Welcome to BLOG Zentangle. To learn about Zentangle, visit our website, read our free newsletters, take a class with a local Certified Zentangle Teacher (CZT), and best of all . . . create your own!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Dance Plus

When students surpass their teachers . . . .
It's thrilling to see what folks created for Laura Harms' 100th challenge with divadance.

Imagine the tangles of the future. They will be increasingly difficult to find (we had it easy to get all the simple ones in!).  But, oh, they will be spectacular! Just look at how Zentangle has blossomed in the last few years . . . unfettered creativity coming out of people, many of whom never knew it was within all along.

Throughout this Zentangle community we see directions and inspirations we never considered along with enthusiastic passion and creativity. Your Zentangle inspired art creates an exquisite positive feedback loop that inspires us all.

It was only fitting that we also be part of this challenge. We feel that it's our service to society to enable anyone to discover and inspire their artist within and then to go beyond what we have accomplished. It's the way of this world.  

Thank you so much for playing with us and each other on this ongoing and unfolding Zentangle adventure.

Thank you for your inspiration.

Click image for large view.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Diva Dance

Laura Harms, CZT, who hosts the popular IamtheDivaCZT blog invited us to guest host for her 100th Challenge blog post.

In honor of this event, we created a new tangle, diva dance. Later on we'll post step-outs for the archives on our newsletter, but for now you'll need to visit her blog to see lots of images and also the step-out instructions.

Here are a couple images of diva dance that we're contributing to this challenge:

By Maria, black and brown Sakura® Pigma® micron pens with white chalk pencil on lokta paper.

By Rick, black Sakura Pigma micron and white GellyRoll® pens with pencil shading and white chalk highlights on prestrung Zendala.

Please drop by Laura's 100th Challenge to enjoy some beautiful images and to add yours to them.

Click images for larger views.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Seminar X

We are thrilled and proud to introduce you to the graduating class of the tenth Certified Zentangle Teacher (CZT) training seminar held this past September.

Please join us in welcoming some of the nicest people you could ever want to meet.

There are now CZTs in Australia, Belgium, Bermuda, Canada, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa, United Kingdom, and United States (in 45 states)!

In the picture above, you can also see some of our Zentangle staff, left to right in the first row are Jess, Molly, Martha, Sue, and Jane.

It took forever to get that picture ready because I just kept looking at all the faces and reliving all our interactions and conversations. Looking at the expressions and body language explains a bit why we don't think we could ever do these trainings online.

We invite you to enjoy images of the creativity and fun enjoyed during Seminar X. Remember to click the images to see their larger version.

Registration is now open for our two Certified Zentangle Teacher training seminars in 2013: June 23-26 and October 13-16.

You can read more about seminar at this link and at many of our archived newsletters.

If you are interested in attending, please register soon because these seminars tend to fill quickly.

To begin the registration process, click the links below, where you will find details on tuition, times and other details:

We enjoyed great weather. This picture was taken in the early morning before breakfast. The day before there was a wedding at the hotel and the decorations were still up in the courtyard.

Above is a small sampling of Zentangle tiles and Zentangle Inspired Art that many students brought.

Our first mosaic along with a couple detail views.

After class in the evenings there were many creative events. Ironically, Miriam White (left) came from New Zealand and is giving a henna Zentangle inspired tattoo to Paulene Whakaruru, who came from Australia and was originally from New Zealand!

Students tangle the back of their name tags and then we varnish them. This always makes for a great photo opportunity.

Another tradition is to create a group Zentangle which everyone helps tangle and one student gets to take home.

We also find something to celebrate. For this class it was a celebration of our  tenth CZT seminar.

Thanks for enjoying this peak into our last seminar. You can learn more about our CZT program here. If you have any questions at all about seminar, just email Martha at events@zentangle.com and she will be glad to answer your questions.

Most importantly, if you are interested in learning more about Zentangle and its practice, please take a workshop with a CZT. You will find them listed here.

Click images for larger views.

Monday, December 3, 2012


Karen writes:
Dear Maria and Rick,

If you will allow me, I wanted to share with you some of the Zentangle Christmas Eggs I  made recently.  I am not a CZT (yet - maybe someday) but Zentangle has changed my life.  I am a long time Pysanky artist and most recently have been inspired by your gift of Zentangle. 

Thank you so much for this wonderful gift and for inspiring so many lives. 



Thank you so much for sharing your inspiration!

Click image for larger eggz.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Treasure Ideas

I've been sorting through my dad's collection of odds and ends. Now and then I'll find something interesting and give it to Maria. Although this is a bit off topic, I wanted to show you what Maria did with a piece of broken silverware and a brass candle holder.

The broken silverware handle immediately became an elegant pencil extender.

What to do with the candle holder? We use exacto knives all the time. How to store them safely and stylishly within easy reach and not dull the point?

Grab a wine cork and . . .

. . . voila!

Click images for larger views.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

One Stroke at a Time*

That's the title of an article that Molly Hollibaugh, CZT, and Zentangle Product Manager, wrote and which appeared in the November issue of School Arts Magazine.

We invite you to take a moment to read her article and enjoy comments from Molly and other CZTs about teaching the Zentangle Method to students in the classroom.

There's also a "Teacher Tested" section with some insightful comments about our Apprentice Classroom Pack on page 11 of that same issue.

Congrats, Molly!

* Article title is based on our slogan, "Anything is possible, one stroke at a time."™

Click links for a great read.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Zendala Quilting

We received this wonderful treat from Patricia Ferguson, CZT:
Dear Rick and Maria,

I have attached photos of my latest wall quilts inspired by Zentangle. My Zen Quilting students are wanting to taking their little 8 1/2" Zen Quilts to the next level so I have worked up a Zen Mandala Workshop just for them with 20" wall art pieces. You will recognize that the first one is based on one of your gorgeous Zendala Set tiles (always credit you for this) and the other is my own star based design. Hope you enjoy them.

I can't tell you how much Zentangle has enriched my machine quilting skills and opened up the creative floodgates. If I get stuck on a quilt, I just tangle until I come up with something new. My customers are awed by the array of quilting designs that I am working onto their cherished quilts, making each one unique.


You can see more of Pat's work, books, and classes at her website, patfergusonquilts.com.

Thank you, Pat, for sending us your comments and those beautiful images.

You can see more samples of Zendala tiles and strings in this newsletter.

Click images for larger views.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Chariot of Tangles

Terri emails:
I am an artist and an athlete, inside my mind. The artist, thanks to Zentangle, is beginning to emerge and I am hoping the athlete is not far behind. I will blame two things for my delayed art emersion, a brother that wielded crayons like Picasso and an assortment of evil Spirograph toys. Each and every Spirograph I received over a span of birthdays had faulty pens. I don't believe I had success completing even one project.

Now, my faith in drawing has been renewed. Your simple to follow techniques have shown me that I can finish a project to be proud of. My husband loves my drawings . . . well, he did until I used his car as a canvas. Did you realize that Zentangle flames on a Dodge shadow are somewhat of a conversation starter?

I always knew approximately what part of town my husband was in because I'd receive texts that said, "Hey, I just saw your husband's car." A young man recently bought said car and digs the drawings.

I thank you for having the insight to put the instructions together and show a technique that can . . . 'one stroke at a time'. . . erase my fear of drawing as well as put my Spirograph ghosts behind me.


P.S. The hood is duct taped. My husband is a good sport. Maybe that is why he brought home another blank canvas, ummm I mean, white car.

Thanks, Terri!

Click images for larger views.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Book Signing

Just a quick note to let you know, or so that you can pass on to anyone you know in the area, that we will be doing a book signing for The Book of Zentangle on Saturday, November 24, in Westborough, Massachusetts, from 1:30 to 4:00 pm.

The Art and Frame Emporium is located at 18 Lyman Street in the Westborough Shopping Center.

Ed Turner, CZT and owner on left with Maria and Rick.

See you there!

Click images for larger views.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Nice Boots!

Sharon Payne, a Certified Zentangle Teacher in North Carolina (USA), recently won Premium First Place Blue Ribbon at the 145th North Carolina State Fair for her Zentangle inspired boots.

Here's Sharon at CZT training . . .

. . . and a closer look at those boots.

Congratulations, Sharon!

Click images for larger views.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Halloween Treat

Elsie wrote in an email:
We had some little candy bars left over from Halloween treats, so I decided to try a tiny Snicker's bar! Much to my surprise on the bottom of the candy was a cute Zentangle surprise. I've attached a photo of the wraper and the candy bar bottom!

This is a great example of one of Zentangle's wonderful side-effects: an increased awareness and appreciation of pattern and design that was previously overlooked.
We will often hear from new Zentangle practitioners that all of a sudden they are noticing and enjoying a beauty that's always been there, but never "seen"–just like this version of our tangle static.
Thanks so much for sending that, Elsie! 
Click images for larger views.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Scrapbooking.com Article

Scrapbooking.com has a regular "Meet the Artist" section on their website and this month we are honored to join their list of interviewed artists.

Follow this link to read Judi Kauffman's write-up of her interview with us. She really caught the mood and spirit of our recent conversation. It's a wonderful read.

Thanks, Judi!

That image above was taken by Bette Abdu, CZT, during a Zentangle Master Class as we rode around Newport, RI in a trolley, hunting for patterns in area museums and mansions. You can read about it (and see a larger image) here.

The other images in the article are two of many illustrations that Maria created for The Book of Zentangle.

Click link for a good read!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

POKE (root, berry & ink!)

Pokeroot was one of our first tangles. It was inspired by a pokeroot plant growing in a vacant lot across from our home. Pokeroot is an unusual name for us to use for a tangle because it is named for what inspired its pattern. We usually choose names that don't create a preconception of how a tangle should look.

John Nordell, CZT, was "poking" around recently and he recorded his results in this blog entry on his CreateLookEnjoy blog. Here's his video from that entry:

John also admonishes, "If you find yourself inspired to mash and draw, please keep in mind that the Pokeweed berries are toxic." 

In preparing this blog, I came upon some interesting pokeroot/pokeweed factoids:
  • Over time pokeberry ink turns from purple to tan. You can see this in the Declaration of Independence which Thomas Jefferson wrote using pokeberry ink.
  • Letters written with feather quills in pokeberry ink by Civil War soldiers are still legible.
  • Supporters of U.S. President James Polk wore pokeweed twigs during his campaign. Similar sounding "Polk" and "poke" are sometimes used interchangeably in reference to this fascinating plant.
Here's some "tangling" music for when you tangle pokeroot.

We invite you to visit John's blog entry to read his full story and to leave a comment.

Click links and enjoy!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

It was a dark and stormy night

Or more specifically, a dark and Sandy night.

Even though hurricane Sandy's center was distant, we still felt its effects.

Maria was up in the middle of the night tangling. She used a black Sakura® IDentiPen™ and what she thought was a black Micron 01. (It was after all a dark and stormy night!)

Above all that turmoil was a full moon.

Molly just arrived and brought a Zentangle tile she did last night. Here she uses hollibaugh, fife, and our latest tangle, bunzo.*

Click images for larger views.

* "Bunzo" was Maria's nickname for her/our son Noah. He didn't like it when he was young, but recently asked if we were going to share its origins. :-)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

What's on Your Plate?

We recently received this beautiful email from "L":
Dear Maria and Rick,

Thank you forever for your inspiration, tangling has proved to be my salvation!

When I was quite ill this summer my husband and I did a joint project for our  Christmas gifts. My husband turned the wooden decorative plates from Brazilian Cherry wood with an indentation in which he glued 12 different circles on card stock decorated with my tangling and then poured on a resin that hardened like glass.

We are so pleased with the result. Hope that you enjoy the photos!  

They are beautiful! We so appreciate you sharing them with everyone.

Be sure to click images for larger views.