Posts Tagged ‘zentangle’

52 Sparks – Week 3

Week Three of Dale Anne Potter’s 52 Sparks asks about our favorite color. I’ve had an interesting week thinking about this one. My first thought was purple, as I wear that color a lot. And…I have a lot of purple in my fabric stash. But the more I thought about it, the more I kept going back to basic black.

Growing up I did a lot of work with pen and ink, as well as charcoal. In fact, the year I was 14 for Christmas I gave my father a drawing I had done from a holiday card. This was the old-style pen and having to load the India ink each time. He had it framed, and it eventually passed to me when he died and my mother remarried. There are times when it looks vary amateurish, and times when I see the perspective and the light sources. I still like the piece. Here it is:

There is something so basic and stark about working in black and white. I was very linear when growing up, and as a naive, young adult, a lot of life was black-and-white, with few shades of gray. That has certainly changed!

In college I had to buy a black dress for orchestra performances, and I have always loved the idea of the “little black dress.” Wearing black and white in the summers was a favorite, and I was delighted to learn in the 70’s that I was a “winter,” and crayon colors were perfect for me. But I have also realized I wore a lot of black when I was teaching. It’s a great discipline color, and it was a staple in my wardrobe, and I could mix and match just about anything.

Speaking of wardrobes, black also is slimming, so that’s another reason why I have so much of it – accented with purple, of course.

I don’t hesitate to use black when needed in my artwork, and of course I love doing zentangles. Last week I showed the beginning of the zentangle – in glorious black and white – that I have started as the first step in a piece for an art show. After three days of a lot of intense, fine work, my zentangle is approaching completing, and then I can go on to the next stage. Here it is, as I’ve started to square off the sides, and not too much to finish.

I wear red, I wear purple, but I am still drawn to black…even if I don’t have to worry about discipline any more.

52 Sparks – Week 2

I’m participating in Dale Anne Potter’s weekly art journaling project for this year. This week’s prompt was “Right now – what drives you?”

I spent a lot of time this week processing that. Travel certainly is a driving factor, and I want to try and get as much in as possible in the next few years. But…on a day to day basis, I’d say it has to be creating with fabric. It’s not all art, but a good chunk of it turns into something pretty wonderful. And I find I am really trying to get as much art time in as possible, what with trying new ideas, redoing old ones, and just generally learning more about materials, fabrics, and techniques.

That said, I was looking at the lists I’ve developed on year-long projects, month-long projects, and weekly tasks. For the last two years I haven’t entered Fish Follies because I haven’t gotten anything new made. I had a fabulous idea last year, but the deadline was as we were coming back from StashFest in La Conner. I had the who piece worked out in my head, but the very first piece would be creating the zentangle artwork that I would need as the base for all the fish.

So as I’m looking at my lists today and contemplating writing about this question, when it occurs to me to just start doing the basic artwork. Start on it, so I can see the progress and realize I really am working on creating, not just reading the lists. I figured if I created the zentangle on a large sketchpad piece of paper, then scan it, I could create the fish I needed and they wouldn’t all be exactly the same. So two hours later, here’s what I have so far….and a long way to go before this part is completed……

Lots more to go, and it will be interesting to see how it photographs – I think it will be too large for the scanner, but at least each of my fish will look very different.

What I like about this prompt this week is the sense of commitment to creating, and when I combine it with my word for the year – optimistic – it feels like a really good fit!

Top Ten Tuesday

I am still so far behind of getting caught up on blogs, even my most favorite ones. But slowly, slowly…I want to enjoy what’s out there!

Really cool shots from this week’s 365 Project. Love the rainbow water drops!!

Cromer High Tide by Paul

As usual, Alyson Stanfield has great advice in her ArtBiz Blog, “Quadruple Your Email Subscribers, and this week is no exception, especially in light of what I wrote yesterday in finally getting to a newsletter.

Now I am certainly behind the time, and this has already gone viral, but what a great story, Caine’s Arcade!

I still haven’t really figured out Pinterest, but I do know that since the TAFA list started using it, the amount of spam I am getting has really increased. So here’s an article I am going to pursue as I learn more about Pinterest.

If you’ve ever wanted to try ATC’s (Artist Trading Cards), here is a blog by Quilt Rat that takes you through the process. Her doodles are excellent.

I have a new guilty pleasure……(that’s how I felt about the ORIGINAL Survivor….), and that’s Fashion Star. I’m finding it absolutely fascinating, both the design and marketing process, and trying to guess which clothes will get a bid. Joan Beiriger’s blog looks at the show from the point of licensing tips.

I love Mamacita and her occasional rants on society and education. Here’s a good one…..

“Back in the day, as George Washington might have said if he’d had to, except he DIDN’T have to because in his day, violent people were dealt with promptly and in a way that mightily discouraged repeat performances, a teacher’s problems consisted of gum, untucked shirts, spitballs, and the occasional talking-back, all of which were dealt with swiftly and firmly.  The teacher was in charge; the parents respected the teacher; the principal usually backed up the teacher, and since decent people were respected back then, the student knew that to be a decent person, he/she needed to shape up or look forward to five to ten in the pen.  At the very least, to be deprived of any further free public educational opportunities, because frankly, those belong to learners, not destroyers.

“Said shaping-up to be done by the student, mind you.  Who else can do it?  Nobody, that’s who.”

Readers of my blog know I love most things zentangle, and now there are zendalas……nice and round. Here’s a couple from the zentangle blog:

Letters of Note always have something of interest from the great and the unusual. This is a letter about writing, from the venerable C. S. Lewis, with advice that definitely stands the test of time.

And on another note, from James Thurber, comes this delightful letter, quite the counterpoint to C. S. Lewis.

Let me know of cool stuff you find on the web this week!

Zentangle the Weekend Away

One of the best classes I took for myself was the basic zentangle class in February. With the rough months of March and April, tangling got me through, with its zen effects for relaxation. I have several zentangles that took over an hour each; it was time away from the stress and just focused on one stroke at a time, as Rick and Maria say. I have started looking at some of the zentangle patterns to use in my quilting, and that’s proving to be intriguing, challenging, and freeing.

Here are a couple of sites you can explore, starting with the primary zentangle site, a pattern site, and then some other sites where I can learn a variety of patterns and view some really cool art.

The original Zentangle site: read all about this growing art form – you will be hooked!

Tangle Patterns – LOTS of patterns, a new one each day. You can sign up for their daily newsletter.

Perfectly4med – lots of  very cool original patterns, all gridded out and easy to follow.

 

I LOVE The Rainbow Elephant (how can you not love that title??). She has a video for every new tangle pattern.

Cool zentangles at Deb O’Brien Designs

And a few of mine….

You might be interested in some of these posts on zentangles:

Staying Sane with Zentangles

A Zentangle Party

Staying Sane with Zentangles

The last couple of months have been difficult, with virtually no art getting accomplished, much to my dismay, and no doubt added significantly to feeling bummed and sad. About the only thing I was able to attempt was some zentangling. The April theme in the Sketchbook Challenge was to “go out on a limb.” I interpreted that to attempting to use more color in my zentangles, which met with a small amount of success. The second one that I did brought back to mind all the attempts at art over the years that didn’t succeed. I was faced again with my internal need to have everything “look good” when I try it. It is very difficult for me to “try” and see what happens – it still needs to “look good.” So I spent some time pondering that lesson, which didn’t help my mood much at all.

So April was pretty darn dry. I admired the zentangles of my friend, who is branching out and developing her own patterns. I was really feeling jealous, and by the beginning of May I was ready to pick up pen again. I have no idea what the theme was for May, but I did get productive…some pieces took about 90 minutes to finish, and some went really quickly. I still want to experiment with color to see what I can do.

The other thing that has been keeping me sane throughout the past month was looking on line at lots of new patterns. I knew I needed to increase my repertoire of patterns, and once I got started with new ones, I could see myself making progress with new tangles.With that bit of intro, here goes:

The thing I liked originally with this, before the color, was the way the paradox pattern worked with the two triangles. I thought color would enhance the pattern, and I found it just the opposite – I lost the twisting that I so love in this particular pattern.

Lots of new patterns in this one.

Zentangle Party

Last Saturday a group of us (mostly our Mixed Media group) got together with a CZT – a certified zentangle teacher from the Northwest side of Tucson. With some planning, and some ooh-ing and ah-ing over zentangle designs, we spent a great three hours learning the official way to zentangle, and a whole bunch of us are seriously hooked. Our next arts meeting on March 1 should have lots of new art to look at! We ranged from age 8 to 82 at the party and had a great time – even managed to keep the chocolate fingers off the tiles.

Even though I’ve been working on “doing” zentangles for over a year, it’s only been since this fall that I started looking at official zentangle patterns. I do like working a little large, so my new ones are more a 4.5 square, instead of the 3.5 square. But first, a word about the Christmas presents I did for my second family this year. Two by three inch refrigerator magnets, based on their initials, none of which I have as pictures. For my friend Alison I did her initial as a five by seven, and I left a lot of white space, as her letter A reminded me of the Eiffel Tower, and Alison has lived in France.

It is delicate and frilly, which Alison is not, but it just has such a great feel, and it was quite a hit. Since I couldn’t resist, I also tried a gradient on it (marbled fabric) from Photoshop.

Now for my first “official” zentangle….there are some new patterns that I can see using a lot. I also love the tools for shading to enhance the patterns.

Now the ones I am doing in my sketchbook for The Sketchbook Challenge this year.

I find on these I am looking at the play of black and white, positive and negative space, and straight vs. curved. Creating a pleasing balance is definitely interesting.I just finished this last one, and there are a lot more official patterns invoved in this one. I want to look at creating the comedy/tragedy masks for my next one, plus continue to look at lots of new patterns. But the best part of all this is how relaxing it all is. The “zen” part really takes over your process, which is a good antidote to a lot of stress at school this year.

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