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!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017


Rick writes:

Deconstruction: To reduce a pattern to its elemental strokes so that a user of the Zentangle Method can recreate it as a tangle by repeating those strokes one at a time in a simple, structured sequence.

Why is deconstruction important?

When you tangle a deconstructed tangle:
  • The part of you that solves problems or criticizes takes a break. 
  • You enter a state of “flow” as you focus on each stroke, because 
  • You know you’ll know what to do later when the time comes, and since 
  • You’re not concerned about the outcome, 
  • You enjoy the process. 

Inspirations for tangles are all around us. I saw this box in a museum:

 It inspired the tangle well. **

As you become aware of patterns, you will also begin to see their structure and their “elemental strokes.”
In the Zentangle Method elemental strokes are a dot, a straight(ish) line, a curve, an “S” shape and an orb. With these elements, you can draw all our tangles. This is why we say, “If you can write your name, you can create Zentangle Art.  
When you understand that all patterns are made of smaller elements, you look at patterns in art with a new perspective.

Complex patterns and designs become understandable as you discover their elemental strokes and structure . . . in other words, when you deconstruct it. And once you deconstruct it, you can tangle it. And once you can tangle it, you can express it in your own style.

Deconstruction Suggestions 
  1. Keep it simple. Most of our tangles are made from one, two, or maybe (like well) three elemental strokes. 
  2. Keep it non-representational. 

If you think you’ve come up with a new tangle, send it to Linda Farmer, CZT, at www.tanglepatterns.com and she may post it on her site.*
NOTE: Creating a pattern and deconstructing a pattern are different. Many Zentangle tangles are deconstructed from pre-existing patterns. For instance, the pattern that inspired the tangle well was created centuries ago. 
One More Suggestion 
We say that the “Zentangle Method is a metaphor for life,” that “Life is an artform,” and that “Everyone is an artist.”

Patterns are everywhere . . . and not just the obvious ones you might associate with the Zentangle Method of drawing. For instance, there are patterns of behavior, personal interaction and social organization. You can also apply a Zentangle approach to those patterns.

What are their “elemental strokes”? How are they arranged? Can you deconstruct it? Can you “tangle” it? And even more fascinating, might discover a new “tangle” of behavior or interaction or organization for others to explore?

Remember, “Life is an artform” and “Everyone is an artist”!


There were SO many wonderful posts from our last blog that we randomly picked three (instead of one) winners. All three will receive a print of Maria’s Zentangle Color Wheel. Maria gilded the “Z” on one of the prints with gold leaf . . . we’ll send that to the first name we drew.

1. ForgetmenotTangles
2. Laura Story
3. Pamela Scott

Please email your mailing address to maria (at) zentangle (dot) com.

Thank you all for all your heartfelt comments!

See you soon!

Rick and Maria

* Tangle Patterns is a great resource, run by a CZT, but not affiliated with Zentangle, Inc.

** More about well in this newsletter.


ForgetmenotTangles said...

Oh my goodness! Thank you guys. You all rock!

ForgetmenotTangles said...

Oh yea. I forget to email you my address. I'm such a dork. 😂😂😂

NaRong said...

Oh my goodness! Thank you guys. You all rock!
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