phandi : from free drawing to mandala (tutorial 01)

  • Purpose : relaxing, centering
  • Duration : 10 to 20’
  • Materials : A5 sheets paper with a circle drawn in the center, felt pens or coloured pencil (more eco friendly)
  • Participants : any age, any number

Rule (MANY possible variations)

  • Ask the participants to take one sheet of paper and to freely draw what comes to their mind in the circle. It can be figurative or not
  • Coming back to group, asking everybody to express their motivation in drawing what they’ve chosen, how they felt before, and how they feel now
    Depending on the dynamic, the assistance just keeps an empathic listening (cf sociocracy, NVC principles) or starts a dialog
  • This exercise is renewed every day of the training to measure the evolution of the feelings of the participants. The drawing are pinned on the wall to visualize it, in a non verbal way
  • On step can consist in having turning mandalas, successively completed in a small group of contributors


I had heard about such “coloring” practices in my childhood, and rather considered them as meaningless games for children.

Then I had the opportunity to use such methods as centering preliminary exercises, in the non violent communication self managed group I am part of. In this last case, the specification was just to freely draw forms, with any constraint. 

The discovery of buddhism gave them a much deeper perspective : How some embodied practices can free the mind and contribute to disconnect the brain, introducing at a later stage a much more available state of mind

The KA01 “Layer of Communication” hold on Sept 2021 in Prenchov (Slovakia) with the support of the ngo Artkruh fully used it as an as well individual and collective way to share feelings, especially in a training context

As graphic designer permanently focussing on the ways to adapt to the specifications of a customer, these practices simply awakened me to the basic pleasure of free visual expression out of any constraint

To go farther

Various uses of pictures, various sizes, various mediums, various specifications from totally free expression to different specific constraints : a principle of workshop that offers a huge variety of applications