Project Description

Project Description


The most used tool a product designer has is hand sketching. We sketch on whiteboards in front of product teams, on paper as we work through ideas, on chalkboards and napkins and anything else that’s handy when an idea hits.

What it is.

During the ideation phase — and any time you’re working out a new puzzle — being able to quickly hand sketch ideas, flows, basic layouts is critical for capturing your ideas.

How it’s used.

Hand sketches are used to work out problems for yourself, to explain ideas to your team, to collaborate on and facilitate the iterative processes. There’s no time to draw up detailed sketches and wireframes in an application like Illustrator or Sketch during a design brainstorming session. Sketching helps you get your ideas down fast, and rework them even faster.



I encourage students to start on paper or whiteboards as soon as a project is assigned. There is nothing harder than overcoming that blank white screen. It’s better to get ugly ideas out right away so you can work them until you’ve molded them into something worth putting into a design program.

The other major reason we designers like to sketch our ideas is because it allows us to make mistakes and make changes easily and quickly. There is nothing high stakes about a line on a whiteboard. You won’t be  judged on your design prowess because it’s crooked, something is misspelled, or the idea simply stinks.

You’re forgiven everything when you’re working fast and iteratively.

So start low stakes. Start off every idea with a quick sketch — or a hundred.


hand sketching

hand sketching


  • Learn to sketch quick ideas, flows and interfaces

  • Practice sketching UI elements fast

  • Understand how to use hand sketching in the brainstorming phase of design

Tips & Tricks

  • Keep it readable but don’t worry about straight lines or perfect objects
  • There are no rules about how sketches should look, so come up with your own look & feel
  • Practice drawing different kinds of form elements (dropdown boxes, input boxes, CTAs, etc), so you’re ready to draw them when you need them


Your Assignment

Sketch the elements below

The goal is to learn to draw various website elements fast as you can. Use a timer with a loud alarm (or a friend) to stop you when the time is up! Try to draw each of these website elements in under