Bullet Journal doodles were my biggest challenge ever since I started my very first journal. I’m not an artistic person at all and all I could ever draw was a smiley face (with an option to add a tongue to the design).
However I AM a very determined person, and once I set a goal I become unstoppable! Of course, practice is the key! I kept working on my skills over and over to get my doodling game on a proper level. But also, I took a lot of help and inspiration from very amazing and talented people.
Well, I’m here today to share with you what I learned during my own little doodling development, and to tell you where you can get some help and inspiration as well. Mind you I’m not an expert and I’m still learning every day myself. But I think if I could improve my drawing skills (more like developing drawing skills!) so can you!
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Before we dive into doodling itself, let’s make sure we have all the supplies ready. The good news is, all you really need is a pen and paper! Here are some recommendations to know where to start:
I always recommend starting with a pencil because you can erase and fix things you don’t like. Of course, you want pencils and erasers of good quality, which would definitely be needed. As for pens – you’re of course free to use any you like, but I’d personally recommend you using some fineliner pens. Among the popular brands are Sakura Pigma Micron and Faber Castell. Both are great quality pens and will be able to create vivid black doodles!
If you’re just starting, I’d recommend you to get a cheap dot grid notebook and keep it as your doodling practice journal. That way, you’d be able to see your progress over time. Another option is to get a dotted notepad, which is what I did, and loved it.
Learning To Doodle
Learning how to doodle has always been on my list, so I was very happy to start Bullet Journal and get back the motivation to start doodling. My study program is very simple: find doodles you like and try to draw them yourself. Rinse and repeat, rinse and repeat. That’s about it – practice makes perfect so all you really need to do is keep practicing. Start with simple doodles and simply work your way up.
This is my favorite method, and if you could see my practice sketchbook you’d know I spent hours on doodles! I personally think it’s all worth it though, because now at least I can actually draw things by myself and not just copy other people’s work. This for me is a biiiiiiiig step!
There is one trick you can use to make it easier for you to understand doodling, so let’s talk about that!
How To Doodle
The trick in doodling is to divide everything into basic shapes. Just like with everything, it’s a skill that takes time to develop, but with practice, you’ll be able to see basic shapes in every doodle.
Let me give you an example: a cup of coffee. It’s a very easily drawn doodle, and if you look at it, you’ll see it’s just 4 rectangles.
Start from using a pencil and sketch all the basic shapes. Then just add a bit more of detail and soften the shape of your doodle and it’s ready to go!
As an example of this concept, here is a little how to draw video, where you can see how I approach each doodle in the step by step process.
There is one more trick – get good directions. Good tutorials will help you develop that skill of seeing any doodle as a set of very simple shapes.
Thankfully Instagram and Pinterest are full of amazing people (remember the artists I mentioned before?) who are sharing some tutorials and step by step instructions. In case you aren’t really a social media person, you can find some more places in my list of Free Resources To Learn How To Doodle.
This doesn’t only teach you how to doodle new things, but it also helps you to later divide any doodle into smaller and easier to draw parts by yourself.
So, without further adieu……….
How To Doodle – Instagram Accounts With Simple Doodle Tutorials
Of course, the first person on my mind is Liz from @bonjournal_. She posts lots of tutorials, mainly florals. She doesn’t work much in color, preferring to do her drawings just in pen (try this Tombow Pen). Liz was the first account I found and she gave me the confidence in my doodling skills. After trying out some of her tutorials I was happy to discover I’m not a lost cause after all and I can doodle in a pretty way too! She also has a YouTube channel if you want to check it out sometime.
Another account with similar nature doodles is Jennifer from @inkbyjeng, who also has a great line of Bullet Journal related products. Unfortunately, she doesn’t post her tutorials as often as I would want to (a.k.a. EVERYDAY!), but every time she does – they’re inspiring and very easy to follow. Definitely give it a look! Try some of her tutorials with this Pentel Pen.
Letizia from @bujoandcookies has become one of my favorite accounts lately. She picks a new theme for her Bullet Journal every month and then posts the tutorial of doodles she used in decorating her spreads. They’re super easy and extremely adorable! Try out these tutorials with this liner and add some color with Zebra Mildliners or Crayola Super Tips.
Feel like some cuteness? Head out to Patrizia from @lifeinabujo. She has detailed doodle tutorials for the most adorable animals! And her spreads are full of inspiration and positive vibes. If you are a fan of her art, you can also check out her Etsy shop, where all her doodles are turned into adorable stickers! Supplies Patrizia sometimes uses for her drawings – Staedler Pigment Liner and MozArt Dual Brush Pens.
Talking about doodling I can’t miss The Doodle Queen Erin from @the.petite.planner. She doesn’t post many tutorials on her Instagram page, but she often does tutorial posts on her blog. And she actually has amazing creativity courses, which teach you a lot about Bullet Journal and doodling! And in case you’re wondering what pens Erin used for this tutorial – it’s Uni Pin Drawing Pen and Kuretake Zig Writer.
Finally, I also do tutorials on my Instagram account, even though not that often. Let me know in the comments below what tutorial you’d like me to do next and I’ll be happy to add it to my feed. I do have quite a few doodling videos on my YouTube channel, such as my Doodle With Me series or How To Doodle videos, so give that a look.
How To Practice Doodling
Practice doodling as much as you can, the more you do, the better you become. But I know from my own experience, it can get sometimes a bit boring or tiring – always looking for an idea to doodle can be a drag. There’s a solution for this too – doodle challenges! There’re so many amazing challenges which help you not only to develop your doodling skills but push your creativity in general. As an example here are a few you could check out:
Of course, this is just a little part of all the goodness you can find to help you out with your doodling skills! What did I miss, what accounts inspire you? Please share in the comments, I’d love to find more amazing artists to help me to become better!
Want to see some of my doodle inspirations – check out my Doodle With Me YouTube series, where I draw pages of different themed doodles.
Need more inspirations and tutorials? Check out my Pinterest account!
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