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Introducing Sprigerz - My New Tangle!

When I discovered Zentangle® and started drawing the patterns I found on Pinterest, I just couldn’t get enough! I tried to teach myself how to draw the beautiful patterns even though I'd never taken a class with a Certified Zentangle Teacher (CZT).

I remember when I finally signed up to take the CZT class. How exciting, I'd learn how to be a CZT! And how scary! We all make up stories in our minds when we are about to do something we’ve never done. I’m a master at this skill. I don’t make up stories that actually come true, but boy can I make up stories! The story in my mind for the CZT class, involved creating my own pattern. For some reason, I knew there'd be a requirement to create my own tangle, and this terrified me!

It made no sense for me to be scared. I'd already created one tangle or pattern and it was published in a soft cover book titled “Zen Doodles: Oodles of Doodles”. My pattern was called “Whimsy-curl” and you can find it right there on page 19. It’s all cool and everything to be published, but this a book with the word “Doodle” in the title, and there is a difference between tangling and doodling, but that’s a discussion for another time.

Creating or Deconstructing?

As it turned out, there was no requirement at the CZT Seminar to create my own tangle, so that little story was just my big imagination. I still like playing with patterns and trying to deconstruct new tangles. Yes, I said deconstruct not create. You see, it’s nearly impossible to create a new pattern. Patterns have been around forever! Literally for as long as there has been life here on this planet. Patterns are everywhere! In plants, animals, and in man made things. I see patterns in almost everything now that I’m a CZT. It’s one of the gifts I received by being a CST and I’m so grateful!

The process of deconstructing is just reducing a pattern to basic pen strokes and providing the steps to create the pattern – “one stroke at a time!” These steps are usually presented as images showing the each step in sequence for drawing the pattern or tangle. We call these step-outs.

Check out the Zentangle Glossary to see the official Zentangle definition of deconstruct and other terms.

Meet Sprigerz

Today I'm sharing a new tangle I deconstructed. It’s not my first tangle, but it is the first one that I’ve shared. I call this one “Sprigerz”. Yes, it’s a made-up word. Just to be sure, I even checked the internet to see if I got any search results for it.

“Why make up a name?”, you ask. Well, one of the key characteristics of a “tangle” is that it's non-representational. In other words, it’s not supposed to look like anything (other than a pattern). Giving the tangle a name that doesn’t mean anything prevents us from putting an image in our minds of what it is supposed to look like. It also gives us a unique hashtag (#Sprigerz)to use online when we post our tiles!


KISS – Keep It Simple Sweetie!

Some other characteristics of a tangle include:
· Simplicity
· Using only 2-3 elemental strokes
· Only a few steps for drawing

All Zentangle tangles use one or more of 5 elemental strokes: a dot, a straight line, a C or curvy line, an S shaped line, and a circle and we use the letters iCSO to represent these strokes. Sprigerz uses a S shaped line, and a curvy line, or soft C, and a straight line. Sprigerz also has only 4 steps for drawing it. So far everything’s looking good for Sprigerz.

But What Is It?

Remember I mentioned that tangles are not supposed to look like anything? You might say that Sprigerz looks like a bird. Well, I guess you’d be right about that. I can honestly say that it was not inspired by a bird. New tangles are inspired by many things and often they’re inspired by patterns in nature (flowers, leaves, rocks, snakes, I could go on, but I think you get the idea. This new tangle is not inspired by nature.

Tangles can also be inspired by exploring the possibilities of an existing tangle, or even just your own imagination! I think Sprigerz is inspired by a combination of exploring existing tangles and my imagination. You see, here’s how it happened…

I was just playing with organic tangles. I love to draw organic tangles. Organic tangles are usually inspired by nature and have curvy lines. Some examples are Printemps, Mooka, Zinger, and Fescu. I love drawing spirals too and I was starting with a spiral that had a stem like Mooka, Zinger and Fescu. Next I added an aura around it. I could have stopped there but I felt like it needed something, so I added a large petaland it looked like a bird’s beak, and I liked it! And so Sprigerz was born.


Is It Non-Representational?

It was not supposed to look like something, but then birds don’t have spiral heads. It could just as easily be a flower, or just another organic tangle. I have only begun to play with Sprigerz, but I can imagine the possibilities. Here are just a few of my first tiles using my new tangle.


And I could not resist creating at least one ZIA (Zentangle Inspired Art) piece.


I can't wait to see what you do with this new tangle! Please share your images on FB & Instagram & even the Zentangle Mosaic app if you have it and remember to use #Sprigerz when you do!

Til next time,
Be You & Be Happy!


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