Friday, June 28, 2013

Holes in the Landscape

When I did this zendala challenge for the week I started to think about the Diva's Challenge regarding the flooding in Calgary. I thought how each of the disasters we face may leave holes in the landscape and in our hearts, but underlying  it all are the threads, the ties, and the memories that connect us all. There is more good, more love in the world than the bad. I choose to celebrate that.

This is Erin's Zendala Dare # 62.
I used a zendala tile that I had hand colored with pink watercolors. The tangles were done with a red Micron  pen and shaded with a few different shades of Prismacolor colored pencils.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

McHenry Zendala class

click on picture to enlarge

Zendala classes are one of my favorite classes to teach. We have lots of new tangles as always, but it's the creation of Zendalas that makes it so intriguing. I present a variety of ways to create a unique, personal zendala and then I stand back. I am always amazed and thrilled to see what they come up with! Their ideas help jump start new ones for me!
Thanks McHenry!!!

Monday, June 24, 2013

New black zendalas

I got the new black Zendalas from last week! That's one of the perks of being a CZT. We get access to the new products first! I had such fun playing with them. I used a plain one in the example shown above but they come in a variety of 'pre-strung' tiles too. (see below) 

I have them for sale right now in my classes. I'm teaching a Zendala class at the McHenry County college tomorrow night (June 25th) - Contact the college to sign up ASAP if you want to get in. 815-455-8588 Class number NFA S91 006.

If you can't join me in the class but still want some tiles, just call or email me.

This is the tin that the pre-strung tiles come in. There are 21 in total. 18 are pre-strung and 3 are blank. I couldn't get my camera to show both the tin label and tiles at the same time without throwing the exposure out of whack so see the picture below to get an idea of what the prestrung tiles are like. 

Friday, June 21, 2013

Hurry Holli ! tangleation

The Diva challenge this week asked us to do something without using a tangle pattern that we already knew. We were asked to create something of our own. I found this to be a real challenge. I didn't know what to do. So I played around with different things. I scribbled on scraps of paper. Finally I decided to do something with my own tangleation of two tangle patterns.

I've named this Hurry Holli as it was inspired by Hurry and Hollibaugh.

click on picture to enlarge

Start with an orb - or a circle drawn with a pencil. You can use a template if you like. 
-Draw four lines that curve across the middle - mimicking the shape of the circle. 
-As in Hollibaugh, draw additional curved lines that go behind the first lines. Don't worry about copying my example.
-Continue drawing sets of curved lines until most of the area is covered. You can drop down to sets of three lines when you want.
-Add short lines in sets of three or four to fill in any empty areas.
-Shade the orb as shown (or whatever way you prefer!) In the step-out above, the left side has only the initial pencil shading while the right side has been blended.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Tangles from Helen Williams

Today's tile features tangles from Helen Williams. I first saw her work in the Flickr group and now she has her own blog! Helen is from Australia. Find her wonderful tangle patterns on her blog;  Look under the tab marked 'step by steps & patterns'.

The tangle patterns used in this tile are;

Scrolled Feather
Oval Paradox-y thing

This is part of my continuing challenge to myself to use tangles by different artists (that have created multiple tangles) and to use them together in a single tile.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Exploring Hollibaugh

Hollibaugh is one of the first tangles I learned - and it's one of the first ones that I teach in my Basics class. So I really wanted to come up with a little something different here.

I started with one of my hand-colored zendala tiles and then cut small circles out of a slightly lighter hand-colored tile. The tangle is done with a sepia Micron Pigma pen and the shading with a coordinating Prismacolor pencil. I glued the small circles on after I had done most of the tangle and its shading. I added less lines and less shading to give the smaller circles more of a pop.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Fox Lake

Last night I visited the Fox Lake Library. The program was Zendalas. It was a very quick introduction to Zentangle and then on to Zendalas. We had a great mix of young and not so young and both male and female too. I did a basic string on their tiles beforehand using a quilting stencil so everyone could get off to a quick start. They all did a great job!  - click on each picture to see the details!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Grid (un) Locked

Recently Rick and Maria posted a grid on the Zentangle newsletter - and blog too - that gave out all sorts of ideas for tangleations on a basic grid. I liked this so much I put the grid on the back of my sketchbook so I can refer to it often. They are like little grid seeds that can go together so many ways to create something new each time. 

I used a zendala tile and adapted a grid that Margaret Bremner had shown on her blog a while back. Then I started with the seed that's in spot J1 on the grid. By twisting it around and adding a few variations, I was happy with the final result. I used my black IDenti-pen to get the thick black lines and a Tombow marker for the vibrant pink color.

McHenry County College 6-13

There were 19 students that joined me last night at the McHenry County College last night. I was assigned a new classroom from the one that I previously taught at and it was a bit of a circus trying to find it. I went to the old classroom first, realized my mistake and then found out I was in a different building. I loaded my supplies back in the car, moved to the other lot, and started again. Then the classroom was locked so I had to find a key!  I'm glad I left plenty of time to get there but if I seemed a little harried, I apologize! The students did a wonderful job on their tiles. I saw a number of new ideas for tangleations and shading ideas!

One student left her tile behind and I have it with me. It's the one in the lower left corner in the picture above. If that's you, please call me. 

Monday, June 10, 2013

sketchbook ideas

One of the most popular things I show at my classes is my sketchbook. It's not a sketchbook so much as a scrapbook. I collect Zentangle tangle patterns, string ideas, inspirations and more in it. I refer to it frequently. It is always in the tote bag I bring with me to tangle on the go.

If you ask 10 different CZTs how they organize their tangle patterns you will probably get 10 different answers. So I can't tell you that this is right for you, It's just how I started out and I haven't gotten around to switching to a different system yet. (There is a big discussion on about this topic.)

The book itself is 10" x 10" and it has 26 pages. I am using ALL the pages now plus the insides of both covers.

The cover itself starts with some artwork I did a while ago. Just simple white pen work on the black cover.

Inside you can see a variety of post-it notes. I keep a pad of post-its next to my computer and when I see a tangle pattern that strikes my fancy, I draw it right away with the tangle name and the name of the person that posted it. Sometimes I'll note the web site if I think I may need to go back to it.

The post-its are in my book in alphabetical order. I've thought about putting them in sections by grid or organic tangles but ended up with basic alphabetical order. I do have them separated by official tangles and other tangles though.

On the back cover is something I added just this weekend. It's the Grid (un) Locked that was posted on the blog last week. I copied it in full and then added several blank boxes for me to add my ideas whenever the inspiration strikes me. Hopefully I'll get more ideas from students in my classes too!!!

Inside the front cover is a page I printed out from the website. It lists all the official tangle patterns. I then started looking at those patterns and made lists of which tangles would be good for snakes -  lines, or borders. The other list is those tangles that start with grids.

Those lists are by no means complete and I'll probably be adding more at some point.

I also use my sketchbook to store ideas. If I see a tile done by someone else that uses an interesting concept I'll make a note or draw a quick thumbnail of it.

When I'm out and about I may see a carpet in a hotel that inspires a pattern. This picture shows a wallpaper that I thought was intriguing. It was white on a cream background. I took a quick picture and  when I printed it out I had to spend some time picking out the pattern with a pen. Below you can see how I'm playing with how those design elements might work on a tile.                                                                  

Other pages in the book have printouts of new tangle patterns from the Zentangle newsletter. And in the way back of the book I have two pages with small squares filled with string ideas.

I have other notebook binders that have finished tiles in page protectors.

Have fun setting up your own systems!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The devil that you know

Erin at the Bright Owl  - has a wonderful collection of templates for zendalas. This week, instead if putting out a new one, she challenged us to revisit an old one that we didn't like or had problems with.

I looked through all the templates I had printed out and pulled out all the ones that I hadn't tried. There are a variety of reasons why I haven't done several of them. Sometimes I'm just too busy to get to them. Sometimes I look at them and figure it would be too busy. And sometimes I just don't like them. I don't know why I hadn't done this one - I think it was a combination of all three reasons.

This is dare number 32 that came out November 17th 2012. When I looked at it I kept seeing alien faces staring at me so I finally decided to just go with that.

Hand colored tile with watercolor paints - blue Micron pen -Prismacolor blue pencil for shading.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Birds on a Wire

'Birds on a Wire' is the challenge tangle this week. It was designed by CZT Mary Kissel - and you can see the step outs on  her blog HERE .

I did this tangle in the spiral format again. It's a fun way to do a monotangle. The picture below was the way I first did it. I love black and white but something draws me to color. After I took the photo, I erased most of the pencil shading. I then used Tombow markers for the red, wellow, and oranges. Then I finished up with a Prismacolor green colored pencil.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Verve monotangle

It's always fun to do monotangles. There are no problems to work out when figuring out which tangles will work best with it. You just get right to it.

This tangle is Verve. It comes from JJ LaBarbera. Her blog showing the instructions is
I had fun doing this with my different colors of micron pens and then shading with coordinating colored pencils. Shading is one of my favorite parts and I love how the colored pencils really highlight the shading for each section here.