Steps for drawing a Mandala

Here is the progression of a simple mandala done on mixed media paper and a .5 marker. This is just a simple drawing, it took a bit longer to document the whole thing. Maybe I’ll try a more complex one again, when I have daylight so I can get better pictures.

I often draw these without the pencil lines but of course I kept getting all messed up since I was trying to document the process. The compass lines help keep everything together.



It can be messy in the beginning and you can fix things as you go.


I add tic marks before drawing the petals.



I added some shading to the first row of petals.



Adding details like dots and accent lines.




Erased the pencil lines and darkened lines and added accents.



Mandala + Mosaic = Magic

This was the largest, most complex mosaic I’d ever attemtped and took me over a year to complete.

My mother and I made an awesome find at Goodwill. A round mirror from a very old dresser. As soon as I saw it I knew I HAD to have it. It cost $10! I’ve since seen a few more but the asking price was much higher. I am now on the lookout for another mirror. (you’ll soon find out why)


My idea was to have overlapping circles and fill in the background with tempered glass.

The hardest part in developing my pattern was that I wanted the overlaps to be a different color than the circles, and of course all the touching colors had to be different. This mirror took quite a bit of brain power and planning. It was quite challenging and at times I ran out desire to work on it, so it would sit on my livingroom floor as a constant reminder that it needed to be finished.


I drew out my circles and design on paper first to work out the composition and transferred the circle outlines to the mirror. The only mistake I made was using a red sharpie. I should have used a black or brown. I was worried the red marker would somehow be visible after grouting. I spent a considerable amount of time with nail polish remover and qtips removing all the red lines from between the pieces of glued glass.


This project took up most of my livingroom floor.


Close up of the overlaps.

My other goal in making this piece, was for each of the circles to consist of different kinds of shapes. Some were random shapes, some circles had long slivers and others were triangles.


All grouted and ready to clean.

All cleaned and ready to go!


I am glad I got this picture of the completed project because about 30 minutes later it fell on the floor and broke into pieces. It was my fault, I bumped it and knocked it over. I should have put it back down on the floor….I shouldn’t have been so stupid….augh, what was I thinking…

I tried not to cry, but I have to admit I did.

I want to do this project again, I learned a lot on the first round and I think I could get it finished a lot quicker. I don’t often keep any of the things I make, but this piece was mine and I had intended on hanging in the kitchen.

So now comes the task of finding another mirror to start the project all over again. It’s been two years since it broke and I think I am ready to tackle this again.