Being a creative individual, designers are always focused on feelings, emotions, creativity, and out of the box thinking. Working with pen and paper is a classic combination to express individual thoughts. This tool is mostly used by most of the designers and artists to explore their creativity. Today many other advanced technological tools are available which really speeds up the design process, but many artists still prefer to work with the most important conventional tool that is ‘pen & paper’.

Designing is a multidimensional Trans formative process in its own nature which has a deeper sense of belonging. The great thoughts are always transferred on paper which is an amalgamation of cognitive, affective and practical ideas, also called as head, heart & hand theory. Design process starts with ideation, so the first 2D presentation of thought is expressed through sketching or scribbling, which allows creative mind to visualize, and express innovative thoughts. The good designs made with creative thoughts also have an emotional touch, values and are executed with great knowledge and skills.  The deeper engagement for execution is possible only if it has come from the heart.

Since childhood are habitual of pen & paper that whatever we think or want to express we grab a pen and just put those thoughts on paper. Transferring these thoughts directly digitally takes longer and the outcome is not as expected, we can say it becomes more like hit and trial method. People started using design software to explore further their imagination but somewhere the creative freedom was restricted with few design tools and a mouse. And that is the reason for technological advancement that digital pen were introduces and today one can create anything which is beyond imagination.

Today’s generation are learning digital applications from their childhood, but many of them are most comfortable with pen or pencil, specially designers who always carry their scrap book to note down interesting points, scribble while travelling which they can always refer and be connected. It’s always a comfort factor for many senior artists who have learned digital applications to integrate their skills but the initial thoughts are always first on paper. Hand creation has always greater value than any other work done using technology. You cannot beat any of the art work done by famous artists like Pablo Picasso, Van gogh, with any of the advanced technology present today.

In other perspective I think designing with pen and paper are always progressive as having an out of the box thought and putting it directly on paper always make a clear expression of idea because you are putting your thoughts while simultaneously thinking logically & aesthetically. Creative mind has got stack of new ideas which needs to be transferred or recorded immediately for further referral as sometimes we keep forgetting but the quick sketching or scribbling can build up a good visual dictionary for anyone to refer. Many professionals talk about this good practice as it creates open minded, well developed and artistic outcome, which can be by scribbling, thinking or idea generation or brain storming about it which really helps you plan your work well with the most important tool that is a pen and a paper.


Sonali Brid, Assistant Professor, Fashion Design Department, ITM Institute of Design and Media