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Linda Farmer, Certified Zentangle Teacher


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How to draw GANADA

Zentangle pattern: Ganada. 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.It’s the weekend!

And it’s a long holiday weekend for our friends and rellies north of the border as Canadians celebrate Victoria Day. I think the meaning has pretty much been lost to the general population in the mists of time but there’s no doubt it’s the official launch of summer festivities. For us in the USA, our long Memorial Day weekend is next weekend — the very last day of the month this year. Ladies and gentlemen, start your grills …

For this weekend’s homework we have Ganada, a cool tangle that looks a little challenging but I think you’ll be quite surprised at how relatively easy it is to tangle with a few repetitive strokes.

Ganada is from Korean CZT James Lim and he has gone to a great deal of effort to provide background on his tangle so let’s get to it:

It’s a long story, but I want to share my appreciation with you about the journey from the rise of inspiration to completing the tangle.

This tangle is inspired by the pattern of windows and doors called Salchang (the lattice window of traditional Korean houses).

Traditional Korean house courtesy of the Korea Cultural Heritage Administration

Salchang is a traditional Korean window and door made of thin woven wood with traditional Korean paper pasted on it. The wooden lattice is mainly made from the pine tree, and various patterns come out depending on how they are laid out.

I always thought that the pattern of traditional Korean windows and doors was great, and from a few years ago, I wanted to make a tangle with this pattern of the Salchang.

I repeated my research whenever I had time. But when I drew it, I realized that I was just portraying the actual Salchang patterns. It wasn’t easy to deconstruct it into a tangle. However, I always kept the pattern of the Salchang in my heart.

But a few days ago, the words of Rick and Maria suddenly came to my mind, shaking my head. “If you can write your name, you can do the Zentangle method!”

“If you can write your name… !”

Suddenly, at that very point, it seemed like the stagnant creativity found its way to an eruption. One part of my head that was thinking about the pattern of Salchang and the other part that remembered Zentangle philosophy were connected at some point, and the light was shining.

If you can write your name… !

[Linda’s note: the site’s software isn’t equipped to display the characters of the Korean alphabet so I’ve had to remove them. In his explanation below James refers to the first two letters in the column on the left of the chart below as the shape of the strokes for Ganada. These will become apparent to you in Step 1.]

When you learn the Korean alphabet, Hangul, you learn “(giyeok)” and “(nieun)” first. These can be said to be “A” and “B” in the English alphabet. The inspiration from the traditional windows was amplified by Zentangle philosophy, reminding me of “(giyeok)” and “(nieun)”.

When my thoughts reached even the C-curve that connects the two letters, the pattern quickly deconstructed.

Korean alphabet: National Institute of Korean Language

The traditional window pattern that has been hovering around for few years was born into a new tangle, consisting of only “(giyeok)” and “(nieun)” and C curves, in just a few hours.

Basic Ganada by CZT Ungto

It was a fantastic experience where inspiration, creativity, passion, and understanding of the Zentangle philosophy were not independently separated from each other but influenced each other and melted together into one new creation in an instant.

Ganada variation by CZT Yunji

The Zentangle Method makes our lives comfortable and happy and constantly stimulates creativity. In particular, this experience was a moment when I felt the meaning of creativity that Rick and Maria have always spoken of, and it was a very happy and thrilling moment.

The name of the new tangle is “Ganada”.

Ganada is a word with a vowel (a) added to the Hangul consonants “(giyeok)” and “(nieun)”. It is the first word to follow when learning Hangeul, like the English “ABC”. It also contains the meaning that the Zentangle method is easy to learn.

I particularly like this tangle because the simple strokes are repeated, it is difficult to understand how it was drawn after it is finished, and it can be transformed into various shapes.

What an interesting peek into Korean heritage and its alphabet. Thanks so much for your hard work and your Zentangle passion, James.

I mentioned above that I think you’ll be surprised at how relatively easy Ganada is to tangle. My only tip would be to envision the “(giyeok)” and “(nieun)” strokes of Step 1 as top right and bottom left corners of an imaginary rectangle. That helped me to keep them aligned for the rest of the steps.

James illustrates the step-by-step instructions for drawing Ganada below.

How to draw the Zentangle pattern Ganada, tangle and deconstruction by James (Jong Seung) Lim. 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!

UPDATE August 10, 2021: Rick and Maria have also posted James’s tangle here on their blog.

Check out the tag jamesl for more of James’s 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!
  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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24 comments to How to draw GANADA

  • deb C

    Wow, what an inspirational story, and what a gorgeous organic-geometrical tangle! I’m going to take my rudimentary Zentangle skills right now and study this to learn it!

    I love this pattern!

  • Cynthia Aten

    This is amazing, and such a careful and loving explanation of how the tangle came to be. I can’t wait to try it, and with James’s careful illustrations, I bet I can do it!

  • James, I am so happy to know the amazing journey that brought you to Ganada!! Your patience and perseverance were remarkable. Knowing the story behind this tangle makes me appreciate it very much and urges me to draw it! Thank you for sharing it here.

  • Dessie Arnold

    What a wonderful story and explanation of the birth and development of this very different tangle! Because I LOVE Korean food, I am very interested to know more about Korea, and this is a lovely introduction to both a bit of the architecture and the writing system of Korea! Thank you James Lim for your persistence in discovering how to bring your concept to paper, and for documenting and sharing it with Linda. Thank you Linda, for including James’ story and photos so that we could have a greater appreciation for this interesting tangle! I’m sure that understanding James’ thought process will be helpful to others who are struggling to capture an idea and turn it into a shareable tangle. Many thanks.

    • James CZT26

      Dear Dessie,
      Thank you for your deep interest in my new tangle. In this way, Zentangle also makes us possible to share and empathize with the unique cultures of each country. I hope your interest in Korean culture continues.

  • Deborah J Davis

    This tangle is very intriguing. Can’t wait to try it. Thank you.

  • Louise Horner

    James, Having lived in Korea for three years and loving the beautiful traditional Korean houses, I am so pleased to hear your story, see your photos, and to learn of your journey to creativity. I am inspired by your experience and your desire to recreate in your own way the traditions of windows and doors into Zentangle pattern of your own style. As my pen moves across the paper, I will be absorbing your wonderful story and feeling warm memories expressed in new ways. You are appreciated!

    • James CZT26

      Dear Louise,
      I’m very nice to see you at here.
      Since you have lived in Korea for 3 years, you must be familiar with Korean culture to some extent. Thank you even more for understanding the background on my new tangle.

  • Pamella dolney

    Thank you for sharing your new tangle GRANADA. I can’t wait to work it out on a step out sheet and do a tangle using it. I loved reading your story too.

  • Jody Genovese

    I absolutely love the look of this James. I can’t wait to try it. Reading your story makes it that much more appealing. So happy you had that aha moment and I’m sure you will gift us with many more patterns. Thanks so much for sharing.

  • Thanks for the share. Will take some playing with this one.

  • James CZT26

    Thank you Sue,

    Have fun with my tangle, Ganada.

  • Jennifer Sparrow

    Bravo for deconstructing this fascinating tangle!!! I was a bit reluctant to try it, but your step-out makes it easy! Thank you!

  • Brenda DeBock

    What an interesting read this morning and the tangle has my brain tingling! I’ve always been interested in other countries alphabets. I’m off to tangle.

  • Dari

    Lovely history on this one! Reminds me a lot of CZT® Pegi Schargel’s B’twined.

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