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In Good Company

In Good Company

Julie writes...

We recently wrapped up our 38th CZT Seminar, and first in person event since 2019! Anytime a group of tanglers get together, it is exciting, invigorating and inspiring and this time was no different.

One of my favorite parts of gatherings like this, is getting to sit down and talk to attendees. The first night at dinner, I had the honor of sitting with a lovely group of ladies and they wasted no time getting deep, talking about the Zentangle Method and the Zentangle community. There was a comment made about the Zentangle community and how welcoming, kind, and supportive it is. They asked me why I thought it was like this and how did it come to be this way?

Rick always says, does the Zentangle Method attract the best people, or does it bring out the best in people? I think it is a little bit of both. I think the inclusive nature of the Zentangle Method is what fosters the kind and supportive community we have.

What do I mean by inclusive? Two things, really. The first is that it is an accessible art form for almost anyone. We say that if you can write your name, you can create Zentangle art. It does not require expensive equipment or materials and its does not require a lot of time (well, I guess it depends on how much you are tangling). You can tangle on the beach with a stick, on a plane on a napkin and everywhere in between.

More importantly, I believe the method invites people from all walks of life. It does not matter if you are 12 or 92, you can tangle. It does not matter if you spent years in art school or are creating art for the first time since you were a small child, the method invites you with open arms, and so does the community. It not only connects people from all over the world with a common language (tangles), but it binds them, because it is about so much more than the tangles.

If you listen to a group of stranger tanglers (that is fun to say), get to know each other, you don’t often observe them just showing each other their art, but you will hear them ask about their Zentangle journey and how they found the Zentangle Method. This often opens the doors to personal and vulnerable stories that create a deep understanding and human connection. It really has nothing to do with the final piece of artwork, but everything that happens while creating it. These connections have created this wonderful community that we get to be a part of. I have seen this community rally behind each other in times of need and celebrate together in times of joy. People opening their homes to each other and offering their support, compassion and love. It is a community that I am grateful to be a part of.

Julie Willand

20 comments

  • There are very few things that make me want to get out of bed and never go to sleep, and Zentangle is definitely one of them…

    CeCe, Crystal Gidget Bushinsky CZT38 on

  • There are very few things that make me want to get out of bed and never go to sleep, and Zentangle is definitely one of them…

    CeCe, Crystal Gidget Bushinsky on

  • Congratulations Zentangle and to all the new CZT#38s also. Whilst I have been tangling for some years, the decision to become a CZT in 2021 has been such a joy, a real boost to my Zentangle journey and my overall artistic journey. We are never alone, as there are so many wonderful people out there who are CZTs and tanglers alike who are always generous in their time and knowledge. Zentangle has been a fantastic decision to have made in my life and I know that all the new CZTs will be feeling the same. Well done and good on you all for sharing this wonderful skill and joining in the Zentangle family – the world really needs it and all that comes as a blessing from it!

    Veronica Hodges CZT #37 Australia on

  • I can identify with so much that has already been expressed here. For me, as of yet I am hesitant to actually teach a class. I feel my skills are on par, but I’m concerned that I won’t present the material confidently and then not represent this artform in the manner it deserves. I’m hoping this phase will pass and I can move forward.

    Bonnie Johnson CZT36 on

  • I was very passionate to become a CZT which finally I did it and I would like to thank the Zentangle community for their friendly and generous support. Especially I would like to thank Julie and Martha for their immense help and yes frankly it the best step I have ever taken.

    Ruchita Patel on

  • Thank you Julie for this lovely putting into words what so many of us are thinking, expieriencing and feeling…

    My personal world has been dark and it still is from time to time, buth ever since Zentangle came into my life, about 1,5 years ago… I feel so supported to be able to hold on and focussing on only positive things, of letting go of situations we can not chance and for being able to learn and grow as a mum and a part of… buth also personally. For me! By me! And as a bonus with so many options and so many possibilitys to come…
    How not to smile and enjoy every moment of it…

    Sofie Oostvogels on

  • Thank you Julie for this lovely putting into words what so many of us are thinking, expieriencing and feeling…
    My personal world has been dark and it still is from time to time, buth ever since Zentangle came into my life, about 1,5 years ago… I feel so supported to be able to hold on and focussing on only positive things, of letting go of situations we can not chance and for being able to learn and grow as a mum and a part of… buth also personally. For me! By me! And as a bonus with so many options and so many possibilitys to come…
    How not to smile and enjoy every moment of it…

    Sofie on

  • Zentangle is so calming and peaceful and it is so enjoyable to talk to fellow tanglers.I used to think that it was because we had something in common. Now having tangled for awhile now I think we perhaps look at life in a different way. With positivity peace and a calmness while expressing beauty with our art! Julie Crosby CZT-32

    Julie Crosby on

  • Brava, Julie! Excellent and well-thought out narrative about this most amazing group of people from around the world – thank you for that! So grateful to be part of something so positive!!

    Shawna Oertley on

  • Words so true. Reading this blog made me smile, nod my head and wish I was there. Thx for your continued mindset of Zentangle sharing and community.

    Nancy Needler on

  • I wish I had been there to meet you in person. The story of how you came to Zentangle is so inspiring. Your videos in the Project Packs are some of my favorites because of personal stories you weave into the lessons. Thank you.

    Ann Baum on

  • Que bella comunidad, estoy segura que alguna vez podré asistir a un entrenamiento y así también difundir y ayudar a otras personas. Gracias por Zentangle!! 🙏

    Adriana on

  • Julie, this really resonates with me. I‘ve tangled with a group of women monthly since I attended CZT Seminar 23 about 6 years ago. Members have come and gone but we always enjoy our time together. Tangling is what brought us together and keeps us coming back. We talk about anything and everything and enjoy our time together.

    Sandy Kelley-Jones CZT on

  • It is so inclusive, this wonderful art method! And I think our shared journeys are what make us a unique and caring community. Love this Julie. Sharing it on my socials.

    Deb Bowyer on

  • I am always nervous meeting new people (even though I dont show it) let alone drawing, which I did not think I was capable of , I remember my first class with other entanglers very pleasant and welcoming experience. It was nice to see that other people were sharing there stories of life while tangling and encouraged me to join in . I have found it to reduce my pain and anxieties from the love and support i get when zentangling in a group . Even through covid our group continued on line and as a matter of fact there were more participants who joined. What a wonderful feeling of accomplishment we all got seeing each others work and sharing and seeing different styles on zentangling. I absolutely love it . ##ZENTANGLE FOR LIFE

    Debbie Dinneen on

  • I am always nervous meeting new people (even though I dont show it) let alone drawing, which I did not think I was capable of , I remember my first class with other entanglers very pleasant and welcoming experience. It was nice to see that other people were sharing there stories of life while tangling and encouraged me to join in . I have found it to reduce my pain and anxieties from the love and support i get when zentangling in a group . Even through covid our group continued on line and as a matter of fact there were more participants who joined. What a wonderful feeling of accomplishment we all got seeing each others work and sharing and seeing different styles on zentangling. I absolutely love it . ##ZENTANGLE FOR LIFE

    Debbie Dinneen on

  • Julie, You did a really good job here putting words to something almost indescribable! ❤️

    Katrina on

  • I love this post. I have met so many wonderful people in this community ( all of them online) and I can confidently say that I have never come across a wonderful and warm community like this ever before! I am deeply grateful for having had the opportunity to attend an online seminar and become a CZT but I seem to have missed out on such dinner chat!

    Suchitra K on

  • The positivity of the Zentangle method is what attracted and compelled me to become a CZT. YES, everyone can be an artist. But I wasn’t expecting the Zentangle community to be so friendly, generous and generally wonderful! Frankly, it’s been one of the best steps I’ve ever taken.

    MKay Watson CZT17 on

  • I know that we all are a whole made up of integrated parts. Zentangle speaks to us in a calm, peaceful voice that allows us to experience the beauty of what it mirrors in ourselves.

    Kathy Y. on

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