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On the Second Day of Zentangle ...

"On the Second Day of Zentangle . . ."

Alfie holds a black tile as he sits on a pomegranate.
Behind him is a Christmas card Maria created. It reads,
"Welcome the wondrous season that gives free rein 
To embrace what is worth holding dear."
On the second stroke of Zentangle
R and M progressed, black tangled white . . .

For years we explored the patterned beauty of black ink on the white square tile. This new art form continued to grow and develop through creative minds all over the world. We started looking at new and fun ways to continue our exploration of tangles. We were not ready to introduce color, but what about using white ink on black paper?

We went to work immediately on our new idea and soon our home/studio/office was a symphony of black pieces of paper covered with white tangles. This reversal of roles opened up a whole new way to look at tangles. 

In June of 2011, after much searching for the right paper and pens, we unveiled our first Black Zentangle Tile. We cut the rich, black 100% cotton mould made paper from the same die as our white tiles. We chose a Sakura® Gelly Roll white gel pen and buttery smooth white charcoal pencil from General Pencil to illuminate this beautiful new paper. 

At first we assumed this reversal in roles of the traditional tangling materials would be exactly the opposite, but to our surprise it opened a whole new world of opportunity and discovery. 

Tangling on a dark surface was uncharted territory and we realized we were seeing old tangles in a a new light. To see some recent explorations on black tile tangling enjoy the video tutorials from Project Pack #01

Today we have a fun lesson using both black tile tangling combined with some white tile tangling.

Second Day of Zentangle... Part 1
Second Day of Zentangle.. Part 2

Rick Roberts


  • I’m loving these videos! I have always liked that Zentangle us a family affair, and in turn, we all have become one big artistic family, comprised of artists from all over the world. I’m glad I’m a part of this.

    Dana "Jonesy" Jones on

  • Love this!!!

    Jackie Saunders on

  • Thank you so much for shading your wonderful idea Molly!!
    I was so fun!!!

    Emiko Kaneko on

  • Thank you for more ideas – playing with the simple contrasts of black, white & gold is enlightening & so classy. Hearing the voice over is so helpful too, Tripoli deconstructed masterfully!!

    Evy Browning on

  • Thank you Molly, for the clear instructions and reminding me to ‘just breathe and go slow’. I am loving these challenges!!

    Tharina on

  • Learning so many great new things to do with my Zentangle passion! Thank you!

    Danita Noland on

  • Wow! I can’t wait to play! The real 3D effect is out of the box ?

    patsy monk on

  • So “out of the box!”

    Lisa Hoesing on

  • Day 2 and still keeping up…. i love these challenges! Thank you for the ideas and fun projects.

    Jadene R on

  • Second day is so over the top WOW I can’t wait to see what else you have planned for us. I am a relatively novice Zentangler and this is so much fun!

    Deb on

  • WOW (wonders of wonders). Where have I been all my zentangle years. This is my first year to do your 12 days of Christmas and after day two I am blown away. Can’t wait to see where this will lead me!. Loving the history behind all this too. Thanks and many blessing to all for taking the time to put this together at this time of year for all of us to enjoy some ZEN time with the pen.

    Sue on

  • Wow! This was very cool! Wondering what else you have in store for us and looking forward to seeing each day unfold!

    Jeanie 'JJ' James on

  • I am still working on creating the second of the two tiles and am looking forward to assembling them! Another day of thinking beyond the square box!

    Laura Oldham on

  • Another day of mindfulness expansion!!!

    Debra Myers on

  • So creative! And Maria, your card is beautiful!

    Susan on

  • Gotta admit I’m nervous to cut this beautiful paper. Great new challenge. Thanks.

    Edwin Ortiz on

  • Thank you for this awesome project ! And thank you for the reminder to take out my gold jelly roll pen and use it more often

    Jackie on

  • Love the projects. I did a tangle and transferred it to glass and fused it in my kiln. Combining two loves is great!

    Sherry on

  • What a unique project! Reminds me of a zentangle Christmas ornament I made last year. And here I was guessing that “a walk down memory lane” would start out with back-to-basics!

    Pat Floerke on

  • This is so inspiring!

    Machteld Schoenmaker on

  • The day 2 project was awesome! I had never thought to put two tiles together in quite that way.

    LadyD on

  • I love the 3-d frame effect with the 2 tiles!

    AndreaR on

  • Really relaxing, quality time while looking and learning from the video. Thank you very much.

    ria matheussen on

  • Oooohhhh this is so much fun, thank you!!! It’s like I am in Providence again ❤️?!

    Floor de Jonge on

  • I love watching these videos, and working on my tiles, as I watch along.

    Debbie J on

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