mad in pursuit journal


Noodling about Doodling

Do you doodle? I've been thinking about doodling. So was Kathleen: "It is sort of funny that people doodle the same doodles… is it a comfort zone or is it MENTAL?"

In truth I don't doodle much anymore because I don't spend half my time in annoying and/or brainless meetings like I used to. For me, doodling served a couple of functions. (1) Pure decoration -- pleasing. (2) Kind of a soothing of my subconscious that heightened my ability to absorb, unravel, learn.

WHAT I doodled reflected what was comfortable to draw... I think. I knew lettering. I knew org charts and workflow diagrams. And tiny, jumping, dancing people. So the common pattern was big words, boxes-arrows-circles-borders, figures here and there, sometimes curly meanderings. A psychological meaning? Who knows... some self-censoring has to go on when the person sitting next to you is glancing down at your pad. My offhand hypothesis: "things have boundaries, things connect (but maybe in unexpected ways), emotions blurt in but are well behaved." The graphic below was based on my doodles -- imagine it done with a fine-point Sharpie on notebook paper.

Deliberate doodling, as some kind of creative process -- that seems different to me. More intentional. Some schools of art -- like the Surrealists -- put a lot of stock in spontaneous drawing and taking advantage of accidents and coincidence in the process. And some artists develop symbol systems and lexicons and vocabularies of shapes and forms. I guess this would be sort of related to the repetitive shapes that meeting-doodlers develop -- only it sounds cooler.


Drop me a line!

Doodle analysis Bullsh*t but fun.

Doodling as a creative process