Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Off the Beaten Path

"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."    Ralph Waldo Emerson

I'm back... with more Zendala pre-strung colored tiles. I had such a great response to the square pre-strung tiles I made, that I decided to create the same tiles as Zendalas. Just very briefly, in case you haven't seen them yet, these are created with alcohol inks on yupo paper and then printed on Bristol vellum, a great surface for tangling. If you missed it, you can read more about the process in my blog from a few months ago.

I will warn you that this is going to be a long post, with lots of photos. Please stick with me to the end.... I don't think you'll be disappointed. I am so excited today to include art work here by my friend, CZT Sonya Yencer. Her tangled pieces are always beautiful, so I asked if she would tangle some of my new Zendala tiles to give you a different perspective on what can be done with them. And she said yes! But first, take a look at some of the Zendalas that I just completed (all include before and after photos, but the befores may not all be turned in the same direction as the afters.)

The first is a multi-colored tile tangled using black micron, stardust gelly rolls, and white gelly roll pen. The patterns used are Antidots, D'rua, Verdigogh, and Tipple. I chose, for the most part, to ignore the pathways and just go for it. I love the coloring in this tile.

The next tile was created in a more monochromatic color scheme. I tangled the pathways using Cadent, but didn't fill in all the paths. Less is very often more, and I have to keep telling myself that. Then I filled in some of the background spaces with Printemps using a white gelly roll pen and a touch of stardust gelly rolls. I kept telling myself, "Don't do it all...don't do it all!"


Next up is a tile with more earthy tones. So I decided to use a brown micron on this one, with touches of stardust and white gelly roll pens again. At first I wasn't sure that I liked the combination of Munchin and Sand Swirl that I used, but by the time I was done I had changed my mind.

Jumping from earth tones to much brighter pink, purple and blue... on this one I filled some of the background areas with the light and airy patterns N'zeppel and Frost Flower. I added a touch of white highlights using a white pastel pencil, and I ended up liking this one more than I thought I would when I began it.

The last one of my tiles that I have to share with you... for now... is one of the tiles from my gray collection. Just shades of gray in these, no color. That is, until I started tangling. I tangled all the pathways in this one (with variations of the pattern Emingle), using black and red microns, adding shading with graphite and a red pastel pencil. I have grown to love this bristol vellum paper for shading because the pencil smudges so easily with a tortillion.

I've saved the best for last, so please DON'T GO ANYWHERE YET!!!!  Here are three tiles that the very talented Sonya completed, along with a brief description of each, in her own words.

"I was immediately drawn to this one because warm
analogous colors make me so happy! In this instance, I chose to ignore the background shapes and create my image on top. The fall weather appears to have revealed a sunflower-y shape! Materials: black .01 Micron, white Gellyroll, Silver Slicci, and InkTense watercolor pencils."


"Love the blend of warm and cool tones on one Zendala! On this one, I wanted to do something bold so I chose a mix of Striping and Pepper to fill a handful of the larger shapes. Sometimes it's hard to know when to stop to achieve the "right" balance of tangled/untangled space. Materials: black .01 Micron, white Gellyroll, InkTense watercolor pencils."

And for Sonya's last Zendala:
"This Zendala's bold colors intimidated me at first because I didn't want to "ruin" the background - it was so striking on its own! So I chose a more classic way to approach it, allowing the shapes to be the strings and working inside. I added in tangles breaking free of the strings to add visual interest. The background is filled with Tipple and Printemps. Materials: white Gellyroll, clear Glaze Gellyroll, InkTense watercolor pencils."

Sonya mentioned the Tipple/Printemps background in this one. It's so subtle that you can barely see it in the photo, so here's a closeup. 

I hope that you've been inspired by some of Sonya's and my tiles. Thank you Sonya for allowing me to share your amazing work in my blog! The good news is that these tiles are now available in my Etsy shop here, just in case you'd like to try some for yourself. If you do, I'd love to see what you create with them, so feel free to send me pictures of your art work.... or post them in a Facebook group.... or post them in your own blog... or just keep them to yourself, if you'd rather. Thanks for taking a peek!

Monday, October 3, 2016

The Path to Nowhere

Forget about trying to compete with someone else. Create your own pathway. Create your own new vision.       Herbie Hancock

Who loves Zendalas? (Most of you, I hope!) Who's seen my colored pre-strung tiles? (Again, most of you, I hope!) If not, you can read all about them here.

Today I'm here to share some of those pre-strung tiles that I've made into Zendalas. I love working on round tiles, but not always drawing the typical, symmetrical designs found on many Zendalas. As you will see below, these are anything but typical! I am showing the 'before' and 'after' tiles. Note that in the first one, the before is not exactly the same as the after tile, as I forgot to take a picture before tangling, but the tile has the same coloring as the after.

Patterns used: Flowtus and Indyrella
Shaded with pastel pencils

On the first tile I tangled between the pathways, but on the next one I tiled inside the pathways.

Pattern used: Garlic Cloves

I expect to have the tiles in my Etsy shop in a couple of weeks. Now it's time to get back to work... there are lots more Zendala tiles awaiting me.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Reticula and Fragments

"A work of art is above all an adventure of the mind."      Eugene Ionesco

Earlier this year, Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas, co-founders of the Zentangle Method, published their second book. It's called Zentangle Primer, and the real reason I purchased it was for the chapter called "Reticula and Fragments." There was lots of buzz about it in the world of Zentangle and I wanted to see what it all meant.

As mentioned in the book, the definition of reticulum is a fine network or net-like structure. In other words, at least the way I understand it, it is a grid. But... the grid doesn't necessarily need to be made up of squares. And fragments is the word coined to mean the elements that fill the spaces of the reticulum. Just think of a grid pattern that you like... the fragments are the lines/shapes inside any one square of that grid (if it is, indeed, square.) In the book, Rick and Maria made up a chart showing many sample fragments, and each one has a letter and number to name it. You can fill your reticula with one or more fragments, drawing each one exactly the same, or rotating them.... or alternating them.... or mirroring them. 

Here are some tiles I drew recently using this principle of  reticula and fragments. This first one uses fragments X7 and F7. 

The next tile uses M1 and K5. I like the way these two flow together.

The next tile was not one of my shining moments. I chose fragment B1 as you see in the upper left corner. My plan was to alternate it with the same thing rotated on the diagonal as you see in the first two rows. However, my plan went awry at the end of the third row. I guess I got distracted by something. At that point I decided just to continue doing them randomly. I'm not too happy with the completed tile, but there are no mistakes in Zentangle!

If you like grid tangles, this is a fun way to approach them and you get some interesting results. And if you're thoroughly confused by now, you might want to get the new book from zentangle.com and check it out.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Putting my Paper to Good Use

"I go wherever my creativity takes me."     Lil Wayne

A couple of months ago I pulled out a piece of scrapbooking paper to tangle on. I have a box full of these papers which I rarely use. This is what I created with a white gelly roll pen.

Patterns used: Flux and Henna Drum

I was leaving shortly after that for my cruise and decided to take a bunch of squares of various papers to work on... they are very thin and lightweight and take up virtually no space in my suitcase. Here are the before and afters of the ones I tangled on vacation. The before pictures don't match exactly because those photos were taken of a different section from the larger piece of paper.

 Pattern used: Baton

 Patterns used: Knightsbridge, elements of Crescent Moon, Static, Up n Down, Tipple, Fassett, Printemps, and Cubine tangleation

 Patterns used: Inapod and Uncorked tangleation

If you're like me and have a stack of papers just waiting for... something... someday... you might want to pull them out and see what you can tangle up! 

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Off the Beaten Pathway

"The imagination is the golden pathway to everywhere."      
 Terence McKenna

I'm back to share some more of the tangling I did on my recent cruise. If you missed my first blog from the cruise, about patterns and my tangling, check it out here. In addition to the official Zentangle pre-strung tiles I shared last time, I brought along some of my own colored pre-strung tiles to work on. Here are the before and after photos of the first one.

 Patterns used: Diva Dance and a tangleation of Beelight

For the tangling I used Micron pens in purple and pink, along with a white gelly roll pen.

The next one I chose was in a totally different color family.

Patterns used: Elements of Florz and Printemps

This one combined brown and black pens, as well as the white gelly roll. A brown pastel pencil was used to fill in the Printemps swirls.

Then I picked one of my gray tiles and did lots of line work to fill in the pathways. My lines are not as smooth as they could be, but luckily when you hold the tile out and look at it, it looks okay (just don't look too closely!)

If you haven't tried my pre-strung colored and gray tiles yet, you can check them out in my etsy shop. They're a lot of fun to use to fill in the pathways or the backgrounds. I only introduced these tiles in July, and so many of you have purchased them and told me how much you love them. Thanks to all of you who have given them a whirl!

There's still more tangling from my cruise to share, so I'll be back soon!