At the end of last week I settled down to try a tile combining Adele Bruno's new tangle Xav, with my own Snag. I drew out the squared grid, and the first lot of waves, and then when I'd put in the second lot that cross the first I noticed my alignment was wrong and those necessary circle spaces were absent. I was ready to ditch the tile - but thought it was a waste and tried to hold onto the 'no mistakes' rule.
I let my pen lead the way. And it seems it took me to the very edges and then right off the map. Not a great deal of the resulting tile bore much relation to Zentangle as we know it. But the DNA is there - the simplicity, the repetitions, perhaps especially in those sections where the lines pinch together at their ends (I've seen that technique in quite a few tangles). And I think it looks fantastic. It reminds me of the underside of mushrooms, and handkerchiefs ruffling in the wind.
Today I tried again to do what I intended the first time. And I sort of got there. Although a wobbly weekend resulted in a wobbly tile. And this is one of those where every little error compounds to the next. My grid wasn't that straight, my circles were a bit wonky and my Snag is downright cockeyed. Shading saved me a bit, but we can't expect miracle from a mere pencil can we?
It's been great getting to know Xav - it's a lovely tangle that I have no doubt will take me to many interesting places when I explore it more. For now I love how it looks like a strange harp - I feel I could run my fingers across its strings and hear it sing.