I’m posting late today. But my taxes are done. Don’t leave yours until the last moment.
One of my goals for this year, which I really haven’t done much about, is getting back to Zentangle with more regularity. Since I couldn’t think of anything else that starts with the letter N that has something to do with the arts or the creative process, I thought I’d go to the wonderful website tanglepatterns.com and see what I could find. Out of the ones listed, I tried these four:
Nine Patch by Suzanne McNeill, which all the quilters will recognize:
Navaho by Caren Mlot:
Noodle by Angie Gittles:
Nayo by Angie Gittles (my favorite of this group):
In my recent post, ARHtistic License: 2020 in Review, I mentioned that my 6th most visited post in 2020 was my article 10 Best Zentangle Sites on the Web, which was actually published in 2018. It needs updating, because I’m aware of many more Zentangle blogs that are also awesome.
As I worked through as many tangle blogs as I could find, I discovered something interesting: some of the blogs on the original list have not been updated in many months, or even years. And some of the blogs I wanted to put on my new list had also been abandoned.
I know that at least one CZT (certified Zentangle teacher) has had issues with her hands and is not drawing very much anymore. I suspect that blogging became a burden for some of the others.
I decided not to list any site that has been inactive for more than three months, even if I love it so much that I draw from it for Creative Juice.
In no particular order, here are the best ones I found that still seem to be updated regularly:
- Alice Hendon, CZT, whose Creator’s Leaf blog was on the previous list, has a new blog called Alice Hendon, Artangleology.
- Picturesque Franconia
- Annette’s CreARTives
- Sue’s Tangle Trips by Sue Jacobs, CZT
- Fleeting Time
- Time for Tangling
- Inkidoodles by Melinda Barlow, CZT
- Another Side of Danie
- The Ultimate Pattern Collection by Erika Kehlet
- Eni Oken, CZT
- Tiki Tangles by Janet Masey, CZT
- Tangle and Inspire
- Sandhya Manne, CZT
- Life of Joy
- Vandana Krishna, CZT
- Notable Ink by Amber Rain Davis. She makes lovely video tutorials.
- Dashtangles by Natasha Dash
Now it’s your turn. Do you know of another great Zentangle blog that is not listed (and is still being updated)? If so, please share in the links below.
I’m still working on my Zen-untangled notebook, though other members of our group have gone on to bigger and better things. I’m determined I will finish this assignment. Here is what I’ve accomplished from May until now:
During June and July, my artistic efforts went toward the Index-Card-a-Day challenge, so these six pages really only represent two months of work.
Some of these samples are more successful than others; I confess, I was looking for the easier designs so I could fill my book quicker, without having to practice them too much. Some really could have used more practice. I am happy to be doing this exercise; the book will serve as a convenient reference for me.
Zentangle® is a method of drawing patterns. Many of the designs are repetitive. Working on zentangle is focused and relaxing. It’s a good activity for being present in the moment. Plus, it’s beautiful, and provides lots of opportunities for being creative.
I first discovered zentangle in a round-about way. My husband likes to carve gunstocks. He bought a zentangle book thinking he could use some of the designs in his carving. He changed his mind and gave the book to me.
You know how when you’re planning to be a certain car, every fourth car you see on the road is the car you want? Well, I began seeing zentangle online, on blogs, on social media, on YouTube. It made me want to learn more.
I discovered a Facebook group called Tangle All Around. Alice Hendon, the administrator, offers weekly challenges: 7 tangles (designs to try), a string (a way to segment your drawing surface so you can fill each section with a different tangle), and a dare (suggestions for using your imagination to create variations for a tangle, or to come up with your own design).
This year, she came up with the special project, which she calls “Zen-untangled.” Over the course of 25 weeks, the participants are making a keepsake notebook of the 101 “official” zentangle patterns. I am way behind in mine (my completed pages are the images in this post), and I have entered mine in a different order, skipped some, and added others. But it’s a very convenient way to have a reference of the tangles I like or am interested in incorporating into a project some day.
If you’d like to learn more about zentangle, it’s been a frequent topic on ARHtistic License.
Some are not strictly zentangle. Some are mandalas. Some are drawings with pattern elements. Some are henna. Click on the links. Follow your favorites. Lots of inspiration here, folks. In no particular order.
And here is mine: https://www.instagram.com/arhuelsenbeck/. I have pockets of zentangle, but other art, too, and quilts, and little glimpses of my life. I’d love it if you would follow me.
Now it’s your turn. Do you know of more cool zentangle Instagram accounts? Please share a link in the comments below.
If you’re a follower of ARHtistic License, you know that Zentangle is my favorite visual art activity. The repetitive patterns with their simple complexity captivate me.
I get my Zentangle inspiration from the many Zentangle websites and blogs on the web. Here are my favorites (therefore, the best):
- Zentangle.com is the official site of Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts, who initiated Zentangle. Read their story.
- The Creator’s Leaf is the blog of CZT (Certified Zentangle Teacher) Alice Hendon. Alice also moderates the Zentangle All Around group on Facebook, of which I am a member. I love her work.
- Tanglepatterns.com is the blog of CZT Linda Farmer. It is a catalog of patterns and step-outs (directions).
- I Am the Diva is the blog of CZT Laura Harms. Every week she runs the Diva Challenge.
- Life Imitates Doodles isn’t limited to Zentangle, but it is an excellent tangling resource. On Mondays and Saturdays, the author lists challenges, tutorials, and giveaways. Other days she posts her artwork or reviews art supplies.
- Enthusiastic Artist is the blog of CZT Margaret Bremmer. Her beautiful designs are inspiring.
- Beez in the Belfry is the blog of CZT Sandy Steen Bartholomew. I love her work. I have one of her books, Totally Tangled.
- Lily’s Tangles contains the beautifully detailed work of artist Lily M.
- YouTube is a source for thousands of Zentangle tutorials.
- Pinterest is also a great source of patterns. May I suggest three of my own boards: Zentangle, Zentangle Christmas, and Zentangle Valentines.
Have I left out any of your favorite Zentangle sites? Please share in the comments below.
Here are my most recent tangles:
Below, several variations of the pattern Chainlea.
Sonnenband reminds me of an Art Deco design:
Below: Mak-rah-may. I turned this into an anniversary card for my hubby. We’ve been married 44 years.
For Diva Challenge #346. Phicops and Huggins:
A string made by tracing found objects:
And the string tangled:
This week’s Diva Challenge was to trace around found objects to make a “string”:
And then fill in the sections with Zentangle patterns of your choice:
I used Quipple, Flux, B-horn, Sanibelle, Paradox, Shattuck, and Printemps.
This is my favorite Zentangle® book right now. Subtitled Learn to Tangle with 101 Engaging Patterns, the book breaks down each pattern into clear steps. This step by step design is key, because many of the completed patterns look way more complicated than they actually are.
Also, each pattern has several examples of the design being combined with other patterns, and showing possible ways to shade for depth and dimension.
The book also explains the history, benefits, and philosophy behind Zentangle, besides listing recommended materials.
What makes this book different from other Zentangle books I’ve reviewed is the way each pattern gets its own page. There’s plenty of room for as many as nine step-outs and for Beate’s (and other Certified Zentangle Teachers’) comments about each pattern. There’s even a glossary of terms in the back.
I know that step-by-step directions are available on the web (I have a whole board of Zentangle designs on Pinterest), but looking them up can be tedious. It’s nice to have a good book of patterns that you can just flip through.