Thursday, September 15, 2016


I love the tangle Tripoli. I think it's because this tangle is almost more of a way to set up a triangle grid rather than a strict pattern per se. Within the grid you can fill the triangles with all manner of different things for totally different looks.

Here is some of my play with Tripoli.

For the first tile I used Zentangle's basic 'triangle' string. (It's sideways now.)

I had a tile with an 'R' string so I used that next. (It's upside down now.)

Then I pulled out a bookmark-in-waiting with some old art on it. Nice colors, and the original art had a bit of a square grid so that was a little challenge.

As always, thanks Laura the Diva CZT!

Friday, September 9, 2016

A backlog of diva challenges

I've been travelling this summer, and thinking about various large projects that need my attention, so I haven't been posting challenges as they come. Here are a few - better late than never.

First, Daniel Lamothe's tangle Knightstar. The construction is the same as Donna Lacey's Knightspeak, however Daniel's is done in in multiple on a square grid resulting in a 'netting' look. It's quite a different result from Donna's with it's single star and checkerboard pattern. Either way, it's a really fun, visually delightful pattern.

On my first tile I definitely still had Knightspeak in mind. Some of my lines went haywire, the gray ink wasn't working out, and there is now a teeny-tiny tear on one side because I came this close to ripping it up. But the zentangle angel on my shoulder said, "Wait! No, no! NO mistakes, right? Keep going!" So I did. Glad I did.
Tangles: Arukas, Black Pearlz, Hibred, Knase, Knightspeak, Zonked
I did want to try Daniel's method, in a grid, and had a Bijou tile handy with a grid already on it. I did some of each tangle just to see the difference: upper left is Knightstar, lower right is multiple Knightspeak.

Next up, Molly Hollibaugh's tangle ING.
The original Ing tangle is angular, but sometimes I like to do the same thing but with curvy lines. It looks very ribbony. Here I've one strip (second from left) with multiple additional sections.

One week the challenge was to be inspired by the Olympics so I used the five rings as a string.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Spill it!

Need a little something unexpected to stir things up a bit? The DivaCZT's challenge this week is to spill something on a tile, let it dry, and tangle around/on it. You could use coffee, spaghetti sauce, food coloring, anything that will leave a splotch. I had some watered-down acrylic paint near my desk so I used that.

These became almost like Rorschach tests; I was seeing all sorts of things in the splotches! Here are pairs: the original splotch and the splotch tangled.

Hammy the Hamster Discovers a Corn Kernel
Tangles: a Black Pearl, Hollibaugh, Tipple, sort of Zander, and sort of either Printemps or Tortuca.

Bug, Meet Windscreen
Tangles: Going Down, Printemps, Tipple and stripes

Red Giraffe, Bending and Reaching
Tangles: Featherfall, N'zeppel, Wud, and stripes

This was originally inspired by Picasso's "Head of a Bull", briefly looked Georgia O'Keeffe-ish, and finished as a sort of African mask.
Tangles: Buttercup, Knightsbridge, N'zeppel (ordered), N'zeppel (random), Tipple,
plus a simple zigzag and a rope twist pattern
That was a lot of fun! Thanks again Laura.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Travelling Tangles completed

It's great fun sending and receiving partially done tiles, ATCs, and occasionally other zentangle art from fellow aficionados around the world. Here are some recent pieces, as received and as finished.

From Yvonne Westover in Ontario Canada, on a linen-textured paper:

From Kelly Barone, on an interesting soft paper with seeds in it:

From Bonnie Baskin for the 'Summer' theme swap:

From Diana Claus:

From Janet Day in Washington, USA:

From Pat Floerke in Nicaragua:

From Prairie Kittin in Washington, USA:

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Line drawing lessons

Some time ago I started doing Simone Bischoff's series of lessons for sharpening one's line drawing skills, so I thought I'd share my efforts with you. Originally in German, the short series is abbreviated in translation on There you'll find the details of each exercise. I did all my work on zentangle tiles.

Lesson one: ways of connecting dots 
Simone shows various ways to connect two dots. I used Black Pearlz for three of the dots.

Lesson two: lines in waves
This didn't work out the way Simone's did, but it is wavy lines!
Two tangles that use a series of wavy lines are Diva Dance and Magma.

Lesson three: fantasy flowers

Lesson four: spiral forms
First, a helix, a double helix, and a spiral.
The second idea in this lesson is to use the three spiral forms all starting from the same place.
It started going rather haywire so I just let it do that, and added more.

Lesson five: angled lines
Using straight, and angled lines first, then adding geometric shapes on the lines.
Some tangles that use this type of angled lines and shading are Raddox and Static.

That's as far as I got (thus far, at least). It is a fun exercise and offers new ways of thinking about mark-making. Give it a try!

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Tile salvage (and a recipe)

I recently attended a pot-luck event and took one of my favorite summer foods, George Bernard Shaw's cook's stuffed green peppers. I didn't have time to make a label before I left, so I made one at the event. The only paper I had in my purse was some zentangle tiles.

After the event, not wanting to waste that lovely paper I decided to tangle it. I designed some pencil 'strings' around the text on the tile.

And then I tangled!
Tangles: Beadlines, Florz, Knightsbridge, Pearlz,
Printemps, Seljuk, Tipple
And now, I digress. Here's a photo of some of the stuffed peppers. I don't like cooked stuffed peppers, but these are raw. So easy to make. So yummy!
And here's how to make them:
• small green peppers (enough to feed who you want to feed)
• lots of grated cheddar cheese (I prefer aged cheddar)
• equal amounts of mayonnaise and mango chutney (minus the big chunks of mango)
Halve the peppers lengthwise and remove stems, seeds and membranes. Try to slice them so the halves will sit flat and not tip over. (four bump peppers work better than three bump peppers!)
Mix the mayonnaise/chutney mix into the grated cheese, so the cheese holds together nicely. Stuff into pepper halves. Really pack it in.
Crunch, munch and enjoy!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Running 'round in circles

I often feel that way.
"I need to do this!"
"I forgot to call so-and-so!"
"I need to do that, too!"
"I'm late with... something!"
"I'm supposed to plan this thing!"
"I also need to plan that thing!"
Thus felt the DivaCZT on her recent wonderful, but whirlwind, family vacation. Thus her challenge this week: use circles. Any way. Any how.

I've always loved circles. For more than a decade I focused on mandala artwork, drawn, painted, and mixed media. So this challenge was right up my alley, and as often happens in that situation, I move from one idea to the next fairly quickly. I had the notion that we were to do concentric circles, so that's what I began with, often using a blind string.

My first tile was three circles in classic black on white.
Tangles: Black Pearlz, Paisley Boa, Pearlz, Prestwood, and
Tortuca, plus stripes, lines and Auras
Next I tried four circles in color.
Tangles: Black Pearlz, Diva Dance, Knase, Niuroda, Perfs,
Paisley Boa, 
Pearlz, and Wud plus lines and spirals
Third tile, a tan tile. I love working in browns on these tiles even though brown in definitely not my favorite color.
Tangles: Ennies, Paisley Boa, Pearlz, Snaylz, Tipple and more
I had really wanted to try Tina-Akua Hunziker's recent tangle Niuroda so I got out a zendala tile and went to town.

Back to black and white. I was quite taken with a pattern I'd seen earlier today of interlocking circles with Rounding at the intersections. It turns out it's Bublz from Lori Byerly.
Tangles: Black Pearlz, Bublz, Drupe, Ogen, Tipple
and circles with Rounding.
The broken apart Drupe in that previous tile gave me an idea: use tangles that are circular in format (or could be) and use only parts of them. Here's the result.
Tangles: Arukas, Cirqital, Daggerly, Drupe, Tipple, and Zonked