DingBatz? What's a DingBatz?

Swap the 'Z' for an 's' and you'll find quite a bit of information about dingbats online. To save you the effort of checking them out yourself, I will tell you. But they don't quite live up to the name, which is just the best name for anything, really. I love the word!

The word originally comes from the language of printers, typographers and typesetters. Dingbats were ornaments or fillers used to break up or decorate the printed page or to add a touch of humour or elegance, depending on the design. But for almost as long as people have been writing, they have used patterns and illustrations alongside the words...think of illuminated manuscripts from as long ago as the 6th Century.


Maria Thomas, who began as a calligrapher before she and Rick created Zentangle, says that she always added little decorative elements to the words she was writing and it occurred to her that the Zentangle community would love them too. And so dingbats became DingBatz with the unique Zentangle treatment.

When I first learned about them, I immediately loved them and drew them all the time - little ones, square one, triangular ones, on coloured tiles, on envelopes...all over! And then I moved on to something else..still tangling but another new technique or idea to explore. That is until one of the students in my 'Hidden Words' workshop suggested that she'd like to do DingBatz..and off I went again! Love them even more now!

I have had a couple of DingBatz workshops now with some more to follow and from the results and the feedback from the classes, other people also love DingBatz. I'd like to that Sheena for the suggestion and to everyone else who has taken the class and kindly shared their drawings with me for this post. Enjoy this lovely collection and remember, they are as much fun to draw as they are to look at! This isn't everyone's because some people are still working on theirs but thank you to everyone who sent me what they did in class.







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