Often used as a focal point for meditation, mandalas are known for helping to calm and enlighten the mind. So imagine how relaxing it it could be to design your own! (Or, if you're more of a coloring person, you can just grab some colored pencils and print out our mandala template . No judgment.)
What You Need
- A ruler or straight edge
- Circular object that you can trace, like masking tape
1. Draw Your Guidelines
Start by drawing a circle in pencil. You can use a roll of masking tape or a plate to trace as a guide. Your circle will be the size of your finished mandala, so plan accordingly.
Draw one line horizontally through the center of your circle, then another vertically so you have four equal quadrants. Next draw a small circle in the center where the two lines cross. This will be your starting point.
2. Add Organic Shapes
Draw your first organic shape! We used a flower petal, but you can make any design you want. Use your quadrant lines to make sure your design is as symmetrical as possible.
Then keep working through the negative space, filling it with repeating shapes.
Build your way out from the central image, maintaining a consistent and symmetrical design. Continue adding shapes until you reach the edges of your circle.
If you're having trouble keeping the shapes symmetrical, mark additional quadrants on your mandala for further guidance.
3. Trace in Ink
Now that your mandala is finished, trace over the pencil lines with ink to make the design bolder. This is also a good time to go in and erase and graphite mistakes.
4. Add Fine Details
From here, you can either leave the mandala as-is or continue drawing within the shapes for an even more intricate look.
And you're done! Once you erase any remaining pencil lines, it's time to color it in — or just enjoy the simplicity of the design in black and white.
Photos and illustrations by Jessie Oleson Moore .
Find Your Next Project
Now that your drawing muscles are all warmed up, why not tackle something a little more ambitious?