Tuesday, January 3, 2017


A few years ago, I noticed that at least once a year, I would experience "mandala madness" -- an overwhelming desire to find and color mandalas, usually around the Christmas/New Year's season.


Since learning to draw through the Zentangle method these past four years, I have graduated to drawing my own mandalas, which ironically enough, I only color sometimes. :)

Here is one I drew a few weeks ago:

This composition shows the thorny stem design I mentioned in my previous post -- I forgot that I had used it in this piece. This was so much fun to draw over a few days. I began wondering if it would amount to much at all and wound up liking it fairly well as it took shape. It is structured by a simple arrangement of three concentric circles, with various motifs built up little by little. This emergence of something from nothing is the most delightful aspect of this drawing process. Of course, gradually increasing complexity built up from simple structural beginnings is how we all do most of what we do in many different spheres of knowledge -- parenting, teaching, socializing, engineering, law, linguistics, medicine, music, architecture -- anything you can imagine. What I love most about drawing is the striking visual result of these cumulative layers of complexity.