Choose a product that has visibly evolved over a period of time — at least 50 years. For the next 6 days, draw one version of that product each day, starting with the oldest version. When you finish you’ll have six sketches, showing 6 different steps in the product’s evolution.

Use photographs or real-life products for reference. Each version should be noticeably different from the previous versions. Don’t worry about making sure they’re perfectly spaced throughout history, or arranged in perfect order. This is drawing practice, not a history report.

Can’t decide on a product? Try one of these:

  • Telephones (wired and wireless)
  • Sofas (or chairs…or desks)
  • Bicycles
  • Drills (hand cranked and motorized)
  • Microphones (and megaphones)

There’s nothing special about these products, they’ve just changed a lot since they were first invented.

If you’re having trouble finding different versions of the product, try these search strategies:

  • Search by design style (Victorian, art deco, streamline, pop-u-luxe, modern, Bauhaus, postmodern, etc)
  • Search by decade
  • Search for the evolution or timeline of your product

Daily Sketch Prompts

Pick one sketch prompt and do one 20-30 minute sketch every day, 6 days a week. Then take a day off and start again with the next weeks’ post. New sketch prompts will appear every Monday throughout the summer. Each week will have 6 sketch prompts that focus on a theme. This week’s theme, for example, is “Evolution of a Product.”

These daily sketch prompts are intended for industrial design students, so you’ll see a lot of products and a few people (for user experience sketches). That doesn’t mean you have to be a industrial designer to participate. If the prompts help you sketch every day, then please join in!

Later this week, I’ll start posting additional articles about daily sketching, with topics like “What to do when you get stuck,” and “How to practice specific skills.” My goal is to post those once a week, but they may take a little bit longer than that. So check back every few days.

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