We are not going to conduct a Rorschach or “inkblot” test (a method of psychological evaluation) of the doodles we’re showing here because I’m not a fan of psychoanalysis. Case in point: the famous line in the movie, The Departed, where Matt Damon’s character says, “Freud believed that the Irish are one race of people for whom psychoanalysis is of no use whatsoever.” The publicity and controversy that resulted from this line when the movie was released stunned William Monahan, the author of this Oscar-winning screenplay. Personally, I loved all of it.
We asked three talented STC graphic designers to give us a doodle specifically for this blog and then we quizzed each of them in order to obtain an insight into the World of Doodles at STC.
“Doodling helps me relax. It clears my mind. I doodle when I have a blank piece of paper. At times I do it with white ink on black paper. I also use red for contrast. Periodically I use lines and squares, but I find squiggly lines much more interesting.”
“I only doodle at work, not at home. More specifically, I like to doodle at meetings because it helps me focus on what is being said. My doodling here is done with a red marker. Generally, I use whatever is handy. I think the interpretation of a doodle is up to the person looking at it.”
“A doodle is a safe way to explore because there’s no expectation for it to be amazing. It’s a beginning phase where I’m trying to figure something out. I think my doodle here looks like music. I used to look at books of calligraphy by Old Masters so that’s a major influence. When I use a sheet of looseleaf paper I always doodle on the edge.”
HOW TO DOODLE EFFECTIVELY
Focus on a problem you want to solve. Hold this in your mind and suspend judgment. As ideas come, doodle onto a piece of clean, white paper. Disengage your conscious mind and allow your hand to do the work. Set your doodled paper aside. Later, look at what you’ve drawn. You may have solved your problem. If not, keep doodling.
DOODLING AT A WHITEBOARD
Doodle by yourself or invite coworkers to do a 10-minute brainstorm at a whiteboard. This creates a no-pressure environment that’s open to anyone who wants to participate. Some very successful companies promote whiteboard cultures, e.g., Zappo, Facebook, Google and Disney.
DOODLING: FAST FACTS
- Doodling is an art form used by graphic designers, architects, mathematicians, artists and cartoonists
- Doodles can be traced back to early cave paintings — currently 37% of the population are visual learners.
- The most popular doodles are: stars, flowers, boxes, arrows, hearts, initials and stick figures.
- The dictionary defines “doodle” as a verb (scribbling) and as a noun (a rough drawing).
- American presidents who have been known to doodle in meetings include: Jefferson, Kennedy, Reagan and Clinton.
Want to learn more about doodlers? I bought the book, The Back of the Napkin by Dan Roam on Amazon. It’s chock-full of useful information presented in a fun way.