Thursday, 19 December 2013

Tangled Thursday - Beginning Lines

I've been pondering a response to my friend Lisa who recently learned about Zentangles.  She sent me a lnk to some drawings she had done, and asked me is she was doing it right.  Something I can't really answer.  Instead, I thought I'd share some thoughts on how I work. 

First, is when to ink in your outside frame.  I pencil mine lightly, and once I have finished my work, then decide whether I want to ink it or not.  that approach gave me the freedom to draw one of these beads extending past the outline. 
Welcome to Tangled Thursday.  A few of my local and online friends have joined me in an occasional Zentangle challenge.  We'll take turns choosing a theme  and them post our drawings in about 2 weeks time.  All are welcome to join in the fun.  If you are new to Zentangles, then visit the website for a complete explanation and all sorts of online resources.  I'm also a big fan of
In this example, I have drawn the outline of the tile as well as the string in pencil.  Both the knightbridge and the pokeweed tangles extend past the outer border. I could have easily contained them within the line, but I did  enough of colouring within the lines when I was a student.
The tipple fills in the spaces around the pokeweed and clearly delineates the border.  I certainly won't be inking the bordr in that area.  I will probably erase the lines that are showing, but it might not be required once I finish the shading.
I drew this tile when I first started.  At that time the first thing I did was ink in the outer border.  That left me with no option of continuing the swirls (upper left corner) outside the border.
In this tile, I even inked in the string before I started drawing any of the tangles.  I don't do that any more, it's too limiting as it takes away possibilities.
This is what a typical page looks like in my sketch book.  There is room for 6 tiles, though I  don't always work that way particularly with strip type tangles.  As with Pia, I like to try out lots of variations.  I find the colouring in of tangles the most relaxing.  I could do tile after tile of just knightsbridge.  One of my friends says she much prefers the line work ones such as Auraknot.  Each to their own.

In answer to my friend Lisa, if you are happy with  your work, then yes, you  are doing it right.  
If you are just starting and are looking for a book, I recommend Zentangle Basics by Suzanne McNeill  ISBN 978-1-57421-327-0.  It's a very affordable book and will introduce you to 24 tangles.  This is the book that started me on this journey.  I also recommend that you take a class if you are lucky enough to have a CZT Certified Zentangle Teacher nearby.  for a list of teachers, visit
I have added Mr. Linky again this week and invite you to add a link to your Zentangles, a new post or one of your favorites.  I'd love to view your work.


Anonymous said...

I have never heard of this before, but I am intrigued by it. I look forward to finding out more!

~ M

Tami said...

Excellent tutorial! There being no real "rules" to tangling, it's always fun to see how others work. My favorite way is to start at the center of a page/area and just work outward till I'm done. I love your way of penciling guidelines and then deciding whether or not to use them.

I have pens and paper ready for all the kids/grandkids who will be visiting for a week after Christmas. We are having Zentangle class! :)

I'm sorry I got nothing posted this week. I've spent every available minute at the sewing machine instead of drawing. But I'll be back next week.

Anonymous said...

I have been intrigued by Zentangle designs. I like the concept of repeated patterns within shapes. However, when I went to the website, I found the rules too rigid. I'll probably never do Zentangles, only "designs based on Zentangle."

Marie said...

Great explanation, Heather. I, too, start with a lightly-penciled border and then decide if I'm going to use it.

I like your sketchbook. I tend do most of my work on card stock tiles because I like the weight of the paper. I have, however, quickly drawn something using pencil on a scrap paper to see if the idea in my head will work. Maybe in the New Year I'll graduate to a sketchbook. ;)

I'm hoping that in the new year more people will join us. Have a good one.