Monday, August 31, 2015

More Lines

"A drawing is simply a line going for a walk."   Paul Klee

I promised you I'd be back with some more of my line drawing (like it or not), so here I am. I absolutely LOVE this first piece I'm showing you here. Drawn on Strathmore tan-toned paper, I used a black micron pen, graphite for shading, and white pastel pencil for highlights. This did not start out to be a flower. It was just random lines, but as it progressed it started looking more like a flower, so the stem was added. My daughter, who was visiting from Scotland, loved this, and believe me, she's very honest and tells me when she doesn't. 

For the next one I used a stencil of a heart on black Artagain paper and filled it with a Signo Uniball white gel pen. I don't love it as much as my flower, but it's not bad.

I did some shading with my white pastel pencil. This may be one of those very rare occasions when I like it better unshaded than shaded. What do you think?

Now that I've had some good practice with this type of drawing, I'll try incorporating it along with other tangle patterns. Stay tuned for more!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Tangled Graphics

"Isn't life a series of images that change as they repeat themselves?"  
 Andy Warhol

A couple of months ago I was able to download, for free, many stock images from GraphicStock. I will admit that it sucked up many hours of my time looking through thousands of their images for designs I liked that would lend themselves to adding tangles. I think it was worth it. Here's one of them, as it was downloaded.

And here's what I chose to do with it. I was unsure if I should add more tangling on the right side of the circle, but when I took a vote of family members the clear answer was to leave it as is. I do love the way it looks, but sometimes I'm just not sure when to stop.
Here's another one of the images, with lots more color. The before...

And the after...

The wavy design reminded me of the line drawings I've been working on recently, so I started by mimicking the feel of those lines. Then I added Rixty, put auras around some of it, and continued the line work around to enclose the Rixty. Interesting, but not sure if I love it. I could try printing this design again and do something completely different with it. Not a bad idea... we'll see. 

It's really fun to take an image and add your own Zentangle touches to it. You should give it a try if you haven't already.  

Friday, August 21, 2015

I Walk the Line

"No one ever discovered anything new by coloring inside the lines."    Thomas Vasquez

My drawings in this post are going to be a little different than my usual style. As a matter of fact, you may not even consider this true Zentangle art. But whether it is or not, I'm having a lot of fun with this. For some time I've admired other people's drawings that I would call line art, or something like that. I've wanted to try it out for awhile, but just now got around to making the time for it. 

I worked on these pieces last week, and then saw the Diva's guest challenge from Sharla Hicks, CZT, to use undulating tangles. I think what I did fits in that category pretty well. I'm sharing my first few pieces here. It took a little time to get into the groove of it, so my favorite one is the last one. 

Here's the first, completed with a Micron 01 on an official Zentangle tile. I was pretty happy with it considering it was my first. I realized after completing this that it's similar to the tangle pattern Meringue, by CZT Kelley Kelly. If I look at it that way, then it is a true Zentangle - a monotangle.

Next I worked on the one below, also on an official tile. As I drew, my hand began moving in a rhythm, and it was very relaxing. I'm not sure about those outside humps, but overall I like it. This one is not yet shaded.

Using my famous pastel pencils, I added purple coloring and then some shading and contouring with a pinkish-reddish pencil. And again, except for those humps I'm unsure of, I was happy with the way it turned out.

Then I tried a flowery design on a Zendala tile, which I colored with Tombow markers and shaded with Prismacolor pencils. Not bad, but I don't think the lines flow as well.

My last one for now ( I figured it was time to stop drawing and put these together in a post) was completed on Strathmore gray toned paper. Like I said at the beginning, this is the one I like best. I tangled with a Micron 01 pen and then added the outline with white pastel pencil. I thought of using a white gel pen but was afraid of messing it up. With the pastel pencil I knew that I could always erase it if I didn't like it (don't tell anyone I just said that!)

I found this process to be very relaxing. My pen didn't even leave the paper when completing a section. I just drew a line and then turned and went back, never lifting the pen. I will absolutely be doing lots more of these and already have ideas in my mind for changing them up a bit. So expect to see more of these type of drawings showing up here in the very near future.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Little Deuce Coupe

"Happiness is the vehicle we travel in, not our destination."    Unknown

This will just be a short post (at least shorter than usual). I wanted to share something that I tangled for a very good friend for her birthday. Using a template from Ben Kwok, I made this VW bug for her.

While the blue was not the perfect match, she owned a light blue bug for the four years that I've known her. And she told me she has been driving a bug for the last 15 years. So when I saw that Ben had this template, I thought this would be a great gift for her.

Fast forward a couple of weeks from when I first had the idea. She informs me that she is getting a new car...a larger, much fancier Mercedes! My first thought was, "Oh no!" But then I realized maybe my idea would make an even better gift now so she will have a memory of the little bug. Here it is framed...not easy to get a good picture through reflective glass!

I think it's pretty cute, and I'm happy to say that she likes it! 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Around We Go Again

"The world is round so that friendship may encircle it."       
 Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

This week's guest blogger for the Diva is Erin Olson from the Bright Owl. Her challenge is, of course, a Zendala. I wouldn't have expected anything else, since she hosts the weekly Zendala Dare (and I'm so glad she's back after taking some time off!) 

Rather than show you the pre-shaded version of this, I decided to shade half of it and leave the other half unshaded for my first picture. I hope you can tell which half is shaded and see what a difference it makes.

I used Crescent Moon, Cruffle, Tipple, and the ends of Dandi. Here is the fully shaded Zendala.

Next is a Zendala I completed a few months ago, after returning home from Tangle U. I used the 4N1 stencil created by CZT Ann Grasso, as a tool to help me in the design. This one sat around for a while waiting for me to do some more zendalas so I could include more in my blog post. I feel like I should have more than one creation in a post so you guys are getting your money's worth! So now that I have more, here it is, completed on a Renaissance tile.

I wasn't thrilled with it, but it sure did perk up a bit when I added shading with brown pencil and graphite, as well as white highlights.

Now take a look at the center of that one (my tangle pattern Kazoo from my e-book), and remember that this was completed months ago and then put away. Here is a Zendala I drew earlier this week on one of my hand-colored tiles.

Notice that the center is the same as on that last tile I did months ago, and had not looked at since. I was a little surprised when I saw that ...of all the patterns I could have used! Well anyway, since this tile is pink and gray, I decided to tangle it using my pink Micron (I think it's called Rose). Then I shaded using a little bit of pink colored pencil as well as graphite to tie into the gray in the tile.

So there you go... three Zendalas for the price of one! I just scheduled a Zendala class for next month. Anyone want to come?

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Butterfly Kisses

"Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you."     Nathaniel Hawthorne

This week's Diva challenge comes from guest blogger, CZT Sandy Hunter, while the Diva takes some well deserved time off. Sandy's challenge is to "Shift your focus to the negative space, so the white part of your tile is the focus of your tangle." So I chose to use a stencil of a butterfly for my white, or negative, space. I tangled a border around the butterfly and then filled the background with tangles using lines, lines, and more lines. My favorite kind of patterns. I added a couple with curves, but they are still lines. Here is the way it looked before shading.

I used Fassett, Static, Sand Swirl, Printemps,Paradox, and Baton. Very relaxing tangles for me. It was completed on a 6 1/4 inch square piece of Strathmore drawing paper. It comes out looking very white here, but it actually is a pale cream color. Here's how it looked after shading.

I enjoyed the process and like the outcome, so I will call it a success!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Because I'm Happy...Clap Along if You Know What Happiness is to You

"The way to stay inspired and motivated is by doing what you like, doing what you love."   Raphael Saadiq

Happy August everyone! I don't know how the weather is by you, but it's broiling hot and humid here in Charleston, SC. No surprise there, but I'm ready for fall. So it was nice to take a vacation and get a break from the weather here. First stop was Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, for CanTangle, a 3 day retreat for CZTs. Temps there were in the 80s at their peak, but that felt comfortable compared to what I'm used to. Then for our drive down the Oregon coast the average high was 70 degrees (55 at Crater Lake!), and I loved every second of it. In my opinion, that is perfect weather for vacationing.

But let's go back to Canada and a very fun, educational, and inspiring 3 days of tangling. I got to meet and take classes from the famous Laura Harms, better known as the Diva of the weekly Diva challenges, Margaret Bremner, whose work I've admired for so long, and Lisa Heron, the wonderful and very energetic host of the event. I also took some great classes from people I had previously met - Cris Letourneau, author of Made in the Shade and co-author of Pattern Play, as well as Bette Abdu, Brenda Shaver, and Molly Hollibaugh. In addition, I met and re-met about 40 additional CZTs. So much talent and knowledge was shared. In case you're wondering about the title of my blog today, that's words from the song "Happy" by Pharrell Williams, which sort of became the theme song for the weekend.

Today I'm going to share just a little of what I created in Canada... a few of the small things. Once I complete (or should I say IF I ever complete) the larger projects, I will share them here also. First is a monotangle (one pattern) tile using the pattern Diva Dance (maybe you can figure out in whose class this was done?)

Next is a tile using Hollibaugh (maybe you can figure out whose class this was from also?) filled with N'zeppel. The tile was completed as a meditative activity, being guided only by the soothing voice of Molly (did you guess?), without any visuals.

This one is from Cris' class on pattern play, creating tangleations, or variations, of existing patterns. Auraknot with rounded points, and filled with some Tipple.

The last one is a tile I created one evening, in my hotel room, all alone. I had wanted to try out the new pattern Frost Flower since it's made from all straight lines and I love straight lines (or at least fairly straight lines). I added shading with a blue pastel pencil, and I love the way this turned out, even though I made a couple of "mistakes."

One more thing - there were TONS of door prizes given out. Among other things, I won a set of Zentangle coasters donated by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. I was going to put them out in a pile on the end table in my family room, but I had a better idea. The table has a glass top with a wood shelf underneath it. So here's what I did...

Now they're on display for everyone to see. Sorry about the quality of the photo... it's hard to take a picture of a glass table without reflections.

Now that I'm home from vacation I need to get back into the swing of things - I went a whole week without any tangling!