, etc…

5. Make sure the pose reads as a silhouette. So don’t square the feet and hands right with the camera, because you don’t want to lose anatomy.

6. Define your lines of your doodles. Go back and press hard on the lines that define the shape of the drawing. In the words of Shelly, my middle school art teacher, “Dark! Dark! Dark!” To test if your chosen lines convey the pose, you can put it down and squint your eyes to see how the pose reads in the defined lines.


1. Sit somewhere and people-watch. Not in a creepy way — just study their how they move and try to match some of their poses. When capturing poses of moving subjects, quickly draw lines to get down the poses and then fill in proportions with shapes. You can add details later, but not when your subjects are moving.

2. To take the poses a step further, think loosy goosy! Whatever action you think of or see, exaggerate it by arcing the lines of action more. This gives the character a more interesting pose and emotion. Think of the life drawings as starting points and draw over them new lines of action that push the pose to something more dynamic and interesting.


1. Draw with one hand on the tablet and the other on the keyboard to hit the brush size keys (“[" and "]“). That way you are just drawing and don’t have to click on any menu to change brush size as you go. The hand on the keyboard will become automatic after a bit.

2. Don’t look at your hand. You need to get used to how what you draw translates to the screen.


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