One of the most wonderful elements of Zentangle is the beauty, simplicity, creativity and unique potential of the tangles (patterns) themselves. If you haven't already read about what a Zentangle is, go to the Zentangle website to find out.
I'm a qualified (now retired) graphic designer who, when I was working in the industry, thought of myself as a designer rather than an 'artist.'
In an effort to explore artistic creativity purely for my own enjoyment, I started learning Chinese brush painting - a very meditative artform. From there my journey led me to calligraphy, a unique combination of the ability to write and draw. And finally to Zentangle.
When I finally discovered Zentangle, I quickly discovered two very important things:
- A Zentangle is never 'right' or 'wrong.' It is a commentary, if you like, on change. A representation of passing moments. Each stroke arises from the pen and, as I move to the next stroke, it becomes part of the past. When I look at a completed Zentangle I appreciate the moments it represents. It is a true & beautiful illustration of the time I spent creating it. There is no judgement to be made. No measuring its success or failure.
It is, simply and elegantly, a captured moment.
- The second discovery was this - there are infinite possibilities for creative invention and insight in the discovery and design of new tangles. Sometimes, when I start to 'learn' a tangle pattern, I make a happy 'diversion' from the usual steps and from there I experience, not disappointment, but excitement! Here's a chance to take a design in a new direction. To create something that is based on an existing tangle, but new! (This is called a 'tangleation.') At other times I watch my pen as brand new tangle patterns emerge from my creative subconscious!
The very simplicity of tangles makes them clever, deliberative, meditative & full of infinite potential for more creativity!
This is one of the many and wonderful unique qualities of Zentangle art. This is an amazing world of possibility and artistic 'ability' that has been opened up for artists and non-artists alike.
Thank you, Rick and Maria for starting this!
Find more of my musings on the art of Zentangle here.
Zentangles® are miniature pieces of black and white art that are not only exquisitely beautiful, they are fun and relaxing to create. For more information about Zentangle® visit zentangle.com