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Sketching Skills: Top Tips from Hazel Boyd, User Interface Engineer

Person sketching a Wizzybug powered wheelchair

Sketching is where our products begin

Designing our Wizzybugs was not a quick process. In order to ensure it met children’s needs, we kept in close contact with families and professionals who knew what young children required from a fun, powered wheelchair.

These important insights were what led us to get started on the design. One of the first steps of visualizing what it might look like, as with all of our products, is sketching.

Eventually, it ended up looking like this…

Over to Hazel...

I’ve really enjoyed the chance to sketch while we’ve been working separately at home.

My work doesn’t often lend itself to sketching, so it has been good to practise something that I haven’t done much for a long time.

Here are my tips for getting started:

1. Use a real object

Use a real object or a reference image to sketch from to ensure that you get the core information right.

2. Lay out the overall shape first

Lay out the overall shape first, with a careful eye for the perspective. If I get hung up on a detail early on, it can throw out the proportions of the overall drawing.

(My sketch of a sleek designer car looked more like an Austin Allegro when I didn’t stick to this one – no offence to Allegro fans!)

3. Observe really carefully

When my pen disappears from view early on during this sketch, I am holding it up to check the angle of the lines – it’s easy to get these wrong if I just guess.

Examples of not observing properly are the joystick (which does not look like it points upwards) and the wheels (which don’t look like they sit properly in line).

4. Enjoy it!

I can always tell from the end result if I haven’t been really looking properly, or if I was distracted. The overall sketch always has more life to it if I’ve really engaged with it, even if there are a few mistakes.

How did you get on?

We hope those pointers were useful.

Please show us your finished masterpiece on social media by tagging @DesignabilityUK if you do give it a go. Or email them to us.

Look out for more of sketching skills videos coming soon!

Wizzybug powered wheelchairs

Wizzybugs provide very young, disabled children with the chance to experience independence for the first time. They enable them to move around as they choose, play with friends and family and feel what it is to be free.