10 Imaginative Doodle Books

Need to add to your doodle library? Here’s ten doodle books to keep you drawing and your imagination growing. These are not books that show you how to draw things in a specific way, but ones that help get your wheels spinning. Presenting:

10 imaginative doodle books


1. Doodle!

by French illustrator Jochen Gerner (b small publishing) is terrific for younger artists, but stirs those creative juices, so it won’t bore older ones, and has enough activities to keep everyone amused!




2. 3, 2, 1. . . Draw!

I’m a big fan of Serge Bloch’s drawings — especially his work combining photos of real objects — and his new book, 3, 2, 1. . . Draw! (Wide Eyed Books) is sure to make you see things in a whole new way.




3. Draw It! Colour It! Creatures

(Macmillan Children’s Books) This book is a great way to introduce budding artists to some of the best illustrators working today. It allows you to collaborate with your favorite artists (including Lorna Scobie) and demonstrates how they all doodle differently — each having their own personality and style.




4. Chris Riddell’s Doodle a Day

(Macmillan Children’s Books) Make a daily habit of drawing with this diary of doodle prompts from the UK’s 2015-2017 Children’s Laureate, Chris Riddell.




5. Hirameki

Hirameki (Thames & Hudson), Japanese for “flash of inspiration,” is a clever book by artists Peng & Hu, who encourage you to doodle what you see out of paint splotches. Perfect for all ages.




6. Drawing in the Sea

I love when doodle books combine subjects that we already love (like oceanography) with drawing, such as Harriet Russell’s Drawing in the Sea (Edizioni Corraini). You’ll not only enjoy doodling, but you’ll learn stuff about the sea, too.




7. Shackleton’s Journey Activity Book

A companion to Shackleton’s Journey (also by) William Grill, is brought by one of my favorite publishers, Flying Eye Books. William Grill’s brilliant illustrations make me want to draw with colored pencils.




8. My Crazy Inventions Sketchbook

Andrew Rae and Lisa Regan created this book, My Crazy Inventions Sketchbook (Laurence King), for all of us doodlers with fantastical ideas (and those who want to come up with fun inventions, too).




9. Maps Activity Book

A follow-up to the gorgeously illustrated Maps (Big Picture Press) by married creative duo Aleksandra Mizielinska and Daniel Mizielinski of Hippopotamus Studio. Ideal for those who are geographically-challenged (like me!)




10. Change Your Life One Doodle at a Time

(Quarry Books) Can a doodle change your life? Author/illustrator Salli S Swindell (and I) think so! Doodling regularly helps your brain to think visually, observe details, focus, and become more creative. Doodle on!




Bonus number eleven : Extraordinaires Deluxe Design Studio Kit

design_studio_kitThis last one is not actually a book, but a lovely brainstorming box for budding designers who appreciate specially-packaged things. It includes a pack of illustrated cards that detail your “client’s” needs, and a pad for you to doodle your designs. There are three kits available here.

These lovely books are available at fine bookstores and museum bookshops.


Win a set of the 10 imaginative doodle books above by showing us your doodle bomb by June 30, 2016. Click here for more details.

All images courtesy of respective publishers.

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3 & 1/2 Questions: Lorna Scobie


If you’ve ever seen Londoner Lorna Scobie’s illustrations, you’ve probably noticed one thing: she often draws animals. Lions, giraffes, cats, rabbits — you name it! She draws them. I adore her animals — they’re so charming and full of character — and wanted to share her work with you. Luckily, I was able to steal Lorna away from her studio for a brief 3 & 1/2 interview!


Are there any animals that you find challenging to draw?

I find monkeys SUPER difficult to draw; they have so many legs and arms and tails, it gets a bit confusing! I’m ok at their faces — it’s the rest of them I struggle with! Other animals I find difficult to draw are hippos, unicorns, sheep and lions. Sometimes when I am struggling with how to draw an animal I look at a picture, but usually I use my imagination. My favorite animals to draw are antelopes, tigers and lizards because I love drawing their patterns.


Your animals look like they could almost talk. Are they inspired by people you know?

That’s an interesting question – they aren’t deliberately based on people I know, but I’m sure traits in my family and friends turn up in my drawings. I think my gorilla drawing is a bit like my dad, but I have only thought that afterwards. My dad doesn’t look like a gorilla… I think there is just something in the eyes that remind me of him. I reckon most of my animals are probably just versions of me, although I’m not as spaced out as they are!


If you could recast a book or film with your own drawn characters, which would you pick, and how would you do it differently? (For instance, if you picked Goldilocks and the Three Bears, would you change the animals or the Goldie?)

One of my favorite books is One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and I try to read it once a year. It’s about a South American family over several generations, and all the family members basically have the same name (Arcadio or Aureliano) so it’s a challenge to keep track of what is going on! I would recast my drawings of lizards as the family, so that each character would be a different color – it would definitely be easier to tell the difference between Red Arcadio and Green Spotty Arcadio!


Please complete this sentence:  I like to draw ____.

Animals. All the time. Even ants.


Thanks for sharing your awesome animals with us, Lorna! You can follow Lorna on Twitter and Instagram. All images courtesy of Lorna Scobie.



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