Friday, January 04, 2013

Fun How-To Project #2: Doodle Universe!

Previously, I shared a fun "how to loosen up" project using Sharpies to doodle on an apron (HERE).

Well, this time we take The Sharpie to new heights!! We. draw. right. on. the. wall!!!

Yep, onto the walls. In Sharpie. Really. :-O

I have a dinky bathroom that has been plain white for almost 4 years. MyGuy has been too busy to apply the promised paint, so one day I was hit with a "great" idea: doodle on the walls with a Sharpie! 

Thus was born the Doodle Universe. 

Eventually, I will add color. But for several reasons it's taken me 6 months to get this far, so I'm learning patience and perseverance. :-) 

Drawing directly onto the walls has several advantages:
  • You let go of perfectionist tendencies
  • It's fun and daring at the same time
  • It's a way to let your imagination loose, and just allow the design to surprise you as you go
  • It actually increases your confidence as you just "do it"

My method was to relax and just gaze at it, and "see" it first in my imagination. If I liked it, on to the wall it went.

My only rule: no pencil and eraser.

That was just my choice, since I wanted loosen up. There are no mistakes with this method, only accidental adventures! If I slip (which I occasionally did), then the design takes a turn in a different direction. It's all good!

Here is the Doodle Universe thus far. First, here is the view as you walk into the tiny half/bath; this is the right wall, and then it goes on around to the left (can click on any pics to enlarge):

Before I started:

Took a big breath, and started on Wall 1:

Wall 1 day later:

Here are Walls 1 and 2 finished:

On to Wall 3, to the left of the sink:

This shows the design progressing around to Wall 4:

Wall 4:

Now Wall 5, over the Throne:

Close up of Wall 5:

Continuing over to the last Wall 6:

And a shot of just the last Wall 6, all done:

My next plan is to add subtle shading, and eventually color. The acrylic color will be in two parts: a pale sponged on background with hints of color; and some brighter color notes right on the main design elements.

And the symbolism?

-Within my Doodle Universe are separate Doodle Galaxies.

-Each main Galaxy has similiar components attached to it, such as the giant wings,  showing movement and change, albeit slow). 

-There are similarities, yet no two Galaxies are identical, they are unique, like people.

-There are cloud-like connectors between the Galaxies; they are separate, yet connected; autonomous, yet needing each other.

-Each Galaxy has tails hanging down, kind of like tails on a kite; they symbolize anchors, a source of stability.

-They also each have a Vine design, representing growth, change, new life.

-There are stylized stars and moons, symbols of reaching for hopes and dreams.

I may eventually add angels, little space ships, quotes... who knows how it will turn out in the end! 

I hope you've enjoyed this glimpse into my Doodle Universe!

Happy doodling,



  1. love this...I did this in the girl's bedroom a few years back. I started painting it blue then realized what I really wanted to do was to turn it into a huge I did...with trees and flowers and a sun with a face and a fairy on a mushroom. There's nothing like a room that says you. Beautiful. Have fun.

    1. Thanks, Chris. Yes, it's so fun to just let it fly, and do what YOU really like, and not feel like there are "rules" to what goes on the wall. Something liberating about that!

      I do remember you posted a fairy sitting on a spotted mushroom! :-D

  2. This looks like fun.... do I have the courage .... The honest answer is No!

    But now I have this idea stuck in my head who knows where it will go. You inspire me.


    1. And you can always figure out a design on paper first, til you are comfortable with it. There aren't any "rules". If you do something somewhere, be sure to take photos! :-)

  3. More than enjoy... WOW... I'm in awe and totally want to be in this bathroom. I see it as a work in progress forever, everything in a state of flux, just like life. Amazing concept. How will you add the color... with sharpies? paint? More pictures as you progress, please!

    1. I like that: "in a state of flux, just like life." So true!

      I plan to use plain old acrylics, since I don't want to buy any specialty mural paints. I plan to first paint on simple shading with diluted Payne's Gray and an old brush. I played with it in Photoshop, and liked how that gave it a bit of a 3D effect. Then will just pounce on soft acrylic colors with a big natural sponge. And last will paint on accents with a brush on the design.

      I thought a lot about it, and while I LOVE color, I knew if I didn't go modest on those color pops, after a few weeks they would start driving me nutso and look too loud and gawdy! So, I will reign in my natural tendency to overdo the color, ha ha ha.

      Yep, I plan to take photos along the way. Thanks for asking!

  4. I enjoy it. Very nice! Been thinking about doing this to some of our rooms. Inspiring!:)

    1. Thanks, Twix. It really is fun to see it progress. You'd have a blast!

  5. I like how the doodles have meaning to you. The layering makes the art all the richer. I love your bathroom walls. What a creative idea... of course, from creative you.

  6. This is so fun! I love all the details and meaning. I have been playing around with how I would really like my surroundings to be with the furnishings in our vacation condo. It has really helped me to be more free with design and such as I know I won't be looking at it every day. When I finally get to move I am hoping that I have figured out more what I actually like and am more daring and subtle at the same time, rather than just having a collection of 'stuff' that I have mostly inherited that doesn't mean that much to me.
    I can tell your design means a whole lot to you and I like the aspects of your personality that shine through!

    1. Thanks, Jasmine. I like your thought that since you won't be looking at it every day, you can go a little bolder and freer. I hope you have fun designing your space... go wild and your inner artist loose! :-D

  7. Great post! I hear from your sister that you have a birthday this month, so I wanted to say happy birthday!

    1. Thank you, LG, I'm glad you enjoyed it. And thanks for the Birthday wishes, too. :-)

  8. I freaking love your doodle universe! I love all your doodles. I doodle, but they don't look anything like yours.

    1. Thanks, Margaret.
      Your doodles would be uniquely YOU. :-D

  9. Your doodles are AMAZING!!

    I love your explanation of the symbolism in your art.

    thank you.


    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed them, Sheilagh!

  10. I don't know how I ended up here today but glad I did love your work. Miss you so much! Hugs Jan ♥

    1. Hi Jan! It's wonderful hearing from you, I have missed you, too. I think of you often, and hope you and Dave are doing well.

      I'm glad you enjoyed the Doodle Universe project. I've been enjoying it just plain black and white, and was just thinking yesterday that I was about ready to start adding the shadow phase now. Standing is a problem, so that's one reason I've been stalling, gotta admit. But this will give me a reason to push it, and that will help build strength. Art therapy, LOL!

      Hugs to you and Dave,