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Monday, January 26, 2015

A New Calendar for a New Year

I had decided that since I was unable to complete my two past Tangle-A-Day calendars from Carole Ohl that I was not getting the 2015 calendar.  Then I got very sad.  I was inspired by all of the wonderful pages people were sharing on Facebook.  I also buy into the starting anew idea each year and love seeing a blank book just waiting for art.  I changed my mind and decided to buy the calendar only to see it backordered.  The Fates agreed with my original choice.  When I checked a few days later, it was in stock again and in my shopping cart.

I am having a blast with the calendar as I get caught up this month.

I think I haven't finished my previous calendars because I got caught up in trying to figure out a plan each day.  Some days were random art, and some were for testing out new-to-me patterns.  I enjoyed the calendars and still go back and fill in empty dates when I want to play.

This year, I am using each lovely block to experiment with a single pattern.  The patterns may be new or familiar to me.  It takes the guesswork out of it and makes it interesting to try new things.  By the end of the year, I'll have a lovely tangle compilation to refer back to while working on other projects too.  Here are a few pages I've enjoyed doing so far:
I tried a few border-style tangles on this page.  Nautica was a fun one with a lot of variety. 

I love Ruflz.  What an elegant tangle.

These were all new to me, and I liked them all.  Jesterz was fun and appealed to the Cadent-lover in me.  Tleaf is quite lovely and delicate.  3 To Go reminded me of cute little break dancers twirling around on the ground.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Mr. Postman, Is There a Tangle for me?

I am finally finishing my 2014 creative pay-it-forward gifts. I've had most of them ready for a while but let life get in the way of my actual mailing. Maybe I just do so much online now that it takes me ages to dig out my address book, stamps, and envelopes. Then addressed, envelopes sit here waiting to actually be sent. I used to be such a great written pen pal back in the day.

I sent some of my tangled dresses from the Christmas tree. I had a fair amount of time and had poured so much love into them, that I thought they would be perfect to send. I also created some artist trading cards (ATCs) to accompany them. Here is one of the items I sent to a fellow artist.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Insane for Renaissance

If Einstein's line about insanity (expecting different results from doing the same thing repeatedly) is true, then I am insane for Renaissance tiles.

I love the variety and depth these Zentangle® tiles provide. It is wonderfully fun to use different pens and pencils to achieve such interesting and vintage looking pieces. 

I've always been inspired by the art of Dr. Meredith Yuhas, CZT. Some of her recent Renaissance work inspired these in me:

Happy 200 to the Diva

Our beloved Diva reached a huge milestone this week--her 200th challenge!  We were invited to create a monotangle with one of our go-to tangles.

I immediately started adding Flux leaves in the center, randomly building outward. I used to not like Flux because I hadn't found my groove with it. Surprisingly, while teaching the pattern in a class, I admired how my friend and student interpreted the leafy shape. Ever since, I have created my Flux like she did--a looser, more leaf or teardrop shape than a comma shape. A new love was born. 

I especially love drawing Flux as a flower or in random spurts with a string. I enjoy letting the petals float, swim, or bloom in various directions. 

It only seemed fitting to think about inspiration for this challenge. I hope that I inspire others when I teach. I am always fascinated by how inspired I am with each of my students. 

Happy 200th, Laura!  Thank you for inspiring us all!

I couldn't stop myself after this one and created a couple of colorful Flux flower ATCs too.  I think I'll be sending these to some of my CZT friends.  

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Ready for Renaissance

I think I am in love.

Okay, I know I'm in love with my husband, our daughter, tangling, and many things, but I think I have found a new love.  When Zentangle® first came out with the Renaissance tiles, I wasn't too sure about them.  I found the paper a bit less enjoyable than the white tiles and wasn't as excited about my early attempts.  Of course, that didn't stop me!
I've been playing with color and shading more, thanks to classes from fellow CZTs, and I have been enjoying trying things in different ways.  Now I am loving the Renaissance tiles.  I like how I can take patterns that I've used for years and make them look completely different with a little boost of color.  I think the combination of black, brown, and white create an interesting depth and richness in the piece.  It is fun to play with shadows and highlights through colored pencils, and I get to play with my beloved Prismacolor pencils more too!

I've added a couple of tiles I created recently to get ready for my class in January 2015.  If you're local, I hope you'll come see how fun these tiles can be.  It's a great way to start playing with color for anyone who is interested in dabbling.  

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Muster Mixer

German CZT Anya Lothrop has created a new "Muster Mixer/Pattern Mixer" challenge inviting tanglers to mix two designated tangles into a piece of art.  The first assignment was to combine Rixty and Mooka in some way.

I knew I wanted to have tall, bulbous Mookas and figured the Rixty could go along for the ride on the stems.  This was a fun and simple piece to create.  I'm looking forward to future mixed up challenges.

Daily Tangling

I have always found that my stress level remains lower and my creativity flourishes when I tangle daily.  Sometimes I play with a pattern or work on a small area if I don't have time for a larger piece.  I am enjoying the new Bijou tiles for some tiny tangling too.

Another great reminder is the Tangle-A-Day calendar from CZT Carole Ohl.  I have used these calendars for a few years.  They are nicely made with daily spots for art.  The calendar illustrates a few patterns as well as sharing some of Carole's beautiful artwork for inspiration.  I usually start off in January and tangle in the calendar daily, but then I lose track of it.  I continue to tangle but usually do so in other journals, tiles, and projects.  

I have two unfinished calendars that I would like to complete.  I've decided to treat them like a new, blank calendar disregarding the dates.  Here are a few pages I've created lately:

 Verdigogh is a pattern that I really enjoy creating.  It seemed fitting for the Christmas page.

This calendar page was inspired by the amazing M.C. Escher exhibit I was fortunate enough to see at the Currier Museum of Art.  I have always loved Escher and was thrilled to be able to see so much of his original work up close.  I was infinitely inspired by his line work, shading, and complex yet often simple strokes.  I created these three pieces and a sample of his chop after seeing the exhibit.