Friday, 28 August 2015

in bloom

And then in other bursts of broken minutes I did another Zendala - Bright Owl's #107.

I used X-ess, Mr. E and Tearce.  And if the Owl's recent tangle, Mushnik, were to flower - it might well look like this!

hidden stars

Sometimes my days don't allow a reasonable piece of time to settle to truly mindful tangling. 

But there are usually at least a few minutes here and there to put Micron to paper and fill in a section of a Zendala. 

So that's what I did.

With Baton and Antidots and the Bright Owl's #106 Zendala.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

the long and winding road

The last time Sharla Hicks visited the Diva's place I ended up learning loads of news ways to work with FluxThis time - not only has she encouraged me to develop my appreciation of curved tangles - but also the wonders that can arise when working in a series.

It's all too easy for Zentangle to become just another box on today's tick list.  Especially when one is trying to make a tile for this or that 'challenge'.  Sometimes they are the perfect kick-start.  But all too often they become constrained by themselves and possibly overshadow the finer point of Zentangle. Which for me is about getting lost in the doing of it - picking up the pen with no plan and being surprised every time by what I end up with.

Working in a series encourages you to limit your parameters - and thereby expand your horizons.  It's about having only a vague destination in mind, and getting thoroughly, blissfully lost along the way.

I decided to focus on Unyun (by Carole Ohl) as it has both an S and a C curve.  Previously I've only used it in its basic described form, as so

which is fair enough but I wondered if it could do more.  After a little bit of playing about in my sketchbook I found three different looks that I wanted to try out on tiles.  I did these quite quickly on fairly smooth white paper, as these are just practice pieces in my view.  I took scans at various stages in the drawing so I would have a record of how they developed.

[click to enlarge]  The top row shows basic outline drawing.
In the lower row I have darkened certain areas and thickened lines.

Smooth white isn't the most amenable paper to shade but still - here are the finished pieces. 

The reverberating one - this makes me think of a sound wave,
with echoes spreading out from the initial noise.  Two rows
of Unyun, mirroring each other, and then aured
and intersecting the auras as it expands.

The crazy one - like eyes and mouths in a hall of mirrors.
  I pencilled 3 initial lines and placed Unyun against them,
but then reversed the direction of the C curves.

The lacey one - I see ruffles around the necks of old Queens,
or piped icing around a cake.  Two double rows of basic Unyum,
darked in the centre. 

Each significantly different while still retaining the essence of Unyun. And even better, I'm brimming with more ideas to try out, which I'll add here once they see the light of day.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

we have lift off

For this week's guest-hosted Diva Challenge, the lovely Bright Owl asked us to have fun with one of her Zendala templates. 

I only discovered the pleasure of Zendalas and Erin's weekly challenges shortly before she took a break - but now she's back and I want to get back into doing them.  They offer a subtly different experience than other types of tangling.

I used the graphite transfer technique to copy the template onto a standard (9cm x 9cm) sized tile and it worked way better than I expected!  This would also offer a great chance to alter or omit any lines you don't fancy using.

And then I went in with my Micron - popping Sandy Hunter's delicious new Papermint tangle into the circular sections, and then a sort of Ticking variant into the leaf shapes and then a few bits of Beadlines and some tufts and dots and shading and there you have it! 

It looks like it's about to fly away, and I feel a fair bit lighter than I did when I started it! 

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

the beautiful silence

For this week's guest-hosted Diva Challenge Sandy Hunter asked us to leave some white space untangled on our tile.

I pencilled a quick looped string and then it seemed to say that it would welcome woven type tangles, so I popped one each into the four quarters.

Featuring Harfe, Bask-it, Looplopp and Keeko

One of the things I love about Zentangle is that while I'm drawing my mind seems to drift in directions it might not otherwise take - sparks of ideas form, and elusive realisations come into focus.

While drawing this tile it started to dawn on me that sometimes we are so keen to fill every moment of our days with activity that we leave no space to appreciate or enjoy the unplanned.  The moment that arises without warning that might be the truest treasure in our all hustle and bustle.  The voids also leave valuable breathing room for the presences - they allow them to be more alive than if they are squeezed into a limited space.

So I'm going to try for the rest of this week, in my tiles as well as my days, to leave a little space.  I wonder if you will too?