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Linda Farmer, Certified Zentangle Teacher


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Artists for Respect
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Zentangle pattern: Tessalations. 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.And so we arrive at the weekend, and a week from today is Christmas Day.

I’ve had the hardest time adjusting to the fact that Christmas is here already, I imagine I’m not alone.

Time has been so strangely elastic this year — March seemed like 8,000 days and it’s hard to believe we’ve all been dealing with this worldwide pandemic for ten (10!!) months now. Seriously?

As Robert and I will be “just we2” for the holidays, we are fortunate in that our expectations are just the way we want them. No pressure, no hype. Just a full and grateful appreciation that we are still here and in good health to enjoy this very special time of year. We’ll deal with our Christmas preparations in due course. Maybe the coming week will stretch out for a few more days?

Today’s crystal-like tangle, Tessalations, comes all the way from summery down under.

Sue Douglas is a Certified Zentangle Teacher from Sydney, Australia, and Tessalations is her first tangle on the site.

Sue shares her touching personal story with us, a reminder of the remarkable healing power of this wonderful art form:

I have been tangling for two years now and officially became a CZT in June 2019 at CZT34.

A friend of mine, Anna Farr introduced me to Zentangle in November 2018, we went to a Christmas Card/Zentangle afternoon, it was just after my husband took his life and she said that if anything else we will at least have fun together.

My teacher was Niki Lawrence and I was hooked. I went back to Niki and got a few more lessons and I have been tangling every day since. I have found that it is still helping me process my grief as it allows my mind to detach from what has happened to help process it.

Tangling gives me much joy and pleasure (which I never thought would be possible again) and if for some reason I don’t tangle each day I definitely miss it!

My life will never be the same as it was but with tangling it helps subside that pain and allows joy back into my life.

Sue’s named her tangle in a Zentangle®-way with an offbeat spelling of tessellation:

A tiling or tessellation of a flat surface is the covering of a plane using one or more geometric shapes, called tiles, with no overlaps and no gaps.

A periodic tiling has a repeating pattern. Some special kinds include regular tilings with regular polygonal tiles all of the same shape, and semiregular tilings with regular tiles of more than one shape and with every corner identically arranged

As I mentioned at the start, Tessalations has a crystal-like appearance and a lovely snowflake quality fitting for the Northern Hemisphere right now. It’s a bit of a blank slate for embellishment but also looks perfectly lovely just as it is.

Sue illustrates the step-by-step instructions for drawing Tessalations below and she includes a simply shaded monotangle to feature her tangle. BTW, from the voice of experience, if you want to achieve that cool coffered effect don’t overlook the inner aura of the squares (Step 1) after you’ve drawn the base grid 😉

How to draw the Zentangle pattern Tessalations, tangle and deconstruction by Sue Douglas. Image copyright the artist and used with permission, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Image copyright the artist and used with permission, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. These images are for your personal offline reference only. Please feel free to refer to the images to recreate this tangle in your personal Zentangles and ZIAs. However the artist and reserve all rights to the images and they must not be publicly pinned, altered, reproduced or republished. Thank you for respecting these rights. For more information, click on the image for a discussion entitled “Artists for Respect” by several prominent artists. “Integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching.” ~ C.S. Lewis

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 thanks helps motivate them to continue to share! And please share a link to your favorite tangles on social media. Thanks!

Check out the tag sued for more of Sue’s tangles on

Enjoy your weekend and we’ll see you back here again on Monday for our last week of tangles in 2020.

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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8 comments to How to draw TESSALATIONS

  • Laurie-Ellen

    Sue, what a really fun, interesting, and creative pattern you have shared. Thank you so much for this gift of your imagination. I am looking forward to learning it and building with it in my own modest endeavors. This is such a treat!

  • Dessie Arnold

    This looks like a beautiful tangle to play with. Thank you for sharing it!

    Sue, I am touched by your story, and your willingness to share it. I have a friend who had to go through that, and although it has taken time, she has found healing. It is very cool to me that so many have found Zentangle to be a help in going through difficult situations, whether it’s grief, serious illness, or other troubles. I came to it after being diagnosed with a serious illness, and I am so grateful for it. I had wanted to take art lessons, to learn to draw, and I remembered a friend showing me her Zentangle artwork. I thought that it would be a wonderful portable thing to take with me to waiting rooms and if need be, to the hospital. It has taught me to draw, and more recently, to play with color – another desire – even though for Zentangle I like to stick to black and white. Anyway, this is such a wonderful community of generous people who share their inspiration and stories.

    Linda, thank you for providing this incredible website. It is such a great resource for anyone learning Zentangle.

  • Love your new tangle Sue. I look forward to giving it a try.
    Thanks also for the special mention. Honoured to be a part of your Zentangle journey and so glad I was there when you needed it (even if I didn’t know it at the time).
    I look forward to many more tangling days with both you and Anna.
    Kia Kaha, Kia Maia, Kia Manawanui
    (Be strong, be brave, be steadfast)
    Much love

  • Beth

    Thank you Sue for sharing your tangle and your story; a very brave thing to do. I love grid pattern and straight lines so I really wanted to try this one out. After many attempts and not feeling happy with them, I thought I’d try it “backwards” and began with the “star lines” in the middle and match up the lines from the beginning – voila! success!!! and so happy that all the points lined up 🙂 And now time to play with a grid and shading.

    Linda, I love your observation “time has been so strangely elastic this year.” I’ve started a new sketchbook with your weekly email tangles and this quote is on the first page along with Sue’s tangle. A gentle reminder that even though time is rigid, plodding along at its own pace, it is what we do with that time that matters and makes it elastic.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and everyone!

  • veronica vazquez

    How can I send you a new tangle?

    • Linda Farmer, CZT

      Go the the SUBMIT YOUR PATTERN selection on the top menu bar of any page on the site. The pages there explain everything you need to know and provide a download link to a PDF submission template. 🙂

  • Jenn Brayton CZT 36

    Sue, I am saddened for your loss and thank you for the openness and authenticity in sharing your story. Zentangle seems to enter our lives when we profoundly need it – thank you for sharing a new tangle with us to use on our own Zentangle journeys 🙂

    “Time has been so strangely elastic this year.” – Linda Farmer,

    The above is my current quotation for my email signature. It sums up 2020 in so many ways for me!

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