We Tangled with Zentangle!

This past Sunday afternoon – yes, the same time the snow hit town – a number of us met at Ledge Craft Lane for our February ART BOX Party to learn the art of tangling with Zentangle!

First of all, a tangle is a sequence of simple strokes that make up a pattern. We had a knowledgeable, creative and fun instructor – Jane Reiter – who lead us through lines and curves, circles and dots. We started with strings, added tangles and ended with shading to create remarkable, unique designs.

How We Tangled

By using museum grade cotton paper, 3.5 inches (89 mm) squares, graphic pencils and micron pens, we created a border and added “strings” (lines or curves) inside the border to separate our tiles into sections.

We then learned how to create tangles inside of each section. Can you believe there are approximately 200 tangle designs! To begin, we learned four of them: Crescent Moon, Hollibaugh, Msst, and Printemps.

Notice how our two-dimensional tangles appeared three-dimensional when we added shading!

We also learned the Paradox tangle and the Fengle.

Now don’t think for a minute that all our designs turned out the same, even though we were following the same directions. This is where individuality comes into play.

We had moments of silence as we focused on our tangle designs, scarcely breathing, so intent were we on drawing our curves and lines. All the while, Zen-type music played quietly in the background.

Yet there were also times of laughter, ooohs, ahhhhs and even a few “oops” as we strived for perfection but learned that there are no mistakes in Zentangle. Tangling is the process of creating simple, abstract beauty that anyone can do.

It was an afternoon of discovery - discovering that by combining patterns in an easy, simple, stress-free way, one can create beautiful art. And for those who never thought they had a creative bone in their body, discovering that they could create unique, beautiful, abstract art!

Thank you, Jane, and thank you Zentangle!

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