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The Magic Trick

The Magic Trick

Sometimes our tangles have stories or tales behind the pen strokes and sometimes our pen strokes inspire stories or tales. When Maria posts a tile on the Zentangle Mosaic App she almost always shares with us some sort of creative narrative. Her words range from inspiring thoughts to fanciful tales. We thought we would share with you some of these parings in a blog series we are calling...

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Maria writes...

Once again, I found myself wandering around a new world, one of exciting art, artists and well… just more! In this world, I am between jobs, between thoughts and between dreams.

The traveling “Mystery Magical Tour” that I have been following has asked me to join the troupe.


But, I am just a lowly artist, in search of a new medium. Perhaps this magic stuff is it. Why not? It is easy to do, fun, creative, and right now, accessible. Which is just what I need. I figure I can still do my art and maybe learn a trick or two. They have me starting as a magician’s assistant – their idea of grunt work. I prepare the stages, keep things tidy, sometimes design the funky cool outfits and appear on stage with my maestro, “The Mysterious Miss Takes.” She is the only non-male magician in the whole show.

She has a style all her own, with a whirling, whistling sound she emits all during her performances. No music. No drum rolls. No “ba dump bum” symbols clanging in that annoying way to let you know when you should applaud, like we wouldn’t know if it was a good trick or not. She glides through her routines seamlessly, like it was always part of her life.

I happened to be working on a particularly interesting, complex piece of art, that I was really enjoying. I had been studying an artist, Ernst Haeckle, who illustrated the wonders of nature in a most wonderful style.  My piece was just about completed, when I had this idea of printing this work on silk!! Brilliant, huh?! I knew someone who knew someone who said they could do it for me. Great, silk it is! I had them print ten scarves. I could supplement my income until the day came when it was me doing the magic onstage.

Well, no sooner had I said this, the boss comes running out of the tent. “There’s no Miss Takes! She’s gone! Baggage and all! I knew she would run off with that no good so-and-so!!”

“So,” he says to me, “You’re on in one hour.”

One hour! I don’t know any magic tricks, I don’t know how to hum like Miss Takes, and I certainly don’t have the equipment she had. Think, Think, Well, I do have a couple of really cool things that I can do, and maybe I can wrap a few of those beautiful scarves around me in a somewhat alluring way…

“INTRODUCING the great Mz Tangles, coming to us from the Ville de Whitins, ready to amaze and daze you. MZ. TANGLES!

After staring straight into the crowd, I took a big breath and began to draw. As big and as grand as I could. Whirling my magic wand (my chalk), I created the most wondrous forms in patterns that grew in surprisingly magical ways. A few lines this way and that way, spiraling curls that brought oohs and aahs, the likes of which Miss Takes had never heard before.

The audience was begging for more! Show us another! And, before you knew it, they were drawing the patterns with a stick in the sand at their feet. Some, even, were seen to be drawing in the air, watching their finger create art that only they could see.

But! It was when I pulled the new scarves from my sleeves and whirled and looped them all about the mystified audience, that they swooned in delight. The effects of the entrancing colors and patterns (that I now call tangles) were that powerful.

Huh.. Well, it could have happened that way. Just Sayin’….


Hats off to Haeckle Silk Scarves are available in the Zentangle store. Limited quantities left… sad to see them go…

Maria Thomas


  • I love my ‘Maria’ scarf. I get lots of comments and compliments.

    Elaine Burns on

  • I can’t find the new Zentangle, Hollis. Do I need to sign up somewhere?

    Elaine Burns on

  • Hello

    Allenmic on

  • Love your creative stories and love you, even though we have not met yet!

    The scarf is utterly GORGEOUS! Wow! Stunning tangling and colour choices!

    FYI: I am bakayaroonna on the Mosaic app. AND I will finally meet you next year at CZT36!

    Debbie Smith on

  • It is always a joyful flight of fancy to immerse myself in Maria’s tales of tangles.

    Bette Abdu on

  • Yes, The Monterey Bay Aquarium featured his art in a show with his drawings (enlarged) and live animals in tanks. Some ranks included magnification to see the tiny life forms.

    It was a wonderful exhibit.. it was magical!

    Lisa Hoesing on

  • Oh, how exciting this is! I learned of Haeckel’s genius early this year when I attended the Tucson Gem and Mineral Shows and purchased one of his books, Incredible Life Forms. I fell in love with his art and his genius! Having recently seen televised scenes of the ocean floor from 3 miles down, I believe some of his renditions may have been of the creatures that live there. At any rate, all scarves that Maria makes based on his work, I will purchase. What a beautiful blend of gifts: Maria and Ernst!

    Paula Schneider on

  • I bought this scarf last year and JUST took it off when I at down at my iPad a few minutes ago. Many compliments as always! Thank you- wearing it is a gift!

    GAle SHerman on

  • Love reading your fanciful tales. I always look forward to what you are going to say!

    Brenda Shaver on

  • Wonderfully fanciful adventure. Images described in a most illustrative way that one could almost believe it really happened. Thanks. .

    Carole Lape on

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