The Duncan Banner

Lifestyles

June 24, 2012

Doodling is one stroke at a time for Zentangle

DUNCAN — Doodling is a common pastime for almost everyone either while you’re distracted by talking on the phone or watching television and don’t deny that you have doodled while in class or a long meeting.

While these pen strokes are sometimes working toward an actual goal, most of the time, they are just random ink markings.

Although there may be patterns familiar to everyone, some get made up in the process.

A few groups in the community were introduced to a form of art June 20 called Zentangle, which helps take those doodle patterns and turn them into something to be proud of.

The summer workshop was held at the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center and sponsored by the Oklahoma Arts Council.

Professional artist Barbara LaGree of Edmond taught the class and is a certified Zentangle instructor. She learned the art straight from the creators in 2009.

She incorporates the patterns into her own artwork and designs now.

“It is similar to doodling but is respected more as art work,” LaGree told her first class of the day, which included children ages 8-10. “It is taking the idea of doodling and making something beautiful.”

LaGree taught her classes that you can take pattern ideas from just about anywhere including building designs, post cards and the inside of envelopes.

Once you have patterns down, there are multiple ways to use then such as on clothing or cupcake icing.

One of the most important lessons LaGree wanted her students to take away from the class was that Zentangle can teach you much about how to handle things in life: One stroke at a time.

“Anything can be done with one stroke at a time,” she said. “This will help you in all areas of life by just breaking things down.”

In Zentangle, the artist starts by making a frame for structure, then divides the square into various sections. In each section, a different pattern is used. Most are simple, while others are more advanced.

There were three age groups of classes offered. Two were for children and the final one was for adults (14 and up). While LaGree kept it pretty simple for the 8-10 and 11-13 age groups, more details were given to the adults.

“We will incorporate more metaphors and meanings behind the shapes in the adult class,” she said. “For the younger students, it won’t make as much sense or mean as much to them.”

Each student was given a kit to keep after the class. It included everything they would need in order to continue to develop their Zentangle skills at home.

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