Friday, June 14, 2013

Grid Seeds are Growing on me


"Seeds of great discoveries are constantly floating around us, but they only take root in minds well prepared to receive them."  Joseph Henry

When Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts, founders of Zentangle, sent out a newsletter a couple of weeks ago about a different way of  approaching a grid pattern, I must admit that I wasn't really too interested. For some reason, it just didn't appeal to me, and I put it out of my mind. So when I saw that the Diva's challenge this week was to incorporate this method into your tile, I was both disappointed and happy at the same time. Disappointed because I wasn't sure that I really wanted to do this, but happy because I knew that this would make me try something new that I would not have done otherwise. I need that little nudge sometimes to experiment with new patterns instead of sticking to the tried and true.

So I sat down with Rick and Maria's chart of "grid seeds" as they called them - patterns to fill in each square of a grid. Each grid seed is a pattern by itself, but when you repeat them over and over in  a grid, they can take on an entirely new look. My first try, in which I filled the whole tile with four different grid seeds, left me totally unsatisfied. It was quite boring! Not even worth showing here.

I decided to take another approach by incorporating only one grid seed and using it as a background to some other tangle patterns. Choosing the seed from location C1 on their chart, I alternated the direction that I drew it. I was much happier with this tile, shown here.




Then, of course, I went onto the next step which is shading. I wasn't quite sure how to shade this background pattern I had created, so instead of shading it I decided to blacken some parts to add contrast and make it pop a little. Now I definitely liked it better.



But one last thought - maybe it needed a touch of color. Worried about ruining my "masterpiece", I made a copy of my tile and then experimented with the color on the copy. I often do that so I'm not devastated if I don't like the result. In this case I loved the effect of the color and added it to the tile. Sometimes just a little bit goes a long way.


So there you have it, my entry to the grid (un)locked challenge. Glad that I was "forced" to try this, I now realize that there is some interesting potential in this method, and I'm likely to experiment with it some more.

16 comments:

  1. Nice tile! - and I really appreciate the step outs and your explanation of the thought process.

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    1. Thanks Sue. I always wonder if I'm saying too much, or if people are interested in it all!

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  2. Hurray for the Diva and her Challenges, otherwise we would have missed your lovely piece of Zentangle art!! I also loved to read about the process! It's like I hear myself....LOL

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    1. Thanks so much Anneke. I'm glad you enjoy what I have to say and that you can identify with it!

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  3. That's what seeds do, grow into something beautiful. I agree with Sue having the thought process makes it more interesting, Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Nice tile. Is nice to see the progression of it. Like your shading on Betweed.

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  5. Caren, I really like what you've done here. I think the tile is beautiful. I love your explanation of your process. It's a great tip to make a copy first before trying different shading or coloring techniques--especially if you're not quite sure how you want to proceed. I think the little pop of color is perfect. Great job.

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    1. Thanks Emily. It's just so heartbreaking when I decide to go one step further with something I make and then regret it afterwards, so the coward in me makes the copy!

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  6. Thank you for sharing the steps you took. It's clear how the tile becomes prettier by every step.
    Great grids.

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  7. Love your take on the grid (un)locked. Beautiful, and your shading is perfect!

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