Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Ecoline markers - light fast?

Ecoline brush markers are a a fairly recent purchase for me. The colors are bright and the markers are juicy. Definitely fun to play with. If you liked my previous post with the stained glass orbs, these are the markers I used for some of them. (I also used my Tombow markers.) In the picture you will see a circular color chart. I did that when I first got them and added water to see what they would look like when thinned with water.

But are they lightfast? If you frame a piece and/or hang it up on your wall, what will happen? So I decided to find out. I took a strip of my good drawing paper and made a color chart with all the colored markers in my set. If you look at each color you will see that I drew a thin line with the marker quickly. Then to the right I drew a thick line, letting the juiciness of the pen fully saturate the strip. I wrote the name and number of the color under the color.

Then I took a black piece of cardstock paper and covered one half of the paper. Approximately 1/3 of the thick line was covered up. Then I put the paper in a southern facing window where it would get direct sunlight. I put it there on June 18th and took it out one month later.

Results? As you can see below, some colors faded badly. The ultramarine violet and blue violet were the worst. That didn't surprise me because pinks and purples are known for fading. What did surprise me was there was also significant fading in the burnt sienna and green colors too. There was lessor fading in several other colors also.

Remember, this was only one month! So I'll put it back in the window and see what keeps happening.

Will I keep using these markers? Yes, because the colors make me happy. If you photograph your work and post it online you will be fine.  But I will not use these for anything that I sell or give to someone that may want to put them on display. 

Thursday, June 18, 2020

stained glass orbs

I took a Zoom class with Inge Frasch in Germany yesterday. Stained glass orbs was such fun! Thanks Inge! Since then I've done 4 more based on the same technique. This was a fun way to use all my colored markers (Tombows) and explore the reticula and fragments from the book from Zentangle. Always good to try something new!

Sunday, June 7, 2020

arukas florz

We have been lucky that so many zentangle artists have been sharing classes during these trying times. I was thankful to spend time with Sonya Yencer on Facebook this morning. She walked us through Floorz and Arukas. These are two tangles I enjoy but don't used all that frequently. Of course, since I'm already familiar with these tangles, I wasn't paying close attention to what Sonya was saying and I jumped ahead. So my tile went off in its own way. I'm happy with what resulted though. It's got quite a few tangleations in it. 

Friday, May 29, 2020

amazing spider

I continue to do a lot of tangling these days. It helps keep me calm. This is a brand new tangle. It's challenging for sure but I love the results! It's called 'Amazing Spider" by Hennie  Brouwer. Thanks Hennie! I added a border of Flux. The border helps to hide the edges where the pattern gets confusing.

Monday, May 11, 2020

Tangled and painted rocks

I can't sew masks and I can't man the volunteer lines at the food banks, but I can paint and I can tangle. So in conjunction with a local real estate agent, I'm painting rocks that are being placed all over my village. They all have some sort of inspirational word or phrase that's usually on the other side of the rock.

We let our neighbors know they were out there on our local Facebook page. They have responded that they are finding them during their walks around the neighborhood during the quarantine. Some are taken home as treasures.  Many of them are finding new homes somewhere else in the village for others to find later.

Stay safe everyone!

Saturday, April 25, 2020

April tiles

Like many of you, I'm somewhat stressed during the quarantine. Every little headache, any scratchy throat, or slight cough has me wondering if I've got 'it'. Thankfully, I'm still healthy. But what to do about the stress?
I'm finding some relief in tangling. The best stress relief is coming from doing the online classes that several teachers are offering from around the world. Even though I usually like to 'think outside of the box' I find that simply following along with a class, doing the same tangles as everyone else, and not having to make any decisions, is the most relaxing for me. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!!
The tiles in the picture are from classes with Mindandtangle, Annie Taylor CZT and Neha.Agrawal.

Monday, April 13, 2020

when life gives you lemons .......

When life gives you lemons ...... make lemonade.

That expression is so appropriate right now. Everyone is staying home - and staying SAFE. And that's a very good thing. But like so many of you, I've been going stir crazy. Buuuut, Zentangle to the rescue. There have been a number of CZTs and other artists that have been teaching classes online - both paid and free classes. They are through Facebook, Instagram. and even Zoom.

I am so thankful for these resources. It gives me sanity, it gives me a schedule to look forward to. And the best thing, it's started my creative juices flowing again.

The artwork above has all been done within the past month. I have the names of the artist that tauight the class on the back of most of these pieces - but not all of them. I'm trying to remember them all but I've forgotten a few. If you start with the large piece in the left lower corner, Tracy Weissapfel, - blue zendala ??? - Top brightly colored piece on black, Eni Oken, - Upper right, Annie Taylor CZT,  - piece to the right of the black was done in a ZOOM meeting with the Prairie Tanglers, - Renaissance Zendala was with Romi Boraz Marks, - Daisies were with Trish Pellitier CZT, - and the tiles in the lower right were with Sonya Yencer.

That's just the ones in the picture above. I've done a number of other things too but they are not all finished yet so they are not pictured. Actually, some of the things in the picture are not finished either but I'm still thinking about what to add.

My wishes for all of you - Stay home, stay safe, stay healthy, and let those creative juices flow!

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Spring zendala

It's not quite spring, but my daffodils are starting to come up. It won't be long before they start to bloom. We are starting to see some slightly warmer temperatures too so a spring zendala was in order.

This was done using a PN micron and colored pencils for the color. I used a circle template to get my spacing the way I wanted it. Otherwise, it's all freehand.

Happy Spring!

Saturday, February 8, 2020


When I saw the stepouts for the tangle pattern Trinity I knew I wanted to play with it. I wanted to challenge myself a little so I did it in the round. This zendala began with light pencil lines creating my circles. Then I did a wash of clean water within the lines. I dropped in color from my Ecoline brush markers using a watercolor wet on wet technique. The tangles were done with a blue Micron pen. Shading was done last with colored pencils, See below for a picture before the tangles were added. It was  taken just after I figured out that I needed to divide the section into triangles before I did Trinity.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

playing with Khala

Khala is a new tangle from Anica Gabrovec, CZT. I've seen a number of variations done by others on Facebook. There have been some real beautys! I tried a few little ones but then I started this one.  The colors were done with with my Ecoline brush markers and at first I wasn't very happy. So I added a color wash and dropped in additional color. It was much better! I then did the tangle variation and added a few more tangles for good measure. Finally I added colored pencil in selected areas. Fun.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Spirals in a zendala inspired by Book of Kells

Spirals in a zendala inspired by Book of Kells

I recently took a class in Celtic calligraphy at the Irish American Heritage Center in Chicago. It was taught by renowned calligraphy artist Denis Brown. I learned so much. Not just about calligraphy, but also about the Book of Kells and the three manuscripts that preceded it and influenced it. The Book of Kells is a glorious manuscript with wonderful illuminations, knotwork, and so many details. It actually is available online if you are interested in seeing it yourself.

After the calligraphy class I came home and wanted to do more. I went through my stash since I vaguely remembered getting some stencils from Jenny Perruzzi a while back. They were all influenced by knotwork. One of them was a stencil that was a spiral. I didn't think much of it when I first got it but now, WOW, it is the same shape as the spirals in the Book of Kells.

Below I used the spiral stencil and then added extra tangles. The colored picture above was done with colored pencils - and inspired by the colors I saw in the Book of Kells. Then I added the Latin words for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. In a tiny space it was challenging to do proper Celtic letters.

Jenny doesn't have these stencils in her Etsy store right now, she's actually got her shop, Acadia Laser Creations on hiatus right now. But if you ask her .........

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Fall Zendala

I've been seeing several pieces done with colored pencil lately so I was inspired to pull out my colored pencils and go for one of my own. Thank you to everyone who inspired me!

This started with a small quilting stencil in my stash. Once I had the basic lines I added a few embellishments and a few simple tangles. Then I grabbed my Prismacolor colored pencils. I tried to pick colors that reminded me of fall leaves - but of course, when I added the purple, I kind of went out on a limb.That was fun!

I apologize for the lack of posts last month. I had a bit of a dry spell. If you have a dry spell too, please don't worry about it. Your mojo will come back when you are ready.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Rose Window

Shortly after the fire at Notre Dame, Jenny Peruzzi came out with a stencil based on the Rose window. Of course I had to buy the stencil and finally had a chance to really play with it. It's an intricate stencil and you can use the whole thing to make a big mandala or just use part of the stencil as I did here. Look at the picture below for the stencil itself.

First I traced the stencil lightly with pencil. I used my Inktense pencils in a somewhat random manner so I could get really strong color. I wet the pencil drawing carefully to blend the colors. I then outlined each shape with a gold gellyroll pen. The gold is hard to see unless you really enlarge the photo.

These are the colors I used.

The stencil is available through Jenny's Etsy shop - Acadia Laser Creations. It may not be in stock right now - contact Jenny if you are interested,

Thursday, August 29, 2019


At the last Prairie Tanglers meeting we were given a template for this labryinth. It was just the gray lines you can see behind the tangles. Each of us added color of our choosing. I used an assortment of blue and green Derwent Intense pencils. Then I used water on a brush to smooth and blend the colors together. I then started tangling on just the gray lines with a Tombow Monotwin pen. Sue Reading, who taught the class, cautioned us against adding additional color after the tangling as the penwork might bleed. However, the Tombow monotwin has a different type of ink so I was able to adjust the color to my heart's content. By the way, I can't tell you any more about the pen as all the small print is in Japanese. But it sure was fun to have that freedom!

You will see the tangles I used were smaller ones as the space I had for tangling was pretty narrow. Many of the tangles are mine and you can find the stepouts under the tab marked 'tangle pattern gallery'. Several other people at the meeting did their tangles in the larger spaces - it was interesting to see the variety.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

OH string with rounding

I saw a post on Facebook that used a continuous, loopy string. Auras were added and then corners were rounded. I don't know exactly who originated it but I decided to take the concept and run with it.

I used one of my colored zendala tiles and a blue micron pen. I used my tangle OH instead of one continuous string. If you look at the picture below you can see the OH was done three times. I added auras and the rounding where it seemed appropriate. That's the stage in the picture below.

It needed more though, so I added a few 'worms' with striping. It still needed more so in came Pokeleaf. Shading with colored pencils and some highlights finished it.