Friday, August 31, 2012

Koi coloring brushes - my new colors and the Zendala Dare 19

click on picture to enlarge

I just got some new colors of the Koi Coloring Brushes from Sakura and I had to give them a test run in this little Zendala. I used the Zendala posted by Erin from The Bright Owl - This is the Dare #19.

When I first get new markers I try them out on a plain piece of white paper (in this case an index card). Then I try out using the colorless blender and also using them with water brushes. Using the Koi markers as watercolors gives them a whole different look. After I had my washes down I tried out a variety of colored Micron Pigma pens on top to see which color worked best with the washes. I settled on the burgundy pen.

Thank you Sakura!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Blindsided challenge

This challenge asked us to create a string without looking while we did it. It caused me to draw some shapes that were not too pleasing to me. Some of the shapes seemed too tiny to be able to do anything with. But when I decided to do a mono-tangle with 'striping' it all came together.

Monday, August 27, 2012

creating a pattern from another source.

Sometimes I see a pattern that I want to use but it's tricky to get the proportions right by eyeballing it. I want to show you a trick for doing just that. Both the old school and new way to do it. 

I purchased a Dover book about Octagons - see the picture below. Dover books set up that any artist may use their images without worrying about copyrights.  One of the octagons looks like it will be perfect for tangles. But there wasn't an example in the book that was the right size for my zendala tiles. The trick was to pull out my proportional scale. When I studied graphic design a few years ago this was a tool of the trade. We all had to figure out how to use it. As you can see below, my proportional scale has yellowed over the years.

To use a proportional scale you put in the dimensions of what you have and you rotate the tool until you see the dimension that you want it to be. You will then get a percentage that you then use for all the other dimensions to get your finished piece. Got that? Well, if that is as clear as mud, the web has come to the rescue  There are now a variety of sites that you can use to do the exact same thing.  or   or These are just a few of several sites that do this for you. Use whichever one makes more sense to you. 

By the way, feel free to use my template above in your work. If you right click on the picture you can copy the image.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Sakura Zentangle video

Today I want to tell you about a new video that Sakura has just posted. Click on the link to see it. It is a compilation of students from a number of zentangle classes throughout the country. Several of them are tanglers from Illinois! You may recognize Banbury Fair in the background. And if you notice the 18 year old tangling under the tree - that's my son! We actually did a short video where he took his shirt off too. (That would have appealed to the teenage girls!)

Sakura makes a great selection of products that I'm happy to use in my zentangles, zendalas and ZIAs. I just got some new Koi coloring brush markers to try out so I'll be posting about them next week!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

more from Ohio

Wandering around my hotel I kept seeing tangle patterns. In the carpet, in the walls, in the upholstery and even in other ladies clothing. These are a few of the pictures I happened to snap.

I was able to spend some time with my grand babies so I have to share some pictures of them too!

They love to play in the fountains!

And they Love ice cream!

But do you think I could get a good picture of the two of them together???

Monday, August 20, 2012

HOOT report 2012

I got home late last night after a fun and busy week in Columbus, Ohio. HOOT - the Heart of Ohio Tole painters held their annual convention and I was so happy to be back there with friends and all the creative energy. There were classes with wonderful teachers, great shopping at the expo floor, exhibits and contest, banquets and more.

The first picture you see is of Memory boxes. They are done for families that have lost infants at birth. Instead of going home with their babies' bracelet and hat in a plastic bag, they are given a handpainted memory box. At the convention they had a table set up with all the supplies and everyone is invited to sit down and paint in their free time. As you can probably guess I did the ones with the zentangle patterns. It's a little more challenging to do the tangles and shading with a paintbrush instead of a pen but it was all good.

The theme of the conference was "U TOUCAN PAINT". I had three great classes pictured above. Some of them still have a few little things to touch up and varnish to be added, but I'm pretty pleased with them all.

Class with Pat Lentine

Class with Judy Diephouse.

And this was our small group of friends at the banquet on the last night.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Dare 17 - and remembering my godmother

The zendala dare #17 asked us to do a zendala in honor of someone who had battled cancer.

For me that would be my godmother. Gloria was my mom's best friend. They were in each other's weddings and as couples they got together every chance they got. Both of them were only children so they were really like sisters. They would alternate throwing New Year's Eve parties and all the kids would be put to bed but we would really be whispering and giggling upstairs while the adults partied in the rec rooms in the basement. At the stroke of midnight those of us who were still awake would run downstairs to blow the noisemakers with our parents.

Aunt Gloria battled breast cancer. She put up a good fight but it won. My mom was visiting me at the time when we got the phone call. I walked outside with her and broke the news. I tear up now remembering that day. My mom is gone now too. I know that the two of them are back together, laughing together as they watch over all the grandchildren.

Aunt Gloria loved her ice cream. So the sherbet colors in my zendala are my way to remember her.


On a personal note - I will be attending a conference next week while my husband holds down the fort at home. Therefore I will not be able to post to mu blog. Please don't worry - I will return and hope to have all sorts of new things to tell you about then. - Sue

Friday, August 10, 2012

Sepia Brayd

The Diva has asked us to use a tangle called Brayd in our work this week. Brayd is a lovely tangle from Michele Beauchamp CZT. I've admired Brayd before but hadn't used it yet. I think that when I did it this week, the things I enjoyed the most were the sparkles and the opportunities for shading. I love how it becomes three dimensional with the shading and sparkles.  I also used one of Sandy Steen Bartholomew's tangles - 'Skeen' behind Brayd.

The pen used is a colored Micron Pigma pen and colored pencils were used for shading.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Praying for those in fire country

I did this tile a couple of weeks ago when there were multiple fires in Colorado - I figured I would post it when the fires were out - now I hear there are more in new locations. 

Thinking safe thoughts for all of those worried about the fires and those who lost homes. 

Pray for rain to end the drought!

And to everybody else - stay safe - don't throw cigarette butts out car windows! (my pet peeve!)

Monday, August 6, 2012

busy weekend classes

This past weekend  was busy. I did a private party on Saturday and a class at Banbury on Sunday. Great group of students both days. I love teaching Zentangle!

Do you see what one of the gals brought to the party on Saturday? The mix is called "ZEN PARTY". We had fun snacks and drinks too. It didn't even phase us when a storm went through and caused the lights to flicker a few times. Thanks goodness they came right back on though!

It's fun to look at all the tiles as a group too. Same tangles were taught but oh such different interpretations! Love them all!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Diva Challenge 81 - Relay for Life

The newest Diva challenge is a guest post from Erin Olsen She has posted a wonderful template for a zendala. She has also posted some info about the Relay for Life for the American Cancer Society. I wish her the best in her fundraising efforts.

I choose to complete these zendala using a tile I colored first. I used a red Micron pen for my tangles and a white colored pencil to highlight and additional colored pencils to shade.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Tangle pattern O-H

click picture to enlarge

When I went with my son to his college orientation I saw a pattern in the fabric of the chair I was sitting on. I thought it would be interesting in a tile. I needed to play around with it a bit but found I was happy with the way it came out. In case you missed my previous post - my son will be attending The Ohio State University. Their cheer begins with O-H!

Steps to do O-H
- Use a pen or marker that will draw a fat line. I used a Sakura Graphic #1. Draw a large script O and then add loops or figure 8s. Don't get too crazy with your line work.
- For the second step use a pen with a smaller nib. I used the standard Sakura Micron Pigma pen 01.  Draw script Os, figure 8s and loops. Try to put your lines into the blank areas between your first set if lines. 
- On both steps feel free to let your lines appear to go out of the section and then come back in again. (think of a figure 8 with the top loop missing a bit.)
- shade as desired.

Tile incorporating O-H

Chair back that inspired this.