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 Eni Oken!
Name: Eni Oken
Hometown: I'm originally from Brazil, but now living in El Segundo, CA for many years.
Favorite Tangle: Mooka
Favorite Place to Tangle: in my kitchen
How I use the Zentangle Method in my life: I found Zentangle at a particularly delicate time in my life when I was going through Stage 4 Cancer treatment. During the 3 years of treatment I found myself creating pictures of the treatment procedures totally covered with tiny repetitive patterns. My oncologist recommended I draw happier drawings as part of my recovery and that’s when I discovered Zentangle. I immediately became enamored by the method since it elegantly allows a person to reach that wonderful Zen flow feeling artists chase all their lives. I had been an art teacher for a few decades and desperately wanted to become a CZT right away, but health and financial recovery didn’t allow me to attend seminar until 2016. Zentangle has literally changed my life, I tangle every single day as a way to calm down and de-stress, as a meditative practice and also find immense joy in teaching Zentangle to others through videos and live online classes.
My favorite story or memory about teaching the Zentangle Method is: As an experienced art teacher, I am particularly impressed at how the Zentangle method can easily teach a person with very little or no artistic background to reach artistic confidence and Zen flow, something artists with more experience take years to master. Every time I see the look of surprise in a person’s face, or the surprised comments online “I never thought I could create something like this”, it gives me such happiness, such joy, it’s hard to describe. I have collected many emails from people expressing similar feelings of surprise, and it never gets old.
Through my experiences as a CZT, I have learned: It is such a great feeling to be part of a community of like-minded people from all over the world, people who connect through this visual language that is Zentangle. I always enjoyed repetitive ornamental patterns, but thought it was too much of a specialized topic in art to dedicate myself exclusively to. Well, CZTs LOVE exploring tangle patterns and easier ways to deconstruct them, it’s such a joy to bond and explore those processes with other teachers.
If I’m not tangling, you will find me: My fiancé and I love to dance, cruise and travel, and during our trips, I am constantly searching for patterns everywhere when we are not dancing. Recently we created together a free app called “Art Raffle” for iPhone, iPad and Mac which explores different ways to combine tangles and enhancers, so we are constantly refining the app and adding more step-outs. Finally, I also teach a LOT, I run a Zentangle monthly membership program called Eni’s Art Club, and the online classes can be very intense, so I spend a lot of time coming up with new projects and preparing for classes. I have created dozens of video classes online, it's amazing how technology can help reach people from all over
Mosaic Name: EniOken
I’ve only just discovered Eni Oken and her artwork. I’m awed by her style. Like her, I started tangling soon after I was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Unfortunately this cancer is incurable, but I hope to do some nice artwork during the time I have left.
Emily Dixon on
Carmen Clayton, The Frog Lover
Carmen Clayton on
Melissa Dare on
Kim Longenecker on
Delighted to see Eni Ojen featured in the Family tee. I have learned a lot more about her from reading above. I have always marvelled at her work and aspiire to create classes that are interesting and fun. Eni however has such huge talent and amazing mind to be able to deconstruct patterns. I aspire to be a great teacher like Eni. She is an inspiration 🙏♥️
Angelina Arcari on
Deborah Davis on
World class Artist!! I remember googling Zentangle in Images section and bam! Some of her gorgeous artworks popped up with a link to her website! And I never looked back! Have been a member of her club since 2018 and I intend to be a member as long as she runs the club. A perfect teacher! I’ve definitely seen improvements in my works over time, which motivates me to continue art with passion! A new perspective to Zentangle! While I admire the actual Zentangle method, her technique helps me with Zentangle inspired artworks and in creating bigger size artworks! And being an art instructor myself, she sets some serious teacher goals as well – how to remain harmonious in an art community and how we as artists must support each other! Simply put, a wonderful human being altogether! Can’t get enough of her lessons and am always excited to see what comes my way! Love you Eni ❤️❤️
Valli Ganti on
I’ve been a member of Eni’s Art Club from its beginning and had the absolute joy and pleasure of meeting Eni in person at Tangle U in Asheville. I would have to say that Eni is the embodiment of the Zentangle spirit. Her joy for creating, her enthusiasm for Zentangle and all its benefits, the excellence she displays in her lessons and teaching, and the generosity of knowledge she shares so freely with her students make her an exceptional teacher and person. She genuinely cares about her students and wants them to excel. I know I’m not the only student who would say they love Eni! ❤️
Viveca Chenoweth on
Kim VanZyll, CZT 16 on
I don’t remember exactly how I found Eni Oken’s Art Club a few years ago, but I do remember that it was going to be a risk and a challenge financially as I am on a set budget. At that time I had stopped Tangling for about a year due to health and other circumstances, and I had never even attended an in person class yet. But I jumped in and have never regretted it. Eni’s content is challenging and encouraging, appropriate for all levels of experience. She always offers great advice and critique/suggestions when wanted. She continues to help me expand my capabilities, and learn new and wonderful techniques. She’s also always working at updating and adapting Art Club to continually provide us better and greater service/ content. So glad to be a member in her classes. 💞💞💞
Ruth Carson on
Eni Oken is an immensely worthy addition to the CZT Family Tree and I am very happy to see her recognised here. Eni is a truly fabulous teacher and mentor and is constantly caring and generous with her time and energy. She is extremely gifted and clearly displays her appreciation for the Zentangle method and artform. Eni Oken has inspired and coached my Zentangle and art journey since January 2016 (which led into Art Club that began in 2017)and it is an honour to follow along on her creative flows and join in. Every tile I do has Eni’s influence or technique in some way and I love that she has nurtured the artist in me and what I have achieved.
Michelle Dugdale on
Eni, you are wonderful, and have gone through so much! Thanks for sharing! ❤️
Carol McKenzie on
Eni Oken, you rock! I have been a fan and a student of Eni’s pretty much since she started sharing her talents on the various Zentangle boards. She hooked me right away with her call for “Shading Fearlessly”. What a concept for someone with a timid hand on the tile! As a member of her art club, I am always amazed at how she continues to churn out one revelatory class after another! I was so hoping to meet Eni in person at TangleU in Scottsdale, but COVID stoke that away. I hope to have another opportunity! Yay, Eni!
Antonine Koval on
Rimona Gale on
I have been inspired by Eni’s work from very early in my tangling journey. I would see something on Pinterest and inevitably it would be hers LOL! I just loved the detail and the dimension in her artworks. So I joined Eni’s Art Club and have been a member for a couple of years now. What a ride! Eni is such a wonderful and gracious teacher. Her methods and teaching style are second to none and my own art has improved beyond measure under her wing! Eni exudes her gratitude for the Zentangle method in every lesson.
I have also had the pleasure of working with her behind the scenes a little and now consider her a friend. She is so giving and generous, and that has been clear with the release of her Art Raffle app. What a wonderful gift her and Alan have given the Zentangle community!
All there is to do now is meet in person one day… perhaps at a future CZT gathering! Thanks for sharing Eni’s story.
Kim lechner on
One of my most favorite people in the whole Zentangle world! A beautiful person both inside and out. A gifted artist and a gifted teacher too. I have learned and grown so much as an artist with Eni. So happy to see you recognized and celebrated here.
Julianne Stamatyades on
Pat Mathes on
Helene Bard on
Eni Oken is an amazing artist and teacher. She has taken ZIA with her 3D shading effects and style to a level that one can only experience by taking her classes. In the process she always communicates individually with each participant. I can go on and on! I absolutely love her diversity of lessons and one can choose what interests them. I have learned so much since joining the Art Club nine months ago.
Norma Jean Peterson on
Deborah Bowyer on
Eni is such a treasure in our family tree! So glad to see her featured here!
JENNIFER SPARROW on
Zentangle came into my life several years ago when I was in transition and rediscovering my creative self. Eni came into my life January 2020 when I was ready to commit to a regular practice of classes. Little did I know that the Art Club would turn into the sanity saving community it is for me. Our silver linings come in unexpected places. Bless Zentangle, Eni and all the other tanglers and teachers out there making the joy of this art form accessible for all of us. Cannot wait for the ability to meet you all in person and give you the biggest hugs.
Deb M CZT 30 on
First let me say that being a student of Eni’s has improved my art in wonderful ways. I agree with Eni, also, that the Zentangle method, overall, has enhanced my life in more ways than I can say. One great thing that has emerged for me is my ability to return to sleep in the middle of the night when I am awakened with PVC’s (palpitations and irregular heartbeats) that prevent me from even remaining in bed because they are so disturbing. I simply draw some big loops and fill them with lines. This Zen flow, as Eni calls it, happens almost immediately and is way better than a pill. Eni has shown us Zentangle and other techniques that make my lines appear more lovely. Eni is a tremendous addition to the Zentangle Family Tree—and I am grateful.
Paula Schneider on
Kudos to the best art teacher I’ve ever had!
I have been a member of Eni’s art club for the past couple of years. She is so patient and so giving with her art expertise. I learn something from every class I attend and I really love the live online format. It is the next best thing to an in person class. I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Eni through email exchanges and consider her a friend as well as a teacher and truly recommend her. She truly takes great joy in sharing her talent and the Art Raffle app is beyond a generous gift she and Alan have given our community. It’s a ripple effect because without Rick & Maria we wouldn’t all have each other to learn and grow from. Thank you Rick & Maria and thank you Eni! Beautiful post.
Jody Genovese on