Review of ‘Ancient Patterns for Modern Tangling’ EBook by Simona Cordara #Zentangle #SimonaCordara #Zentangle-InspiredArt

Simona has been a part of the Zentangle®/Tangling/Pattern drawing community since 2010 and has co-written three books on tangling.  She’s just  published ‘Ancient Patterns for Modern Tangling’ in a  PDF EBook format.

That EBook is what I’m here to review today, (The giveaway is now closed).


Format: PDF EBook

No. of Pages: 38

New Patterns: 13

What’s It All About

‘Ancient Patterns for Modern Tangling’ looks briefly at ancient patterns (aka motifs) and uses them as prompts to help you create your own patterns. There are 13 new patterns included, as well. The book is not about the Zentangle method, but does use the step-outs to show how patterns can be created.

Some of the most ancient motifs are used here, such as Circles, the Eye, and the Bird Goddess. You are shown how to add to these patterns, break them down and use them to create new patterns for yourself.

Simona encourages the reader to pick up the pen and start creating patterns immediately.  She tells you how easy it is, and shows you how easy it is, and then lets you start drawing.  The instruction relies heavily on playful illustrations with just enough text to make the meaning clear.

There aren’t really chapters, just sections that explore a type of ancient motif, or introduce one of the new patterns.  Tips and reference links are given throughout.

Most of the illustrations are in black and white, though a few are in full color.  While the illustrations for the motifs are very simple, the artwork for the new patterns, done by Lila Holter, Tricia Long, Sandy Moore and Agneta Landegren, are more complex.

At the end of each section, Simona leaves space for the reader to try out what they have just learned.  She suggests that the EBook be printed out, but it isn’t absolutely necessary. The practice could easily be done on printer paper, in a sketchbook, or even on scrap paper.

‘Ancient Patterns for Modern Tangling’ is a workbook, lean on text, with prompts. This makes it an easy read for the uber-busy, the young, or the new to the English language.  It isn’t meant to be a comprehensive study of ancient patterns or an introduction to Zentangle.  It is a good introduction for those who want ideas for creating their own patterns.



Motifs: Circles, Squares and Triangles

Motifs: Spirals, Waves and Suns

Motif: Snake

New Pattern: Rando

Motif: Eye

Motifs: Ram Horns and Bull Heads

New Patterns: Rando, Regardu, Bendo, Arko, Aries, Fajro, Flugilo, Brovo, Pistilo, Vuohi,

Motif: Bird Goddess

New Patterns: Diino, Fantomo, Strigo,

Resource Links

My Examples

Using the suggestions that Simona gives for the Circles motif, I came up with this pattern.  Chances are step-outs for something like this has already been done, but when you are creating patterns for yourself, that’s okay.  Simona does provide links for places you can go to check and see if your pattern already has a name and step-outs.

I have to admit that this type of drawing is very close to what I often do.  Not necessarily with ancient motifs, but with taking shapes and just adding or taking things away.  I create my patterns as I go, and don’t bother to keep track of what they are.  They get re-created again if I need them.  I find this a very organic way to draw, so for this example I played with circles and eyes and bird goddess motifs and just went where they took me.

It’s also fun to use learned patterns, so for this tangle I used new patterns Strigo, Aries, Fajro, Flugilo, Pistilo and Vuohi from Simona’s book.

If you don’t want to wait and see if you’ve won, you can purchase her book at ‘Ancient Patterns for Modern Tangling’ .



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