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.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Diva's Weekly Challenge #294 and a room with a view

What a busy week in this sparrow's nest!
The sheet of packing paper that was serving as a curtain in our bathroom fell down, so I knew it was time to get creative! I decided to cover the glass with clear Contak paper, which looks a bit frosted. Then, I used my Permapaque white pen to draw a Fife curtain and some "vegetation". This was lots of fun!

That took care of too much on view in this room!

A room with a view to love! 

We celebrated Thanksgiving yesterday with our daughter and son-in-law. I started cooking on Monday, so I wouldn't have everything to do on the day of. I enjoyed taking my time and planning, and loved putting together my table "art" with recycled kraft paper, pine cones and needles, gingko leaves that I happened upon the day before and my fake pumpkin. After the meal, we relaxed by doing leaf rubbings on the paper. I'm looking forward to using the gingko leaves later. They last a long time, and keep their golden color.

This week, the Diva asked us to use the principle of reticula and fragments in our tile. If you have the Zentangle Primer, you've seen this. But if not, it could have left you scratching your head. I haven't taught this principle yet in my classes, but if I may just give a nutshell explanation, here goes:
  • Reticula is a fancy word from frame which, like a string, divides the tile. Unlike a string, it creates regular shapes. It can be a grid or a spiral or a sphere made up of other squares or triangles or spheres. In the Primer, Rick and Maria have included 30 reticula.
  • You fill the reticula with fragments. (There are 154 4-sided fragments, 66 3-sided fragments and 45 orb fragments in the Primer.) I think of the fragments as little tiles, or stones, or beads that I use to fill in the frame. The general idea is to repeat a fragment, or rotate it as you repeat it or mirror it, but you could also use different fragments within the same frame.
  • This is the basic concept. The beauty is that it really opens up a new level of creativity as you work with the smaller fragments as opposed to sections of a string or tile. It moves away from a named tangle, created by a named artist, and shows that, in fact, we can all create original patterns! In the Primer, the reticula are labeled, but only R (for "reticula"), a letter A-L (minus I and J)  and a number 1-33. Likewise, the fragments are just labeled with a letter A-L and a number 1-25 to help you find what you might be looking for. 
  • Check out this post from the Zentangle June 6, 2013 newsletter for more information.
For my Diva tile, I used R-E 1 and a variation of fragment G-1.
If you can't imagine what that looks like, and how could you???, here it is:

I used a blueberry stained tile and experimented with tangling on top of and around the stain. Has anyone stained a tile with cranberry? I'm thinking of giving that a go! 'Tis the season and all.

What do think about reticula and fragment theory? Have you tried it?

Thanks for stopping by. Have a beautiful week!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Diva's Weekly Challenge #293 and "zen" some!

This week the Diva asked us to use an oldie but goodie: Keeko. I probably should have done more with it, but, in the end, decided to use it sparingly as the base for a tree, as deconstructed by Helen Bradley.

Here are some other entries from my sketch book this week. (Although my blog policy is transparency, I'll refrain from posting the other 2 entries, which would not contribute anything good to anyone ;) Maybe once I have "worked through" them, you'll get a look. But for now, they have issues that need some resolution!!!)

Thanks to my beloved for supplying this Phil Ochs quote: "In such an  ugly time, the true protest is beauty."

This was inspired by one of Maria's posts on the Mosaic app, where she was "playing" with fractals and Paradox and Betweed. (If you don't have the app, I highly recommend it. I treasure her descriptions of her creative process, which she generously shares with us. Her writing pen creates as much magic as her drawing pen!!!)

My question for you this week: How do you know when a tile is complete? How do you know when to stop? I would love to hear your thoughts.

Thanks for visiting. Have a peaceful, harmonious week.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Eaxy?? The Diva's Weekly Challenge #292

This week the Diva challenged us with Nadine Roller's tangle Eaxy. The idea is simple enough: upright X's support horizontal X's, which then support more upright X's, and so on.
I won't show my different attempts at learning the tangle, but I'll just say that my very first go at it was the best. The more I tried (thought?), the worse it was! I tried to put it on gridded paper to help me line things up. Nope. I tried to look for the meta-pattern of big and small boxes. Nope. So finally I decided to put away my paper, take an official tile, close my eyes, breathe and think of everything that I'm grateful for, and place my corner dots. Once I had done that, I remembered a photo my friend Didier shared on Facebook yesterday. He had visited a beautiful park in Lille, France, that had once been a city parking lot. (Here are some pictures of Le Jardin des GĂ©ants, but they are nothing compared to Didier's.) I remembered a particular path with interestingly shaped pavers. That became the center space of my Eaxy tile. And the rest fell into place. Another moment of Zen, letting go, and marveling at what happens.

Merci, Didier!
Next time you have a high focus tangle, I hope that you will let go and find your Zen.
Have a peaceful week.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Diva's Weekly Challenge and more!

On Monday of this past week, we welcomed our first batch of trick-or-treaters in our new neighborhood. There were far fewer than we had expected, so I now have some 3 or 4 pounds of leftover sweets. Send a self-addressed box and I'll be happy to share!!
Lar and I celebrated our 19th anniversary on Tuesday with a nice lunch, a walk on a new trail and a movie at the theater where we first met! My card for him this year was another Zendala, inspired by the last InkTober challenge: friend. He is my best friend, and so much more. And I am the luckiest lady in the world!

I completed several black tiles for the Diva's challenge this week, and honestly, wasn't really happy with any of them. They all seemed to come out muddied and flat. I would love to know if you have certain tangles that work better for you on black. Here on those that didn't work for me!!

Have a lovely week! Thanks, as always, for stopping by!