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No matter what artistic medium you love, sketching or drawing out ideas can be a helpful part of the creative process. But what if you’re drawing a blank—literally? 

Instead of waiting for divine inspiration that may never come, take a look at these ideas. From easy drawing ideas to sketchbook inspiration, we’ve got you covered.

Common Reasons for Having a Creative Block

As a creative person, experiencing creative blocks can be crippling. You may think you’ll never create anything ever again! But it’s a pretty common feeling for everyone to have at some stage, and it can be overcome by understanding where it’s stemming from, and how to move past it. Here are the most common reasons for having a creative block, and what to do about it.

You’re Aiming for Perfection

Nothing is perfect, not even those gorgeous pieces you see on Instagram or hanging in museums. Professional artists who make art that looks perfect have worked hard and practiced their skills relentlessly, and even they may feel unsatisfied with their work at times. Realize that perfection is an illusion and create for joy, fun, or stress relief… but never perfection. 

You Need to Switch Up Your Media

If you haven’t been exposed to new artists, styles, or subject matter in a while and are repeating things you’re familiar with, you might get blocked. Whatever your preferred medium (whether oil paints or embroidery), look at the work of artists in a completely different medium. And don’t stop at looking: Have a go with it yourself! You might get some new inspiration for color combinations, use of light, composition, and more.

You’re Comparing Yourself to Other Artists

While exposure to other artists and modes of practice is essential, there’s a difference between being aware of their work and comparing yourself to them. No matter how advanced you become in your art practice, there will always be someone you think is “better” than you. 

But a good thing about art is that there are no clear-cut right and wrong answers. A piece by another artist that you love and compare your own work to might not be as beloved by the next person, who prefers the spontaneity or use of color of your own work. So don’t compare yourself to other artists—just be inspired by them.

Get Some Cool Drawing Ideas

Pen Drawing for Beginners: Permanency, Texture, and Composition

Why Drawing Might Just Be the Solution

Drawing is an essential skill for artists in all media. You don’t have to be an expert drawer to be a good artist in a completely different medium, but it helps to be able to work through ideas with a pen or pencil and paper (or digitally, if you prefer and have the technology). Practicing your drawing skills, and broadening the subjects you can confidently draw, will help spark ideas for lots of other forms of art. 

With some of the following ideas for drawing, you don’t need to stay blocked for long.

Pencil Drawing Ideas

Pencil drawing is an ideal way to develop your drawing skills because pencils and paper are easily available—you likely already have them laying around your office or home!

Self-Portrait

portrait drawing
Student work by Nadia Dias T. for Simple Realistic Drawing for Beginners

Tree

tree drawing
Student work by Paulina Quintanilla for Intro to Graphite Pencil Drawing

Still Life in Colored Pencils

Hands

hand drawing
The ability to draw hands is essential for drawing realistic looking figures

Highland Cow

Sketchbook Drawing Ideas

Keeping a sketchbook where you jot down ideas and practice forms and techniques can be a good way to banish perfectionism. A sketchbook can be personal (unless you want to share it) so you don’t need to feel the pressure of creating something perfect on a canvas. Here are some fun sketch drawing ideas.

Facial Features

mouth drawing
Student work by Beatriz Alves for Drawing and Painting Portraits: A Guide for Artists

Cartoon Sketches

Birds or Animals

Draw Your Day

Pen Line Drawings

Easy Drawing Ideas

There’s no need to make kickstarting your drawing practice complicated. Trying to draw something really advanced when you haven’t mastered the basics might just lead to further creative blocks. Take a look at these easy ideas for drawing.

Mountains

Quick Fashion Figures

people drawings
Fashion figures can be very simple to draw.

Gratitude Journal

Medieval Castle

castle
Student work by DJ Rao for How to Draw a Simple Medieval Castle

Oil Pastel Fruit

Sometimes, reinvigorating your creative process is just about looking at familiar processes and subjects through fresh eyes, or with a different creative medium in your hand. Try these creative drawing prompts without expectation and just see where they take you! May you never run out of cool drawing ideas again.

Get Inspired Today!

Start Drawing: 3 Fun, Freeing Exercises to Spark Your Creativity