Draw Quest

Drawing is one form of creative expression that has not made a rapid transition
to the digital/online world. The tablet may well change that. Paper is
one of the most amazing tablet apps I have seen. It is beautifully made
and the art that people are creating on it is inspiring.

seems like there is even more potential that can be unlocked with
drawing. Draw Something showed that everyone can draw something (no pun
intended). But Draw Something is a two person game. It is not massively
multiplayer and social in the way that Twitter, Instagram, and
Foursquare are.

Enter DrawQuest. DrawQuest is the creation of our portfolio company Canvas.
One of the most popular features in the Canvas community is the drawing
challenge. The company regularly sends out a themed challenge and the
community responds to it. That inspired DrawQuest.

DrawQuest is a
tablet app, initially for the iPad only. After signing up, you receive
daily challenges, you draw them, submit, and then you can see what
others have done with the challenge. You can like, play back someone
else's drawing, follow users, etc.

DrawQuest is a game in the
same way that Foursquare is a game. It’s fun and engaging and you get
feedback on your creations. I believe this kind of interaction will lead
more people to draw on their tablet in the same way that Instagram has
led more people to take photos on their camera.

You can download DrawQuest for your iPad here and read more about the app on the company’s blog.

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#mobile#VC & Technology

Comments (Archived):

  1. kidmercury

    “ipad only”if i ever visit prison i’ll be sure to check it out.

    1. fredwilson


    2. matthughes


    3. Brandon Burns

      i just got my nexus4. iDevices can suck it.now if only google can make a chrome book that can power my adobe creative suite and other processor-intensive design / graphics tools…

      1. kidmercury

        off topic, but did you hear about the sales numbers from fab? sales up 300% this past january over jan 2012! WOW!!! amazing! (no offense fred) http://techcrunch.com/2013/

        1. Brandon Burns

          Tracking like a hawk. You know what I’m up to. :-)BTW, back in Chicago next month!

    4. Donna Brewington White

      With you. Although I may cheat and get my kids one.

  2. LE

    This is a great idea I will have to get my kids into this.Also might be an idea for a similar app to allow integration with a one click way for a parent to get a print sent to them (framed) or to grandparents – a nice way to earn revenue. Taking it one step further adding a picture and doing a set of those holiday cards that people send out (where every month or two is a holiday and reason to send a card.)

  3. LE

    “and the art that people are creating on it is inspiring.”If the art is good then it is marketable and they should hold gallery shows complete with prints that can be purchased. (And yes it can happen.)

  4. ShanaC

    So the reason some people will never switch is about how they draw.I fall into the category of “I have a hard time switching.” I’ve tried drawing on (other people’s) ipads. I find it really weird that pressure doesn’t translate, and that there is no tooth/give on the screen. I’ve been told I am activated by materiality, which may be why this happens. I’m pretty stuck on certain charcoal types (vine soft, or compressed), certain pencil types (6b and 4h), and certain paper types (Borden and Riley #116, though there are a few others I am interested in). some brushes, erasers, water, and sometimes fake turpentine. Occasionally I’ll use ink washes and raw pigment. I think it feels weird to draw with anything different, like my hands are being all screwed up and I don’t have tactile control.My BF, otoh, loves drawing on his Ipad with a stylus.That being said, I would probably kill for a mmo version of exquisite corpse ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wik… ) – so I might be tempted to switch if I can get over the hump of how it feels 🙂

    1. Fernando Gutierrez

      It’s interesting how stylus are making a come back. I see more and more people using them with iPads, Galaxy Notes… it feels kind of retro!

      1. kidmercury

        i’m very bullish on the stylus, although it still needs work; not quite as easy as writing just yet and still a little frustrating, at least based on my experience with the galaxy note II. the bottom line is that for tablets to really take off as productivity tools, there needs to be a better input mechanism. voice and gestures are part of the solution but writing is just too important. i regard the stylus as an enabling technology and as such expect it to enable a bunch of disruptions.

        1. Fernando Gutierrez

          How do you use the Note II? As a substitute of your phone or as a complement/second phone?

          1. kidmercury

            it’s my primary phone/pocket computer. yup, i hold the big thing next to my ear! 🙂

          2. Fernando Gutierrez

            Well, I guess it’s no different than when we went from tiny feature phones to the first smartphones. They were smaller than a note, but we considered them huge back then (Blackberries, Pocket PCs…). I feel tempted.

      2. ShanaC

        i find it good when I want to write (ha) with my hands Otherwise, typing is for me

        1. Fernando Gutierrez

          Typing all the way. My handwriting can barely be called writing. When Palm Pilots and Pocked PC ruled I never used the writing recognition features with the stylus, I just typed with it in the small on-screen keyboard.

    2. Anne Libby

      I had an awesome NYC experience yesterday, the guy next to me on the subway was drawing. I asked him about his tablet, and whether he was using Paper — he was. He proceeded to show me booklets filled with his truly stunning drawings.He started to tell me about using the app as an app, and also how he was starting to use the app for drawings he usually makes on paper. We reached my stop too soon.Sometimes it pays to talk to strangers.

      1. leigh

        Is paper the livescribe pen app? Or something else? can’t find it ….

          1. leigh

            oh so sold

  5. Joseph Sunga

    I think this is an absolutely great idea. I would see this as more of an educational tool to keep folks drawing each day. If you’re able to draw one drawing each day, the progression you’ll see in your drawings will be significant. Look forward to using this app soon.Although — it does look geared towards kids, but that’s not going to stop me. 🙂

  6. takingpitches

    I like the “mission” expressed in the Drawquest post and the reference to Ken Robinson.As a new dad, these are the kinds of educational tools that I am attuned to more than ever.

  7. J Nicholas Gross

    How is this different from Zynga’s “Draw Something” app? That had great traction and then fell off significantly after they bought it for peak price from OMG POP.

    1. fredwilson

      i am a Zynga shareholder and Draw Something user so i am a fan of that servicebut Draw Quest is a massively multiplayer game whereas Draw Something is a two person game

    2. LE

      The contest angle makes it more addictive.And if they add mini-prizes (like lotteries do) in addition to big prizes it will feed that addiction over the long term because people will be intermittently reinforced with rewards. Or at the very least they will hear about friends who won awards.Art is one of those things that everyone thinks they can do because art is nebulous and almost anyone can create something with appeal. It’s not like having a contest to see who come up with music (which is more difficult).Further extending the idea they should create different categories of prizes (5 year olds not the same category as 16 year olds or adults). Then they can get sponsorships for some of the prizes I can see many things happening with this.I’ll give this my 2nd “doesn’t suck” award. That means the idea is really good so if it fails the owners (and the execution) suck not the idea.

  8. Kaiyi Chu

    My only question is what’s their business model? How are they going to make money? In-app purchase?

    1. fredwilson

      yes, you buy additional pens and brushes, just like Paperit turns out that this is a fairly attractive model for Paper and i think it can be for Draw Quest as well

  9. LE

    Speaking of art there is an excellent article in the just published Wharton Alumni Magazine issue regarding artists that attended Wharton.http://whartonmagazine.com/…The article starts like this:“A successful artist has to recognize opportunities,” says Eric Berg, W’68, GFA’74. “Or create them.” In the late 1990s, he had an idea for a sculpture of Drexel University’s mascot, Mario the Dragon. He wrote a letter to Drexel’s then-President Constantine Papadakis to pitch it, saying he’d been driving through the campus for 20 years and knew the best spot to install such a monument. After three months, he had no response. He wrote again. This time, he caught Papadakis’ eye. Two days later, Berg laid out the details over lunch. Drexel would pay Berg $5,000 for a model and then choose from three sizes with price tags: $275,000, $350,000 or $425,000.(My emphasis on recognizing opportunities and persistence. ).

  10. bsoist

    I read this post already. 🙂 Checking the app out now.

    1. fredwilson

      yeah, the launch was planned for yesterday but some back end challenges delayed it a dayi had scheduled this post automatically and was in meetings all morning so i had to do a post take down which i really don’t like to do and rarely do the post stayed in my feed and there were links to it on twitterall in all, not a great thing for AVC but the right thing for draw quest

      1. bsoist

        > back end challenges delayed it a dayBeen there, done that. 🙂 No explanation necessary – just in a Friday mood.I’m on my first quest now.

      2. Fernando Gutierrez

        It was disconcerting, but I can totally understand how terrible it must be to get a post at AVC when not still ready. I hope they make good use of all the juice you send today. I’m not really into drawing, but I’m a compulsive tester, so I’ll give it a try this weekend.

      3. ShanaC

        it happens

      4. Aaron Klein

        It made many of us realize that we’re addicted, not to the drinks, but to the conversation going on in this establishment.I kept refreshing yesterday morning at the gym. Surely something was wrong with my browser… 😉

        1. Donna Brewington White

          Addicts. Sometimes I get to the end of an incredibly busy day and think “something’s missing” and realize that I’ve been feeling that all day. And then realize that I haven’t visited AVC that day.

        2. Fernando Gutierrez

          That’s nothing! :)I had seen the post in my email, so I was sure it had to be there… so I tried with four browsers, different computers and using proxies from different countries. Then I shot an email to Fred because something was broken!!! I’m engaging less lately because I’m more time on the road and my schedule is a bit hectic, but I realize I’m an addict anyway.

  11. jason wright

    another post and another disqus debacle

    1. fredwilson

      what’s the disqus problem?

      1. jason wright

        disappeared post

    2. Donna Brewington White

      Hey, we can’t blame Disqus for everything! #disquslove

      1. jason wright

        history teaches us that the messenger always takes the blame.my bicycle frame cracked. i blame disqus!

  12. John Revay

    Our second daughter is avid drawer…I will have her check it out later this weekend and report back.#ThinkSnow

    1. ShanaC

      stay warm

  13. Karen Williams

    Is this the post for Fun Friday today ?? Or is there something coming up

    1. fredwilson

      this is all i have today

      1. Dasher

        Fred, here is an interesting topic for someday. Did you watch Josh Koppelman’s Pando monthly interview clip about software eating VC and unbundling. VCs as being similar to travel and real estate agents. I thought that was amazing coming from a VC. I am sure VCs like him and you will do fine. Any thoughts?

          1. Dasher

            Thanks for the link. As an experienced entrepreneur I am not quite warmed up to the idea of using crowdfunding for disruptive tech ventures that takes a whole village to make them successful. Again I am also not sold on the idea of online education replacing the mentorship and inspiration provided by teachers. I think they can augment in certain situations but am not yet convinced they can be a total substitute.

    2. Donna Brewington White

      What, you don’t think this is fun?

  14. Matt A. Myers

    Curious if this was this an internal pivot of sorts or part of a planned long-term plan?

  15. Tom Labus

    I got their email announcing the service and encouraging those of us who have zip drawing ability.

  16. Donna Brewington White

    Ha! I checked your social media sites to make sure you were still alive. Apparently, you were. 😉 But then the delay allowed me to spend some time with the Shelby.tv post that I had missed.BTW, when I tried to log on today I got a 503 the first couple of times. So then eventually checked your Twitter feed and logged in that way. What is life without obstacles to overcome?If you ever wanted to freak us all out on April Fool’s day, don’t post, tweet, check in — completely off the grid. We will go bonkers.

  17. pointsnfigures

    Screw tablets. I have to buy a new tv. What do I buy?

    1. fredwilson

      A Samsung 40″ display and boxee.TV for HD broadcast TV and an appleTV for everything else

  18. Mark Pfaltzgraff

    Nice app. My kid practically sleeps w/ his iPad, more gaming than I’d like. His least favorite subject is art & yet got him to download this & he’s drawing away & having a blast! Thanks for the post & best wishes for your Canvas investment.

    1. fredwilson


  19. RawBob

    ” DrawQuest is the creation of our portfolio company Canvas.””DrawQuest is a tablet app, initially for the iPad only.”I must be missing something. Why was this not on Android first?

    1. fredwilson

      Sadly it was not

  20. charlessmith

    Finally downloaded this and my kids LOVE it. very cool.

    1. fredwilson

      that’s great!

  21. Alex Bea

    I love how everyone’s stoked to get their draw on….keep that creativity coming.