Inspired by the meditative method of zentangle art, 18-year-old Maldives-based artist Mahi Abdul draws pattern-adorned animals and fantasy creatures that look like they could come to life at any second. From a dragon-like chameleon with decorative scales to a majestic phoenix with vibrant plumage, it’s hard to believe each incredibly detailed piece is drawn entirely by hand.
“Zentangling has taught me so much about myself,” reveals Abdul. “Patience in my craft, and the state of being fully mindful, not just when I’m holding a pen.” Each incredibly intricate drawing from the artist’s portfolio showcases love for his craft. “I often ponder over ‘finished’ drawings,” he says. “Wondering if it would look better if I spend another couple of hours on it, which empowers me to better myself every time.”
Outlined in black ink and filled with colored pencils, each vibrant drawing beautifully pays homage to creatures that inhabit our planet. Abdul even adds clever shading to create shadows, making each animal appear three-dimensional on the page. “Walk in kindness towards mother Earth and all its wildlife,” says the talented artist. “Happiness flows from caring for all sentient beings as if they were your own family, because in essence they are.”
Inspired to try zentangle art? Learn how to get started with our step-by-step guide.