Exquisite Corpse Drawing Book

Published: December 29, 2014

How about a surreal drawing game to match the surreal nature of the end of the year?

Exquisite Corpse drawing is one of the most fun drawing games you could hope to partake in, and it’s easy as pie and your mother. Ho – oh!

The idea of Exquisite Corpse began in the early 20th century with the surrealists- as a parlor game. You can do it either with writing or drawing and both are equally fun.

The idea is to combine different elements to make up a new element that usually is quite silly or strange. Read up more about Exquisite Corpse on Wikipedia, and I highly recommend playing the writing version when you’re out at the bar with your BFFs.

For reals, though, all you need for this is a piece of paper, some scissors, and a drawing utensil. And then if you find yourself getting way into doing this, you can take it further and add pages, color, different media, words. You might just find yourself as addicted to making these as tangle drawings.


Paper (you know I love me the white card stock.)

Scissors (or craft knife)

Pencil (markers or colored pencils are optional for color)

1. Take a piece of paper and fold it into fourths. Just fold it in half and half again, then cut off the 4th piece and squirrel it away for a bookmark craft.


2. Now measure each side flap into thirds and cut along the lines. I made the top area a little smaller than the bottom two thirds.


Super secret pro tip: lightly draw pencil lines onto the back paper where the flaps open so you have a guide for where to place your first drawing.

So now that you’ve prepared the paper, I need you to tune into your inner weirdo. This part is fun.

3. Draw a person on the back flap of your paper: the head and neck go in the top area, the shoulders and torso in the middle, and the legs and feet in the bottom space.

Exquisite Corpse drawing activity

4. Close your left flaps and draw a different option for the head, the torso, and the legs.

5. Close your right flaps and repeat the drawing. You may have to erase/reposition a few times, but you will get to the point where you can open/close any of the flaps and have a delightful new figure. De-lightful. Or just weird.

I ended up randomly drawing different body sections, and then colored them in with colored pencils.

Eqxuisite Corpse drawing activity Eqxuisite Corpse drawing activity

Kid Drawing Game Option:

You can take the same folded and cut piece of paper and hand it to one kid with a pencil. That kid will draw the figure on the middle inside. Cover that up with the right flaps, and the second kid draws the figure on the outside of the right flaps. The third kid will draw their figure on the outside of the left flaps. Hilarity will ensue.exquisite corpse drawing game for kids
exquisite corpse drawing game for kids
exquisite corpse drawing game for kids

The best thing in the world happened after I gave Beckett this book to play with- first he exclaimed how cool it was, and then he asked if he could make one! You bet you can, kid.

He spent a blissful, focused 30 minutes on this bad boy and it’s far cooler than mine.

Exquisite Corpse book project

Wouldn’t this be a fun-nomenal New Years’ Eve activity for the kids while you’re slugging down a bunch of champagne?

Check out lots more drawing games for kids here.



2 thoughts on “Exquisite Corpse Drawing Book”

    • Yippee! They’ll dig it. I would love to see some of the finished products! How cool it must be to see a bunch of kids all coming up with different variations of one project.


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