Friday, 6 March 2020

territorial jottings

I go through phases of working a lot in my sketchbooks, gathering new tangles galore, and playing with ideas, colours or techniques.  And then for no apparent reason I'll just stop... spending less time inside these pages, and instead working straight to tile.  Then I'll start again.  Perhaps it's about filling the book with inspiration which sustains me for a while and then I need to top up again.

Here's the latest batch of pages from my sketchbook - the earliest one was started last summer, the most recent one was started in December but I tucked a couple of tangles into some gaps just last week.

Points of interest -
White ink on black - showing that I was playing with Project Pack 6 around this time
Comparing Dealys with Aura-Leah helped me to appreciate their differences
Hanamar which seems to confuse me less than similar tangles
A new take on Finery (middle right) and Dewd meets Mooka (middle left)

Points of interest -
Using a Doodah as a zipper - a Maria Thomas' idea I really love
Ravel - endlessly relaxing to tangle
Trinity - a tangle that doesn't come easily but always rewards my efforts
Una which I just remembered when looking at this page - almost looks like it's knitted

Points of interest -
A couple of delicious Ela Rieger organic tangles (top left)
Hollis - which really demands me to slow down
Tangent - which is a really quirky tangle and so much fun, I need to use it more

Points of interest -
 Blue ink comes onto the page as I play with Zentangle's Project Pack 07 ideas
Experimenting with Afterglo was fun
High Stakes is a great tangle for when you need a handful of excitement to finish a tile

Points of interest -
More blue fun from Project Pack 07 - Day #8 giant decorated Cadent was a pleasant surprise
Two bands of Elegan - which took the tangle world by storm recently.  I was trying out colours ready for Valentangle - I really wanted to be brave enough to work with purple, but retreated into the comfort of grey in the end!

Points of interest -
The end of Project Pack 07 - Day #10 organic bouquet was comforting to tangle
Sun is a mesmersing spiral tangle, and seems to play very well with Hollis. 
And Nana is a great new find for when you need a hit of dark drama on your tile

I've just started working on two new pages in my sketchbook - which I'll no doubt share with you some way down the line.  On one I'm playing with the ideas introduced in the Project Pack 08 videos from Zentangle HQ.  On the other I'm exploring the technique known as Whatz-Its. I've bought the course (which is offered by my friends at 7F5R Studio) - but you can get a free taster of the technique (which is a lot of fun and very versatile) by watching their free preview lesson, which gives a heap of inspiration in itself.


  1. You are THE BEST at Composition & Mixing Tangles. WOOHOO!! <3

    1. Thanks Jules. It's funny though - on these pages there is no intention, it's just about packing stuff in, filling the space. When it comes to intentional composition and mixing of tangles... suddenly it feels a lot harder!

  2. My most favourite bit has to be that purple and grey border on your Valentangle page! It’s so calming and tranquil.. yet elegant and the colour so soothing to look at (stare at!!) :)

    I’m so stoked to have my tangles thrown into the mix, on almost every page of your explorations! Makes me so heart glad and grateful! Grateful for you, for zentangle xx

    1. Thank you Debbie. Interesting that you like that purple Elegan border - it was a departure in colour for me - but one I want to return to - I feel sorry for my barely used purple pen.

      And yes, your tangles are everywhere in these pages. I keep thinking about Tangent recently... I had ideas at the time, but no time. I want to start playing with it again. Always the danger of moving on too soon to the next thing, while I prefer to linger longer and loop back and revisit favourite places.