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A Reminder to Embrace your Zentangle Practice

A Reminder to Embrace your Zentangle Practice

In 2007, we started BLOG Zentangle and began our enjoyable series of conversations within our Zentangle community.

In reading through these blog posts with their insightful comments, we decided to bring a few of them to your attention from time to time. It is easy, for me anyway, to sometimes think of old information as stale information. But these insights and conversations are anything BUT stale!

We invite you to enjoy this post from 2017...

Begin previous post . . .


Julie writes: 
I really do believe that we are our own worst critics. When it comes to our Zentangle art, we know there are no mistakes and no preconceived outcomes, but sometimes (it’s okay to admit it) we compare our work to others and feel inadequate. One comment I get from many Mosaic App users is "I love looking at everyone's work but mine is not good enough yet to post." Today's blog is to tell you to embrace your Zentangle practice, let go of this insecurities and (literally or metaphorically) post that tile!

 If there is one thing that I know, my Zentangle practice is much more about the process, the journey, than it is the outcome. Don’t get me wrong, I love finishing a tile. The satisfaction that I created something, a beautiful piece of artwork, is not something I had until the Zentangle Method. The real beauty to me is not in my finished work, it is in the process of getting there.

I was fortunate enough to have grown up next door to Rick and Maria and was a Zentangle “guinea pig.” I have been tangling for almost half my life but it was not until 2013 when I started working for Zentangle, Inc. that I really kicked my practice into high gear. In the beginning, it was intimidating. I was surrounded by the artwork of Maria, Rick and Molly each day and when my tiles did not look like theirs, I will be the first to admit that I felt discouraged. I felt pressure to tangle more, to learn more tangles and to be better. Where did this pressure come from? Myself. It was all my own insecurities.

It was not until I settled into my Zentangle practice that I was able to let go of my insecurities. I was able to do this when I began to embrace the process, the act of creating, and not just the finished product. It was okay that my tiles did not look like anyone else's, because I created it, one stroke at a time. It was okay that my tiles did not flow like Maria’s, hold as much graphite as Molly’s or have the geometric edge that Rick’s had, because that was their style and I had mine. It was okay that I did not know all the tangles because all I needed was a few of my mac and cheese tangles to make a beautiful tile. It was okay to draw marasu over and over (and over) again as long as I enjoy creating those tiles. Creating Zentangle art is such a personal process, my tiles should not look like anyone else’s.

Share with us in the comments below how you embrace your Zentangle practice and we will choose a commenter at random to receive a Zentangle surprise!

Thanks for reading!
- Julie

Julie Willand


  • Thank you for the reminder. I have been getting to critical of my own work lately, and too envious of others` work of late. Getting back to my roots and trying to work with `official` patterns as my daily practice. I love Zentangle!

    Lisa Anderson, CZT20 on

  • I just sit down and draw tangles. Maybe it’s in a letter to a penpal or in my art journal. I will take inspiration from other people and put my own spin on it. I didn’t get here overnight, it took letting go of my preconceived ideas of what a “good” tangle looked like. I have fun.

    Jackie on

  • Julie, Maria and Rick.
    What a wonderful reminder that it’s all about the journey. I love to see all the beautiful work of others who are using colors and techniques and know that one day I may be about to create something equally as lovely. As for right now I am where I am and I’m loving every minute of it and all the growth and peacefulness that comes with it.

    Terri Young, CZT 16 on

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