Saturday, June 21, 2014

Diva Challenge & String Thing

When I first saw the string for String Thing 45 this week I saw it as a woodburned piece so found a 4" x 4" piece and got started.  Mostly happy with it - would have preferred a bit more dimension on the inside but I'm OK as it is - it's always a good day when I can do a little pyrography.

click on any image for larger view

String Thing 45

Tangles: Dooleedo, Demi, and Dex


Completed last week's String Thing 44 a little too late to enter it.  Initially I stopped and thought it was finished in the first photo but the more I looked at it the more incomplete it felt.  It also didn't have much eye appeal for me - felt like the 'nzeppel was too big.  I let it sit for awhile and then decided to fill in the background.  It looks better but....  The reason I'm posting it is that it ended up fulfilling another challenge.

The Sketchbook Project folks have started another project called Challenge Accepted - this week it was to find an X and post it via one of their options.  It was down to the last day and I still had not found an X.  I have walking poles by Exerstrider and in desparation was going to cross those but before I got around to that I saw the String 44 tile on my work table and B.A.M!  I saw the X.  The whole time I'd been working on it I'd never seen the X.


String Thing 44



Tangles: 'Nzeppel and Navaho





Last is the Diva Challenge 172 - Duotangle  Auraknot and Mooka - love Auraknot but Mooka is another story - love it but have always been less than satisfied with mine.  The challenge for me this week was a vow to post it no matter how it turned out.  So here it is.  Actually it's one of my better efforts - discovered a couple of tricks that made a difference.  Gives me hope that with more practice I may learn to love my Mooka and stop avoiding it.







Sunday, June 8, 2014

Zendala Dare and String Thing Challenges


So glad to see the Zendala Dare's appearance in my feed reader - welcome back Erin - hope you enjoy your summer. Looking forward to hearing more about you business opportunity - sounds like even though you're out of school for the summer you're still going to be quite busy.  Hope to see a few more Dares before you head back to school.

Zendala Dare #94 - since it's the first of the month the added feature is Happy.  I thought about using tangles that begin with the letters in Happy but decided to go with what often makes me happy when tangling - lines.  Line work makes me happy.  A little surprised at what appeared - it's a little more delicate than what I usually do, as in fill any open space with a tangle lol!  I'm not entirely sure that it doesn't need a bit more but for know I'm going with this.  Who knows another day I might pick it up and add more to it.

click on an image for larger view


Zendala Dare 94 - Happy




It's a String Thing #43 challenge can be found at Tickled to Tangle  I'm late to this challenge.  I think I managed to complete one before taking off on my recent travel adventure.  Glad to find it again - this one was a fun one with lots of appeal.  The tangle choices were Hypnotic, Hibred, Hollibaugh and Huggins.  I opted to not use Huggins.  I kind of like the way it turned out.  Looking forward to adding this to my list of challenges.


It's a String Thing #43




Wednesday, June 4, 2014

I'm Ba-a-a-a-ck

If you are looking for the Diva Challenge 170 photos and you don't want to read through a long post on my recent travel adventure feel free to scroll to the end for the photos.

Such a poor neglected blog, but I have mostly good reasons for the silence.  I was off traveling on a 5+ week adventure.  While I did have plans to post from the road that part did not happen - having too much fun, lack of blog worthy photos and less than stellar internet connections via my iPad.

The trip started the end of April, I flew to Portland, ME for Tangle U - my first time attending.  Highlights - with 110 CZTs in attendance so much creative energy flowing all weekend long - taking it all in - amazing and fun.  It was also fun reconnecting with a few classmates from Seminar 4 and also meeting so many other folks that I've only known online via their websites.  Sandy's CZT Trading cards were a hit and so helpful to connect names with faces.

With so many folks in attendance from Seminar 10 (a hoot of a group) and others that follow my brother's blog I had to make a slight change to my name tag.


click on any image for larger view


One downside was the snafu that prevented Margaret Bremner from attending - was so looking forward to meeting her - absolutely love her work.  The disappointment was eased somewhat by receiving not one but two of her tiles in the Missing You and Ensemble swaps.  How lucky can you get!  Thank you Margaret for participating in the swaps!

Next after a short bus ride from Portland to the Boston Amtrak station I was on the train to Ohio for visits with family and friends.  Mom's place was home base for catching up with relatives and long time friends, plus a weekend trip to visit my brother's family.  Missed out on seeing them the last time back - had a great time visiting with nieces and nephew and their spouses and children.  In addition to seeing how much the 3 grand nieces had grown since I last saw them I got to meet 3 new little cuties that have since joined the family.  Also a fun shout out to my sister-in-law who always willingly accommodates whatever dietary plan I'm following.  This time she managed to do it perfectly before I'd even had a chance to fill her in on the details, ESP works well and the email exchange was priceless, made my day - thanks Lori.  Oh and I won the bet going away!

Spent a few days in Columbus visiting friends I've known for 40 years - how great is it when you can get together after many years and it's as if you saw each other last week - never missing a beat, great conversation and so easy and comfortable just being together.

My cousin Dianne picked me up in Columbus and we along with Cris of TangledUpInArt drove over to southern Indiana joining 20 others for CZT Hideaway 2014.  OMG!!!! what fantastic weekend of tangling, relaxing and meeting more CZTs, but the best thing about it - besides meeting Angie and Lesley, the two awesome CZT's that organized the retreat, was sharing it with brother Donald and cousin Dianne - the first time we've been together since they became CZTs.  The weekend went by so fast - would have gladly stayed there a whole week, will definitely attend this event again.


Angie  Dianne  Me  Donald  Lesley

Hitched a ride back to Indianapolis with my brother - bright and early the next morning was on the train home to San Diego.  There was one other fun event planned for the hour layover in Albuquerque, NM.  Dennie and her sister, both CZTs I'd met at last October's Viva Zentangle retreat in Nevada, were going to come down and meet me at the train station - however as the train was running quite a bit behind schedule we couldn't make it happen.  The good news is I'll get to see them at Tangle U next year which will be in Santa Fe.

It was a great trip but it sure is nice to be home!

Diva Challenge #170 - UMT - Bugles

Lately I've been having fun with with Found Poetry/Prose ZIAs.  I usually do a standard tile for the challenges but was having a hard time getting started with one this time so decided to do another Found Poetry ZIA.  I'm  going to be teaching a class on it in July so it will be nice to have a few more samples to share.


 Tangles used: bugles, quabog, fescu and riverstones



 Just another one I did recently - I actually found 3 poems from this one page but have not completed the tangles on the other two - I think I'm hooked.


 Tangles used: mssst, printemps, dooleedo, angel fish, shattuck co2, and heartvine


If you're in the San Diego area click here for information on the Found and Tangled class in July



Sunday, April 13, 2014

Zentangle Diva Challenge 162



Challenge 162 - Initial String - a quick post mostly to test posting from my phone - should be interesting. I used T A (Tinkered Art) to create the string. In previous attempts I found using S W as a string was not very inspiring so thought I would mix it up a bit.





- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Diva Challenge 156 ... and a bit more

This week's challenge - try grid-based patterns on curvy or uneven grids - you can read about the inspiration for the challenge and view entries on the Diva's blog.

I'm quite fond of grid based patterns so this was a fun challenge. The first one I completed didn't turn out as curvy/uneven as I intended so decided to do a second one.  That's where things got interesting!   I keep a tray on my desk with blank tiles.  At the back of the tray I also keep tiles I started but never completed.  Often times the incomplete ones end up in this stack because I'm not liking how it looks or not sure how to finish it off or just feeling stuck.   It's amazing how often I can pull one of those tiles to work on and whatever was in the way before is gone and I end up with a completed tile.

When I decided to do the second tile for this challenge I was just reaching for a new blank tile - somehow the tray ended up turned around so instead the incompletes were now in the front of the tray.  Since I was seeing the back of the tile I didn't realized I'd pulled an incomplete until I turned it over.  It was a bit surprising but when I looked at the tile I'd pulled I realized I'd pulled the perfect tile for the curvy or in this case wonky grid challenge.  Unfortunately I didn't take a photo before I started working on it.


click on any image for larger view


Challenge 156 - Tile 1




Challenge 156 - Tile 2

When I re-started on this incomplete tile, the grid as Bridgen was completed and only 3 tangles had been added in the sections.  I don't recall when or what I'd set out to do with this tangle but when I saw it today it seemed perfect for the challenge.  I didn't do much shading as I didn't care for the graphite with the Sepia pen and didn't have a colored pencil that would have worked so I guess it's still a little incomplete.






It's a String Thing #29

Just discovered Adele Bruno's It's a String Thing  so gave that a try this week.  I was trying out a different pen - won't be using it again as it didn't give me as sharp a line and didn't scan well.





Zendala Dare #92

Haven't done a Zendala Dare in a while but managed to get this one completed - finished it a week ago but never got around to posting it until now.





 All I got for now!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Diva Challenge #154 -Valentangle

Didn't spend much time thinking about this one, other than a small debate whether to use a heart string or go more abstract. In true Zentangle style - just went with the flow and waited to see what would appear.  About half way through had my doubts but just kept adding a little this a little that until it felt finished.  I rather like it.


What's your inspiration for Valentine's Day?


click image for larger view


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Diva Challenge 153 UMT Jailed Johnny

Head on over to the Diva Challenge to read more about this week's challenge.  It's UMT (Use My Tangle) week.  This week's tangle is Jailed Johnny courtesy of Sadelle Wiltshire, CZT.

I actually used two new tangles in this challenge.  Besides Jailed Johnny, the border is Ditto, a new tangle from CZT Sue Jacobs.  I enjoyed learning and using both of them.  It took me a little longer to get the rhythm and flow of Ditto but it was well worth the effort - will definitely be including Ditto in my Borders and Frames class.


Jailed Johnny



click image for larger view




Sunday, February 2, 2014

Diva Challenge 152 - Aquafleur

One of the things I love about Zentangle is the freedom to go wherever your pen on paper takes you - no specific outcome required.  Leading up to the holidays what with prepping for a craft show and making gifts I was more in production mode vs enjoying the process.  This challenge and this pattern in particular was a great way to get back into the creative process.

Once again what started out as my original idea is nowhere to be found in this tile.  What I found most interesting is that for a long time it felt like it was unfinished.  I kept thinking I would be adding to it, however every time I went back to it to add something I felt stuck, unsure of what I wanted to add.  Some of that, I'm sure comes from my limited appreciation of white space.  If there's open space I'm usually filling it with a tangle.  One of my goals this year is use and appreciate the beauty of open space in my work. I'm glad I listened and resisted the urge to fill in all that white space!

Aquafleur

click image for larger view

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Merry Happy

Even though I have not posted many of my Diva Challenges lately today is a good time to post the last Challenge for 2013.  The Diva is taking a well deserved break for the holidays.  Challenge 148 is Merry Happy - create a tile or ZIA for our own holidays.  If my artistic skill went beyond the Zentangle method it would have been fun to create something less abstract but I'll stick with what I know and what I have time for at this time of year. 


Merry Happy Everyone!

 Use your imagination for the glitter highlights

 
While I have not been tangling with pen in hand I've been busy with my woodburner creating gifts and requests.  Here's some of what I've been up to and best get back to if I plan to get them all finished. Enjoy - and hope all of you have a joyous time celebrating your holidays.


6"  Basswood Candle Plates
3 Styles - Flat top pedestal, scoop rim, and pillar cutout


click on image for larger view































Thursday, October 24, 2013

Where Does the Time Go

It's been mostly fun since my last post - just didn't realize it had been so long - again!

I've been hit and miss with the Diva Challenge but have a few to post and the big event was the 3rd Annual CZT Retreat - Viva Zentangle in early October.  What an amazing event -   you had to be there as I don't have enough words to adequately describe the the energy, fun and enthusiasm created by a gathering of 30 CZT's.  Unfortunately I was having too much fun to take many photos, but I'm guessing the folks on Facebook will have posted some by now.  Bette Abdu and Bette Beauregard did an amazing job organizing the retreat - thank you both for all your hard work.  And thanks to all in attendance - many fun connections were made - hope to meet up with you all again someday.

 click  image for a larger view


Challenge 141 - Duotangle - Fengle and Quandary

I don't use either of these tangles very much - I don't have a very good feel for them.  With Fengle, I love the light airy flow that I see in others work but mine always seem to come out heavy and rather pudgy.  Quandary, maintaining size and alignment - never been my strong suit.  I think with Quandary I'd probably have just as much luck if I tossed actual rice grains on the page and outlined them.  But hey, I'm always up for a challenge - try to post my first but that one - well, it looked like someone stomped on fengle so here's take 2.




Challenge 140 - Pointillism

I enjoy adding stippling to my tangles so I thought this would be a fun challenge and it was.  Since I was curious about the differences between stippling and pointillism, I spent some time with Ms Google to find out.  What I discovered is that this challenge was more about stippling than pointillism and had saved some of the information to include when I posted the image.  However before that happened Linda over on tanglepatterns.com wrote a post on this very topic - much better than I would have done - it's an interesting read so hop on over and read her post Going Dotty - Exploring a Stippled Zentangle she does an excellent job of explaining the differences.










Challenge 136 and 138
Colour Colour Everywhere  &  Fun with Borders

 For the CZT Retreat, everyone was to make 30 ATC's to swap on the first night.  Since this activity was added late in the game we had the option to make copies if we wanted or not.  My head hurt as I started reading the directions for getting a good copy made and cutting them out - decided that felt too complicated for me and making 30 would just take time - so I did.

It went well and I was pleasantly surprised (or maybe a bit shocked) with the way they turned out.  Why shocked? --  I don't really care for the ATC size and shape, I haven't worked a lot with black as I have a love/hate affair with white pens and I rarely work with color.  I did not have the white ATCs so black it would be.  I do like the look of the metallic gel pens on black so pulled those out and just started in. Somewhere along the line I decided having a border provided the structure I needed and I did decide to limit the tangles I used.  One of the suggestions in the retreat info was to use a theme if we were so inclined.  I didn't start with a theme in mind but after completing the first 4 or 5 I realized I'd created a theme anyway.  I was using metallic sparkly pens and enhancing them with the Wink of Stella Brush glitter pens.  If all that sparkle, bright colors and glitter doesn't say Las Vegas I don't know what does!


Challenge 138  Fun with Borders




Challenge 136  Colour Colour Everywhere





I used a few different borders on about half of the ATC, but a favorite of mine is a pattern my brother created - Tierso.  Visit his blog Tangles and More to see more of his work.

Here are two versions for creating Tierso - while his version works well, I find have better spacing by drawing it the opposite way he does.


Tierso by Donald Wilka





Thursday, July 25, 2013

Catching up . . . again!

Lots of tangling just not a lot of posting lately.

Challenge 128 a repeat of the two pencil string technique.  Ugh - started out with so much potential, not sure when it went haywire but it did.  Following in Laura's steps of posting her first attempt - this is mine.  This one is destined for some added work may end up with pieces of it in a collage.  Added the vignette digitally to soften it a bit.


click on image for larger view




Challenge 127 - a duo tangle using the tangles Cirquital and Opus - definitely a challenge as these are two patterns that are not at the top of my list.  Cirqiutal - have not found the flow of this one, at least using it in a circle - just cannot find the spacing that I liked.  I have used the overlapping leaves in other shapes but for this challenge wanted to at least attempt the circle again - need the practice.  Opus is one of those mirrored patterns that most of the time I don't like my results but I've learned to never give up.  I had a lot more comfort using it in this tile. Will have to move it up the list and try to work it into other tiles.  Practice Practice Practice!





Challenge 126 was stencil fun - don't own any craft or design stencils but what's a stencil if not a template or pattern.  Don't remember what site had this template but there it was in my Snagit/Evernote folder just waiting for this challenge.  One of the great things about Zentangle - no matter what idea or image you may have in your head when you start out, the result is always a surprise.  When I started with this design I fully intended to fill in the spaces but when I finished the first part I really liked the simplicity and decided to stop and let it be.   For those of you that have followed this blog you know how strange that is for me - there's not a lot of open space in most of what I create - so have a laugh with me.  Simplicity reigns.






Are you tired of looking at images yet?  Here are a few more.  These are the postcard size (4"x6") that I did for a recent CZT swap - Mindful Postcards.  Any tangle we used had to start with one of the letters in Mindful.  One went to Australia and 3 went to the East coast.













Monday, July 22, 2013

Calling all CZT's



Have you signed up for the 3rd Annual CZT Retreat?

The Retreat is open to all CZT's but I want to give a shout out reminder to any CZT's that live closer to the West coast than the East.  As you know many of the retreats and events are held on that other coast but the 3rd Annual CZT Retreat will be a held little closer to home this year - Las Vegas.

Don't wait until the last minute to send in your registration.  If you drop it in the mail now and it's postmarked by Thursday July 25th you qualify for the Early Bird Discount.

The basic info -

Thursday October 3 to Sunday October 6, 2013
Homewood Suites, Las Vegas NV
Workshops with Beckah Krahula, CZT #6 and Suzanne Wilka, CZT #4 (yes that would be me)
Creative Art Bar - always open. and more…..

Full details are at  http://tangleclubhouse.com/viva-zentangle/








Look forward to seeing you there!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Diva Challenge 125 UMT - Birdie Feet

The first challenge of the month is Use My Tangle and this week it's a tangle named Birdie Feet.  Had no idea how I might use this tangle, but I'd recently come across 2 other new patterns that I was itching to try.  I just made my challenge a little broader for me - use all three new to me tangles.  Technically 2 I have never used but the one while it's still a new tangle I did use it on one other project.  It's very detailed so I consider it still new as I need the practice.





click on image for larger view

I came across this tangleation step-out for Fiore posted by Debra Castaldi on her blog Mainely Tangles.  Oh My - my kind of tangle - look at all those lines!!!!!!   Fiore was posted on tanglepatterns.com a few days before - I liked it a lot but before I could try it out I saw the tangleation and had to go their first.  (This is the second attempt pattern.)

Then I saw Fiddler  a new pattern by Lara Williams.  Love the high contrast values of Fiddler.  I drew the upright one first - no practice.  When I was finished it I was wishing I'd been a bit more focused as to spacing.  The second one went much better, but I still felt like I had not been as true to the pattern as I could have been.  Imagine my surprise when I went back to look at Lara's example and it was not as off kilter as I'd imagined.  While I still want to tighten it up a bit I'm pleased and will definitely be using these two patterns more

Birdie Feet used it as fringe around Fiddler - worked Ok but will have to think more about how best to use this one.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Fun ZIA Projects

Just a fly by post - if you're looking for some fun ZIA (Zentangle Inspired Art) projects check out this blog post over on Tangles and More  The mattes are a cool idea. 
For fun and full disclosure he's a fellow CZT and oh yeah he's a pretty good brother.  And someday I hope to be able to draw the organic tangles as well as he does.

Back with this week's challenge entry later.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Is it a Zentangle?

Harrumph!  STOMP!  S.T.O.M.P!   Grumble Grumble Grumble!!!!!!

That, would be my first reaction Monday when reading the details for this week's challenge.   So what do we get  - a curveball or more like a dancing and dipping knuckleball - "can you do a Zentangle without using existing patterns or tanglelations of them?  And what are your experiences while doing so?"

I have a rare Monday morning available to actually do the challenge first thing and the challenge is to create without using known patterns - huh???   Time to follow the advice I often provide in a class - Breathe - Relax - Smile.

While calmer I still had quite the game of pong bouncing around in my head.  So many thoughts from all different directions.  Trying to make sense of it only seemed to bring up more ideas.  No way to get it down in any logical order so what follows is pure Randomonium  - the short version.

Zentangle is the process used to create, not the product one creates, but I'm guessing that's not really the distinction being made with this challenge. 

Patterns - Zentangle patterns vs other patterns.  Are they different - again probably semantics but  patterns are not Zentangle.  Zentangle has provided an easy method of creating patterns that have been around forever.

What defines the patterns we are to not use - just those patterns published by Zentangle or on tangle patterns.com  or from the Flickr pattern group or from books, or from other's blogs?  I've been collecting patterns from a variety of sources since I started working on gourds and even more since I discovered Zentangle.  I have 1100+ stored on my iPad plus several books - so are all of those patterns off limits for this challenge?

In my case I've been using many of the patterns that would be labeled as Zentangle patterns for years - woodburning them on gourds - patterns like hollibaugh, shattuck, keeko, waves, daggerly, gneiss - just to name a few. So would it be fair game for me,  if for the challenge, I used patterns that I used before I discovered Zentangle or would they be off limits?

 click any image for larger view







So what is it exactly that we are being asked to do?  Create new patterns?  Use patterns or elements of patterns in new and creative ways?   Draw real objects rather than random patterns? Doubt that's the case. 

Being a Gemini I can drive myself nuts debating with myself, so at some point I turned down the volume and focused on how I might approach this challenge.  I thought a lot on how I created the wood burning on gourds.  I started either with an inside shape or outside border and just built each element off of the previous element.  That thought led me to the 5 basic strokes used in Zentangle -



Aaah the plan of action is taking shape. First stop thinking and analyzing make it about the process, find the Zen of the Tangle.

I would build this week's challenge starting with a basic shape - in this case I started with a circle in the center of the tile.  From there I could use one of the 5 pen strokes to add to and create the challenge piece.  No specific pattern was planned but if one showed up so be it.
Since this was a different way of working on a Tangle I've included a few WIP (work in progress) shots to show how it grew.


click any image for larger view

I wasn't really grumpy just perplexed as to what I might do.  Wasn't even sure I would take on this challenge. Glad I did as it turned into a very fun exercise - one I'll definitely keep in the toolbox for Zentangle as well as woodburning.

 It's not shaded - yet - not sure if I will - need to let it breathe a bit and look at it later.  I'm also debating if there needs to be something more in the center.  Any thoughts - suggestions/comments welcome.