What Is A Doodle Inn?

Put simply, it’s a space – within an existing place – set aside specifically for people to draw, in a comfortable relaxing atmosphere, with other people who are doing the same; somewhere troubles can be put aside for a while and a community of doodlers can form.

At a Doodle Inn everyone can draw. At a Doodle Inn it’s not about the product, it’s about the joy to be found in the process of drawing. It’s not about what you produce, it’s about how you feel as you create it.

A Doodle Inn is a space where the focus is on drawing for mental wellbeing and fun, and where drawing with other people can help foster a sense of community and combat isolation and loneliness.

It’s Like Your Favourite Cafe

Like your favourite cafe, it’s a place to relax and de-stress. At a Doodle Inn you unwind and relax by drawing rather than eating and drinking, and you pick up paper and pens rather than food and drink.

Also like your favourite café, you go there for a specific purpose (in this case to draw); and the more time you spend there the more you get to know the regulars, and can be sure of a warm welcome.

Or Like A Gym For Your Imagination

A Doodle Inn could be thought of also as like a gym, but one where you exercise your creativity, and give your imagination a work out.

It Uses Drawing As An Aid To Wellbeing

The principal aim of a Doodle Inn is to encourage people to discover and feel free to enjoy the benefits that drawing can offer to mental health and wellbeing.

Alongside this, the fun of drawing with other people helps to foster a sense of community, and thus combat feelings of isolation and loneliness.

It’s a space to enjoy the process of making marks on paper, in the company of others; somewhere to drop into, when you need a break particularly, where you can take your mind off other things and give yourself a reason to focus on a pleasurable pastime for a while.

Free To Access

With the current uncertain state the world is in especially, many people can’t afford the luxury of regular cafe visits, or of subscriptions or entrance fees to things like art clubs and groups, or local classes.

So one of the most important facets of a Doodle Inn is that it is completely free to access for the community it serves.

It’s About The Process, Not The Product.

Unlike most art groups and classes, there’s no setting goals, no expectations or competition. A Doodle Inn is for fun, for the pleasure of drawing, alone or with company, for the joy of the process. It’s not about what you produce, it’s about how good you feel creating it.

A Doodle Inn isn’t somewhere where you’ll find Art, with a capital A. Or competitive criticism. A Doodle Inn is somewhere to, well, doodle. To enjoy playing – maybe for the first time – with making marks on paper, and see where it takes you.

Is it just for Artists?

Absolutely not!

Many seasoned sketchers will feel comfortable drawing in public already, but for many new doodlers, and plenty of long timers too, it is something they’d do only with the greatest trepidation for fear of ‘standing out’.

At a Doodle Inn the whole reason you – and most importantly everyone else too – are there, is to draw. So there’s nothing for reluctant doodlers to feel nervous about; not only will you not be conspicuous, you’ll probably hear a welcoming cry of “Come on in! Grab a sketchpad…!”

If you are someone who already enjoys drawing, or even someone whose work involves drawing, a Doodle Inn gives you somewhere to aim for where you know you can focus on the purpose of drawing, without other distractions.

So whether you’re having a go for the first time, or whether you’re a seasoned doodler, the key is it’s somewhere to forget your troubles for a while, away from your usual environment, where you can drop in and, in the quiet company of others, simply enjoy discovering and spending time drawing.

You May Find Your Tribe

Although, like a gym or a cafe, you can be as solitary or as sociable as you like, at a Doodle Inn you can find that drawing in company can be fun. You may just want the background hum of low voices or the gentle sound of pens on paper, or after a while you may find you get to know fellow doodlers and offer a welcome to newcomers, swopping drawing ideas and sharing your artistic efforts.

Here at Doodle Inn HQ we’re hoping that as time goes on, and word spreads, Doodle Inns will be popping up all over the place, and more and more people will be finding how much pleasure and fun they can have drawing and doodling!

Support the Doodle Inn Project on Patreon and help it to grow.

“Drawing helps me…

… to feel connected, part of something basic and timeless. Not having drawn for a time, I feel that now; I can identify what was missing.”

“Drawing and doodling…

…are very meditative for me. They make me feel calm and relaxed, and bring out my creative energy. The more I draw the more creative I get in other areas of my life too.“

“My sketchbooks…

…are a record of happy moments, of quotes that have inspired me in the down moments, of friends, and of my evolution as an artist (with a small ‘a’!).“