It starts on paper.
Doodling is often for designers a free form beginning to the exploration and creation of great ideas. While many exciting digital devices with intuitive interfaces are built to spur your creative process, nothing quite lives up in the beginning to the ease and freedom of doodling on paper. Sketching or doodling are the first steps of tracing out into reality the designs still forming in your imagination. Paper gives you permission to make mistakes, to create something odd or terrible or just maybe ingenious. It nurtures the “sketchy” nature of new ideas that are only partially formed, shadowy connections and inspirations that only begin to take on real shape in a quick sketch or design on paper.
Writing – or more precisely copywriting – takes place onscreen today. Mistakes are quickly edited and blocks of text can easily be moved around and reconnected as ideas evolve and take shape. The keyboard has sped up the creative process for wordsmiths. But to begin a visual idea, pencil or pen on paper still seem to be the tools of choice.
In the creation of a logo or any design concept, doodling is thinking. How do you represent a company’s core values, mission, standards, range of expertise in a compelling way? Sketching becomes a visual expression of real-time problem-solving – an essential part of the creative process. The shapes and ideas liberally sketched out on paper will be edited and developed on screen as the process continues. But in the initial stage, feel the freedom to draw, connect and reject. Wrong turns and attempted ideas all litter the page as you continue to draw, but still inform the overall process.
Alma Hoffman has a wonderful essay on this in an article called “I Draw Pictures All Day” on Smashing Magazine. She points out that all artists, writers and creatives should carry a sketchpad. You may also want to check out Sunni Brown’s book “The Doodle Revolution” about using the habit of doodling to improve creativity and focus.
With that in mind, we at ImageSmith gave custom embossed Moleskine® notebooks as gifts last holiday season. You never know when an idea will arise or you will find some tidbit of vital information to remember. No wifi needed. And now Moleskine has a notebook with a “Livescribe” app that instantly brings your sketched and notes to your computer screen and can convert writing to text. The paper itself has a dot pattern embedded in it which is read by the pen as you write. Moleskine understands the intersection of analog and digital.
No surprise, doodling itself has risen to a high art form in the hands of many talented designers and artists. Check out this gallery for some inspiring examples: 48 Examples of Doodle Art. You might also find enlightening the random doodles of some creative greats at these sites: Doodles of Famous Authors like Plath, Nabokov and Kafka and Six Famous Notebook Users like Hemingway and Picasso.
They’ve also found doodling can help combat stress – another plus with those looming deadlines, right?
About the logo at the top of this article: ImageSmith is now partnered with Extreme Awards & Engraving – our in-house partner providing custom engraved trophies and awards for employee recognition programs, sporting events, and promotional needs. With our new sister company, we will be sharing space, resources and expertise in a collaboration designed to further provide you with one place to meet all of your marketing needs… Under One Roof! Visit them online at www.extremeae.com or call direct at 828.684.4538.
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