Thursday, 27 November 2014

make or break

In this week's guest Diva challenge Sandy Hunter asked us to shake up the way we use our tangles.  If it's in a grid break it free, and if it's freeform make it work within a grid.  I love this kind of challenge - tangleations are a delicious part of the world of Zentangle - and I don't work with them as often as I should.  In doing different things with a tangle you get to see its potential as well as knowing its core even better. 

First off I started with Printemps and placed it in a vaguely Florz inspired grid.  I'm never that neat with this tangle, but I like the way it looks organic and lively and makes interesting and uneven shapes within the grid.

Then I played with the wonderful Aquafleur and had it wrapping around square sections within a parallel-line grid.  I with I'd left those black orbs out but this is just a practice piece.

Then I switched things round and lifted something from a grid and set it free.  I used Ciceron and let it roam around the page.  I struggled to keep the aura lines even on this tangle, but like the overall look and imagine it could look effective laid over another tangle.

And lastly I freed Ticking, from rows rather than a grid, but I think it looks beautiful this way, still retaining that great sense of curve that the shading gives it but with the added bonus of it being able to loop and overlap in all sorts of ways.

All of these are just practice pieces lifted straight from my sketchbook where I worked them out, hence them looking a bit rough and ready.  I'd like to take time to use them use them in some finished tiles, and really see what they can do, but I'm pleased with my haul.  It was a challenge that's offered some unexpected rewards. 

Friday, 21 November 2014

whichever way you look at it

No theme or grand plan or challenge entry - this is a tile drawn for the sake of drawing alone.

I used another of the tiles cut from old packaging that I debuted last week.  The colour combination is so warming it seems to pull whatever you put on it closer together.

I used a couple of the recent new tangles featured on TanglePatterns.  Whirlee is a delight -  I love the way it appears so natural, like sycamore keys, while also looking mechanical like propellers.  Twizted is mesmerising in its repetive strokes and makes me think of the corn dollies my mother used to collect and hang above the kitchen window.  I love it when a tangle dislodges a long forgotten memory in that way.

I felt like some symmetry so that explains the layout.  And added a bit of colour using dry Inktense pencils.  One strange thing happened with those.  Last time I placed the colour after the lines of black Micron and it dulled the black.  But this time I placed and blended the brown first and then drew over it with the Micron - with no problem.  But when I went to do the same on the white of the Whirlee the pen kept clogging.  Somehow the white pencil must be made slightly differently?  It proved to be a labour of love as I had to wipe clean my pen point after almost every Tipple!

The finished piece makes me think of the shift of seasons which is creeping closer every day - autumn in its bronzed glory humbly stepping aside for the chill cloak of winter.  

Monday, 10 November 2014

waste not, want not

This week's guest Diva challenge invited us to draw a tritangle while contemplating the notion of thanks.

A while ago I cut a few tiles out of some card mailing envelopes that my second-hand books had arrived in. Today seemed a good day to use one.  I like using fine papers, but there is something appealing about using what would otherwise head to the recycling bin too!  I like reading new books, those crisp pages, and unbroken spine.  But there's appeal in the old yellow ones too - thinking of all those hands they have passed through.

Muted pleasures - Trio, Huggins and XYP
- coloured with dry Inktense pencil

While I tangled I thought about some of the things that made me thankful in that moment.  These pens I was using to create line and the pencils to add colour.  The bones and muscles that facilitated the movement that turned my ideas into something tanglible.  The light (as dim as it was on this rainy November day) that lit me as I drew.  The square of card that was receiving the ink.  The envelope that travelled to me delivering a book I will enjoy reading, gaining pleasurable or education or both.  And the tree that grew to eventually form both the book and the envelope and the tile.  It's all quite incredible when you start to think of it like that!

Saturday, 8 November 2014

obscured view

Life is still getting in the way of tangling.  I've started to  make brief visits to my sketchbook again, but actually drawing on a tile has been rare.  And posting and sharing those results even rarer.

But here's a little something I knocked out for this week's Diva Challenge.  I wasn't in the calmest frame of mind when I drew it and that shows in the wobbly lines, but Seton is forgiving tangle, that turns wobbles into rustic charm.

I adore how Seton provides the bare framework for us to embellish in endless ways.  Here I chose to use my own tangle, Kitl for the fill.  For some strange reason I often forget to use my own tangles when drawing!

A bit of colour and I'm quite pleased with the finished image.  I like the strange sense of looking through bars onto a patterned wall, or seen another way a tiled wall.  This confusion sums up my state of mind of late - sometimes it's hard to know quite what you're looking at.