Word Scrabble

By Miranda Morgan

Workshop Objectives

This sketching workshop is designed to develop “imaginative sketching” skills, in other words, enhancing sketching from the imagination. Being able to sketch from the imagination helps to articulate ideas that may not be fully developed quite yet. Ultimately, sketching from the imagination gets ideas on paper which acts as aid in discussion and problem solving – which ultimately, will help push concepts and ideas to their maximum potential.

Workshop description

The workshop consists of sketching from a series of randomly chosen words. For this particular exercise 3 words were chosen, a combination of nouns and adjectives. The 3 words can be arranged in any order to create a phrase/thing. The combination of words will most likely make a creative phrase. This creative phrase may be something you’ve never heard of, but with a little creativity you can imagine and sketch it. These phrases push your creativity, as they are uncommon combinations, you really have to use your imagination to create a visual representation of the phrase. For example, one combination found in our workshop was “sticky-kitten- toes”. More than likely, you’ve never heard of something such as “sticky, kitten, toes”, but with a little imagination you can create an idea of what it might be or what it might look like – using this exercise to work out the details as you sketch your idea of “sticky-kitten-toes”.

What To Do

  1. Start with making your inventory of words on strips of paper:
    Create two piles of paper strips (approx 20 strips in each pile). On each strip in one pile write an adjective, until the pile of strips is . For the other pile, write a noun on each strip. You can depending on the number of people participating). These should be simple common adjectives and nouns, don’t make it too complicated – remember, the fun comes when you put the combination of the words together in creative phrases.
  2. Next, find 2 containers/cups/paper sacks. Label one container as #1 and the other as #2. Place the adjectives in one container and the nouns in the other.
  3. Take the labeled containers, now filled with your strips of paper, and have each participant choose 3 total words. These 3 words should be a combination of both adjectives and nouns, chosen from container #1 and #2.
  4. Once the combination of 3 words is chosen, read the combination aloud and share the phrase with those around you. What is your favorite arrangement of word combination? What is most fun? Choose your favorite phrase that you can create.
  5. After you have your favorite phrase ask yourself “what does this look like?”, “what could this be?”, “how can I create it?” – your imagination will now be at work.
  6. Lastly, DRAW your ideas of what your phrase might look like and what it might be. Be creative, use your imagination and have fun.


This workshop is useful when working out a range of ideas, not only when you have funny phrases — but also when you are faced with challenges as a MAKER. Next time you face an obstacle, take a moment to imagine a solution and ask yourself, “what does that look like?” or “how can I create this?”…then go to your sketching paper and work out your ideas.