In preparation for teaching art classes through the outreach program at the Art Center, I have been tinkering with the digital tablets they had donated some time ago. They run on an Android operating system and therefore don’t have some of the art-friendly graphics and drawing tools that come shrinkwrapped with any given Apple device. However, there are some tools – even freemium apps – that get the job done. And the job, in this case, is to introduce kids to drawing and painting with a digital tool while giving a lesson in mandala creation.
The mandala part has been a process of discovery for me, but I found a fairly sophisticated digital painting app that we can play with for free. It has symmetrical rulers that make this kind of thing… well, childsplay. Which is a good thing for my art lesson.
Rather than having kids worrying about executing their mandala drawing in a perfectly symmetrical alignment (something I’d worry about if we used traditional materials), the app will take the kids’ ideas and show them how it’ll look multiplied. It does this in real time, allowing the artist to see immediately what will and won’t work toward the desired effect.
Since I’m having so much fun drawing these, and painting/coloring them in is so incredibly relaxing, I’m offering these mandalas as free downloads. I hope you’ll use them to either paint with a digital tool or just print them off and get out your markers. If it doesn’t lower your blood pressure in 5 minutes, you’re welcome to yell at me in the comments.