Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Diva Challenge 100!!!

This week's challenge marks number 100 - Congratulations Laura and thank you for providing this wonderful opportunity for Zentangle enthusiats around the globe.  To mark the occasion Rick and Maria, Zentangle founders have created a new tangle pattern - Diva Dance.  The instructions for Diva Dance can be found on Laura's blog here.

It's been my good fortune to have started with the very first Challenge - could any of us have imagined the many creative places this would take us.   What's amazing is to see each week's entries - everyone starts with the same prompt yet each entry is unique, inspiring and exquisite. A Zentangle feast.

This time of the year I'm busy making gifts, many are Zentangle inspired, so my entry this week is one of gifts I made - it's a basic fold envelope for a "big" but small sized gift - made using bristol vellum.  Funny thing - the last challenge of 2011 was also a handmade gift box.

100th Challenge
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Folded - Front View

Folded - Backside


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Diva Challenge #98 UMT Keenees

The first Monday of the month is UMT (use my tangle).  This weeks UMT - Keenees was created by Donna Hornsby, CZT from Texas.

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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Diva Challenge 97 No Strings Attached

The challenge this week - create a Zentangle or ZIA without using the string to get started.  Since I mostly work without a string it didn't feel all that challenging until I decided to mix it up a bit and impose a few other challenges for myself.  Decided to work up something using some of the steampunk images and patterns I've been seeing others use.  Talk about being outside one's comfort zone.  Did find a few patterns that I liked but not sure how to put it all together so just put pen to paper and got going.  Another way I challenged myself - shade using gray pens instead of pencil.  I think it has possibilities but will need more practice with a variety of pens.  When I scanned the it the shading looks like I just drew wider lines - can't really see that it's gray.  The scan produced an image that was very black and white - too much white and not enough contrast - looked very boring and blah so dropped it into picmonkey and added some texture.  Very different way of working on a challenge.  Not sure it's my favorite but it's not all bad either.

No Strings Attached

click image for larger view - if you dare with this one lol!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Diva Challenge 96 Zinger

Zinger is the latest pattern announced by Zentangle HQ -  Maria has used it for quite some time but it  now has an official name - courtesy of a fellow CZT from seminar 4 Sue Clark.  The Nov. 18th Zentangle Newsletter has the step-out of the pattern and the story of how it came to be called Zinger.

I'm no longer in possession of the first tile I did for the challenge - I made several tiles to give to folks at our Thanksgiving gathering.  My plan was to scan them before I left but somewhere along the line it just did not get done.  I didn't realize my error until I was getting ready to create a post for the challenge.  Back to the drawing board - decided to give myself another challenge and use more of the floral/organic patterns. I love the look of them and admire the many ways that others use them but mine just never quite come out the way I want them.   One of my talents seems to be the ability to wilt, wither and kill off plants of any kind - on paper or in pots!   My brother has the better "green zentangle thumb" in the family!  Oh well it's a challenge so I'm not going to hide them.


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 Silkpod the tangle in the lower right corner is a new one from  cuz' Dianne

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

This and That

A few links I came across today and thought you might enjoy.

Jean Theurkauf has posted a fun Holiday Zentangle Inspired Art video

Dianne Krumnow's latest tangle pattern Silkpod 

I wasn't happy with the one nameplate I'd previously posted here - so started over on a new one - keeping some of the same elements but going for a lighter look.  I'm pleased with the way it turned out.  Delivered it to the customer this morning and she loves it!  The nameplates are still something new so I'm learning and refining things as I go along.  I appreciate the comments left on the previous post - confirmed what I was seeing and freed me up to go in a different direction.  Thanks.

Take Two

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Ganesha Calling

Dilip Patel a CZT from India has commitment to publish 100 Zentangle Ganeshas before 31st December, 2012.  In order to accomplish this he has requested contributions from the Zentangle community.  You may read more about the project and how to submit your creation here.  To date there have been 70+ submissions.  You may use your own creation or use one of the templates Dilip provides.

Thank you Dilip, for the invitation - nice to learn the history and story of Lord Ganesha and it was a fun Zentangle to create.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Diva Challenge 95 - Mickey

This weeks challenge comes from  guest poster Courtney Frantz.  

Courtney writes . . .
On November 18, 1928 the Walt Disney Studio released the animated short film, "Steamboat Willie". This was the official debut of Mickey Mouse as well as his girlfriend, Minnie.  Since Mickey has been touted as one of the world's most popular cartoon characters and noting that his debut was in a black and white film, I feel it is only fitting that we use our black and white Zentangle art to pay tribute to Mickey, Minnie and/or Walt Disney.

I've spent the last couple of weeks working to complete a few of the woodburned Zentangle Nameplates - one gift and two special orders.  It's a good thing I enjoy making them since I've had a couple more folks request them.  It's also been fun exploring different font sites to find new and interesting fonts to use. During one font search I came across a Walt Disney font - wasn't sure I could make it work for a nameplate but I really liked the look so went ahead and installed it.

Had to laugh when I read this week's challenge - who knew I'd have a chance to use the font so soon!  First thought was to tangle the initial "M" - that would be too easy and if there's a way to make things more complex I can usually find it!  Since I'm still in nameplate mode why stop now?!

Diva Challenge 95  - Mickey

Tangles - Meer, Inapod, Cruffle, Knase, Ennies, Yale, Mickey

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Here are the 3 woodburned namplates.  Have not found the best settings for scanning them or for photos - need to work on that another day.  I'm still experimenting with the nameplate projects - mostly not sure how dense or sparse to make the tangle patterns.  One way the names are very prominent the other they meld into the overall piece.  Not sure which I like better - then again it's not so much what I like, it's what the customer likes.  If you have a preference or other thoughts please leave  a comment to let me know.  The concept is definitely a work in progress.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Art Every Day Month - Day 1

Decided to participate in the Art Every Day Month over at Creative Every Day blog.  The goal is to create some piece of art every day in November.  Seemed like a good idea when I signed up.  You can read more about it and sign up for it at either of the links above.  Will be something different for me - will just have to see how it goes.  At least I'm starting out well by posting something on the first day!


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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Challenge #93 Bunzo

This week the Diva challenge is to use the newest tangle - Bunzo.  Lots of  possibilities with Bunzo - and it seems to have a mind of it's own as it grows and morphs across the tile.  None of the strings I drew really excited me so I grabbed one of the pre-strung tiles and had a go at it.  The harder part was choosing the other tangles but overall I'm pleased with the way it turned out.  If you want to see the other amazing creations using Bunzo head on over to the Diva's site and if you have not tried Bunzo yet - what are you waiting for - you'll be glad you did!


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Sunday, October 28, 2012

Challenge 92 - String Theory v. XIV Stripes 2.0

Straight forward directions for the challenge this week - create a Zentangle using Stripes as the string.  Since I don't as a rule look to see what others have done prior to creating my own piece, I also did not go back to see what I had submitted for Challenge 24 - the last time Stripes was the challenge prompt.

I ended up  creating two. The first one I did on the standard square tile and the 2nd on a round Zendala tile.  I planned to use a blank round tile but when I went to pull it out of the tin, one of the pre-strung ones caught my eye - just calling to be stripes.  Did not use any of the patterns I had intended to use with the round tile - instead I went simple using only lines to create stripes.  For some reason the scanner did not pick up the shading very well but I really like the way it came out on the tile.

The square tile started out as my practice tile - trying out a few tangles as stripes, but then it just morphed into it's own little thing.  It's a little rough around the edges but then many of mine end up that way!

Challenge 92  Stripes as the String

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Diva's Weekly Challenge 91 - Beads of Courage

The challenge this week is in honor of the Diva's son Artoo's second birthday - Happy Birthday Artoo - and the organization Beads of Courage.   Beads of Courage is a charity that helps and supports children with a chronic illness or condition, please follow the link to find out more about the work of this wonderful organization.  To read more about this week's challenge and Atoo's courageous journey visit the Diva's site here.

OK, easy enough - just draw a string of beads on a tile and fill the beads with different tangles.  Before I could get to it another idea popped up.  Have no idea why or where it came from and not the typical project I would attempt but for some reason I decided to go with it and see what might appear.  The thought - to create a tile with real beads on it.  Going through the few beads I still have around - just one of many a stash of abandoned craft endeavors - I didn't find any beads that inspired me or would be easy to attach to a paper tile.  OK, time for plan B - had no idea what that might be.  Again no real thought process (that would be too easy!) the idea of making paper beads floated in.  Decided to go for it. Drew a few tangles on lightweight paper, added a bit of color, rolled them, strung them with purple thread and added them to the tile.

Beads of Courage
Zentangle Paper Beads on Florz

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Diva Challenge #90 String Theory v. XIII

This week's challenge is to use String 001 from TanglePatterns  string series.  I rarely use a string I just start tangling.  On those occasions that I do use a string, I usually don't stick to it I just go where the tangle takes me and it's usually outside the string, so this was a good challenge for me.  For the most part I did stay within the bounds of the border and the string.  Maybe I'll start to use a few more just for the fun of it.

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Will be teaching a ZIA class soon so I've been experimenting - trying out different pens and tangling on different surfaces.  This metal switch plate is the latest adventure.  Pens used - Identi-Pen and Microperm 01.  I have a plastic switch plate to try next and I resisted buying the birch one for woodburning.  I'm happy with the way it turned out but will probably go back and add some shading with hash marks.  Still looking for a suitable pen for non-porous surfaces.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Challenge #89 UMT v. IX Sankegg

Before I get to this week's challenge want to give a shout out of congratulations to my brother Don Wilka and cousin Dianne Krumnow on becoming CZT's at last weeks Seminar 10 in Providence.  What fun!

The Challenge on the first Monday of the month is always UMT - Use My Tangle - a tangle that has been submitted by a challenge participant.  This month it is Sankegg by  Maria Vennekens, CZT from the Netherlands.  You may read more about the pattern here.

Had a very difficult time finding the rhythm and flow for this pattern - even tracing it to get a sense of the movement wasn't working for me this time around.  Had the most difficulty with proportion and alignment - was all over the place.  As a last resort decided maybe I needed to find another way to create it.  That worked!  It's going to take more practice to get comfortable using the pattern but at least this alternate step-out is working for me.

Using this step-out - I definitely had more success with proportion and alignment and an unintended plus - I found it a lot easier to grow the pattern both vertically and horizontally.  Using this method - once I reached Step 4 - it was so much easier to align the one leg with the point of the adjacent triangle.  Drawing it this way produces a slightly softer line - a bit more curved less hard angle.  Definitely a work in progress.

Rough version of the alternate step-out - with it's own Bronx Cheer!

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I was so excited to finally draw the pattern I kept it simple - stayed with a monotangle and a bit of shading. A first for me - used a Tombow marker instead of a pencil.  It's actually a grey marker but scanned with a hint of brown.

The image below is a woodburned piece I did as a birthday gift.  It's done on a 4" square Birch painting panel with a cradle - makes it very easy to hang and no framing required.  The fun part after the party received commissions to do few more for the upcoming holidays.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Challenge 88 - Use the new Official Tangle IX

When I first saw this pattern, I really liked what folks were doing with it - thought I would really like it.  I still do but I need to work with it a bit more.  Started several tiles but the flow was not happening.  I let things rest for awhile.  Not sure why but when I went back to work on some of the unfinished tiles - I instead picked up a piece of round cork from another project.  I used a black Fine Point Permapaque Opaque Marker  - different but I like it.

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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Diva Challenge #87

Challenge #87 is revisiting a challenge from last year dedicated to the International Day of Peace on September 21st and inspired by the website Pinwheels for Peace.  Once again the challenge is to create a Pinwheel - Zentangle style.

Pinwheel for Peace

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Not sure this one is quite finished - I see all that white space just waiting for more tangles.  Too often that's exactly what I do and then end up not pleased.  Another attempt to leave some space - so for now I'll set with it but can't promise that it won't reappear with a bit more added to it.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Zendala Dare 14

My first thought when I saw the template for this week's dare - very small and this will be difficult - not enough to stop me just take a little pause before diving in.  Another first thought was seeing strings of beads.  Anyone that knows me knows I have a love hate relationship with beads.  I love them however the beads don't seem to care for me all that much.  I didn't intend a bead motif that's what appeared so I went with it.

Zendala Dare 14
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Still playing a little catch up with the dare - here is last week's entry.  The added element to Dare 13 - Play with Paper - the only rule was you cannot use the official Zentangle tile or Zendala paper.  For a fun read check out Erin's post on her love of all things paper here.  I pushed the outer edges of the envelope in my definition of paper - I woodburned the dare on a piece of basswood. 

The reason I've been so behind on completing the dares is that I  also participate in an annual swap with a group of online pyrographers.  All of those tiles were due July 1st so I've been spending most of my free time working on those.  Also, when I read Erin's post - it's an apt description of my love affair with wood that I can burn on.   I just used paper in it's hardest state for the dare.  It's the first tile and I've posted a few of the tiles I did for the swap.

Zendala Dare #13 Play with Paper

 A few additional tiles from the Woodburner Swap

Monday, June 18, 2012

Zendala Dare #10

To participate or view other entries for the Zendala Dares visit The Bright Owl

What do you know, I'm getting this week's dare posted before the last minute and I'm finally caught up with completing past dares.  While I do enjoy working on the Zendalas, the process is different from a standard Zentangle.   The symmetry of the Zendala templates presents a different challenge.  Instead of just winging it with selecting patterns as I would with a standard tile, I've completed the first 10 staying true to a symmetry with the patterns.  Seems to require a bit more thinking and planning.  That's not a bad thing just different.  There are no rules so I could go free form just have not allowed myself to do that yet.  It's interesting that I would notice and maybe find this a bit "nudgy" since I very much like balance and symmetry.  Just one of the ways that Zentangle has changed things up for me?

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Zendala Dare #10

Zendala Dare #6

Zendala Dare #7

Zendala Dare #8

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Zendala Dare 9

It is the 9th week of the Zendala Dare hosted by  Erin at The Bright Owl.  I've completed several but I"m a little behind in getting them posted.  Doing a little catch up and posting a few of the others with this post.

Trying something different with this tile - leaving more open/white space.  While I understand the importance of open/white space my tendency is to fill in the whole string or tile.  I find it hard to strike the right balance and not think a tile is unfinished just because it has open spaces.  I like this tile but there is still a strong urge to pick up the pen and keep working on it.

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 Zendala Dare #9

Zendala Dare #3

Zendala Dare #4

Zendala Dare #5

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

San Diego CZT Meetup

Had a really incredible and fun day yesterday (Tuesday) - the Certified Zentangle Teachers (CZT's) in San Diego had their first meetup.  We started planning it a couple of months ago - took a bit of time to coordinate a date what with 6 busy schedules.  We did miss one CZT that was not able to attend due to illness - Rho, hope you are on the mend.

There is something special about a group of CZT's getting together - good conversation and camaraderie and inspiring talent to be shared.  Each with our unique magical story of how we came to find Zentangle and knowing the shared experience of how it has enriched us plus the fun and joy we receive being able to share it with others - how special is that?

Meet the CZT's of San Diego County - l-r back row  Denise, Cecie, Izumi, front row Jennifer and yours truly. Thanks for a great day looking - forward to the next time.

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Note: If you are a CZT in San Diego County and have not posted your profile on the Zentangle Teacher List we don't know how to reach you.  Please email me at tinkeredart [at] gmail [dot] com so you can join us next time.

Update: Per Ann's comment request a photo of the tiles  and a little info on the font.

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The tiles were a small welcome-to-my-studio gift for my fellow CZT's - their initial - each with only tangles that begin with it.  The tile holders are Snapshot Dots - you can read more about them in my previous  Zentangle Display Options post.

 To answer Ann's other question - the letters are not stencils you can purchase, but it's very easy to make your own with your word processor.  My preference is to use fonts where the outline provides the largest area to tangle.  Coopers Black is a nice wide font that comes standard with most word processors.  You can also find some nice free fonts online.  The font used for these tiles is Pretoria Gross - not a free one, but one I really love - available at My Fonts.

A couple tips to get you started - select the outline option when formatting your font - it will print just that, an outline of the letter - will save you lots of ink!  When selecting your font size some folks might not know that you are not limited to the sizes that appear in the drop down list.  Just place your cursor in the font size box, delete the number and type in whatever number you need to get the size you want.  You will need to do bit of experimenting to find the right size to fit on a tile - that size will also vary a bit with each letter and font.  It's a lot of trial and error sizing, printing, and cutting out to test on a tile.  Once I had the right size I printed them on heavier card stock and cut them out - easy stencil whenever I need one.  The same technique works for making words or phrases you might want as stencils.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Diva Challenge 71

Challenge #71 - use the new tangle  Pea-Nuckle - created by Molly and recently announced in this newsletter.

I'm also posting a few past challenges that I completed but did not find the time to post.  This challenge tile was my first attempt at Pea-Nuckle.  Did not practice much at all just jumped in so it's a bit uneven but now that I have a better feel for the flow of it, I think it's one I'll be using more often - has that nice fine line detail that I enjoy.  Definitely one I'll be using in a woodburned tangle.

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Challenge 71  Pea-Nuckle

Challenge 69 UMT v.IV Groovy

Challenge 68 - Hibrid and Strircles

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Zendala Dare 2

Find the Zendala Dare at The Bright Owl  Just enough time this week to finish one of the templates for the Zendala Dare - and experiment with another framing option at PicMonkey

Zendala Dare #2

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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Diva Challenge #66 - Laura's Auras

 The challenge this week - read about it here - is to play with the Zentangle embellisment Auras, using either tangles that incorporate auras or to use auras to enhance your Zentangle.  As an added challenge for myself I wanted to use tangles that do not have auras as part of the design and I wanted a tangle that would have a straight line aura.  I started out with BB as the main tangle - I kept trying to keep it small but after a few attempts I just let it grow however it wanted and then filled in with a bit of Keeko.  Considering the size of BB this one might have worked better for the Biggify Challenge a few weeks ago!

Laura's Auras

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A note about the framing - no I didn't actually frame it with a matte.  I use an online photo editor (no interest in Photoshop) to clean up my scans and to resize them.  I had used Picnik for years and was very disappointed when Google (who purchased it about a year ago) decided to shut it down.  I've been testing out a few alternatives - most were OK but none as good as Picnik - until recently that is.   Seems a few of the former Picnik folks have started a new endeavor called PicMonkey  It's still in beta- more features to come. It's free and I'm sold but I will gladly pay for it if they offer a premium version.   That's a long explanation for how I came to frame this challenge tile.

One of the features is the ability to add frames - I usually just add a simple thin black frame and round the corners but today I wasn't liking the way it looked - with  BB being so prominent it just seemed very harsh.  I played with the different frame options - while BB is still large using the Museum Matte frame option seems to tone it down a bit.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Zendala Dare

A fellow CZT Erin announced on her blog a new weekly project - Zendala Dare. The short version - every Friday she will post a new Dare with guidelines and a set of templates - one suitable for a Zentangle tile, one for the new round Zendala tiles and one for full sheet 8 1/2" x 11". Similar to the Diva Challenge you will be able to add a link to your creations. To kick off the first dare she's also giving away a set of the new Zendala tiles. Read the full details for the Dare and how to enter the giveaway here on her blog The Bright Owl

Zendala Dare #1

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For some reason both scans are a bit tilted - not sure if it's operator error or something about the scanner. Will tackle that another day.