Thursday, February 28, 2013

Mayan inspired

Recently we returned from two weeks in the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico. What a great place to go for a break from Canada in February! We didn't really realize how much we needed to get away from it all until we were actually away from it all. (*gratitude*!).

The Yucatan is where the amazing Mayan civilization rose and fell. The Mayans developed the most accurate time-keeping system in human history, combining both the solar and lunar cycles into a calendar with a 52 year cycle. I've always liked the Mayan carved stone, squared glyphs with lots of interesting details.

Here's a photo of some real Mayan stone carvings - although not glyphs - taken at Chichén Itzá (pronounced chi-CHAYN eet-TSA).

I didn't take a sketchbook but I had lots of Zentangle tiles with me. (I took way too many art supplies, but you never know what you're going to need, right?) So I used the front and back of a tile and drew some of the glyph designs I saw.

Then I used another tile and 'picked and choosed' some of these to draw a little Mayan inspired piece. No tangles here, but a similar drawing method.

I tried another (tea-stained) tile using sepia ink and brown pencil. There are larger sections and I filled some with actual tangles.
Tangles included: Ambler, Hibred, Paisley Boa, Wud
This could develop into something interesting!


  1. I love Mayan designs, and your interpretations are beautiful!

  2. Really inspiring! I'm so impressed that even your initial drawings are so careful and beautifully drawn...

  3. I love your interpretations! My grandparents loved visiting Mexico when I was a child, so I've always liked the designs. The way you took the shapes and textures and created your tiles is lovely.

    1. Thank you! We really enjoyed our recent time in Mexico. I'd certainly go back.