Somewhere around the middle of 2007 I began doodling on Styfofoam cups. It was something I really didn't even think about at the time. I would get a drink from the cafeteria and during meetings or conference calls, I would catch myself drawing on the cup. At that time work was very stressful and I found by doing this it had a calming effect on me. I also noticed it helped me to focus when I really needed to concentrate.
At first I would just throw away the original doodles when I finished my drink. One day, however, I decided to keep a cup and completely cover it in doodles. Before long, co-workers were asking me to make them one and some even suggested I should start selling them. It was at this point I started to see my designs as more than just worthless scribblings from a stressed out cube farmer.
Since the first complete cup I designed in 2007, I have created close to 100. I even made one for my yearly performance appraisal. My boss at the time asked all of her direct reports to share their accomplishments in a unique way. Being a musician, most thought I would write a song and play it for her, however, I created a cup to show what I had done that year. She was definitely not expecting that and was pleasantly surprised when she opened the box.
The texture of the Styrofoam is another aspect I've found interesting. Some cups are better to draw on than others. I can't explain it, but it does make a difference. I've also tried markers, gel pens, and highlighters, but what seems to work best is a cheap, mediup tip, run-of-the-mill ink pen, nothing fancy.
I used markers with images 1793-1796, then wiped them with a damp paper towel to make the color seep into the pores. It was a pretty neat effect, but rather messy. I encourage you to try it and let me know what you think.
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image 1736 image 1775
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What fun to have Alan join us with his delightful and creative cup doodles. You may contact him at:
On his second page, Alan added some of his doodle art drawn on paper.
On his fourth page, Alan launched out and doodled on new surfaces.