What is Zentangling?

If you like to draw patterns or doodle with pen and paper, you can learn to Zentangle. As the name implies, it's a Zen-like way of creating images through repetitive patterns and shapes.

Zentangling is relaxing, stimulating, entertaining, and fun!

You don't have to have had any art training to Zentangle, but if you did, here's a new way to showcase your talent.

Also known as Zendoodling, and maybe more names, it's growing in popularity every day, so read below on how you can get started.

Have a Zentangled Christmas and a Zendoodle New Year!

Thanks to everyone who has enjoyed the blog and the Facebook page.  I hope you have a healthy, peaceful holiday season, and look forward to spending more fun time with you in 2012.

Here's something new from Zoe Ford:

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

Zentangling in New Zealand

One of my favorite Zentanglers is Jo in NZ:

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing, mandala

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing, mandala

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing, mandala

Parlez vous Zentangle?

Marie-Noelle and Eric, aka Country15, are prolific and very creative Zendoodlers who live in France.  Whenever I check out their Flickr pages to see what's new, I'm overwhelmed, and wonder why I don't click that link more often.

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

We're baaaaaaack!

Such a busy summer, and so little time to update the Zentangling blog.  I hope to atone for that sin by providing regular updates from now on.  Here's the first:

From Shelly Beauch:

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

zendoodle, zentangle, art, doodle, drawing

Keep on doodlin'

CraftyDR practices her hobby a lot.  Whether her goal is perfection or nirvana, only she can answer. 

The thing about Zentangling, like many hobbies that involve one's hands, is that it's very relaxing, and the more you do it, the more relaxed you can become.  You can practice your zendoodling in order to get better at it, or to simply escape the stress of modern life.

My new Friendoodlers or ZenFriends are a very talented and creative group!

One of the first Zentanglers featured here was Molossus, who has a blog called Life Imitates Doodles

What I really like about her newest work is the use of shading and different shapes:

There's a little Ralph Steadman thing going on in this last one.

Zendifferent is good

Being somewhat unconventional and disinclined to follow the herd, I find myself attracted to the Zendoodles and Zentangles that do not follow the conventional Mandala style.  Today I encourage you to look at the many Zentangle examples I've been sharing, and think of how yours can be different from what you're used to creating.

I liken this to pottery.  One can throw a pot on a wheel, and it'll look much like every other pot thrown on a wheel.  Or you can take it off the wheel, cut here, add there, and distress it so it's unique.  Use the wheel-thrown pot as a starting point for a truly individualized clay artwork.

The same is true for Zentangle.  Maybe you got started with symmetrical designs and repetitive patterns within patterns duplicated throughout your design.  So now it's time to break out and experiment with a different style.  Add imagery, or build up several different Zentangles into a larger one that resembles something, or go for a completely asymmetrical pattern that takes on a life of its own.

Just be different.  Think of it as cross-training for your art.  If and when you return to the way you've been drawing, you'll see a refreshed attitude and appreciation for the discipline.

Zendoodling a font?

Since we last saw Zoe Ford, she's been creating letters with her zendoodles. 

and she has some other new works of note:

More Zenteriffic drawings from Country15

Country15 was first featured here.  I'm not sure whether it's Eric or Marie-Noelle who did these in their home in France, but really like how they incorporate the Zentangle/Zendoodle style into recognizable images:

The touches of color are very nice too.  As you can see, Zentangling isn't limited to drawing Mandalas or Zendalas.  Look around your neighborhood for ideas that you can incorporate into your Zendoodling.

Zentango with Molossus

I first featured Molossus back in January.  Sandra (her real name) has been busy, and here's a recent one I really like:

She calls this the Yoga for the Brain Potholder.

It's fun to check back in on my previous features, and see how their work is developing.

What does Zentangle mean to you?

Remember the Saturday Night Live sketch for New Shimmer?  Is it a floor wax or is it a dessert topping?

Among the devotees of Zentangle, a similar debate rages.  Is it a noun, a verb, or even an adjective (zentanglicious)?

In putting together this blog, I received the following e-mail from someone whom I had asked permission to use their zentangles:
"I'm sorry I have to disappoint you, but regarding my personal view towards zentangle and my teaching method, I can't give you permission to use my work on your blog.
The reason it doesn't resonate with my point of view towards zentangle is that as Certified Zentangle Teacher I've been asked never to use the word Zentangle as a verb
I teach Zentangle as a meditation and that's why I stay very close to the very basics of Zentangle.
In Zentangle as a meditation there is also an obvious difference between zentangle and doodle. So for that reason I never use the word 'zendoodle'.
With all respect for your point of view towards Zentangle, I wish you a lot of success with your blog."

I want to hear from you.  Do you zentangle, or do you practice Zentangle?  Do you zendoodle?  Is it a hobby, obsession, diversion, or religion for you?

Please tell me, using the comments section below this post.