Tips For Sketching in Cafés ☕️

Iva Mikles

Hey everyone! Welcome back to another Artist Advice video!

Lately, I’ve been diving into both digital and traditional sketchbooking, which has significantly boosted my confidence in my art.

So, I thought I’d share some sketchbooking tips that have helped me develop my skills and might help you too.

Today, I’m taking you along for a sketchbooking session in a café. Drawing outside is a fantastic way to gather new ideas. Stepping out of the studio into the ‘wild’ of a café, with its bustling atmosphere and the inviting aroma of coffee, can be pretty inspiring.

Tip #1 – Art Supplies:

It’s essential to pre-decide on your tools. This approach allows you to focus more on your art and less on decision-making.

In this digital sketchbooking session, I’ve limited myself to one tool. Even though digital offers unlimited colors and brushes, I recommend creating limitations to spark creativity.

For me, using just one or two brushes in these sessions works wonders.

Tip #2 – Color Choices:

I adore playing with colors and creating new palettes, but it can be overwhelming, especially outdoors.

To avoid the frustration of not liking a chosen palette, I often stick to black and white.

This simplifies the focus to lines, shapes, light, and shadow, making the process liberating!

Tip #3 – Choosing Your Spot:

Particularly for introverts, this is crucial.

You want a spot where you feel comfortable, away from too much foot traffic. I often choose a corner or a seat with my back to the wall to avoid curious onlookers, especially when I’m not yet confident about my sketch.

Tip #4 – Favorite Snacks and Drinks:

Sketchbooking should be enjoyable, and what better way to enjoy it than with your favorite treat or drink?

My personal favorites are cheesecake or a cinnamon roll. I’ve also taken a liking to iced coffee, which stays enjoyable even during longer drawing sessions.

Tip #5 – What to Sketch:

With your favorite drink by your side, draw inspiration from mundane things around you – a coffee cup, sugar dispenser, or people in the café.

I sometimes add elements like a dog, even if there aren’t any around, just because I love drawing animals.

Remember, if you’re new to outdoor sketching, it’s okay to be unhappy with your first few attempts. It’s about practicing and capturing the moment, not perfection.

Sketching regularly contributes immensely to artistic growth. So, even if it’s not a masterpiece, every sketch is valuable. I hope you found this ‘draw with me’ session inspiring.

Thank you for joining me. Stay curious, keep sketching, and most importantly, keep creating!

Until next time, bye!”


Hi, I am Iva (rhymes with “viva”). I am a full-time self-taught artist behind Art Side of Life® and a Top Teacher on Skillshare. I have 15 years of experience in the creative field as a concept designer, illustrator, art director, and now freelance artist, content creator, and art instructor. My goal is to help you get your creative groove on with Procreate and make awesome art through practical classes, tutorials, Procreate brushes, and guides on art tools, supplies and resources. About me »

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Hey there!

I am Iva (rhymes with viva), and I'm the artist behind Art Side of Life. I'm all about helping you get your creative groove on with Procreate and make awesome art! So on my website, I share Procreate classes, tutorials, brushes, and guides on art tools, supplies, and resources. Ready to create and make amazing art? Then explore, join and have fun ♡

Grab your gear:

iPad Pro, Air, Mini or iPad

Apple Pencil

Procreate Brushes


Drawing Stand

Open Procreate and enjoy!

More about me »