How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (2023)

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (1)

Learn how to draw a mandala! In this drawing lesson, I'll show you how I constructed the colorful mandala you see above. Although it looks complicated, it's actually quite easy, once you know the steps!

What is a mandala?

A mandala is a complex abstract design that is usually circular in form. In fact, "mandala" is a Sanskrit word that means "circle". Mandalas generally have one identifiable center point, from which emanates an array of symbols, shapes and forms.

Mandalas can contain both geometric and organic forms. They can also contain recognizable images that carry meaning for the person who is creating it.

In essence, mandalas represent the connection between our inner worlds and outer reality. Designing your own mandalas can be both inspirational and therapeutic.

Are you looking for printable mandala coloring pages? I've got 23 hand-drawn mandala designs to color, just for you!

My ebook of Mandala Coloring Pages is perfect for those who want ready-made, blank mandala designs to color.

If you want to learn how to create your own mandalas, continue reading my popular mandala-making lesson below!

Create your own mandala

When you create your own mandala, think of it as an echo of your soul. Drawing and coloring a mandala can be a highly enriching personal experience in which you look inside yourself and find the shapes, colors and patterns to represent anything from your current state of mind to your most deeply-desired wish for yourself, for a loved one, or for humanity.

You can design a mandala to symbolize a state of mind that you would like to achieve. Mandalas are great tools for meditation and increasing self-awareness. Many different cultures around the world use mandalas in their spiritual practices.

The best thing about designing your own mandals is that you have the freedom to choose whatever shapes and colors that you feel express your sense of self and your view of reality. Your mandala is yours, and you have the freedom to use your creativity to create a mandala drawing that is uniquely you.

Once you know the basic steps of how to draw a mandala, you can try now new designs and new colors each time you draw a new mandala.

Materials needed:

You don't need many materials to learn how to draw a mandala. All you need is: paper, a pencil, a ruler, and an eraser.

If you make a purchase via the links below I receive a small commission, which helps support this site.

To color in your mandala: your choice of colored pencils, watercolors, crayons, or any other type of art material for coloring. You can also use a compass if you like - this will be covered in the steps below.

If you'd like learn more about which colored pencils to use, check out my Colored Pencils Guide!

Let's get started!

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (3)

(Video) Mandala art on Magic Colorful Drawing Book || Scratch Note || Easy Semi-Circle Mandala art #Shorts

The first step in how to draw a mandala is to measure out your paper into a square shape. The square can be as big or as small as you like. The bigger the square, the more room you will have for putting in lots of detail and color. I made my square 8" x 8".

Next, use your ruler and a pencil to draw a dot in the very center of the square, as shown above.

The next step in how to draw a mandala is to draw a series of circles around this dot. Once you've drawn the dot in the center of your square, one easy way to draw circles is to use a compass. If you don't have a compass, don't worry - drawing circles is easy if you follow these steps:

Using your ruler, measure out 1/2" (or more or less - depending on your preference) from the center dot. Make a mark 1/2" above, below, to the left and to the right of the center dot, as shown above.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (5)

Next, measure out another distance from the center dot. I chose 1.5" from the center dot. Using the same process as before, make a mark at this same distance on top, below, to the left and to the right of the center dot.

You can continue making as many rows of these dots as you like. I chose to make 3 rows of dots, as you can see above.

The important thing is to make sure that the dots you make are all equidistant from the center dot.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (6)

Now that you've drawn your dots, it's time to connect them. Draw a straight vertical line connecting the dots that go up and down, and a straight horizontal line connecting the dots that go one either side. See above for an example of this step in how to draw a mandala.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (7)

Next, draw another series of dots at the same distances from the center as your first series of dots. See the example above. The yellow arrows point to where the new row of dots will be located. Try to make them at a 45 degree angle to the perpendicular lines.

(Video) Mandala Therapy: Art of Centering the Self

Draw four rows of dots, making a large x shape. See the example above.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (8)

Next, use your ruler to connect the dots you just made. Now your picture should look like the picture above.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (9)

Now you'll want to connect the dots into circles. To do this, start at one dot, and draw a curved line to the next dot, and so on.

Don't worry about making the circles "perfect". We're not worried about perfection here! Just take it one step at a time, going from dot to dot.

It's okay if you make mistakes. In the example above, you can see 2 instances in the outermost circle where I made a mistake the first time around. If this is your first time learning how to draw a mandala, trust me - it will be even easier the next time you do it.

Just make sure you draw lightly enough that you can easily erase any mistakes.

Tip: If you don't want to take the time to sketch out your own circular grid, you can download and print your own polar graph paper. This is great for sketching, but if you use this graph paper to create a finished piece, remember that you'll still have those little blue lines underneath your mandala. When you draw your own grid, you can erase the lines!

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (10)

Now that you've drawn the basic outline for your mandala, you can begin drawing designs in your mandala!

You can use a pencil, colored pencils, ink, crayons, or whatever you choose.

I chose to use two different colors of colored pencil to draw in my design.

You can start from the center, or you can start from anywhere where you feel inspired to make some marks.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (11)

Using the lines and circles you drew as guidelines, you can draw shapes like circles, triangles, raindrops, loops, etc.

(Video) Mandalas and More: A Meditative Drawing and Coloring Book for Mind, Body, and Spirit

The important this is to repeat your pattern. For example, if you draw a circle on one of the lines, be sure to draw it in the same spot on the other lines.

This creates repetition, which is a key element in creating a mandala.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (12)

As you draw more and more designs, your mandala will start to look more complex.

The key is to take it slowly, drawing one shape at a time and going around the whole circle drawing that one shape in the right place.

Then you build on that shape by drawing other shapes around the circle in the same manner.

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (13)

Here is how the mandala looks with all the designs drawn in. Pretty cool!

You can leave your mandala just like this, or you can choose to color it in.

I decided to color my mandala with watercolors...

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (14)

Voila! Here is my finished mandala.

Using watercolors, I colored in the design using colors that were soft, introspective, and uplifting.

Now you know how to draw a mandala!

Video demonstrations

If you'd like more instruction, these short video courses on Skillshare are an easy way to get better at drawing mandalas. Jump straight in with their 14-day free trial or use the code ARTISFUN30 to get 30% off annual membership! As an affiliate to Skillshare, we get a small commission that helps support this site.

  • How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (16)

    (Video) How to Draw a Mandala: Tips, Tricks, and Mindfulness

Mandala Coloring Pages

Coloring mandalas can help center your mind while nurturing your soul. If you want some ready-made blank mandalas to color, check out my coloring pages below that you can download instantly and print and color over and over!

Detailed Mandala Coloring Pages

Mandala Coloring Pages

Learn to Draw Course

Check out my review of the Let’s Draw course! It’s an online course that’ll teach you basics of drawing and sketching from your own home. You’ll learn from two experienced instructors who have taught their method to thousands of students!

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (20)

Click to return to the Abstract Art Table of Contents, where you can...

If you like my abstract art, check out my printable Abstract Coloring Book with 20 pages of intricate abstract line art to fill in with COLOR!

How to Draw a Mandala: Learn How to Draw Mandalas for Spiritual Enrichment and Creative Enjoyment — Art is Fun (22)

(Video) Diálogo: A conversation about Latin American art in North America - Latin Expressions Series 2022

FAQs

What are the 3 mandalas? ›

The three types of mandalas are the sand mandala, the healing mandala, and the teaching mandala. Sand mandalas use crushed up pieces of colored stone, healing mandalas help calm the creator or viewer, and teaching mandalas are an important part of religious training in the Buddhist faith.

What is the purpose of drawing a mandala? ›

The brilliant psychoanalyst Carl Jung believed that the mandala represents the Self and that drawing a mandala gives a person a sacred space to meet that Self. He considered making mandalas an effective form of art therapy, helping to calm and comfort people struggling with mental health issues.

Can I draw mandala with pencil? ›

Now that you've drawn the basic outline for your mandala, you can begin drawing designs in your mandala! You can use a pencil, colored pencils, ink, crayons, or whatever you choose.

Which pencil is best for mandala art? ›

You don't need any particular make what's more important is the grade of pencil. HB or B, such as these ones, is a good choice for drawing mandalas and other geometric patterns, Celtic knot designs etc. They will not smudge too easily, neither will they leave a hard indent in the paper when rubbed out.

How do I make a natural mandala? ›

To create your nature mandala, place a meaningful item in the center. Then start placing other items you gathered near the center first and continue moving outward from the center until you've created a circular design. 3. Continue making patterns until your items are used up and your nature mandala looks complete.

What do mandalas mean spiritually? ›

In the Eastern religions of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Shintoism it is used as a map representing deities, or especially in the case of Shintoism, paradises, kami or actual shrines. A mandala generally represents the spiritual journey, starting from outside to the inner core, through layers.

What are the 5 elements of a mandala? ›

The Mandala of the five elements represents the elements (space, fire, water, earth and air) connected to the five families of Buddhas (Vairochana, Amitabha, Akshobya, Ratnasambhava and Amogasiddhi) and connected to the five colors (white, red, blue, yellow and green).

What are the four gates of a mandala? ›

The basic design of a mandala is many concentric circles with a square in the middle that represents a god being honored by the art. On each flat side of the square is a gate. These doors represent the four "boundless thoughts"--kindness, compassion, sympathy, and patience.

What are the 5 common symbols in mandalas? ›

Some common symbols within the mandala include wheel, bell, triangle, lotus and sun. Wheel with eight spokes: The circular nature of a wheel works as an artistic representation of a perfect universe.

How do I choose a mandala? ›

Select a mandala that you are drawn to, that "feels right," or makes you feel happy, empowered, or energized. There is no right or wrong choice, but a selection made using your intuitive sense is usually the best means of finding and working with a mandala that will be most beneficial to you.

What is a personal mandala? ›

Personal Mandala. A mandala​ is a complex abstract design that is usually circular in form. In fact, "mandala" is. a Sanskrit word that means "circle". Mandalas often, but not always, have one identifiable center point, from which emanates an array of symbols, shapes and forms.

What is mandala art in simple words? ›

In the ancient Sanskrit language of Hinduism and Buddhism, mandala means “circle.” Traditionally, a mandala is a geometric design or pattern that represents the cosmos or deities in various heavenly worlds. “It's all about finding peace in the symmetry of the design and of the universe,” says artist Saudamini Madra.

What kind of math is used in mandala art? ›

Mandalas are rich in mathematics (circle geometry, reflective and rotational symmetry), and provide useful practice with geometry tools including rulers, compasses and protractors.

What color should a dot mandala be? ›

This class is about Dot Mandala & Dot Art Techniques and the best part is that you can use either Poster colors or Fabric colors or Acrylic colors or Gouache Colors to paint these paintings.

Which Colour material is best for mandala? ›

Try out different coloring tools

Gel pens, colored pencils, watercolor brush pens, and markers can all be used for coloring. But because most mandala designs are very detailed and intricate, many colorists swear by gel pens and colored pencils since they have very fine points.

What does F stand for in pencils? ›

The degree of hardness of a pencil is printed on the pencil.

B stands for "black". These pencils are soft. H stands for "hard". HB stands for "hard black", which means "medium hard". F stands for "firm".

Can mandalas heal? ›

Mandalas, meaning "circles" in Sanskrit, are sacred symbols that are used for meditation, prayer, healing and art therapy for both adults and children. Mandalas have been shown in clinical studies to boost the immune system, reduce stress and pain, lower blood pressure, promote sleep and ease depression.

Which drawing book is best for mandala art? ›

Some of the most popular papers or sketchbooks for black and white mandala:
  • Brusto White Sketchbook 160gsm: ...
  • Fabriano White Sketchbook 110gsm: ...
  • Ayush paper White Sketchbook 140gsm: ...
  • Anupam Sketchbook 160gsm: ...
  • Brusto: ...
  • Anupam: ...
  • Ayush Paper.

Is mandala art good for brain? ›

Here is where Mandala Art, an ancient art form, comes in, with mental-health experts saying it plays a therapeutic role in healing the mind.

Why do people destroy mandalas? ›

The destruction of the mandala serves as a reminder of the impermanence of life. The coloured sand is swept up into an urn and dispersed into flowing water - a way of extending the healing powers to the whole world. It is seen as a gift to the mother earth to re-energise the environment and universe.

How do mandalas help mental health? ›

Mandalas are also used in art therapy. The therapist uses a mandala created by the client as a representation of his or her current feelings and emotions, this technique is found to be self-calming and self-centring by some.

Are mandalas a form of meditation? ›

Monks often use mandalas as a meditation practice for healing and compassion. The repetition of patterns, colors, and shapes invite the practice of pure presence … nothing to do but stay in the moment, in the flow.

What do mandala colors mean? ›

ORANGE: Creativity, transformation, self-awareness and intuition. YELLOW: Learning, wisdom, laughter and happiness. GREEN: Physical healing, psychic ability, love of nature and caring. BLUE: Emotional healing, inner peace and meditation. PURPLE: All things spiritual.

Is a mandala a personal symbol? ›

Introduction to Mandalas

Present in many cultures, languages, and traditions, mandalas are both highly symbolic and deeply personal – evolving over the centuries while maintaining its roots in ancient rituals.

What are the symbols of mandala? ›

Symbolism in Mandalas

Traditionally, they include the presence of Buddha's mind in an abstract form, most commonly represented as a wheel, tree, flower, or jewel. The center is a dot, which is a symbol considered free of dimensions.

What do triangles mean in mandalas? ›

Triangles are popular symbols in mandala art as they convey a variety of meanings. Some triangles are upwards facing: They represent action and energy towards the spiritual. When triangles face downwards, they represent creativity and the pursuit of spiritual knowledge.

What are the 2 varieties of mandala art? ›

What are the different types of Mandalas?
  • 1 - Some Types of Mandala found in Mandalas Life. 1.1 - Shiva God Mandalas. 1.2 - Sri yantra mandalas.
  • 2 - Mandalas Symbol and Representations.
  • 3 - Outer Mandalas.
  • 4 - Teaching Mandalas.
  • 5 - Healing Mandalas.
  • 6 - Sand Mandalas.
  • 7 - Kalachakra Mandalas.
  • 8 - Architectural Mandala.
19 Dec 2017

What do shapes mean in mandalas? ›

Different shapes in Mandala

Dot:everything is one, symbol of the Un-manifested. Circle: wholeness, integrity, unity. Horizontal line: Divides up from down, the earth and the sky. Maternal energy. Vertical line: connection between worlds, energy.

Why is a mandala 48 days? ›

In the Indian yogic system, it has been adviced that any form of practice be done for one Mandala i.e 48 days. Just as the embryo needs to spend enough time in the womb to become a fully formed child, a yogic practice needs its time to mature within our system.

Where should mandalas be placed in the house? ›

Mandala painting in the Bedroom

The best place to put the mandala painting is on the sides of the bed. It is also great idea to hang at the back side of the bed. This arrangement helps to renew the positivity in our body.

What is a mandala flower? ›

Mandala flowers come in many different shapes and sizes. They can be depicted with one flower in its center and petals radiating outwards, or they can be made up of a multitude of flower images with different shapes, sizes, and shades.

What is an example of a mandala? ›

A mandala is an arrangement of simple shapes repeated in a circular pattern. (Mandala actually comes from the Sanskrit word for "circle.") For examples of mandalas, we can look to nature (think flowers like roses, chrysanthemums, and dahlias; ripples in a body of water; and snowflakes) as well as ancient art.

What are the 4 types of symbols? ›

7 TYPES OF SYMBOLS
  • pictogram.
  • ideogram.
  • icon.
  • rebus.
  • phonogram.
  • typogram.
  • logo (trade mark)

How many colors should a mandala have? ›

In Tibetan Buddhism, mandalas are usually drawn from the center to the outside, using five colors in the same way: White color: It is symbol of openness. Red color: It is symbol of vitality and strength. Yellow color: It is a symbol of humility.

Does a mandala have to be a circle? ›

The word mandala derives from a sanscrit word meaning circle. While mandalas are most often rounded or circular (i.e., more symmetrical), this is not necessarily the case (see the examples on the next page).

What do you put in a personal mandala? ›

Your mandala must be circular, symmetrical, and include geometric designs. You must include a minimum of 8 symbols that represent you in your mandala. Include symbols to represent people, activities, goals, and traits. Your mandala must be full color with colored pencils.

What is the mandala of life? ›

Mandalas are also spiritual symbols in the Indian religions of Hinduism and Buddhism, representing the universe. For the “mandala concept” think of your own universe, your own life and the center point. Think of all of the ingredients in our lives (relationships, activities, dreams, etc.)

What is the basic form of mandala? ›

In Hinduism, a basic mandala, also called a yantra, takes the form of a square with four gates containing a circle with a center point. Each gate is in the general shape of a T. Mandalas often have radial balance.

What are examples of mandalas? ›

A mandala is an arrangement of simple shapes repeated in a circular pattern. (Mandala actually comes from the Sanskrit word for "circle.") For examples of mandalas, we can look to nature (think flowers like roses, chrysanthemums, and dahlias; ripples in a body of water; and snowflakes) as well as ancient art.

How do you explain a mandala to a child? ›

Introduction: Explain to the children that mandalas are special circles that have unique meanings to each artist. Mandalas can use different colors, but they all have something in common: RADIAL SYMMETRY. Mandala art begins with a central point and all other lines/colors/symbols radiate out from that central place.

What kind of math is used in mandalas? ›

Mandalas are rich in mathematics (circle geometry, reflective and rotational symmetry), and provide useful practice with geometry tools including rulers, compasses and protractors.

What are the benefits of creating a mandala? ›

Mandalas, meaning "circles" in Sanskrit, are sacred symbols that are used for meditation, prayer, healing and art therapy for both adults and children. Mandalas have been shown in clinical studies to boost the immune system, reduce stress and pain, lower blood pressure, promote sleep and ease depression.

Are mandala good for mental health? ›

Since the circle can represent a safe and contained space, mandalas have also been found to help both children and adults suffering from anxiety disorders and posttraumatic stress disorder. Creating artwork inside the circle can help silence a person's inner critic and induce a calm, meditative state.

Is mandala good for kids? ›

Coloring, in particular, mandalas promotes well-being at all ages. For children is an activity that helps develop hand-eye coordination, trains the mind to recognize shapes, develops creativity, stimulates the sense of patience and attention, helps the development of intelligence and reasoning.

What is healing mandala? ›

Beyond meditation, sand mandalas contain powerful healing energies. As the monks make the mandalas, they chant and meditate to evoke the positive vibrations residing within the sacred patterns. This energy has healing power that extends to the entire world -- further realized by releasing the sands into flowing water.

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