Mandala – Step by Step

Step 1: Create your grid.

I enjoy having my mandala in the center of the page so the first thing I do is draw an X by drawing a line from each corner to the opposite. This is the lightest of lines because it’s literally used just to center my graphic.

I then take my 360° protractor and grid out every 10°. I then draw a line from one degree  to the opposite degree. {ex. 0° – 180°} I continue to do this all around. I then take my compass and make random sized circles moving from the center out to show just how big I want the mandala.

Step 2: Line your center.

This part is always the most difficult for me because the center, determines the look of the whole mandala. If you look through the mandalas that I have posted, you will see that the different options are truly infinite. Nothing is right or wrong. With this one I chose a pinwheel of sorts that I built flowers on top of. This set the tone for an organic mandala.

Step 3: Start building outward.

You will see that I used the grid lines in two different ways. the larger flower petals run between the grid lines, whereas the triangular petals use the grid line as a center point. I tried to put more detail in the triangles because they were so large. Some options here are to use your protractor and grid out every 5° to make the get ails smaller, or just do like what I did and follow the grid lines making each layer larger than the layer before it. I have used both methods and both are fun to do.

Step 4: Final and Largest Layer

In this picture you will see that I have leaves that are lining my mandala and bringing the entire organic piece to life! I love how this is turning out and although I say that about almost every one of my pieces, its simply because I am as shocked as everyone else about the end result! I try really hard not to plan too much because I want to be able to adapt to kids bumping the table, pens running out on ink and even surprise sneezes.

Step 5: Putting in little details

Now is the time that you go back and add more details. These can be anything you want. Go wild.

Step 6: Finishing touches!

This is the point where you start from the center and erase all your pencil grid lines and start focusing in on every little detail. This can be as elaborate or simple as you want. That is the wonderful thing about mandalas. They truly change drastically, even with one detail. I will suggest that if you do something to one side, make sure you are consistent if you want it to look uniform. If your mandala is NOT symmetrical than disregard and have fun!

So, Now that you’ve seen the final product, let me know what you think! What would you have done differently? What do you like the most? Do you have any questions, comments, concerns or constructive criticism? Post them below and I will respond as quick as I can.

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