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How to draw easy facial expressions: 15 emotions to add personality to your note-taking!

With free face drawing practice worksheet to print or use digitally

Reading Time: 7 minutes
How to draw easy facial exprssions: 15 emotions to add personality to your note-taking

Do you ever find yourself doodling in meetings, while studying, or taking notes in class? Well, now here’s another way to make your doodles more interesting and more useful: draw easy facial expressions and add some emotion! In this article, you will learn how to draw 15 facial expressions that will bring your doodles to life.

Doodling while being focused?

Digital Notebook Editions

Doodles can be used to help you focus when you’re studying or working on a task, and they can also be a great way to come up with new ideas or work through problems. Whether using one of our digital notebooks with a notetaking app like Goodnotes or Notability, or just good old-fashioned paper and pen, doodling whilst studying can be a hugely valuable activity, helping you to recall better what you have learnt.

Put simply, purposeful doodling can help you retain more of the information you need to remember!

You’ll remember more if you express that emotion!

Being able to draw easy facial expressions can be incredibly useful. Doodles of expressive faces in your study notes can be really fun and helpful. For example, if you are studying literature, they might help you consider how particular characters are expressing emotions and feelings.

Notes doodled on Macbeth script showing quick drawing of an angry face and a scared face.
Making Notes: A quick drawing of an angry face will remind us how Macbeth became so enraged at this key point in the book.

Facial expressions tell us so much about a person’s mood, so it’s always useful to have a range of facial expressions handy. Try looking at different people, and see what kinds of expressions they tend to portray. Identifying the characteristics of your own face can help you draw and express your own thoughts better.

Once you’ve mastered a few fundamentals, you’ll be able to add a completely new level to your note-taking by using expression and emotion. You’ll also be able to easily express your own feelings about things as you learn. You might wish to highlight concepts you like, things that perplex you, or even comedy that makes you laugh out loud! When you depict that emotion in your notes, your brain will be more likely to remember the experience.

It’s so easy to draw simple facial expressions

Simple drawings of facial expressions are super easy to do. You can make an quick doodle of an expressive face using only a few lines. In this tutorial you can have fun when you draw easy facial expressions and give them easy-to-read emotions. Notice the shapes, the way they look and the expressions portrayed. Find out what kind of expression you prefer and try to replicate it in your own doodling.

Lets get started…

First, download our easy-to-draw facial expressions worksheet.

Download your free Easy Face Expression Drawing Practice Worksheet

We have designed a fun free worksheet to help you draw easy facial expressions.

Download yours (above), and use it digitally in a note-taking app on your iPad or tablet, or print it out and get going with pen or pencil. If you’re using it digitally on an iPad the ‘Letter’ size version works slightly better, but you can use either.

We’ll introduce you to some ideas about how, with a little practice, faces can be drawn quickly and expressively. You’ll soon be able to see how simple it is to draw easy facial expressions. Take a look through these ideas first, then there’s chances to have a go yourself on the worksheet you have downloaded.

A few simple lines can be used to draw a pleasing face.

As you can see here, an appealing face may be created with just a few basic marks. With short lines for brows, nose, and mouth and dots for eyes, you have all the elements you need to create some fantastic expressions. Draw in the head form and it starts to make an impression!

Draw two guidelines for positioning

Typically, the eyes are about midway down the head. If it helps, draw the head shape first, then draw a light cross as a guideline. You can then add the eyes on that horizontal central line.

Simple guidelines can help you position the facial features appropriately.

If you then slightly adjust the eye position, you will be able to make your face look in different directions; up and down, or to the side. This can be useful to clarify or emphasise an intended expression, such as looking down in shame or looking up in hope. 

Little Changes to the Drawing Can Totally Flip the Meaning

A few little changes to the facial expression drawing can totally flip its meaning.

You don’t need to make big changes to the drawing to have a big impact on the emotion it conveys. It’s surprising how simply changing the shape of the mouth or the slope of the eyebrows will make the face express totally different emotions. In the example above, notice how small the differences really are, but what a different story they each tell!

Throw in some props to help tell the story

Try adding some simple props to your drawings of facial expressions.

By adding some simple props to your drawing, you can also add some depth to their meaning. They don’t need to be complicated. In fact, they are likely to be much better if they are not! Adding reading glasses, headphones, hats, or even replacing facial features with objects can work well. Try swapping out eyes for hearts, or shells for ears!

You can also see in the example above (right) how we have shifted the features off-centre slightly. Use this technique to suggest a turned head and to add emphasis.

Add a splash of colour!

Adding colour to your drawings of facial expressions can add extra meaning.

Don’t be afraid to have some fun with colour; it can help express more meaning while also making your drawings stand out! A green-tinged face, for example, might convey eerieness, or a blood-red one, anger. If you draw your expressive faces using ink or a dark pen, you can use marker pens or a brush and transparent ink to add some colour over the top of your drawing.

15 Easy to Draw Expressions

Here are 15 fantastic easy-to-draw facial expressions that you can learn to doodle in no time! If you’ve already downloaded our free easy-to-draw facial expressions worksheet, you’ll see that there’s a whole page of these for you to practice. Use these faces as a jumping-off point to begin creating your own library of doodled expressions and emotions; you never know when they’ll come in handy. Get started now and learn how much fun it is to draw easy facial expressions!

Content Facial Expression easy to draw
Happy Facial Expression easy to draw
Joyful Facial Expression easy to draw
Surprised Facial Expression easy to draw
Thinking Facial Expression easy to draw
Sleeping Facial Expression easy to draw
Sleepy  Facial Expression easy to draw
Discontent Facial Expression easy to draw
Cross  Facial Expression easy to draw
upset Facial Expression easy to draw
Angry Facial Expression easy to draw
Saddened Facial Expression easy to draw
Worried Facial Expression easy to draw
Frightened Facial Expression easy to draw
In love Facial Expression easy to draw

Download your free easy-to-draw facial expressions worksheet here

Get started right away! Simply choose the paper size that you usually use for your printer. If you are planning to use the worksheet digitally on an iPad, then ‘Letter’ size works best, but you can use either.

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