It looks more like a mouse...
Happens when someone with poor drawing skills has drawn something. And then the other person will misidentified the drawing for something else. Or, the drawing is really simple that anyone could have mistaken it.
This isn't tied to drawings. Clay arts, handcrafted gifts, needlework or any handicrafts can also be classified into this trope.
Compare Hollywood Scribbling
Anime & Manga
- Rukia in Bleach is known for loving to draw Chappy the Bunny, being absolutely horrible at drawing and using her bad drawings to explain concepts with people being different colors of bunny. Most character in-universe are never really sure what her drawings are supposed to be.
- In Kyou Kara Maou, nobody ever guesses what Gwendal's knitted animals are supposed to be correctly.
- Subverted in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, in which Scott draws a blank circle with scribbles at the top, and it's immediately recognized as a picture of Ramona.
- The "What a horrible ugly monster! It's a picture of mommy..." variant is used in Le Chat, a Belgian comic.
- In The Little Prince, the narrator explains how he once drew a picture of a snake that had swallowed an elephant, and all the adults told him it was a very nice hat.
- In Baby Sitters Club, it is suggested to say along the lines of "What a nice picture! Can you tell me about it?" when confronted with a child's drawing, because "you don't want to say 'what a lovely elephant!' and have it turn out to be a picture of their grandmother."
- A For Better or for Worse comic has a young Elizabeth showing her father a painting after a day of preschool. Her dad starts to comment on what a nice face it is-- until Elizabeth interrupts to tell him that it's just a pizza.
Live Action TV
- Family Guy, "Lois Kills Stewie":
Peter: Stewie, uh, how long you been all messed up and evil like this?
Stewie: Oh, so now you're interested in Stewie. Last week when I made that macaroni picture of an owl, you didn't give a damn!
Peter: That was an owl?
- The Penguins of Madagascar: Julien and Marlene are missing and Kowalski shows a picture he drew of them to Fred the squirrel.
Fred: Which one's the otter?
Kowalski: This one, obviously. Note the whiskers?
Fred: Oh, I thought that was a cat.
Kowalski: Did I ask "have you seen this lemur and cat?"
Fred: No, that's why I thought it was odd that you drew a cat.
Kowalski: It's not a cat.
Fred: Then why does it have whiskers?
Kowalski: You know what? Forget the otter.
- Played with in Stargate SG-1. Daniel and Samantha are presented with a thermal image of the symbiote inside of Teal'C, and they play dumb:
Daniel: Oh, that's very good! Did you draw that yourself?
Sam: What is it?
Daniel: That... That's a duck, isn't it?
- From Criminal Minds. Morgan looks at a picture drawn by an autistic kid and can't figure out what it is. Hotch makes a glance, says "It's obviously a dog" and keeps on what he's doing, leaving Morgan absolutely befuddled.
- A skit from The Whitest Kids U Know has a child named Kevin showing a picture he drew to his parents. While it appears to be something rather inappropriate(read: penis), he explains to his parents after they fail to respond that it is an elephant.
- Subverted moments later, when Kevin showed a drawing that looks exactly what it meant to be.