A design friend recently asked me what I like to doodle. As in, what do I draw in the margins of my notebook when I’m in a boring meeting? My friend said she always winds up doodling her own name, trying out her signature in different styles of handwriting. I’d never really thought about it before, but when I realized that when my pencil goes on autopilot, I’m usually drawing faces.

They’re always female faces, usually just sketched quickly in pencil. They’re a little more detailed than the faces I draw on my “Girls” and other fashion figures, but I’m still never aiming for realism. I just like to catch the expression around the lips and in the eyes and keep the rest simple.

I usually keep the faces in case I have time to revisit them later. Sometimes I’ll just add some color to the pencil sketch, for example in the case of “It’s Only Tuesday”, above left (clearly inspired by the workweek). The faces below are examples of times I’ve been able to redo the sketch completely, making a new version in ink and adding favorite beauty details from the runway.

Now how about you? Do you have a habit of doodling? If so, what do you draw?