Doodlers of the world, unite! We’ve always known what people say now, that doodling is a healthy outlet for a writer. It enhances creativity, increases productivity, helps concentration, and stimulates areas of the brain that are dormant. Some say that it alleviates stress and calms the amygdala, thereby helping process our emotions.
I don’t know. I just like to doodle. In high school and college, if I could find those noteboks, I doodled all over the pages. Usually it started with drawing borders around important words, but then elevated to symbols and pictures. And when I studied, I think the graphics helped me remember the information.
I remember that my sixth grade teacher told a story about a boy that had been in her class years before. He was always doodling at his desk (which I don’t think she discouraged). Anyway she said she’d just received an invitation to attend an exhibit of his work in an art gallery.
Famous doodlers include Queen Victoria, Theodore Roosevelt, Ernest Hemingway, Claude Monet (who woulda thought?), Marlon Brando, and Presidents Hoover, Eisenhower and Kennedy. I imagine George W. Bush was and is, as his artwork is pretty good.
A squiggle may or may not be just a squiggle. It could be a Freudian slip. It might mean the person with the pencil isn’t paying attention to the speaker at all, completely lost in his own thoughts. There’s even a theory that a doodle says something about the author according where it’s drawn on the page.
I just think they’re fun.
Information and doodles from: news.artnet.com, hungryjpeg.com, alfastudio,com, flickr.com, quartoknows.com, theatlantic.com, reddit.com, daringtolivefully.com, healthharvard.edu.