How to Turn Doodles into Fine Art

Love to doodle but want to take things one step further? Today I’ll show you how I turned simple pattern doodles into a HUGE work of art that I can hang in my home.

I got this idea from maths class back in highschool. Instead of listening to the teacher, I was using each class to slowly build this massive collection of doodles on my file. I covered it with squares then filled in one or two squares during class. (No, I’m not great at maths) haha.

It’s so easy, anyone can do it and looks really effective when you add it all up, BUT there are a few secrets you need to know to turn it from amateur looking doodles into a cool textured art piece.

Jump in and I’ll show you how.

Nicola x

My Collection of Doodle/ Pattern Art

Some of these pieces are available as downloadable prints HERE. Others like ‘Riverend’ and ‘The Fray’ are available as high quality Giclee prints.

If you print your own art out, I recommend getting a proper art printing company to do Giclee prints on ‘art rag’ (special textured art paper) – this makes the artwork look SUPER nice and professional because Giclee uses 8 inks and come out looking super pigmented. It makes black look like velvet for example. It’s lovely. Once you go Giclee, you won’t go back!

Here’s a breakdown of the video

Step 1 – Choose your colours.

I like monochrome or earthy colours for my house but you can do this bright colours or pastels. Whatever you like. I’d stick to around three to four colours max though. That will stop it from looking like a rainbow threw up on your page.

So you’d use the darkest for the background, the lightest for most of the doodles, then the middle colour to add interest over the top of the light colour.


Step 2 – Colour the background.

Choose either the lightest or the darkest colour in your palette for the background. The secret is to make it TEXTURED. That means using a rough bristled brush and slapping the paint on in all sorts of directions to get that cool urban look, or if you’re like me and you’re on a tablet, just leave it looking scrappy.

The messier the better!

TIP: If you’re using a tablet, make sure the very bottom layer is solid white otherwise the background will be transparent and may cause issues when you’re printing. (ie: the colour of the paper will show through instead of how it looks on the tablet – this is fine is the paper is white, but if it’s grey or yellow toned then it will alter the colour vibe a bit.)

Step 3 – Add Faint Guidelines

Add your grid. Make these lines super faint if you’re drawing on a canvas, or on a seperate layer if you’re drawing with a tablet so you can delete them later.

The rule is… don’t be too uniform.

Step 4 – Start Doodling!

Then start filling up your page with your doodles. One for every square/ rectangle.

The trick is to keep the overall vibe of your doodles similar. So either use simple patterns or shapes like I have or do all cartoony type doodles, or all nature inspired etc..

That will give you a nice consistent look throughout the whole piece.

Make sure you use a textured brush and don’t make things perfect. Scrappy is good!

Then before you know it, you’ll have a huge piece filled with lots of detailed doodles that you can hang in your home.

Have fun!!

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