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What is Zentangle?
Linda Farmer, Certified Zentangle Teacher


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How to draw STERON

Zentangle pattern: Steron. Image © Linda Farmer and ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. You may use this image for your personal non-commercial reference only. The unauthorized pinning, reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal.Here’s the last one in July for your creative tangling pleasure!

Steron, a cool ribbon-style tangle from Texas CZT Shelley Cox, shares DNA with the Zentangle®-original Huggins and also Cadent.

All three use the Zentangle “take-off-and-land” technique that’s always fun to do and it’s fascinating how many different tangles can result.

Steron is Shelley’s first tangle on the site, here she features it in a lovely tile as a ribbon or frame together with a “radial” or sunburst version which to a degree shares DNA with CZT Jana Rogers/Pharmer’s Stella.

Shelley shares a little about her background and her tangle,

I live in a little town, Watauga, by a big city; Fort Worth. I’m a transplant starting from Detroit, Michigan by way of Southern California, via Nashville, Tennessee to Fort Worth. I’m married with his, hers and ours sons (5 of them!)

I’ve been playing with colors, paper and design since I was a kid; I started in College as a Commercial Artist, then working with design and advertising. After life got in the way, I became an Accountant, and stopped drawing. Several years ago, I started back with pencil and paper and discovered Zentangle!

My father became terminally ill and one of the ways for me to cope was doing tangles; keeping supplies with me at the hospital and at appointments. My father wanted me to get back to my art and I wanted to honor him. After he passed, I wanted to learn more about Zentangle; I brought my mother to Rhode Island and we took the CZT class # 21 and we both became CZTs!

I’m still an Accountant, but have weekly Tangle classes – and yes, the tangling has me doing more art again!

I’m always working with lines and I was trying to do one thing and that one thing led to another and I created Steron.

It’s easy to do – remember to start with 3 small orbs and to take off and land; but you can replace the orbs with dots or add a little tear drop at the end. The result allows for all sorts of designs.

At first glance I didn’t recognize the logic of how to lay out the orbs for Steron (Step 3) but I soon found when I visualized turning the shape of Step 2 “upside down” or mirrored so that Step 4 is the result, then placing the next set of three orbs beside it becomes easy. You kind of “grow” the ribbon as you move along, mirroring the previous shape each time. And of course there are many ways to embellish the shapes to create variations. Shading gives this tangle its dimension and emphasizes the woven appearance.

Shelley illustrates the step-by-step instructions for drawing Steron below and features it in a monotangle creating an embellished letter with her last name’s initial, “C”.

How to draw the Zentangle pattern Steron, tangle and deconstruction by Shelley Cox. Image copyright the artist and used with permission, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Image copyright the artist and used with permission, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Please feel free to refer to the steps images to recreate this tangle in your personal Zentangles and ZIAs, or to link back to this page. However the artist and reserve all rights to these images and they must not be publicly pinned, altered, reproduced or republished. They are for your personal offline reference only. Thank you for respecting these rights. For more information, click on the image for the article “Copyrights and your blog.”

Shelley’s radial-style version of Steron differs in that the “V” or “U” shapes do not alternate their up-and-down orientation as they do in the ribbon-style version so the result is quite different as shown in Shelley’s Zendala tile.


How to draw the Zentangle pattern Steron, tangle and deconstruction by Shelley Cox. Image copyright the artist and used with permission, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Another example using a variety of orbs aka Tipple to embellish Steron for a rhinestone-filled effect:

As you enjoy any of the tangles on the site, please leave a comment of thanks and encouragement to show the artists you appreciate them for sharing their creativity to inspire yours. Your comment helps motivate them to continue to share!

Check out the tag shelleyc for more of Shelley’s tangles on


Like some help with shading your Zentangles?

It's fun and easy — forget about traditional "art rules" for shading, this is Zentangle and those rules do not apply!

As we are coached in the chapter on Shading in the Zentangle PRIMER Vol 1, "Ignore the light source ... in Zentangle shading we do not consider the type or direction of the light source. ... More often, shading is a component of the tangle itself that we use to play with dimension, emphasis, and contrast."

Everything you need to know is here in two free tutorials on TanglePatterns.

  1. TanglePatterns Shading Mini Clinic, Part 1 by CZT Marizaan van Beek, and
  2. TanglePatterns Shading Mini Clinic, Part 2 by CZT Sandy Bartholomew

You can always locate these and many other helpful tutorials by visiting the TUTORIALS tab on the pink alphabetic tangle menu bar as shown here:

TanglePatterns Tutorials


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!
  10. Never miss a tangle! FREE eMAIL NEWSLETTER - visit the SUBSCRIBE page on the top menu bar of any page on the site and sign up to get notices delivered free to your inbox.


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