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Linda Farmer, Certified Zentangle Teacher


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How to draw ARUKAS

Zentangle pattern: ArukasArukas is the latest tangle pattern from Zentangle® HQ. It was “discovered” recently while Maria’s daughter CZT Molly Hollibaugh was tangling.

Arukas was first introduced at the two recent CZT training seminars (16 and 17) at the beginning of this month.

Molly explains how Arukas came about,

I was fooling around with orbs, as I have been fascinated with them lately. I don’t remember exactly how it happened, but somehow I found myself in this back and forth aura rhythm. Soon a star was born . . . I mean, a tangle. The name came to me immediately. I think it had something to do with the pen I was using. (!)

Arukas begins with a large orb and the “spokes” of the star shape radiating out from it. Auras are then added alternating on the orb and radiating spokes. It’s as simple as can be!

Zentangle pattern: ArukasOnce you’ve explored the original star Arukas, you can have some fun experimenting with more Arukas ideas by changing the number of radiating spokes and also the shape you use in the center to start. For my first example above, I used six spokes while the one here on the right uses the original five spokes. Arukas is such a fun tangle to play with, “a beautiful, versatile, and very forgiving tangle.

As the newsletter suggests:

  • Use multiple initial circles. (Just be sure to do each spoke and aura on all of them as you proceed.)
  • Add solid fill and sparkle.
  • Use a spiral.
  • Use other initial shapes.
  • Explore and have fun!

I found it interesting to play with the spacing of the auras too, alternating narrow and wide. You get a whole new effect.

Maria illustrates the step-by-step instructions for drawing Molly’s Arukas here in the Zentangle newsletter. Lots of beautiful eye-candy is also shown from other CZTs who’ve experimented with Arukas.

Update October 20, 2015 – Sakura just posted this video of CZT and Zentangle Product Manager Molly Hollibaugh demonstrating how to draw Arukas:

You can find Sakura Tool Sets on Amazon.

UPDATE December 11, 2018 – Project Pack #04. As part of the Twelve Days of Zentangle, 2018 Edition series, in this Day 9 video starting at (06:15) Rick demonstrates how to tangle Arukas.



UPDATE April 03, 2021 – Project Pack #13. As part of the Layers & Transitions project pack, Martha and Molly tangle a mix of Arukas and Diva Dance beginning at 24:11.


UPDATE May 24, 2023 – As part of Zentangle’s 21-day challenge honoring May’s Mental Health Awareness month, Day 14’s Bijouism is Appreciate and Maria tangles Arukas in this 16:50 minute limited-audio video.


UPDATE August 14, 2023 – Project Pack #21. As part of the Organic Tangles: Tangles of a Botanical Nature project pack, Rick creates Rambling Arukas, his fantastical imaginary botanical specimen combining Arukas, Rambles and Tipple.

You’ll find the printable steps for tangling Rambles here in Zentangle’s newsletter.


For a complete list of Zentangle’s Project Packs click the PROJECT PACKS link in the pink alphabetic tangle menu bar.

Check out the tag zentangle for more Zentangle®-original tangles on

Related Links

  1. Looking for tangles by Artist or Type? For details visit the ABOUT > HOW TO FIND TANGLES BY ARTIST OR TYPE page on the top menu bar of any page on the site.
  2. What is a Zentangle? — if you are new to the Zentangle Method, start here for the fundamentals.
  3. Zentangle terminology — a glossary of terms used in this art form.
  4. How to use the site — an excellent free video tutorial showing how to use the site as well as pointing out lots of useful features you might have missed.
  5. 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.
  6. "A Zentangle has no up or down and is not a picture of something, so you have no worries about whether you can draw a hand, or a duck. You always succeed in creating a Zentangle." Thus patterns that are drawings of a recognizable naturalistic or actual object, figure, or scene, are not tangles. A pattern is not always a tangle — here's what makes a tangle. TIP: tangles never start with pencil planning.
  7. How to submit your pattern deconstruction to TanglePatterns
  8. 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.
  9. 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!
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8 comments to How to draw ARUKAS

  • Barbara Sosna

    Step 5 of Arukas is confusing. It involves 2 new steps without an indication which one should be done first. What do you think?

  • Vicki B

    This could be the sister to my “Roscoe” tangle. The drawing pattern is very similar but the result is quite different. C

    • Linda Farmer, CZT

      Hi Vicki, I agree they are certainly related with the alternating arc and straight line auras. Totally different result … very interesting. Thanks for pointing that out!

  • Linda Farmer, CZT

    Sakura just posted this video of CZT and Zentangle Product Manager Molly Hollibaugh demonstrating how to draw Arukas.

  • Melena

    Linda, thank you so much for posting this. It really helps to watch someone demonstrating how to draw a tangle. I like Arukas even more now! And I love knowing how Molly came up with the name. Amazing how we don’t see what’s right in front of us sometimes. 😀

  • Joyce Blodgett

    I like Arukas a lot, but because my eyes and fingers never agree with my brain on what they’re seeing, my version of it (and nearly all tangle patterns) comes out quite different. I like mine a LOT, and don’t feel bad about how different it is, but Molly would never recognize her pattern in my drawing.
    I’ve even tried drawing many patterns in super slow motion, but it’s what the eyes-fingers interpret that makes my tangles come out as “What in the world did I just draw???”
    Does anyone else experience this, or is it just me? I’m also dyslexic with numbers, so much so that I cannot have a checkbook. Maybe I’m “dyslexic” with drawing patterns, too, LOL 🙂

  • Linda Farmer, CZT

    In Zentangle’s “21 Days of Bijouisms” series honoring Mental Health Awareness Month, today’s bijouism is Appreciate and today’s tangle is Arukas.

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