CZT Family Tree

The start of 2023 also brought me the unexpected joyful but humbling experience of being selected to join the’s CZT Family Tree. I was partly focussing on my Community Wall Tangling work and it was great to read a few CZTs thinking they might try the same thing local to them. If you want to read the full article, you can read it here. And get in touch if you’d like some help with setting up one of your own.


Glossary, Glossar, Glossaire, Woordenijst

As people from all over the world expand the technique, newly created tangle patterns are given different and unusual names. Additionally a whole vocabulary of terms and techniques have been born through Zentangle, or adapted with a Zentangle context. So to help, I have put together a comprehensive glossary of tangling terms on my website, so the new-to-tangling can understand some of the terms spoken that perhaps experienced tanglers might be talking about. Check out the Zentangle Glossary Also in French, German, and Dutch.

Tangle pattern names often have strange spellings. Tangle creators usually invent a new name for a tangle to make them different from existing words – certainly that make it easier to locate them online.

Their names may be given in honour of a person, influenced by the location of where the tangle came from or where the original pattern was spotted before it was deconstructed. Or perhaps there was a story, a moment in time that the person deconstructing the pattern that resonates with the tangle. Sometimes coming up with the name of a tangle can be just as much fun as deconstructing it, and new ‘fantasy’ words can be fun to build, just as much as creating a new tangle pattern.

Although there are tanglers all over the world creating new tangles, it is great that they can use word-building for naming tangles to step over language barriers and communicate across the globe with patterns.

And because however comprehensive I think it is, at the bottom of the glossary page – there is a submission form box. So if there is a term you have come across that I haven’t included – please do let me know so I can add it. If it is a technique that can be attributed to a person, do let me know who that was – always good to acknowledge who started it. I imagine this is a resource that keep building as the community of tangles and tanglers builds too.
News · Tips & Tricks

Copyright and Original

Recently both in an online forum and an email direct to me, I was asked about the copyright of patterns.  So I thought just penning my thoughts here might be an idea. 

A tangle is a pattern that has been deconstructed (by someone) and it is let out in the world for others to use as they wish. It is always nice if you can attribute a tangle to who deconstructed it if you promote it on social media – it’s just a kind thing to do, either with the name of the person, or the tangle name.  Patterns have been out on this planet long before us humans got here, nature shows us some beautiful examples, through leaves, flowers, snowflakes, lichen, shadows, water reflections.  Patterns are everywhere.

Where a pattern is turned into a logo, or a piece of art designed it can be copyrighted. If drawn by you and is totally your own work, you hold claim over the image.

If you do an original piece of art, it’s yours. You can do with it as you wish. (You can give credit if applicable to the tangles if you post on social media, but the drawing itself is yours. Compare it to drawing sunflowers, although when we think of a drawing of sunflowers, most people will instantly come up with one artist associated with ‘sunflowers’ but it doesn’t stop anyone else drawing them. So if you draw a ‘tangle’ design of your own composition, do with it as you like.

Where you can run into naughty territory is if you take someone else’s composition, and draw it in the same way, although ‘your drawing’ is yours, the ‘design’ of the drawing is someone else’s therefore you would need to credit it as such.  For example if you saw a piece you liked and copied it, or if you did a lesson by someone, credit them, they are the ones that came up with the design idea.

If you are are then going to profit from this artwork, you’ll need to get permission, because you can’t honestly say it is ‘all your own’ from beginning to end, and although you can promote your drawing it should be with a credit to who helped you get there.

Say for example you have been asked to design a tattoo by a friend. If it’s your design and work – all good, you don’t need to credit it on someone’s arm, both they and you know that it had been a design commissioned between you both, and the tattoo artist will respect that, and also lay claim to the work they did on your friend’s arm.

But as another example if you followed a lesson online and you then choose to get it printed and sell the cards for money, you would need to ask permission from the person who did the composition, it may be your pen work, but they gave you the design.  If you say did a secondary design, perhaps taking the techniques that you learnt from your lesson and put them into your own design, you are all good.  If you feel like being kind and put a photo up on social media, it’s always nice to tag someone to show you appreciate what they inspired you to do.  

Likewise if you teach a technique you can attribute to someone, good idea to mention their name. Some techniques have been around the art world for years, but some person has come along put a tangle spin on them. And if course more than one individual can come up with an idea at a similar time, and each will have their own spin on the technique. Often if you reach out to a fellow tangler they are delighted it is getting used.