For our first sketch, we pulled a dramatic point from a plot of a novel we're working on. The main character has come home from school to discover that the evil landlord has cranked up his furnaces and is spewing thick smoke next to her farmhouse.
We made her the focal point by contrasting her to the background, and then we led the eye up the scene with her eyeline and the trees heading up the driveway to the smokestack. We used jagged lines on the smokestack (the evil landlord's house), curved shapes on the heroine, and encircled her with the driveway. We added plants and the mailbox in the foreground to add depth and round out the composition.
Below is a page of thumbnails that we sifted through before moving onto the next sketch, just for funsies!