I get asked, occasionally, if I do sketches first before starting one of my scribble art drawings. The short answer is: not usually.
When I get an idea in my head, I usually sketch it out on the paper that I use for the project. If I don't have the tools to do that, I will try to do a quick sketch on a scrap piece of paper so that I can "remember" my idea later on when I have the resources to do the actual sketch.
Quite often, though, I come up with an idea but do not have a piece of paper and/or a drawing utensil to document my idea and I forget about it forever. I think someone needs to create an app that will capture and store the ideas we get in our minds!
In the first image, it shows examples of ways I might do a quick sketch. The top sketch on the third sheet of paper is the only one, so far, that has made it to a completed project, which is the piece I titled "Bright Diamonds" (third image).
The second image shows examples of sketches directly on 11"x14" pieces of mixed media paper. (The designs are a little difficult to see in this image because I try to keep the pencil marks light so that they are easier to erase.) As of this writing, there are 10 projects waiting for the ink to be added. A lot of these get sketched out, but then it may be several months before I get back to then to start adding ink. And then I often forget what my initial thought was for the colors that I wanted to use and I have to start the thought process again. Sometimes, I will jot down the color ideas in pencil on the sketch and then erase them right before adding the ink. It helps quite a bit to jog my memory, by I will still sometimes changes my mind before the inking process.
This is just a little insight of how my ideas make it to paper.
Have a great and artful day!