Zentangle is...

The Zentangle® Method, created by Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts, is an easy to learn, fun and relaxing way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Zendala Moments: Rain

"Flash drought." This term joins the list of global warming symptoms. When I saw it in a recent news article, I knew that I was experiencing it. My garden, our neigborhood, town and beautiful forest have been parched for many weeks, but, seeing the deadly drought that has had France in its grip for over a year, I barely paid attention to it. Then the crevasses in the red clay around my house seemed to widen and deepen, almost overnight. I remembered all the rain we had had earlier this year with a wet winter, spring and summer, and very few of our usual blistering temperatures. It seemed impossible that I needed to water my new vegetable plants, but I knew I had to. Weeks of searching the weather forecast for any sign of rain finally gave way to a small cloud icon for today. Dare I hope?
The rain came this morning. Neighbors went outside to look at it, as if it were snow! The kids across the street built a rain fort, with chairs and umbrellas and small chairs to sit in while they watched. I decided to enjoy the rain from the shelter of our screened porch. Listening to the pit-pat of drops on the leaves of surrounding trees, I picked up the Zendala Moments #08 template and started to draw.

Happy birthday to my niece, Gala! A devoted high school English teacher, she deserves a little shout-out!

My October entry for our local postcard swap found me ready for leaf action! I haven't spotted any tangle-worthy leaves yet, so I stuck with my trusty stamp, a glaze pen, some watercolors and colored pencils.

And just an update to my last post. I just noticed that in addition to the InkTober prompts I posted, there are several other options. See a complete list here.

How's your autumn? 

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Catching up: Project Pack 06 and Organic Borders

When I last posted, I shared some tiles I had done as part of my study of Margaret Bremner. Here are a couple more.

My Zendala Moments 07 post used a technique that was featured in the Project Pack 06, where white pages or tiles are stained with black ink. I altered that idea slightly by taking black and white squares, cutting them into irregular shapes and then putting them back together. This tile followed Maria's lesson, using ING and Printemps. Somehow, my tiles didn't quite fit together, so I placed a yellow paper behind them to highlight the "mistake", and remind me of Kintsugi, a tradition where Japanese artists mended broken pots with gold.

As I followed along with the Project Pack videos, I worked on an ensemble of 4 "spliced" black and white tiles. This was lots of fun!

Eni Oken's Organic Borders ebook gave me my next inspiration. This technique of creating borders much as you would create a floral bouquet is a little more challenging than the Zentangle cartouche technique, but still relaxing. 

I like this technique so much that I decided to create a sampler of my favorite elements on a Zentangle spinner template that I had.

Now, I'm gearing up for InkTober2019 and tangling on some lovely autumn leaves. (After a wet spring and summer, we've hit a dry spell. I wonder if there will be supple leaves to tangle?) I hope you'll check back to see what we come up with!

Monday, August 12, 2019

Zendala Moments 07 and a humble homage to Margaret Bremner

It seems another month has gone by, and kids are preparing to go back to school. My retired friends and I will be together celebrating another year of NOT going back to school, another endless summer :) The Tour de France ended a few weeks ago, after keeping me glued to the TV every afternoon for two hours. I calculated that I spent 40 hours watching it. (I missed a day!) Luckily, I was watching the abbreviated version. That's about all my back and hips could stand!

I tried to use this time "productively", that is, for tangling! In particular, I chose to do a study of Margaret Bremner's tangles and tiles. Her work has always fascinated me as unique in its starkness, with lots of black and white blocking, but rich in textures, too. I still don't understand it, as you can see by my description! I added 56 tangles to my collection, and then started studying her strings. I've made a new gratitude journal, which is "pre-strung" now, thanks to Margaret's inspiration!

Project Pack 06 videos are out, with their "No mistakes" lessons. The supplies center around 2-tone tiles, simulating the ink-stained pages of a journal. These take me back to Bremner's bold tiles, with lots of black areas. Together, they inspired my Zendala Moments 07 tile. You can see where I spliced the two pieces together. Not intentional, but, oh, well--no mistakes!

And finally, another cartouche:

My daughter and grand-dogter ;)

Love and peace!

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Zendala Moments 06 (Reprise!)

After writing about the pen widths in my last post, I just had to have another go at Annette's lovely template!

Zendala Moments 06 and nib widths

This month's Zendala was inspired by the last day of Project Pack 1, where Molly tangled Crazy Huggins on a black tile. (I'm not sure why I had missed that lesson.) Recently feeling one of those urges to play with Crazy Huggins, I found her video. She used a Gelly Roll 10 and an 05, and the feel of the ink on the Apprentice tile is sumptuous. It's almost like brushing on paint, as you move slowly to give the ink time to flow. Very relaxing. 

Before shading

After shading

Wanting to remember to use different nib widths, I made some notes in my journal.

When the time came for the Zendala this month, I wanted that same feel. I took another Apprentice tile and my Moonlight Gelly Rolls. I used a soapstone to soften everything.

Using those wide nibs feels like carving the tile. Now, if I could only find 05 Moonlights for contrast!

My fat nib kick continued!

A clean coffee filter, Koi brush pens and metallic Gelly Rolls

Glaze pen under Koi brush pen

Back to the Micron 01, I went to the opposite extreme! 

Do you have a preferred pen width? Have you experimented with different nibs?

Klimt inspired ribbons and Zendala Moments 05

Two months since my last post! Lots of tangling (and gardening, of course!) has kept me away from the computer and the blog. Time to catch up!

Nancy Domnauer (linedotcalm.com) recently introduced me to a fascinating technique through an excellent online class, Klimt Ribbons. Introduced at last year's ZenAgain conference with Rick and Maria, it involves using bits of the beautiful patterned backgrounds in Gustav Klimt's work to create tiles. Ribbons for the string, and fragments for the fill, lots of bright colors and gold ink--it's a rabbit hole if there ever was one!!!

My first tile

As you can see, I wanted more and more color! I used Koi water color brush pens, with the gold metallic Gelly Roll on top.

Three weeks later, I was fortunate to take another online Klimt class with CZT Tracey Nicholson. In this class, the string took on a more mosaic look.

This time I used Prismacolors.

My Zendala Moments 05 tile had a little Klimt effect!

These tiles don't use a lot of defined tangle patterns, per se, but for me, the colors and 10 nib on the gold pen get me in the Zen zone!

Have you tried this technique?

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Zendala Moments 04, et al.

Where does the time go? I just noticed my last post was last month!! And it's already the middle of May....
I have spent many hours--or rather days!--in the garden, as temperate weather finally found its way to North Carolina. My vegetable garden has seen several "rescue" operations recently--a rat snake that was trapped in the netting, and two rabbits who seem to have found a new home. In the picture below, the bunny is waiting at the gate to go back in the vegetable enclosure. Sigh.


Between gardening and animal rescue operations, I've been tangling, of course!

I found this picture of myself when I was 4 or 5 and created the cartouche.

A bit of tangling on a folded Zendala for my friend Leandro, a 15-year old Messi fan

I joined the "Today's Tangles: Keeping It Classic" group on Facebook after seeing some interesting prompts on the Mosaic app. Thank you, Sandy!

Last but not least, the Zendala Moments 04 tiles! Thank you, Lonetta!

I finally finished my journal from the CZT seminar I attended in 2015! This journal was so special that I wanted to save it!!! I only used it for "special" things. Now I've started another journal, same size and brand as the first, but minus Maria's beautiful calligraphy on the cover. I'm trying to use it more often. It reminds me of hearing people say that you should use your crystal and finest china every day, not just for special occasions. (I don't have any, so that's not a problem!) But the sketchbook question lingers: should I use it for everything or just special projects? I think that when I do use it, I am more likely to take my time and savor the experience, much like one savors a meal served on china more than a meal on a paper plate! And the Zentangle Method encourages us to use the finest materials we have available, so that we appreciate the moment more, thereby intensifying our gratitude. On the other hand, the journal is a little awkward for me to draw in because it's not flat, and it's just more cumbersome. (Oh, those geniuses, Rick and Maria, and their 3.5 inch tile format!!!)

What do you think? Do you prefer journals or tiles? I do hope you'll let me know your thoughts!

Sunday, April 28, 2019

(Another) Zendala Moments 03 and Cartouches!

Cartouche: 1. A structure or figure, often in the shape of an oval shield or oblong scroll, used as an architectural or graphic ornament or to bear a design or inscription.
2.The latest Zentangle craze, launched in the Project Pack 05 and its accompanying (free) youtube tutorials.

I clearly prefer the second definition, and have been savoring the tutorials this week. If you haven't already, you really must check these out. (I'll admit that I had to see the videos before I got excited about this project.) Here are a few tiles I did this week:

From Day 3, using the embedded letter technique on recycled cardboard

A card for my son-in-law. Zendala Moments 03 on a tile dyed with bleeding tissue paper. This cartouche technique is covered in Day 5.

From Day 7.  The flower is from a botanical print.

Get out your keepsakes, family photos, memorabilia, natural treasures--whatever speaks to you--and create a beautiful cartouche to honor it as you meditate on its beauty and meaning. In this age of "Kondo-mania", think about what truly "sparks joy" and let it inspire your creation.
Thanks for stopping by. 

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Zendala Moments 03

Thanks again, Lonetta, for this lovely template! I had a great time tangling this. I used a paper that I had made with water color and ink a while ago. I loved the colors, and just had it up on the wall, admiring the leaf and branch shapes. (Orange and fuschia are my happy energy colors.) The leaf shapes in Lonetta's template reminded me of the paper.

May all your energy be happy and bright!

Sunday, April 7, 2019

Can't get enough Zen(dala) Moments!

Lonetta, of Zendala Moments fame and glory, has me hooked. No sooner had I posted yesterday than I started Zendala Moments #2, and once again channeled my inner Bohemian with the bright colors. (Maybe one day, I'll have my own little "roulotte".)

So much fun, but gotta go. Zendala Moments #03 awaits!!!

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Zendala Moments #01 and a new spinner

Thank you and kudos to the lovely Lonetta for starting another Zendala site. I've mentioned before how much I missed Erin's Zendala Challenge. Zendala templates really put me in the moment. No planning, lots of repetition, lots of turning the tile, seeing the spaces and metashapes in different ways. I feel like a kid with a kaleidoscope!

I think that the Zentangle spinner qualifies as a Zendala form, too, don't you? Although it's much less intricate, the repetition is there. Here's my second spinner, from the Project Pack. I decided to focus on fragments and explore the recently published "Reticula and Fragments" book. Channeling my inner Bohemian, I went with some bright, vibrant colors and gold.

Thanks for coming "around" to visit!