Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Diva Challenge #295, Made by Joey #142 and Travelling Tangles

Reticula and Fragments pt.2

This week's Diva Challenge is to continue on with more Reticula and Fragments, a technique introduced in The Zentangle Primer v.1. It seemed to be a challenging challenge for many last week. There are so many possibilities with it once you start wrapping your brain and pen around it, it can become a little addicting (well, for me it was). I just had an R & F Aha! moment when I saw Annette Plaga-Lodde's blog, CreA(R)Tive, this morning. She perfectly illustrates fragments.
I don't have the book and as things stand, I doubt I'll be seeing one in the foreseeable future, so I'm not referencing the letter/number system the book uses to identify each grid and fragment. In last week's post I noted how I'm sort of sleuthing my way through this concept (which I love by the way) sketching the varieties of grids (reticula) and fills (fragments) that I've seen in others posts, not only from last weeks submissions but also from the Facebook group Reticula and Fragments.
I'm glad we were given the opportunity to explore this more. I chose a grid I saw somewhere that reminded me of a lattice. I framed it first with a fragment of Pokeleaf. The challenge was to use a fragment that was asymmetrical so that when rotated or mirrored it was different.

My beginning

I cannot draw a straight line to save my life. My first diagonal lattice was all wonky. I'm using a tile colored with art tissue. I'm not sure where the fragment came from. I started off in my sketch  book, copying things I saw on the internet and then noodled around with some ideas:

research and development

Finish my Tile Series: ZigZag string and Pipez

This happens to me from time to time: I look at a challenge and I'm sort of "meh..." Nothing clicks, nothing inspires. One minute I'm thinking I'll take a pass for the week and then the next minute I'm down with it. The pattern Pipez was new-to-me. it has a Steampunk vibe and though I liked the pattern I don't have a lot of Steampunk in my arsenal, then the zig-zag string seemed like an odd juxtaposition. I did, however, have one tissue colored ATC where the colors seemed to follow a left to right swipe. I penciled in the string and the vertical lines of Pipez and did not stop until this was done.
I had a lot of fun with this! I had no idea where it was going. I chose not to worry about if a pattern "went with" another pattern, and inadvertently found odd juxtapositions quite freeing.

I have accumulated quite a backlog of Travelling Tangles in the last two weeks. The next group swap is going to be assigned tomorrow, so a new wave will be coming in shortly. It's supposed to rain this weekend so I'm giving myself up to Travelling Tangles and Christmas gift art. Fingers crossed for a productive weekend;-)

This is my finish to the third of three tiles sent to me by the lovely Jem Miller (aka Ragged Ray) 
in West Sussex, UK.

This is Jem's gorgeous start. 

I love how the colors so seamlessly transition from red to green. In fabric parlance we call this technique "Ombre". I saved this one for last because I truly was afraid I'd mess it up. Jem's line work is so clean. It was such a graphic beginning and my hand is much sketchier. The first two of Jem's pieces can be seen here. Margaret Bremner had recently posted pics of several bookmarks she'd made out of older pieces of art and there was one that had a beautiful Umble. I tried to copy that. I tried, but my line work will never be that clean...Anyhoo, with a little inspiration from Margaret and Maria (I used a few MT inspired columns on the white bits) I managed to finish Jem's lovely start without too much anguish;-)

This is my finish to a lovely start by Linda Kinsella in Ontario, Canada

Linda's starter tile

This was for the Breast Cancer Awareness Pink theme swap. There were so many possibilities here. I had a lot of fun with this.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me!

Saturday, November 26, 2016

String Challenge#172 and some Travelling Tangles

patterns: Cubine, Ennies and Fescu

Fresh on the heels of The Diva's Reticula and Fragments challenge, I had a little play with Cubine. I immediately messed it up. Oh well...I really like how it came out though and it was a very Zen tile to work on. I like how the string has a tile within a tile effect.

I didn't have as much Travelling Tangle time this week. I was truly fortunate to receive a gorgeous little packet of mail from Jem Miller (aka Ragged Ray) in West Sussex (U.K.) a couple of weeks ago. Here are my finishes to two (of  three)  tiles she sent me:

Jem's line work is so clean and graphic. I truly aspire to that so, whenever I get something like this I know it's going to be a long and very Zen process. I was in the mood to create some gems and contrast them with another grid pattern to compliment Jem's starter of OO-Africa. I used Test Pattern.

I love wavy stack strings, so I continued on with a few more wavy pencil lines and proceeded to choose patterns that would alternately compliment and contrast Verve and Footlites, I started off with a little triangle fragment play.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me!

Happy Caturday;-)

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Diva Challenge #294, Joey Challenge #140 and some Travelling Tangles

I'm quite fascinated by this concept introduced in the Zentangle Primer v.1. I don't own the book so I'm only just figuring this out. Basically, Reticula refers to the grid. It can be any type of grid. Reticula is the network or net-like structure that contain the fragment.

Slush pile tile reborn

I started this for a String Thing challenge last month and then abandoned it. It was a good place to play.

My cafe set up

I started off noodling around the internet and making myself a reference tile:

Side A

The flip side

I chose a fragment that would work within some of the smaller wonky bits without getting cramped and ugly and went to work. This wasn't really meant to be the finished entry, but I really like how it came out and time is running short as the holiday weekend is upon us. I definitely want to explore this concept more.

Finish My Tile Series: JuJu Beedze

Joey started off this challenge with a little bit of JuJu Beedze in the center of the tile. I'm currently in ZenGem mode preparing for the next Travelling Tangles group swap and also for some Christmas gift ideas I hope to share later. I like how this tile turned out. I'm going to laminate it and stick a magnet on it.

Here are a couple of Travelling Tangles I finished over the weekend:

Early on in my Travelling Tangle adventure someone sent me a starter using this super cool pattern, Isla, (on the top). I didn't realize it was an actual pattern at the time because I'd never seen it before. This morning it showed up on my Pinterest feed and I had to use it immediately. I love it.

Lin Laider in Massachusetts sent this ATC. The theme was to spill something on your tile. I used the contours of the watercolor to set the string.

This was the second tile from Lin. I think she spilled wine on the tile. The lighting wasn't so great on this pic and the color from the stain doesn't show, but again, I used the stain as a string.

Lin's spill starter

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Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Diva Challenge#293, Joey Challenge #139 & Travelling Tangles

Diva Challenge #293
Pattern focus: Keeko

I was quite inspired by this week's challenge to use Keeko as I'm always happy when a challenge reminds of things I've forgotten. I've enjoyed using Keeko in the past because it's so easy and relaxing to draw, truly a Zen pattern and I forget what a great fill it is.
I pulled out one of my tiles colored with art tissue paper and let it set the string. The finished tile is a bit disjointed but I like it;-)

Made by Joey Challenge #139
Finish My tile Series: Mooka 

Joey provided a lightly arching frame with Mooka emerging from one corner. In addition to adapting this to an ATC, I tweaked my Mooka a little, a variation I habitually use with Mooka, which is to resolve the bottom all to the same point rather than create a series of corners. I guess what I end up with is a variation of Flux.

I finished one Travelling Tangle this week:

This came from Margaret Blank in the UK:
There were so many possibilities with Margaret's start. After a lengthy stare-down and many rotations, I could see some options for the string. I almost always lay in pencil string if the sender hasn't provided one. Following Veezy's curves, I started with a few arching string lines and then the Barberpoles. This laid the groundwork for a graphic corner and organics spilling out of the top.

In my weekend post I shared some pictures of my Travelling Tangles album. Working on it always makes me happy.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me:-)

Saturday, November 12, 2016

String Challenge #170 and a Travelling Tangles Album

"Oke" and "Jellylegs"

Thankfully Adele tasked us with a relatively simple challenge this week, using a very simple string and two simpatico patterns. I love playing with "Oke" and don't use it often enough. I was drawn to "Jellylegs" as soon as it popped up last week. I still have a few of the orange and black tiles I made for the October challenges and it felt like a good fit here. I'm slowly emerging from my funk and I feel like I may be getting some semblance of a  Zentangle groove back.
As I mentioned in my last post, I finally got caught up with my Travelling Tangles backlog. For anyone not familiar with The Travelling Tangles Project, check this out. It's a wonderful group of collaborative artsy ZenPals that make trips to the mailbox a treat.
My next wave is beginning to trickle in and though I didn't complete any new pieces this week, I spent some very therapeutic quality time on my Travelling Tangles album. My spirits were lifted and I feel truly grateful.

I bought two of these scrapbooks years ago because they were on sale somewhere. I'm not and never have been a scrapbooker but thankfully they survived many Feng Shui purges, just waiting for the perfect purpose. I also had a postcard book of antique maps.

I've been so impressed and inspired by the creativity involved in the whole package: the envelope art,  handmade notecards, and the personal notes are all cherished.

Happy Mail!

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Friday, November 11, 2016

Diva Challenge #292, Made by Joey #138 and More Travelling Tangles...

Use My Tangle: "Eaxy"

The first Monday of the month is a Use My Tangle challenge, where The Diva chooses a pattern submitted by one of her many fans and followers. This is Nadine Roller's pattern "Eaxy", an easy pattern using X's. Easy in theory, but in practice?...well, I can't remember when a pattern vexed me so. I suspect most of you reading this feel my pain.
It's been an unsettling week and I've been trying really hard to get my Zen. I've found windows here and there but mostly my focus has been scattered. I practiced "Eaxy". A lot. I got frustrated. Took breaks. Practiced some more. Started an ATC. Got frustrated. Tossed it. Noodled around on Pinterest. A lot. Checked out other submissions. I was not alone.
Then two things happened within minutes of each other. I came across a gorgeous (is there any other kind?) Lily Moon tile and read Jennifer Sparrow's blog post. Jennifer posted of picture of a garden path and I immediately thought of cobblestones which always makes me think of 'Nzeppel. 
'Nzepple Eaxy! That was the solution to my frustration of the shabby cross-overs that I couldn't clean up. So, many thanks Lily and Jennifer!

Finish my Tile: Twile

Joey started us off this week with a ring filled with Twile in the center of a tile. I had some left over ATC's from the current Travelling Tangles swap...

... and in keeping with my personal challenge of adapting the Joey challenges to ATC's, I took a little artistic license with this.

Earlier in the week, I finished the last of my Travelling Tangles backlog to make way for new round starting to trickle in.
Here are two recent finishes to a tile and ATC sent by Sue Olsen.

I love these! They're so cool just on their own.

Sue is the inspiration behind my latest coloring technique obsession-tissue paper. Check out Sue's tutorial here. Sue recently posted some additional tissue paper play here where she overlays the white tissue for a really interesting effect. This is next on my To Do list. Thanks Sue!

A while back, I sent Margaret Bremner one of the first ATC's from my tissue paper trial run.

This is so freakin' awesome!

Margaret applied torn paper (orange) to the ATC and continued to work her magic. 

"You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club"-Jack London

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Saturday, November 5, 2016

String Challenge#169 and a few Travelling Tangles

patterns: Narwal, Onion Drops and Viaduct

In my last post I shared some Halloween inspired tiles I created with black and orange tissue paper for the Diva and Joey Challenges. This is one from that batch. The coloring seemed a good fit for Adele's string, formed by the cursive letters: ele, the first 3 letters in eleven (November being the eleventh month), also as I just now noticed, the last 3 letters of my name;-)
I started this last night, only knowing where I wanted to place Narwal. The rest just sort of...happened;-) I left the center alone because I liked that it looked like horns. When I was attempting to take a picture of this at the cafe this morning, I noticed the black mask in the corner of the counter area where I was sitting and thought it a fitting prop to go with the horns. It made me think of a Mardi Gras costume.

I've been trying to get caught up with my backlog of Travelling Tangles this weekend since a new swap has commenced and I really need to get my butt in gear with Christmas gift art.

My finish... this lovely start by Marguerite Samama,
 travelling all the way from the Netherlands

My finish... another of Marguerite's beautiful starts.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Diva Challenge #291, Made by Joey Challenge#137 and a few Travelling Tangles

A set of Halloween inspired tiles colored with art tissue

When presented with this weeks challenges on Monday, I have to admit I was not all that enthused. The Diva's options were either to create a Halloween inspired tile or use a black tile. Joey presented us with a "Finish my Tile" challenge using a "Wud" filled pumpkin as a starter.

Halloween is just not my thing. I don't have kids and even during the 10 years I lived in New York City, studying and then working as a theatrical costume designer, I only ever dressed up once.

Anyhoo, I had to really work to wrap my pen around these challenges, besides Halloween was long over by the time I got around to these. I decided to create a set of tiles using the, as yet unused, black tissue from my art tissue packet. The first tile was really more of an experimental piece. I'm not crazy about it but I try to embrace my less-than-stellar attempts as "adventurous".

Catching up on some Travelling Tangles:

My finish... this start by Dorte Seupel Kor, travelling all the way from Germany 

My finish... another of Dorte's starts. This was an Autumn themed swap.

These were my starts to October's theme: Breast Cancer Awareness Pink. I  used Daniel Lamothe's pattern Dreamcatcher on tiles colored with art tissue.

This was beautifully finished by Anita Westin in Sweden

This was Anja Shaffeld's (Germany) fantastic finish.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me.