Challenge #315 … “Molygon”

This week’s Challenge is to use the pattern “Molygon”.  This tangle reminds me of bananas so I just had to create a fun little Bijou ZIA.  Hope you get a giggle out of it!

Happy Birthday to our “leader”, Laura Harms, CZT on her special day this week. Make a wish and have an awesome day!

“Zen Gem” Sunday …..

The focus of our class, held at the Icarus Creative Arts Studio, was “Zen Gems”.  Five of us spent the two hours learning how to create gems, using different mixes of colors,  and then applying them to Bijou tiles for the sake of time.  Everyone picked up the gem technique (“Susan-style”) very quickly and produced beautiful tiles.  I’m looking forward to seeing how they introduce the gems to their future work!

It was also good to hear Judy’s review of her four days spent at CZT Training in Providence, Rhode Island earlier in the month of April.  I was so glad to hear that it was the same, awesome, “hard to describe” four days that I experienced three years ago.   She is now a Certified Zentangle Teacher …. and maybe will teach me a few tricks down the road!

Looking forward to seeing this group in a few weeks – I love my Sunday afternoons spent at Icarus, sharing Zentangle with them all!

Practice sheets …. looking pretty darn great!

First-time gems on Bijou tiles – AWESOME – and LOVE the patterns!
Judi, Cherie, Liliana, Judy

Tile I created to share with the group!

Springtime “Under the Sea” …

Today I had the pleasure of sharing an “Under the Sea” ZIA with Lori, Terri and Ryan.  Lori and Terri have been driving down from the LA area and Simi Valley for classes with me for about a year now.  It’s always fun to get together with them and share.  This time they brought their son-in-law/nephew-in-law, Ryan, to join in. Ryan is a web/graphic designer who wanted to try out something a little more relaxed and unrestricted.

After learning a few new patterns (Angelfish, Squid, Sixty, Phycops, Btl-Joos), we agreed on using a circle on an Apprentice tile as our foundation.  This gave us a little more room than the regular 3.5×3.5 tile.  After we got our basic patterns down, everyone was on their own to embellish the patterns/tile as they wished.  Then … out came the watercolor pencils.  We had a great time filling in our “aquariums” and blending the colors with a Tombow Blending pen.

The work is beautiful.  And Ryan, who hasn’t taken a class before, made a super nice tile and even ventured off and used a couple patterns we didn’t even discuss in the class.  I did hand-out the “Organic Ocean” flyer from Meredith Yuhas, CZT, as well as my own list, that shows many patterns suitable for an ocean ZIA.

My next class …. Sunday, April 30th at Icarus Creative Arts Studio, 1pm-3pm.  Grab a glass of wine in the Winery Tasting Room and come to the Studio to learn how to create “ZenGems” to enhance your Zentangle art!

(Ryan, Terri, Susan, Lori)
(poor picture quality care of Susan)


May & June Classes … Sign-up Now

New classes have been confirmed for May 21st and June 11th. Both dates are Sunday afternoons with classes held from 1:00pm-3:00pm at Icarus Creative Arts Studio.  Come learn to “stack and tangle” your patterns in May, then use tropical-inspired patterns to create a summertime “tropical garden” on June 11th.  Sign-up now using Paypal here on this site.  Seating is limited for all classes.  

Challenge #309 … “Noom”

Back at ZenAgain in late 2016, several new patterns were introduced.  One of them was “Noom” – in honor of the Super Moon taking place at that time.  (Hence … moon spelled backwards!)  The step-outs have just been made public so the Diva challenged us to use Noom in our work this week.

Also introduced at ZenAgain were Zentangle Diptychs* (definition below).  I’m not sure if I conquered this technique quite yet, but this tile was fun to make no matter.  Check out the Diva’s site for other interpretations of Noom.

*Definition of diptych (from Merriam-Webster)
1:  a 2-leaved hinged tablet folding together to protect writing on its waxed surfaces
2:  a picture or series of pictures (as an altarpiece) painted or carved on two hinged tablets
3:  a work made up of two matching parts

Challenge #308 … “Mac’n’Cheese”

This week’s Challenge was a nice, simple, easy one …. use your favorite go-to pattern on a tile.  My favorite go-to is “Flux” – it’s fun to draw, relaxing, and goes anywhere on a page.  When I have to sit and wait, I love to do Flux on whatever I can get my hands on!  My other favs are Cruffle and Zinger so this tile features all three.

“Monotangle Meets Bijou” …

Had a great class at Icarus yesterday with the theme of “Monotangle Meets Bijou”.   I introduced seven new patterns that we did on the Bijou tiles.  It was a fun class which really focused on two ideas – new tangles and smaller paper.

When you begin your Zentangle journey, I think most of us find that “wow”, the paper is so small (3.5×3.5).  Once you get into it, the size doesn’t seem to be an issue any more because you use your dots, border and string to make it manageable.  So with this class, I wanted to show  the same process exists for smaller tiles – many times starting with your four dots, border and string.   (Today, because we created monotangles, we didn’t use strings.)

At the end of class, with not much time left, we took three patterns and put them on a Bijou (with four dots, border and string) – Footlites, Lollywimple and Diva Dance.  Think they did a great job for a jiffy tile!

Next up – Zen Gems on April 30th!

Nice work by Judy, Lilliana, Cherie, Sharon & Judi
(missing Jeanne’s!)

Challenge #304 … “Waybop”

This week’s Diva Challenge requires the use of one of Zentangle’s newest patterns, “Waybop”.  This was one of three “official” new tangles introduced at Zen Again back in the Fall of 2016.  I recently taught all three new patterns to a class, and it was a bit of a challenge by all!  The patterns were a bit more difficult than most, but everyone persevered and we made some beautiful tiles.  (See my post “New Products & New Patterns”)

Just this past weekend, I taught a class where we ended up with a little time left at the end.  The ladies requested to go over this very same pattern one more time.  They all got it, but just needed a little more reassurance that, yes, they were doing it correctly!

I love this pattern!  I think it’s one of my new favorites.  There are so many different ways to create it and embellish.  This tile was done on light grey Stonehenge paper, using a black micron and white gel pen for accents.  I like to play around with a different number of “seeds” each time.  This tile features 10!

Check out the Diva’s page to see the unique entries this week from all over the world!  Enjoy.


Black Tiles …

Black tiles and white Jelly Roll pens were the supplies needed for today’s class at the Icarus Creative Arts Studio on the grounds of the Bernardo Winery.  Six ladies took part in drawing beautiful black tiles with the Jelly Roll pens, and shading with either a white charcoal pencil or the Zenstone.  All tiles were beautiful.

Our first tile included Indy-Rella, Twing and Nymph.  These are great patterns to use with the white pen and they shade out very nicely.

img_1695Beautiful Art by Paula, Jeanne, Judy, Sharon, Judi & Cheri

The second tile featured the die-hard Bales, along with a new pattern I discovered this week – “Joki” – from Danish tangler Kim Aarts.  It’s a pretty tangle and easy to get into a rhythm tangling all the curves.  Adding just a touch of shading gives it even more interest.

img_1698Beautiful Art by Cherie, Judi, Sharon, Judy, Jeanne & Paula

The best part of a class is seeing the outcome of all the tiles considering everyone is using the exact same patterns.  Some have a heavier hand than others, some view a pattern in a different way – but, however way they are drawn, all pieces are beautiful.  This was a very fun class … if you haven’t tried your white Jelly Roll pen on a black tile, you’re missing out.

Next up on March 5th is an “Introduction to Zentangle” class.  If you haven’t tried Zentangle yet, but are thinking of giving it a try, this is the class to take.  After that, March 19th will feature “Monotangles Meet Bijou” … another fun and different class!  Hope to see you at one of them!

Black Tiles, Black Swans …

Last night, Judy, Julie and I met for our monthly Tangle Session.  At first, Judy had requested something “Valentine”, but then decided she wanted to do black tiles and white pens.

We started off doing a traditional black Zentangle tile, using a Sakura White Gelly Roll pen, and white charcoal pencil for shading.  I introduced two patterns that they hadn’t done before – Twing & Nymph – and added a few Indy-Rellas.  The results were very simple but elegant.   (I also gave them a small acrylic frame/magnet for their work, so you see a bit of glare off the frames in this picture).


Trying to add a little Valentine’s Day to the evening, I was able to come up with a “different” and “new” pattern I found on Pattern Collections.  It’s a new one from Suzanne Crisafi titled “Swan Love”.  Seemed appropriate for a Valentine theme on a black tile so we used black Zendalas and created a little “Swan Love” accented with a few other tangle patterns.  It’s a fun, simple pattern and easy to dress-up with your favorite embellishments and a splash of color.


New Products & New Patterns …

The class at Icarus Creative Arts Studio today was titled “New Products-New Patterns”.  While the new products were fun to share, the new patterns were a bit intimidating to say the least!  I had to keep reassuring the group that whenever you draw a pattern for the first few times, it’s going to be frustrating if you don’t get it immediately.

That turned out to be the case today with Drawings, Waybop and Noom.  I knew it would be a tougher class than usual as I’d been practicing these three patterns for the last few weeks to figure them out myself.  But, all of a sudden, the “light went off” and I got the hang of them.  Just like I told these ladies they will too.  I feel you need to include some of the tougher tangles to challenge yourself.  Usually, though, the challenge is to not get frustrated and give up – to stay in the “zen” zone.  We tried each pattern a couple times and by the end of the class, they all were ready to proceed on their own.

I also introduced the new 3Z triangle tiles so we selected Drawings and completed a monotangle of this pattern.  We added a small Valentine touch by including a little heart, or two, and filling them in with gold ink.  I’ve shared a photo of them below.  The group arranged our tiles in different shapes to find one suitable for a photo of 10 tiles.

It was another great afternoon spent with ten wonderful ladies.  This was just the second class for four of them, having just completed the Intro Class a couple weeks ago.  (I sure hope I didn’t scare them off with these more intricate, involved patterns!)   Judging from all their work below, I think everyone of them did an awesome job as they all look fantastic!

AND congratulations to Judy J. for her registration at the next Zentangle Training Seminar coming up in April.  Judy is my first student to go on to CZT training.  I’m so happy I’ve been able to introduce her to Zentangle and that she wants to take her learning even further!   Judy – you will love your five days in Providence!

Next up on February 19th – Black Tiles!  Hope to see you there!


Zen Gems ….

Had a very fun “Zen Gem” class this evening with Judy and Julie …. They’ve been setting up “once-a-month” classes with me for the last several months and it’s always a fun couple hours when we get together.  This class focused on creating “gems”.  We practiced on Bijou tiles, then proceeded to create some beautiful “zen flowers” on the original tiles – think they turned out great!img_1677

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