Keep Calm and Zentangle!

Ok you guys, I spent a significant amount of my childhood sitting at a table blowing through reams and reams of white copy paper just doodling. I also spent a significant amount of time in school (when I was supposed to be paying attention) doing the same. Though I think I only took one art class in high school, I spent an awful lot of time drawing. I never really realized that doodling, in fact, is one good way to de-stress. Even if you wouldn’t label yourself as “artsy” or “artistically inclined,” I think there’s still something to be said about spending a little quiet time rolling a pen over a clean sheet of paper. 

Recently, I learned that someone is actually making money off this concept – that art can be used for relaxation. Who knew? 🙂 My mom came back from a trip with her ladies’ group and told me I had to learn all about Zentangle because I was sure to love it. After a quick web search, I tried it. 
Then I tried it again the next day…and the next…and the next. Hmmm…I think I do love it!
Then I made a Zentangle Pinterest board and had four Zentangle books in front of me with some fresh new Faber Castell Pitt Pens. Ah, I absolutely love it. 
This form of art is basically shapes and patterns. The best part is, there’s no right or wrong way. Our 7 year old can even do it. Every piece you do ends up being a surprise in the end. I usually do some Googling for ideas, or flip through the Zentangle books (which are really good references by the way). I saw a feather that I liked and drew the basic shapes, all of the patterns within the feather are just random.
The possibilities are endless and you can create a drawing big or small. A lot of times, I work on a smaller flower in a sketch book while I’m having coffee. Just enough time to take a breather, have re-fuel and do something creative at the same time. It’s really hard for me to get anything done unless I’m doing 12 things at once. Understand? 
Also, you don’t need anything fancy to do Zentangle. A lot of the enthusiasts use Micron pens and Copic markers, but I just use my favorite drawing pens by Faber Castell (Pitt Pens). My selling part on the Pitt Pens – they don’t smear when you erase pencil lines! Wahoo! You could also use fine point Sharpie markers. If I want to add a little color, I use my Prismacolor Art Markers, but you could use anything – including Crayolas. Additionally, gel pens add a nice sparkle to your work. I recommend the Gelly Roll pens by Sakura.
As far as paper goes, you can use anything from scrap paper to a paper that’s constructed specifically for ink drawings. I prefer that the nicer paper when I’m doing a larger project because my markers tend to bleed over lines on regular multi-use paper and I like to minimize the chance of problems like that. If I’m doing coffee and doodles, it’s usually on the back of the grocery list.
So, in short, here’s what you need: 
  • Paper of your choice
  • Fine tip and/or medium tip pens
  • Pencil and kneaded eraser (optional, just if you want to sketch out first)
  • Colored pencils, markers of your choice (optional). 
  • Most importantly, your imagination. 🙂 
Hope you try it and enjoy! 

One thought on “Keep Calm and Zentangle!

  1. thefullams says:

    I love this idea. I used to doodle like this all through school, too. I'd draw outlines, then shapes in the shapes and scenes in the smaller shapes. Teachers either loved it or hated it. I might have doodled through every math class I took :-b Thanks for sharing zentangle.

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