Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Zendala Dare #89

Erin gave us a slightly different template this week - it seemed open and quite challenging to me when I first saw it over on The Bright Owl.

I wasn't sure what to do, so literally just started tangling. This is my first attempt - and I've just noticed it's upside down, but it doesn't matter!

And then, I did another one adding the latest new tangle, Aquafleur, for a bit more practice! This one took a long time but I think wasn't quite worth all the effort....

Still - I wouldn't miss a Zendala Dare for all the tea in China! I do love it.
Do leave me a comment - click to follow too if you want. It is lovely to know that someone is looking and that I'm part of what's going on in the Zentangle world. 

Off now to see what everyone else has done - Axxx

Weekly Challenge #152 - Aquafleur

I start with a bit of an apology. I've had a stinking horrible head cold this week and it's left me feeling rather down in the dumps. This, despite it being my delightful daughter's 10th birthday yesterday. Even balloons and presents and cards and her unique and beautiful pleasure in it all couldn't quite rouse me to where I would love to have been....

And I suspect this shows in my attempt at Aquafleur - the Diva's Challenge for this week. Everything I've seen thus far suggests a light, billowing sort of tangle - great fun, a bit of a show-off centre-stager sort of tangle. So I can't quite explain what happened to mine....to me, it looks to be 'lurking' not blooming, its lovely bands slipping off  whilst being overwhelmed by miserable weather conditions and dank, ferny undergrowth! Ah, me...must be feeling sorry for myself!

I did have another go later on though and was so pleased with the Aquafleur I did, I couldn't bear to add anything to it at all! It's still a bit on the heavy side but I love the effect of the shading - I shall work at making it more cheerful next time I try it! 

I have loved seeing what everyone else has done with it this week. See the entries here and maybe submit one of your own! 

Off for a nice hot bath and bit of pampering now, I think!

Friday, 24 January 2014

String Thing #24

Another interesting selection of tangles - this time beginning with the letter 'Y' and a string by Courtney Franz. Again, all the tangles were completely new - apart from the dreaded 'Y-ful Power' which I did try once...and failed miserably. I stuck at it this time and although it lacks some of the elegance of its originator, Shoshi, I used it and got it to flow a bit.

Yabbut by Margaret Bremner, CZT
Yang by Genevieve Crabe, CZT
Yew-dee by Peg Farmer, CZT
Y-ful Power by Shoshi
Yincut and official Zentangle® pattern

This is the string:

It really did look like a tunnel to me when I transferred it roughly onto my paper and I came up with this.

Which I enjoyed doing and rather like.

I also tried to do something different too - and was determined to get the better of Y-ful Power too!

This, on blue card:

I don't like it quite as much but I do like to keep a record of what I do...

Looking forward to seeing the other entries on Adele's blog - Tickled to Tangle - when she uploads them sometime around Monday. It is fascinating to see what a range of interpretations are put on a fairly narrow set of options!

Happy weekend!

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

I am the Diva Challenge #151 and Moebius Syndrome

This week, to bring to the fore the condition known as Moebius Syndrome, which Laura's second son was born with, we are tangling the amazing moebius strip.
This is not a disease but a very rare neurological disorder which is present at birth. It primariy affects the cranial nerves and means those with the condition can't move their faces to express emotions that the rest of us take for granted - like smiling, frowning - and it affects the eyes and their lateral movement. Artoo, as we know him, has had to have a lot of help in his early life but it's clear that he is very involved in all the usual things and wants to be a palaeontologist when he grow up - and jolly good luck to him I say.
More information and some great photos on I am the Diva's blog. Do pop over and see what others have created this week

This is my take on the Moebius Syndrome's symbol. I used gold pen on the tangles but it doesn't show too well. 

I used Cubine and Fife - Fife is new to me and I did enjoy doing it.

Raising awareness for all sorts of things is something I wholeheartedly agree with and I wish Laura, Artoo and all the family all the very best for the future. It was a good challenge. Thank you!

Monday, 20 January 2014

Zendala Dare #88

I now know why I always look so fat on my blog photos...it's the screen! When Erin released her latest template, I had no printer ink and so couldn't print out the template. Unable to wait for my husband to return from town with more ink, I traced the template directly from my computer screen. And this is what it looked like:

Now if that's not distorted, I don't know what is!  Yippee - pass me another piece of pie!!

Anyway, before I could make a start, my husband was back and the ink was in the printer - so I did my usual. I printed all three copies out and made a start on the first and smallest one, using any patterns that popped into my head.

Betweed, Paradox, Diva Dance, Huggins with Hypnotic, Crescent Moons,
Hollibaugh and Tipple. It was great fun!!
Then I began the next one and my only thought was to try and make it different from the first. And to use a pattern I hadn't used before. And it's so little known to me that I've had to just go and check the name - Aura-Leah. I LOVE it!!! And ended up doing a monotangle - which is also a first for me. I'm pleased with how it's turned out and can also say it looks very different from the first one.

Just Aura-Leah in this dare.

Thank you Erin - off now to The Bright Owl to check out what everyone else has been doing with the Dare. Thanks for popping by - do say 'hi' in the comments box.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Diva Challenge #150

I thought long and hard about 'my word' for the new year, as suggested in I am the Diva's Challenge #150. There were many words I could have chosen to try and suggest a key meaning for 2014 but I decided to really set myself a challenge. This year, my chosen word is inspire

I want to be inspired and I want to be inspiring. And inspiration doesn't just happen - we have to work at it. I like Peter De Vries' quote: 
“I write when I’m inspired, and I see to it that I’m inspired at 9:00 every morning.” 
I have never read Peter De Vries' but I am inspired to - and will!

How can one find inspiration? Well, experts suggest that 'doodling' can help - hurray!  I have found I am very inspired by Zentangle and so the word is appropriate for the reaction it has in me. I am inspired to try new patterns, to sit down most days and let my pen wander over the paper, with intent but not too much instruction and I do try to let the tangles 'happen'. In turn, this is very inspiring. As a creative but not particularly artistic person, when I finish a Zentangle or ZIA,  I feel I have created something that IS artistic - abstract and intricate and often quite beautiful! It is a really good feeling.

And in turn, I have been inspired to share my enthusiasm and now run a small but engaged Tangle group in my local area, where I can see how inspiring the making of Zentangle patterns is to others. We are learning together as there isn't a CZT for hundreds and hundreds of miles!

Apart from Zentangle, I also want to inspire the students I teach. Living in Spain, I find many people either want to study English or want their children to learn. I am a qualified teach of English to speakers of other languages and I work hard to make my lessons interesting and engaging.  I do genuinely love the English language. The more Spanish I learn, the more I love English and its flexibility, its subtlety, its lyrical sound. I want to inspire my students with a love of the language too - it's the greatest motivator for learning I can imagine.

  • ɪnˈspʌɪə/

    1. 1.
      fill (someone) with the urge or ability to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.

      • create (a feeling, especially a positive one) in a person.

      • animate someone with (a feeling).

Interestingly, I would still trust my words to inspire much more than my ability to produce art!! But I enjoyed doing a detailed set of tangles for my challenge this week. And am looking forward to seeing what my talented tangling friends have come up with over on Laura's blog. (That's probably you!!)

Tangles used: Ionic, 'Bales', Nzepple, Itsy Bitsy, Ilana, Nvelope, Florz and a selection of individual patterns, including Fern, Fengle, Zinger and Fescu...

(I was 'inspired' to run my black and white tangle through BeFunky's photo editor
to give it this 'sunburst' effect!)

  1. Hope you'll be inspired to leave me a comment! 

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Zendala Dare #87

I logged onto my blog yesterday morning and was within one minute of seeing the latest Zendala Dare from Erin at 'The Bright Owl'. I thought I'd get in quickly too and had a very pleasant Saturday afternoon of tangling. These are my two contributions - hope you like them as I enjoyed doing them both.

Smallest tile - just notice there's no shading!
I used Tipple, Boo*Kee, Beadlines and
I'm not sure if the pebble one has a name...any ideas?

For this, I moved out a segment each time I went round.
I used Barber pole and a variation on that, Crescent Moon, Eylet and Ribbon and the last one, which looks rather maggot-like - which was not quite what I intended. Is there a 'Maggot' tangle? I suspect not!

Don't forget to check out the other contributions to the dare on Erin's blog

Saturday, 11 January 2014

String Thing #22

Hello - here we are with It's a String Thing, set up each week by Adele Bruno on  Tickled to Tangle.  This week we used String #22, by Margaret Bremner and a set of tangles beginning with the letter 'R' - only one of which I knew already. It's always good to learn new tangles.

The tangles are:

Raindotty (which I know and love), Rain, Reticulated, Retro and Ragz. 

I couldn't resist making piano keys on Reticulated...and the whole thing makes me think of a fairground! In fact, I think I may have to do a version with some colour on it....what do you think?

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Zendala Dare #86 (not 89!)

I've been getting a bit behind with some of the challenges and dares that I find so very inspiring as a newbie to Zentangle. So I have made sure to get in quickly and positively with those for the New Year - not a resolution, mind, as resolutions soon feel like obligations. No, taking part in these weekly challenges is a huge joy and source of inspiration and anticipation...I really love it!

I'm always excited to see the new Dare from Erin at 'The Bright Owl'  and love the links to everyone's contributions on Mister Linky! It's an excellent widget...

I am usually a 'cup half-full' sort of person but I have had such moments of sadness over the Christmas break due to the death of my dog, Darwin, and I'm really having to take stock and accept that he's gone and won't come back, ever. We had a few tears as the children left for school yesterday morning and he wasn't there watching them go...or waiting when they came back but we are now able to talk about giving a home to another (as yet, unwanted) pup as Darwin was a few years ago. And we will do soon.

In the meantime, I know I have such a lot to be grateful for - not least being a mum, according to my daughter!! She's absolutely right. I have put just four words into the centre of my Zendala this week - Love, Health, Family, Home - but the list goes on, of course. The tangles around the words contain all my gratitude for having found Zentangle. My four first ever tangles make the corner parts, with a selection of my favourites after that. These include:

Betweed; Mooka; Clams and Cockles, Paradox; Tipple; Bales; Florz; Huggins; Cuboid; Myst; Raindotty; Aah; Diva; Crescent Moons; Hollibaugh; Verdigogh; Heartstrings. All nailed down!

So yes, very grateful.

***And very grateful to Annemarie over on Anne's Tangle Blog for pointing out to me yet again, that I posted a loopy link on Erin's Mister Linky that didn't bring you here, but just went back to Erin....oh dear, must concentrate!

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Weekly Challenge #149

Laura, at I am the Diva, gave us a beautifully elegant example of this week's challenge - on a theme of 'The New Year' or '2014'. I had already done a welcome banner for 2014 which was almost literally full of New Year 'spirit' - I drew it after drinking plenty champagne! And my husband kept on topping up my glass as I tried (and failed) to draw 'Bales' behind the word 'Year'!! However, as it's Zentangle and any deviation from the expected is an opportunity,  I just carried on regardless. It's cheerful and makes me smile when I open my blog.

My entry to the challenge this week puts the 'Footlite' on 2014 as the 'Crescent Moon' curtain rises and the tangled curtain pattern (whose name I couldn't locate... ) pulls back to reveal a 'quietly confident' year. ( I hope!)  Not quite Zentangle but I couldn't put the idea away once I'd had it. On my copy, the Footlites are shining silvery which is caught up in accents on the numbers but my scanner doesn't pick that up. And whilst I don't usually 'do' colour, I decided the new year was a good time to give it a go. Promise I'll practice for future posts!

Happy New Year - hope it's tangling well for you so far.

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Tangling the year out

I'm just about to start Erin's final Zendala Dare of 2013. I didn't notice it yesterday because I was busy doing quite a big picture which I so enjoyed doing.

I just filled a big page with anything that came into my head.

And now, I'm going to sit in front of the fire with my family and whilst they all watch 'Star Wars' or something similar, I shall get on with my last Zendala Dare of the year. I do love Zentangle!


Happy New Year to you all.

These two are both quite 'dense'. The first one looks rather industrial, I think, with the tubes and the pipes...

And the second has some of my favourite tangles which are reminiscent of seashells. I enjoyed this but am off to try a third one and use some much looser tangles...

Don't forget to check out the incredibly varied and interesting versions done by others on Erin's blog!