Monday, July 7, 2008

Ever heard of a Zentangle?!?! Neither had I!

A few months back on the ATCsForAll site I was looking thru the gallery listings and came across some ATCs that were doodles called "Zentangles." Don't get me wrong, they were cute doodles and all, but I was thinking...why the fancy name?

So I started looking online and see there's a couple who, with the help of some savvy marketing and New Age psycho-babble, have made doodling into a business! Yep, they sell books, materials and give seminars on how to doodle in a meditative sorta way, with names for their different patterns (or 'tangles', as they style them), special official, specifically-sized doodle cards cut from fancy heavy paper, which they will $ell you in kit form, including a special pen! Special Corporate rates available! They've even got a special gallery for the art that various alumni have come up with. Ain't THAT special?!

That said, I was invited to join in an AFA member's first hosted swap (the first three swaps anyone can host are limited to 12 participants, kinda like Swapmeister training wheels.) - and the subject was (drumroll) Zentangles!

Erm...okaaaaaaay! I'm game for anything once! So I check out what's being posted Zentangle-wise and add my own spin. The primary difference is I don't have the overall pattern totally abstract, instead I start with a theme I can hook it into. And ya know what? Once I get past the original bad taste I got from the merchandising, it's an interesting exercise. I'm pretty happy with the results. Here's what I came up with (all are regulation 2.5" x 3.5"):

Wait! What's this?! I am not alone! While Googling "Zentangle" to see what others might be saying about this marketing phenom, I found another blogger with a similar take: Lisamarina: art in ink & watercolor + cool links & art info.

Nice to know I'm not always out by myself
in left field.