Let’s Do Zentangle!

Some of you may have heard about this type of art. I can proudly say that I’m one of those many artists who do zentangle a lot! I’ve done a lot of zen-arts since last year. You could check them on my instagram. Now I’m about to tell you some points about zentangle, get your pens ready!

first-zentangle
One of my first zentangles. Almost every patterns here are from Pinterest.

So, what is it? I quoted some lines from zentangle.com:

The Zentangle Method is an easy-to-learn, relaxing, and fun way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns.

Almost anyone can use it to create beautiful images. It increases focus and creativity, provides artistic satisfaction along with an increased sense of personal well being. The Zentangle Method is enjoyed all over this world across a wide range of skills, interests and ages.

We believe that life is an art form and that our Zentangle Method is an elegant metaphor for deliberate artistry in life.

As far as I know, zentangle has become a thing in some fields, like stress reduction, education, therapy and even motivational training. I also started doing zentangle when I tried to overcome my insomnia. I read about an article about art-therapy for self-relaxation, then one article led to another and I found out about zentangle. I tried it once, twice, until I became addicted to it.

How to do it?

There are a lot of books that can help you to get started, by showing some designs as examples and numerous patterns to practice. Or you can just simply google it and I’m sure you will easily find step-by-step instructions and inspirations for your own zentangle! A lot of artists share their works too; they’re my inspirations and a motivation to get better, by thinking “I want to be as good as them” :p For the materials, basically, you can use any media like pen or pencil or whatever you like, but most people use a drawing pen (I usually use Sharpie, Snowman, or Sakura Microns). For a start, you can learn drawing some patterns, any patterns. I’ll tell you one thing, don’t hesitate, just draw!

P.s I’ve never had a clear image of the finished version of my drawings when I start. I don’t do sketch, so I can’t never figure out how my works will turn out until it’s done. I just draw one part at a time until I fulfilled one full page.

steps
I should’ve captured more progress, but oh wells!

What benefits can I get?

Believe me, there are a lot of positive things you will get by zentangling (from my point of view, of course). Let me list what I feel after one year doing it:

  • It’s relaxing and it’s a way to relieve stress. No doubt.
  • It’s simple. You can do it anywhere and anytime, it only requires you a pen and a paper.
  • It leads you to endless creativity. You can make hundreds of zen-arts by simply repeating some patterns, honestly.
  • It improves your fine-motor skills. My hands are shaky and not steady at all but it’s not an excuse to not do zentangle. Trust me, it helps me a lot with my tremor.
  • It makes me feel good about myself. I feel greatly satisfied after I finished a piece, I just can’t get enough of that feeling.
  • It lets me be a part of artists community (or whatever you called it). I usually post my artworks on instagram, and there are vast number or artists who do too. I get to know some of them and thanks to my zentangles. We inspire each other and that’s one way to develop your creative side; by letting yourself inspired by others. It makes me even better knowing people enjoy my works as much as I do.

As I quote from Psyhcology Today, zentangle is a form of mindfulness and aimlessness. If we simply enjoy the creative process, we can enjoy every single moment of it and that is ultimately what any creative expression offers us. Zentangle teaches us not to rush and to take good care of ourselves in the present moment—after all, the present moment is all there is.

So what are you waiting for? Get a paper and a pen, start now! 😀

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