Do you ever find yourself doodling while you’re chatting on the phone, reading, or listening to someone speak in school or in a meeting? You may not even realize you’re even doing it. There is actually a reason why we pick up a pen or pencil and start creating in situations like these.
Doodling helps us to think, remember and learn. It also helps our brain function and process data. According to Smashing Magazine, a study conducted by Jackie Andrade, professor of psychology at the University of Plymouth in England, showed that doodling helps the brain to focus and keeps the mind from wandering away from whatever is happening at the moment. Many people think that doodling causes you to lose focus, but it’s really just the opposite!
No matter your age, doodling is an effective way to keep the mind active while having fun and expressing creativity. The Middletown Arts Center offers several classes for children involving doodling with art instructor Art Kaney, also known as “DoOdle Dude.”
Each of DoOdle Dude’s classes, whether it is cartooning, animation, comic book drawing, claymation or sculpture begin with doodling to get the students feeling confident and get the creative juices flowing. Even the greatest works of art begin with a doodle!
Doodling is about the self-satisfying inborn need to create. All that’s needed is a blank canvas and something to draw with. Once you have those essential tools, doodling will come naturally.
To register your child for classes with DoOdle Dude, call the Middletown Arts Center at 732-706-4100. The DoOdle Dude also invites you to join him this Sunday, March 3rd from 1-4 p.m. at 36 Church Street (next to the Middletown train station) for the MAC's annual free Family Arts Festival and Open House for all ages.
You can doodle anywhere at any time! Start doodling right at home or on-the-go. Here are some tips from the DoOdle Dude to get you started.
DoOdle Dude’s Ten Steps to Get Doodling at Home or On-the-Go
1. Grab a pencil! This is the most essential tool for doodling. You will also need a pencil sharpener and a good eraser.
2. Find something to draw on. It can be a piece of scrap paper, notebook paper or even a napkin. Don’t be afraid to get creative with the canvas for your doodles.
3. Staring at a blank canvas can be quite scary, especially when you’re not sure of what to draw yet. A basic shape is all you need to start your doodle, whether it is a circle, oval or square. You can get really creative and blend the shapes together to make what I like to call a “sqoval” or “sqircle!” The goal is just to get something on the canvas.
4. Give your shape some eyes somewhere on his head. It could be at the top, middle or far sides. Eye placement is actually one of the ultimate tricks to character design.
5. Give your head a mouth so your character can talk and eat! You can draw it small, wide open or however you choose. Then give your character some bite with teeth! Draw those chompers square, sharp or round.
6. For the ears, draw little circles behind the head. No need to spend too much time with detail on the ears.
7. Now for the body! A little rectangle under the head is all you really need.
8. Drawing the limbs is quite simple; just sticks for the arms and legs!
9. For the hands and feet or shoes, draw ovals at the end of the legs and arms. If you’re drawing feet, you can add little lines for the toes. Then add little lines to the hands for fingers.
10. You’ve successfully completed a doodle! Now, someone may walk up and tell you that you forgot the nose. You can add a little circle for a nose if you wish, but you don’t have to. Don't let anyone burst your doodle bubble! It’s your own creation, which means it can be however you want it to be.