Hello, here's a huge word list for drawing ideas!
mallodraws last edited by
I’m @mallodraws, this is my first time posting. I really love what a supportive and warm this place is! I want to draw lots of children book friendly portfolio illustrations in the coming year, and become a happier more inspired drawer all round : )
In my quest to more new work, the biggest struggle I experience is embellishing the illustration with story details.
The best solution to this I’ve found thus far is collecting a LOT of descriptive words for inspiration. Kind of like collecting DNA or illustration ‘seeds’
I’m sure I’m not the only one who struggles with this bit of the process,
so here’s a gigantic word list I’ve gathered over the years.
Hope it’ll help anyone who’s going thru a "what to draw" dry spell!
(Wish I could make flashcards out of these, wouldn’t it be fun to pull out a random set and do a drawing challenge?)
PS. Also, found this AMAZING list of 400 things to draw by Phil McAndrew: http://philintheblanks.com/thelist.html
Cockroach, sailor, baby, parrot, brother, bride, wife, insect, painter, miner, coastguard, horse, traveler, a happy couple, miner, traffic controller, Pig, mouse, giraffe, elephant, lizard, ant-eater, moose, crocodile, bull, iguana, raccoon, tiger, wolf, owl, bear, cat, dog, human, butterfly, rabbit, monkey, dragon, witches, sheep, goat, elk, ostrich, flamingo…
They were at…
Countryside, city, coffeeshop, staircase, jail, club, river, forest, lighthouse, library, church, hospital, train, wedding, funeral, farm, a wrecked ship, in space, a stormy sea, on a icy road, a tiny room, a snow fort, a doll house, a shelter, in a dragon’s belly, on a branch, a beehive, on a swing, in a maze, a seaside fair, standing in line, in a tree, at the gym, the doctors office, living room, a empty park, meat market, beside, indoor swimming pool, on the patio, inside a nest, in an ice rink, on a tiny island full of houses, in front of the school assembly, in a food court, on the escalator in a mall, a busy corridor, a dark quiet corridor, a hotel room, tropical forest, banquet, home sweet home, under the sea, theatre, a ballet show, a concert, in robot land, in the fridge, the circus, a new theme park …
They are …
Smiling, waiting, fighting, looking, searching, combing, teaching, learning, boxing, swimming, listening, spying, riding, spotting, slicing, cooking, baking, singing, playing, sleeping, hoping, surfing, mining, gardening, cutting, growing, shouting, loving, leaving, breaking, asking, driving, saying, running, kicking, dancing, knitting, watching, holding their breath, talking, trying, got a fright, grilling food, riding a hose, scooping, lifting, blowing, fleeing, frying food, baking cupcakes, on the phone, fell asleep sitting, strolling leisurely, on the bus, rushing to get home, on a bike, soaking in a bath, packing for vacation, hugging, setting the table, holding hands, blowing bubbles, flopped on the sofa, reaching, pulling, sitting cross legged, all curled up, writing on the board, listening to a story, stomping, kiss, trapped, soaring above, melting, petting, whispering, stretching, waking up, in disgust, observing, investigating, imagining, skip roping, conquering, mixing, mixing together something, looking at shop display, falling off table…
Delighted, surprised, affectionate, curious, shy, angry, weary, calm, content, static, grateful, affectionate, assured, relieved, refreshed, relaxed, grateful, sad, grief, lost afraid, furious, relates, annoyed, anxious, bored, ashamed, burnt out, confused, indifferent, demoralized, depressed, disappointed, wistful, sleepy, empty, guilty, jealous, giddy, lonely, excited, numb, grumpy, seething…
Wild card adjectives
Old, bold, cheeky, mischievous, naughty, light-hearted, cozy, humorous, infectious, warm, coy, alert, thoughtful, wistful, monstrous, misunderstood, scaly, fluffy, wrinkled, smooth, wet, dry, powdered, glittery, sticky, crunchy, soaking, wobbly, steaming, detached, short-tempered, ridiculous, organized, loud and proud, thin, slender, stocky, plump, elegant, soft, coarse, bright, pointy, round, saggy, bulging, mystery, danger, adventure, invention, bursting, windy, it just snowed, late afternoon, just woke up, sweltering hot, drizzling rain, midnight, drab day, misty…
Beard, mask, long top hat, woolly fat scarf, beautiful glowing wings, colorful socks, notepad, flask, name card, a jar of purple flowers, a pink feathered hat, glasses, a striped umbrella, silver boots, a puffy coat, long skirt, bowtie, a collar, platform boots, hiking boots, overalls, roller skates, sneakers, bandannas, a good, sunglasses, a stuffed animal, a fat backpack, plaid pants, pink loafers, ugly sweater, a strange pin, arrow and a bow, suspenders, bowling hat, hairy mane, cane, smooth gloves, tattoos, distressed jeans, misfitting eats, hairy eyebrows, elephant nose trunk, snouts, a rump, hair, fur, scales and feathers, claws, mouth, lips, muzzle, bob cut hair, curly hair, wavy, spiky hair, wreath in hair, ponytails, braids, masks from all over the world, summer dresses…
Car, boat, airplane, toaster, suitcase, typewriter, guitar, lorry, wallpaper, scooter, camper van, radio, telephone, ferry, fridge, micro, circus, television, magic seeds, scrambled eggs, a wonky tree, crocked gold spoons, mugs that don’t match, a white shell, rocks, snail, fossil, acorn, a tank, lunch, torch, torch, tent, rub cube, candy, spinning top, table cloth, rocket, crayon, jump rope, shovel, clapping monkey, dartboard, seafood salad bowl, a old telephone, coffee maker, a great tray, macaroons, squashed bird, an Italian wood chair, hula hoop, a baby plastic cup, fancy mirror, dice, globe, yarn, teeth, magnifying glass, riding horse, a ripe mango, a teddy bear, huge flowers, funky furniture, camera, window, a shiny metal beetle car…
Eli last edited by
@mallodraws I love this! It would be great for writing as well. The flashcard idea is cool--I have always thought it would be fun to just print prompts on slips of paper and draw them from a hat (or jar or box!) I may have to print these up and give it a go. You could also keep adding your own words to the mix
Julia last edited by
that's great! that could also be a game to play with kids. I love it! Thanks for sharing
Also helpful in coming up with possible mock book cover/ book titles . I think that would be fun! Mix and match words like "The Old Notepad" or "All Curled Up In Space" -lols I really like that one.
Sas last edited by
Oh this is so great and handy! Thank you so much for sharing it with us!