Humans are hardwired to see “patterns”, to recognize familiar things (such as faces) in almost any visual representation or photograph. This is one small argument against anyone’s perceived inability to draw, because you don’t really have to! Just the smallest gestures and marks can become recognizable “things”. If you don’t believe me head on over to @facesinthings twitter page to see an ongoing collection of inanimate objects all photographed to reveal… faces.
Still, everyone can (and should) sketch regularly to improve and build ones own practice. Here is great eg. from David Grey’s “Visual Thinking” page that can get anyone up and squiggling “things” right away, in this case birds.
Squiggle bird instructions
Squiggle birds is a quick exercise that you can use to get people stretching their visual thinking muscles. It takes about five minutes and quickly, clearly demonstrates how little effort is really required to make meaningful, easy-to-read images. The main point of the demonstration is that our minds are already pattern-making machines, and very little drawing is actually required to convey an idea. The mind will fill in the rest.