Everyone can draw with a little Drink and Doodle

I dusted off my visual facilitation kit recently and hosted a casual afternoon Drink and Doodle with the ANZ MVP crew.

Previously designed for in-person workshops, I picked out a bunch of exercises that I thought would adapt to the online enviornment. The meeting was in Microsoft Teams and had some important preconditions for participants:

  • A drink (alcohol is not required, I had ginger ale this time)
  • A few sheets of A4ish paper or a notebook
  • Markers (pens will work, but markers are better)
  • Camera on to share faces and results

Thanks to Shiva for inviting me to run this little session and to all of the MVPs who generously shared in the process and shared their work.

Note: I did get permission to share more examples on my blog, but some technical failure (and a smidge of human error) means I can’t share nearly as many as I could have. So for my MVP artists, it’s not you, it’s me!

Squiggle Birds

We started with Squiggle Birds, a simple but fun exercise that can be a lovely warm up for workshops.

Full credit to Dave Gray for Squiggle Birds. It feels like an age ago that he was in Australia and I got to do some Squiggle Birds as part of his own workshop warm-up.

Simply squiggle, then add bird features. A beak, eyes, tail, some legs.

Shiva Ford – Squiggle Birds

Draw Toast

I love Draw Toast as a design thinking and team building exercise. The instructions are simple but the results are varied and the discussion is a valuable insight in to diversity of thinking and how people approach problems. We did a cut down version with only a small amount of discussion on different approaches.

I encourage you to get deep into Drawing Toast by checking out Tom Wujec’s website which explains how you can use Draw Toast as a mechanism for solving wicked problems and system thinking.


Will Velida – Visual instructions for how to make toast

Continuous line drawing

This is one that I remember doing back in art school in the olden days. It is another simple exercise that can yeild really interesting results and the individual can chooes the level of fidelity.

Here is a great (and quick) YouTube tutorial if you want to give it a go.

Will Velida – Continuous Line Drawing of a Logitech Mouse

Double doodle

I can’t remember where I picked this one up it’s been in my kit so long. It’s a bit of a mirror drawing exercise where you draw with your left and right hands at the same time.

  • Fold a peice of paper in half, and then back out flat
  • Grab two markers – two different colours
  • Choose a subject
  • Draw your subject using both hands with your fold as the centre line.
Rebecca Jackson – Double Doodle – Ginger Beer Bottle and Glass Half Full

Portrait torture

That’s not really what I called it, but I might call it that when I run workshops in the future. We did two different portrait exercises. I don’t have a specific credit here but these portrait exercises use a few different constraints to make it interesting, and quick portraits always result in a good laugh.

  • Timed portraits – Draw someone in 3 minutes, then 2 minutes, then 1 minute.
  • Blind portraits – Looking only at your subject and not at your paper, draw someones portraits
Arafat Tehsin – Subject I cannot remember

Rebecca Jackson – Cameron Dwyer morphs into James Arber

Let me know if you give any of these a try, or if you have exercises of your own to suggest. Comments below.

If you are an MVP who make lovely doodles during this session that are not on my page, please send them to me. I would love to feature more.

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