• Natalie Young

Don’t Know What to Draw?

Updated: Oct 9, 2020

Deciding what to draw or figuring out what project to make next can be one of the most daunting tasks for an artist. I’ve compiled a list of things I’ve encountered through my own experience that have helped overcome standing in the face of a blank sketchbook page!

One of the things I’ve noticed about myself is sometimes I feel there is some specific subject I need to be drawing or a style I need to be adhering to. The thing to be focused on is determining what you enjoy and desire and are passionate about, otherwise your heart just won’t be in it.

I’ve seen several artists who are well-known but do not accept commission work because if its something someone else wants them to draw, they know they won’t put their best foot forward for those clients. The bottom line here is draw what you want and not what you think you should be drawing. That’ll start making your decision process a little simpler.

Keep a List:

A lot of times I’ll be working and have a brilliant idea of something that would be super fun to draw, only to completely forget what that is by the end of my shift. Listing has become one of my favorite things and something I would highly recommend. If I’m at work or out and about, I like using the Notes app on my iPhone to jot down random thoughts of things I could potentially draw. Otherwise, I just keep a Word document with notes I create while I’m browsing my computer or drawing at my desk. When you feel like drawing and don’t know what, take a glance at some ideas you’ve previously written down, sometimes none of them sound good but it can initialize some brainstorming!


Similar to the advice above, I love to have a list of movies, books, music, and videogames that I’ve considered making fanart for. Think of a specific character from your favorite movie and see how you can bring it to life in your style, create a landscape from a detailed description in a book you’ve recently read, etc. The possibilities are endless!

Sombra from Overwatch – digitally painted in Photoshop CC 2019

I have a passion for electronic pop music and enjoy creating worlds and artworks based on the lyrics and sound of the beat. The most inspirational has been Madeon, who is a talented, young French producer who just recently made a comeback this week (after 3 years of silence!). I also really enjoy Porter Robinson, Daft Punk, WRLD, Skylar Spence, and several others!

Based on “Beings” – painted with acrylic 2017

Here is a piece I created for Madeon’s single that dropped yesterday, “All My Friends”! Its important to remember you don’t have to stick to one medium either. A lot of times, I’ll end up using multiple kinds. Below I inked my sketch with microns first, then brought that linework to life in color digitally in Photoshop, and finally added text using InDesign.

I dig the aesthetic he’s created for the album and I’m sure you’ll see more art soon based on his tunes.

What are some things that inspire you to draw or create? Comment below!

#illustrator #denverartist #creativeblog #dontknowwhattodraw #artblog #drawthisinyourstyle #digitalpainting

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© 2023 by Natalie Young. Proudly created with Illustration Portfolio.

Zesty Creatives is based out of Colorado.