Friday, September 16, 2005

The Doodle Association Game

The Doodle Association Game

Words take a backseat

Last week, in an effort to kill some time, Kim and I invented a little game. Basically, it's just Word Association with doodles instead of boring ol' words. We didn't really make up any rules before we started — they just kind of formed as we played. But I'll do my best here to explain things to you.

Person A draws something. Anything. A shape, a bridge, an amorphous blob; whatever strikes A's fancy. Person B then draws something of their own, influenced by the previous drawing. Sometimes it may be the shape; sometimes it might be the subject matter. Sometimes it might just be one little piece that looks like it could be a piece from something else. Then... it's Person A's turn again.

Pretty simple, right? It's fun to do with multiple people, but there's no reason you couldn't play all by your lonesome self. Don't fret about rules, or about creating a masterpiece; the point of the game is really just to kill time. And to tell you the truth, the simpler your drawing, the easier and more imaginative the game is.

Wait! Don't start Yet!

Direction of Doodling

One suggestion I'd like to make before you begin is to draw each doodle sequentially (as opposed to just dropping them haphazardly on the page); and as you get to the end of each line, start the next doodle directly under the last, moving in the opposite direction.

So that's it. Give it a try if you'd like. Feel free to leave a comment posting a link to your results — I love following the visual trail of how one drawing influenced the next. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to get ready for my big Hollywood Super-Star meeting with Milton-Bradley and Parker Brothers...

Comments on this Article

There are currently 68 comments.

[ Add one of your own! ]

Pierce

Brilliant. I'd love to know just what's going on in the middle of line four there though. Whats after the testube, and what the hell is after that?

bearskinrug

Well... I think the test tube led to an erupting volcano, which lead to a creepy hand...

Pierce

...which lead to a creepy hand... face thing.

Kim

I think my favorite transition is "baby" to "carrot". And I'm quite proud of my "hand and dumbell". Anytime I attempt to draw anything cartoon-like it ends up looking much, much worse.

bearskinrug

Haha! You'll have to consult Kim on that one, Pierce — that thing is her's... :)

Kim

Pierceó
It's an armless creature. I figured it hand enough protrusions on the rest of its body.

Pierce

"hand enough protrusions." good one.

I like how when you start looking at it half way down, it's almost impossible to see which direction it is going in.

Jason Santa Maria

This is very cool visual thinking exercise!

Juna

If this was a game that you could actually get points from.....then I would give 5 points to whoever made the transition from smelly cheese to smelly socks. Awesome.

sutter

Milton Bradley, here you come!

Jolo

Raindrops keep falling on the hive.

Joshua Lane

@ Jason - We should do this in the office! Maybe even put something on the wall or in the conference room.

TheJones

How do you win?
A game needs a winner!

Jared

This really would be a great game for Milton-Bradley. Personally, I would also like to see Scrabbleship become a reality.

Kim

I guess the winner could be the one that stumps the other player. We'd never have a winner!

Charles G

Has anyone noticed that graphic with the red arrow guiding you through how to read the images? It's got a dropshadow on it! I could just reach into the monitor and touch it!

Details people, details.

Thats why the bearskinrug stays in my favorites folder. Well, besides all the sockmonkey content... monkeys! hehe.

Jeff Louella

This would make a cool app. Kinda like the "Draw a Pig" thingy.

Rachael

This is an awesome game idea! If only we could mix this with Haiku Who somehow. I love the little diving man.

Steve

...and it ends with...ravioli?

Mmmm, ravioli.

Nary

No...It doesn't have to end -- you can keep drawing. Ok, who's next? After the ravioli, I'd draw a flying saucer. Shwoo-woosh

Kristen

And after the flying saucer, I'd draw a flying saucer...of ravioli. For it is sacrilege to pass over the ravioli so quickly. Mmm...ravioli.

murten

Did you resized it, Kev?

bearskinrug

No - those are pretty much about the size... you could really do them any size you want, though.

wayne

if you're going to market this, you need a better name. something proactive. something that works in a whole new paradigm. like "ka-doodle!" or "crazy chain" or "doodlink" or "lines of thought" or "doodly appendages." your next steps are to pick one of these names and then write me a check.

Charles G

I was touched by his doodly appendage.

Jaline

Best. Game. Ever.

Ryan

Very creative and sounds like fun. I will try with a couple of friends when we're bored eating :)

Dustin Askins

My wife and I tried it out...

Doodle Assocation

Thanks for the idea!

flo

very clever but i love it since i draw and doodle alot!!! thnx for the idea

Alex

How to get those ideas? Oh boy, I need to get creative some time.

Mike

New game: See how many of your appendages you can doodle with.

bearskinrug

Hmmm - I like that! I'd have definite trouble with my feet, I can tell you that...

Marley

Umm. Are you kidding me. Where thge fuck do you get a volcano? It goes to a hershie's kiss and then into a fortune cookie.

Alyssa

Wrong direction Marley, it's the fourth line, so it's going from right to left.

Great game - time waster - brainstorming tool! I've really enjoyed it.

Glen C.

It's funny, I've been doing this for a long time when bored in class. The only difference is that I draw a shape or something with my eyes closed and see what comes of it... and I suck at drawing really bad.

Andy Havens

Neat game. Reminds me of "My Team, Your Team," a game I play with my 6.5 year old son. Described here.

.Suchit

Super. Have you seen "Connections" program on Discovery Channel. It used to evolve such a story starting with one thread and spanning whole world.

I wish had some drawing skills. :( ... Anyways, one thing comes to my mind is use this technique for evolving User Interface storyboards.

bearskinrug

Glen C. - That's a pretty fun game too. Drawing with your eyes closed is very similar to drawing blind contours...

Andy - Hah, hah! That's sounds reeallllly fun - I may have to post that link! :)

Suchit - That sounds interesting! I'd love to see how something like that comes together...

megan

i dnt get it !!!!!!!

Hannah

i think it goes from the test tube - to a hershey's kiss, to a fortune cookie to a COUNT DRACULA

bearskinrug

Kinda! You're reading that line backwards :D

But yeah... I'm not sure how Dracula and the cookie are related. Maybe because cookies drink blood.

Felipe SM

I loved this idea!!!
Really really cool!
It will be very good to use in some class... hahahah!

pen2lobster?

BRILLIANT!!!
...but i dont get how the ball point pen turns or goes into a lobster?!!! boy, thats a thinker. I hate it...I LOVE IT.

Thanks!!!

alice

fantastic! like a long-lost brother to "destructo" (where the next person has to draw something that either destroys, cancels, or disables whatever the previous person drew--the more elaborate the stories, the better).

Mattias

Sweet! Love this kind of small games. Will try it soon.

bearskinrug

Alice - That sounds fun! I've never heard of that... I'll have to try THAT out... :D

Pedro Markun

Neat!

Somehow it brings Hesse's Das Glasperlenspiel to my mind =)

Ned Batchelder

This is a cool game. I play something similar with my kids: Doodle-O, wherein a drawing is started abstractly by one player, and must be finished concretely by another.

Tim Heaney

There's a cool word for doing things like that little red arrow is indicating: boustrophedon.

bearskinrug

Oh my - that is an excellent word! And it's handy to know, as well — thanks Tim!

Here's the official definition...

Caio

Love it.

Just love it.

masayume

Cute game. Perhaps it should have a rule to win too.

lemsip

have been , have gone, goodbye, so long.

Onno Knuvers

Now what would be cool is if we setup this up as a online commuinty thing. So one person does a doodle and then the next person does a doodle and so on and so on.

Also you can have a group situation like 6 people or so, and then you get the image back they will be heaps of changes and cool images.

bearskinrug

Masayume - Agreed - "First person to pass out from exhaustion loses".

Onno - Yeah - that would be pretty cool! :D

thaneda

wow, i do something like this all the time, except mine aren't so organized. usually someone draws a blob, and then the other person either adds to that blob or does another take on it. sometimes the blob is penguin or squid shaped.... it usually turns into a crazy landscape of jokes and fanciful drawings :D

your lines are so nice and clean though, and i find that even the slightest difference in techniques (between mine or yours) are interesting and well, i guess i'm just trying to say- thanks for the inspiration. i'm always looking out for it!

Chris

Very cool game. Reminds me of when I was a child, my dad would make a single, small mark or scribble (not as elaborate as Doodle-O mentioned above) on a piece of paper, and pass it to me. I would then have to turn it into a drawing of something. After completing it, I would make a mark of my own and pass it back to him for his turn. It was always great fun sitting in church! :) And now, 30+ yrs later, I have taught my son and daughter the same game.

bearskinrug

That sounds like a pretty fun game as well. And I definitely wish I could do something like that during church!

KOOOOOLIEO

THIS THING SUCKS A LOT AND IS BORING

bearskinrug

Well, I can see how it wouldn't be as fun for some people. Thanks, Kooooolieo!

bob

u people r cool:}

Jennifer

Your link here reminded me... I wanted to say thanks for this game. My 10-year-old loves it. When the whole family goes out to eat (extended family included), my son will flip over his paper placemat, beg a pen off someone and get started. Then we pass the placemat around. We've had as many as 6 people participating while we wait for our food! Thank you!

bearskinrug

Hahaha - awesome! Any chance for me to see the results?

steve

Ooo... I need to try this next time I'm out with the girlfriend. I've always settled for plain 'ol hangman or tic-tac-toe. This is much cooler, despite what that wet blanket KOOOOOLIEO says.

Jennifer

I'll have to remember to keep it next time we're all out. We usually leave the art at the restaurant when we go. I'm sure the restaurants have all kept them and framed them in the employee break rooms. It's really fun when there's no pen so we use the restaurant supplied crayons.

danielle

I want to say I love how how you did line 5 I think it is exerlent I just want to thank you for spendin time to do this and putting it on the internet for every one to see so thanks.

Bri

Me and my friends play a similar game howvever it is a little diffrent. Everyone playing choses a diffrent color pen or colored pencil and peroson 1 draws a doodle or sqwiggle and then person two completes it by making it whatever they want. Person 2 then draws a doodle for 3 and so on. It is a great game to kill time and laugh a lot.

Adelynne

Nice!!!
I like how you form and form the different shapes!!! 8-)
*thumbs up*

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