Found in the book, You Are Here: Discovering the Magic of the Present Moment by Thich Nhat Hanh

I have arrived, I am Home

In the Here and in the Now

I am Solid, I am Free

In the Ultimate I Dwell

This is my first Art Assignment that I set for myself in my project I call “The Happiness Experiment.” I feel that actively putting effort into being a more joyful person makes sense if you are serious about having a happier life.  It’s just true that you need to take time with yourself and do things like meditate, make sacred art and music, or just uninhibitedly sing and dance…. if your attention is on joy and the present moment then life will bloom radiantly all around you.

When I decided to assign myself an art project, found here in this post, I didn’t know that I would end up making a beautiful Mandala.  Putting words into a Mandala is also something I have never seen before but I felt like that is what called to me this time.

This is my first tutorial and I wish my pics would have turned out a little better but if you click them they enlarge enough so that you can see the pencil marks in the first few photos.  Next time I will learn from my mistakes and use a better camera.

Making a Mandala is like doing a round Zentangle.  One small step at a time without a whole lot of thought to the finished project.  It’s a metaphor for life.

First I found the center for the paper with a ruler and made a large X as a base.


Next I marked half inch segments onto each line.


I divided the circle into equal parts  an added more half inch markings on the straight lines I added.



My mantra fit into the spaces.  The outer layer starts with “Arrive” then the next ring shows “Home”, as you go further inward you will see the words “Here” and “Now”, then “Solid” and “Free.”  The inner two circles represent the “Ultimate”with the “I” in the center surrounded by an infinity symbol.


I marked out the larger pieces of the Mandala surrounding each word in a seperate space.


Next I started filling in the larger parts with ideas from patterns that I found on Pinterest. When you use inspiration pieces from other people, use a lot of examples, don’t take more than 1 or 2 patterns from each example so you can create your own personal art.


Make sure to erase all the the pencil marks now before you start painting.

I used Dr. Martins India Inks to paint mine, pictured below.  When you use multiple coats of ink you achieve a stained glass look that is mesmerizing to look at.


I decided my color layout as I went along after choosing a palette to work from, Blue, Purples, Pinks and Red.


At the end I added some detail work with a white Gelly pen.


This whole piece was intended and created as a Meditation. I tried to stay in the present moment as I worked, trying to feel a sense of “home” with each new part. It was important to me that I didn’t overthink the piece, just placing my attention on what I was doing at that exact moment.

Now I have a great piece of art that I can hang in my home and whenever I see it I am reminded of my Mantra and how I felt while I made it. It’s kinda awesome.

Peace, Love, Hope, Joy



One thought on “I am Home pt. 2: A Mantra Mandala Tutoral

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