I've been drawing mandalas for as long as I can remember. Mandalas are diagrams used traditionally as a tool for meditation, but even when I was very small and the only things I knew about Buddhism came from watching episodes of Monkey, I drew circular geometric designs reflecting my inner thoughts using color pencils and graph paper to calm my mind.

At first I didn't know they were called mandalas, but at some point I saw a television broadcast of monks creating and then sweeping up a sand mandala on a news program, and I had a name for what would become a life-long practice for me. From about the 4th grade onwards, I discovered Deluxe Paint on the family computer (an Amiga) and my mandalas became digital. Over time I've experimented with using whatever medium I've had to hand - paints, sand, beads, wire. My digital mandalas were almost always transient like the traditional sand paintings - I would build them up in layers and then reverse the process to destroy them. This process of constructing and deconstructing the mandala is what's most precious to me, not the picture that unfolds during the process.


A static picture could never capture the essence of the practice - constructing a mandala is like telling a story by building up a map from my thoughts - by moving through that map, those thoughts are set free so that I don't have to dwell on them or stress about them. However, I recently started saving images of some of the mandalas I create to share so that people might understand a little more about what they are and why I draw them. The examples on this page show how the mandalas I draw unfold. I drew these using Kaleidosketch.