Tangles with Ink



Zentangle® is an art form that I encountered on March 3, 2012. I was immediately hooked and have been tangling almost daily ever since. You will find some of my Zentangle Inspired Artwork (ZIA) at the bottom of this page.

It didn’t take long before I realized how useful this would be in a classroom setting. Not just an art class… any class. While developing fine motor skills, tanglers have the added benefits of increased focus, concentration, relaxation, joy… the list goes on. This is a wonderfully simple art form that doesn’t require anything other than paper, pencil and ink. It doesn’t require drawing skill. Anyone, even the person who insists that they can’t draw at all, can create astonishingly beautiful works of art with this method.

There are some posts in the blog showing some ZIA done by kids in a lunch club that I run at a local school. Not a huge budget for fancy paper and sakura pens… just good quality card stock, ultra fine point sharpies, pencils, pencil crayons, markers. The kids create beautiful art, even the ones who insisted that they can’t draw. The reaction they have to their own creations is wonderful. They are astonished and quickly become much more confident in their creative abilities.

Zentangle, as developed and copyrighted by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas, is more than just doodling. It is a method that brings the zen, meditative aspect to doodling. Their process of creating zentangled artwork and their method of teaching this art form are now being shared around the world by Certified Zentangle Teachers. I would recommend that you spend some time exploring Rick and Maria’s website, zentangle.com.

Another resource I highly recommend is  is published by Linda Farmer, CZT. You will find lots of patterns, strings and ZIA on her site: tanglepatterns.com.

There are quite a few wonderful artists posting their zentangle inspired art on the internet. I’ll post some of my favourites soon. Meanwhile, if you’re looking for inspiration for your own tangled journey or you want to share this with your children, students, friends, relatives or the person who watched you tangling over your morning coffee… the websites above are good starting points. After that, Google is going to provide you with lots of useful images and websites.

Below, you can see a selection of some of my own ZIA.



2 thoughts on “Tangles with Ink

  1. Donna Taylor


    I had heard about Zentangle. A lot of quilters do it to train their hand for free motion quilting. Watercolors are my favorite medium and yours are beautiful. And Dreambirds – oh my gosh it’s wonderful. I hope you do make it. I’ve already sent the link to a friend of mine who is retired and loves knitting. Just a little hint hint to her. :-}

    Grandma would be so proud of all your creative arts. The artistic gene is certainly alive in the Taylor family. Gwen loves to knit and of course her music, Gherry Cern knits too and his music, Katie Stempler just graduated with an art degree, Charie also loves to knit, sew, draw and cook, and Gherry of course. If it hadn’t been for feeding his family and keeping a roof over our heads, he would have loved to be a starving artist all these years. A non-starving artist would have been better, but he would have done it either way.


    1. Thistle Post author

      When I was little and visiting the farm, Gramma tried so hard to teach me to knit or crochet or sew… anything. I just wanted to be outside with the animals. All these things have come to me gradually over the years, starting in my late teens. Not sure what’s coming next but I’m still a work in progress.


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