Let's Get Started - Zendoodle

First-Year Project:

What is Zentangle® and what is Zendoodle?


Short answer:

Zentangle” is a registered name for a process of drawing (hence the ® above). There are some specific parts of it (a few are mentioned below).


A Zendoodle is basically the same idea but without some of the confinements of a Zentangle (also called a tangle).


Long answer:

The term ‘Zentangle’ was coined by Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts. Roberts had noticed that the focus that Thomas had while drawing, was similar to the meditative state he had learned as a monk – what is often referred to as “flow“. They then set out to develop a system allowing almost anyone to follow and use as a way to relax and express themselves creatively.


The system follows certain steps, which are established to allow freedom to create within the boundaries. I am not an expert on this, at all, but as I have learned and come to understand it, the gist of it is this:

1) Zentangles are drawn within a 3.5″ square area.


2) There are official tangles. While this may sound overly constraining, it is actually meant to allow for more relaxation —  creating without a lot of thinking.


3) They are created within a boundary and sectioned off by what is called a “string”, however, what you choose to do with the patterns within each string and tangle is limitless.


4) Strings are drawn very lightly with a pencil and the tangles are drawn with a pen. (I prefer/use Staedtler Pigment Liner pens; 02 for drawing and 08 for darker shading. Sakura Micron Pens are my next favorite)


5) They are black and white.


6) It is a highly-focused process (versus doodling, which is usually done while doing other things, such as talking on the phone), designed to facilitate relaxation.


7) It’s not meant to look like anything.


8) Most importantly: relax. Don’t make it a stressful process. While these sound like a lot of DOs and DONTs, there is really no wrong way. While the end result may turn out to actually be lovely, it’s really about the process.


Zendoodling has none of the specifics, regarding paper, size of the shape, color etc. You can draw a shape (letter, animal etc) that fills a large sheet of paper and fill it in with patterns or create designs on clothing, pottery, etc, and it can be meant to look like something.



Benefits of Zentangle and Zendoodle

Studies have shown that doodling actually helps you pay better attention to other things going on around you. So doodling during a lecture or a meeting, though everyone else thinks you are being rude and not listening, actually helps your mind focus on what is being said.


Zentangles and Zendoodles are different from this sort of doodling, in that they are deliberate, and are meant to focus, relax and calm you. As I mentioned above, it is meant to be a very focused process.



Zentangle is an easy-to-learn, relaxing, and fun way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns.



Almost anyone can use it to create beautiful images. It increases focus and creativity, provides artistic satisfaction along with an increased sense of personal well being. The Zentangle method is enjoyed all over this world across a wide range of skills, interests, and ages.



Students must be prepared to make a major commitment. It is our assumption that students entering the program are here to lay a foundation for a career in a design field and will be required to meet rigorous and stringent standards. Strong communication skills, both verbal and written, are required as is the ability to read and analyze. Serious students will find that the program will provide them with an excellent opportunity to develop the skills necessary to succeed in the job market or advance in education.


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A Central Montco Technical High School Program!