We always say that the Zentangle Method attracts really awesome people. We have had the pleasure of working with wonderful Certified Zentangle Teachers (CZT) all over the world and we are excited to share these wonderful people with the entire Zentangle Community. Through our series, CZT Family Tree, we will introduce individual CZTs.
Today, we are excited to introduce Audrey Markowitz!
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Name: Audrey Markowitz
CZT #: 7
Hometown: Carson, Nevada, USA
Favorite Tangle: Pick just one? That's tough! But if I had to choose, I'd say flux. I love its shape and organic curves and the way it always dances with endless verve!
Favorite place to tangle: My favorite place to tangle is in my studio surrounded by my art, my art supplies and my Sophie (my fur baby), of course, curled up on top of my feet.
How I use the Zentangle Method in my life: I used the Zentangle method as a way of giving back the joy, the serenity, the magic and the create inspiration that it continues to give me. The Zentangle Method has been a life saver! Over 8 years ago, I got breast cancer and required surgery and radiation. The Zentangle Method got me through a VERY difficult period. At the radiation center, I was known as the "redhead who sat in the waiting room with her pens and notebook tangling her heart out!" I have since given up the red hair and let the white and gray take over!
Prior to my surgery, I remember telling my surgeon that I had a Zentangle class scheduled 3 days after surgery and asked him if I thought I would be able to keep the commitment I had made prior to my cancer diagnosis. He said, "If you're up to it, do it." I could tell by the look on his face that he didn't think I would be up to it. But, my passion for teaching and sharing the beauty of the Zentangle Method was all the energy I needed to teach that class, and I did, in fact, teach it! The feeling of joy, vitality and happiness in my body while I was teaching that class, even though I just had surgery, helped me remember that I, Audrey, was still inside me despite what I had been through and what I would be facing... that I was more than my cancer.
All through my treatment and radiation, I continued to create art and teach the Zentangle Method - the two things I am passionate about. The Zentangle Method has truly been a gift that keeps on giving. I vowed to continue sharing that gift with the same enthusiasm and passion that I started out with when I first began teaching. I have taught at out local cancer center to both patients and staff, to teenagers and young children, to seniors and to everyone in-between! My heartfelt commitment has been to share this art form and allow each individual to enjoy it in a way that is most meaningful and satisfying to them.
My favorite story or memory about teaching the Zentangle Method is about a student of mine who at her first introductory class with me was literally afraid to pick up her pencil. She was unbelievably worried about taking the class and wondered if she would even be able to complete it. Well, not only did she complete it, but she went on to take many, many other classes with me and eventually went on to create her own business creating art using the Zentangle method. Today, she has her own online business and also sells her art in different shops around town and the surrounding area. He work is exquisite. There is an old zen adage that says it right, "To surpass the teacher is to repay the debt."
Through my experiences as a CZT, I have learned how important your own genuine enthusiasm, passion, sense of humor and concern for each student is when teaching. We all learn and process information differently. The challenge is to be empathetic and to be creative, to listen and to find ways to reach everyone.
If I am not tangling, you will fine me in my studio designing a new Zentangle class or experimenting with a mixed media project. If I am not in my studio, I am out on a long walk with Sophie, or curled up on the sofa reading a good book.
Find me on the Zentangle Mosaic App! Username: @Audrey