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Linda Farmer, Certified Zentangle Teacher
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How to draw ZAILZ

Zentangle pattern: Zailz. Image © Linda Farmer and All rights reserved.Looks like it could be a little complicated, right?

Nope, easy-peasy and fun too! Zailz by Spokane WA, CZT Loretta West is simple to draw “one stroke at a time™”. I like this tangle a lot.

Similar in concept to CZT Sue Clark’s Tri-Po which has been around for quite a while, but a little different in execution, Zailz is Loretta’s first tangle pattern on the site.

This tangle was developed from two converging inspirations. In addition to being an Art Instructor and a CZT, I am also a sailor and am now working towards becoming a Skipper, so the shape of the tangle is derived from looking at sail shapes…. a lot.

Secondly, I love to look at Japanese Woodblock Prints for inspiration, the way they are organized and designed is amazing to me. The Great Wave by Hokusai is one of my favorites and I thought of it frequently when working out this tangle which pretty much drew itself.

I live in the Inland Empire of Eastern Washington State, not far from the Idaho border and only a couple of hours from Canada, where I was born and raised. Even though we live in a desert highland, there are numerous lakes for water sports close to Spokane where my home and studio is located and where I live as my Mom says ‘the life of Riley’, with my patient husband and Labrador.

I have been a professional artist for over a decade and have taught various mediums for nearly as long. Three years ago I started to tangle to cope with grief which had sucked up my creative juices. Through time and Zentangle, I got it all back and then some! Eventually, I obeyed that little voice and became a CZT two years ago so that I could share this wonderful art form and practice with others.

As far as tips for drawing Zailz, Loretta suggests we think of the cursive lower case letter ‘s’ in Step 1. “This will give you a nice curve and space for the inner lines. Be sure to turn the paper or tile in different directions so that you get the convergent shapes as opposed to them all going in the same direction, but if you like that, do that instead.

Turning your tile is definitely the secret to an interesting result with Zailz.

Loretta illustrates the step-by-step instructions for drawing Zailz below and shows it in a cool Zentangle where she uses orbs and the Zentangle-original tangles Knightsbridge and Amaze/Stiritup as “fillers”.

How to draw Zailz by CZT Loretta West

Image copyright the artist and used with permission, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. You may use this image for your personal non-commercial reference only. Republishing or redistributing pattern deconstructions in any form is prohibited under law without express permission of the copyright owner. For more information, click on the image for the article “Copyrights and your blog.”

Check out the tag lorettaw for more of Loretta’s tangles on

Related Links

  • Linda's List of Zentangle-Original Patterns — here is the complete list of original tangles (aka "official tangles") created and introduced by founders Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas, including those not published online. If you are new to the Zentangle Method I highly recommend learning a few of the published Zentangle classics first.
  • A pattern is not always a tangle — here's what makes a tangle.
  • Un motif n’est pas toujours un tangle — Qu’est-ce qu’un tangle ?
  • Un diseño no es siempre un tangle — ¿Qué es un tangle?
  • Zentangle terminology — a glossary of terms used in this art form
  • For lots of great FREE tutorials on TanglePatterns, click on the TUTORIALS link in the pink alphabetic menu bar below the tangle images at the top of any page
  • Strings! Have we got STRINGS! Click on the STRINGS link in the pink alphabetic menu bar below the tangle images at the top of any page for 250 different (free) Zentangle-starters. More than enough for any lifetime!
  • What is a Zentangle? — if you are new to the Zentangle Method, start here for the fundamentals

Enhance your Zentangle experience ...

Current Edition! TANGLE GUIDE, 2019 Edition TANGLE GUIDE - 2019 Edition

The 8th Edition of my TANGLE GUIDE. This instant-download 72-page (40 MB) interactive digital eBook contains all the tangles on the site from May 2010 through December 31, 2018. Containing over 1,000 tangles, it's a must-have tool for using the site.

"Linda, Thank you! I was relying on too few and getting stuck after 3 years of daily working with Zentangle. This has inspired me to ‘begin again’ with renewed excitement." ~ Barbara R.

See the BOOK REVIEWS page for more details on its features and view a sample page.
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If you're new to Zentangle® and tangling, my BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO ZENTANGLE is just what you need to get started. Also available en Français and en Español.

Zentangle Primer Volume 1AVAILABLE IN SOFTCOVER: This is the only Zentangle book you'll ever need: the fabulous Zentangle PRIMER Vol 1. It's your CZT-in-a-book by the founders of Zentangle®! Visit the STORE tab on the top menu bar or click on the image. For more about the content and to read the rave reviews, visit the BOOK REVIEWS tab.
"Absolutely the best Zentangle Book yet! As an accomplished artist I used to think I did not need instruction on this art form. How wrong I was! My tangling improved by leaps and bounds after reading this book. If you think you have Zentangle down then you need this book more than ever!" ~ Kris H

The Official Zentangle KitAnother great jump-starter for new tanglers is the original Official Zentangle Kit. The Kit includes all the supplies you'll need to get started properly: Sakura Micron Pens, Zentangle Tiles, pencil, sharpener, tortillion, a booklet and an instructional DVD by co-founder Maria Thomas. Click on the image for more information about the Kit and its contents.

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