cat icon

It's a String Thing #92

May 12th was a free cone day at Häagen-Dazs shops and to celebrate Adele Bruno at Tickled To Tangle themed this week's It's a String Thing (#92) with sweet sounding tangles: Butter, Cayke, Chocobox, and Kandy Ribnz.

All of these tangle were new to me. I tried this challenge twice. I was unhappy with my first tangle, as it felt crowded, chaotic and flat. I was too same in scale size. I like my second version much better.

Chocobox reminds me a double cartoon dinosaur head. It was fun to do - there are couple black sheep chocoboxes who wanted to start life as figure 8s. I stumbled upon a very minimal version of it while learning it that I really like. I also had no idea that my Cayke tangle took on a life of it's own until I started looking up how to shade it when I completed the second tile.

There i something very airy and floating about this Zentangle. And I felt happy at the end, so I guess it was good medicine.

The happy version:

And the chaotic version:
cat icon

I am the Diva's Weekly Challenge #217

This week's challen for I am the Diva is to create a duo tangle using Dex and Bunzo in celebration of her 35th birthday. (Happy birthday, thank you for the challenge!)

While my Dex isn't the neatest (the boxes in the background), I found that pattern much easier than Bunzo (the organic stacked parentheses). My engineering brain prefers order and logic to organic design, and I am having the most trouble with the more organic patterns. My Bunzo feels a bit more linear than others that I have seen, a fingerprint or signature if you will.

Additionally, I am noticing a couple of other signatures in my Zentangles - I have a very small comfort zone of stroke size. I prefer my strokes to be similar in length to what I would use when handwriting (my handwriting is very regular and the same size when I am on lined paper or not). This is leading to a more dense finished tile. I still benefit from the meditative state when I draw them, but I fell that my composition is not as pleasing as it could be. Looking back through my tiles, I have a very regular size for patterns with repeating strokes. I have a very instinctive and consistent 1/16" line spacing in most of my tiles.(It's even present in today's, the dark box in the center of Dex is a sixteenth of an inch from the edge of each box, with minor variations here and there and the bunzo lines are close to that in their centers as well.)

The other signature that I am seeing is something I cannot verbalize, but I can see a mental tie that says, yes, these two pieces were done by the same person. Kind of the way a graphologist could figure out if the same person was the author of two different handwritten items.

Am definitely learning and relaxing with this.

My shading in this is a bit odd. I think I may have shaded the foreground as if it was lit from the lower front, while I shaded the background as lit from the top. Still need to work on that light and shadow thing. :)

cat icon

Working through One Zentangle a Day, Days #2-4

Last week was crazy weather here in Colorado. And it shows in the tangles I did.

Day 2 of One Zentangle A Day introduced Knightsbridge (the checkerboard), fescu (the little hairy pattern) and nekton (the cross-hatch). Nekton was a challenge, but I loved knightsbridge and fescu. This tile turned out a bit flat because I have so many lines that are so close together. I mixed those three patterns with previously used tipple, static, and crescent moon. I may have gone overboard on the tipple (leaving the centers of the side 'leaves' empty probably would have been very striking. I'm blaming the overuse of tipple on the overdose of hail that we got. (The day I tangled this, 4+ inches of hail fell in a 45 minute period. The weather was crazy!))
String: Crossed figure 8s
Tangles: Crescent Moon, Fescu, Knightsbridge, Nekton, Static, Tipple
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, recycled 60# sketch paper

Day 3's string was a couple rain drops that I drew. Strings and tangles are supposed to be non representational, but using this as a meditative device, I've decided that rule can be bent if I need to work out some thoughts. And this entire Zentangle is really imagery of how I was feeling after six days of rain. (We've had more than double our May average precipitation so far this May, and we had that in about three days.) The tangles introduced on this day were hollibaugh (pattern that looks like pickup sticks), festune (looks like tires), and pokeroot (looks like mushrooms). I combined these new tangles with knightbridge, nekton, and fescu. And have an image where the sun is blotted out in the upper left, rain is falling on a pile of life preservers, and weeds and mushrooms are growing in the sodden ground.
String: Raindrop pair
Tangles: Fescu, Festune, Hollibaugh, Knightsbridge, Nekton, Pokeroot
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, recycled 60# sketch paper

Day 4 has two images. The first one practices new tangles and the second is a shading exercise.

The new tangles for this day were Jonqual (a more 3D version of knightsbridge), Shattuck (strands woven together between posts), and Nipa (kind of bubbles rising through waves). The weather for Mother's Day (the day I did this Zentangle) changed from Thursday's hail and Friday's (and the rest of the week really) to snow, which affected my string again. This time it was a hexagon with opposite corners connected. I didn't actually mean to put knightsbridge in this tangle, but it was a more automatic motion for me than the jagged lines of jonqual. My attempts to morph into Jonqual were only successful in one try. Zentangle theoretically has no errors, but they said nothing about coloring over your attempts and patterning with white pen. :) So that's what I did with the other two. It looks slightly off that one is different, but I'm happy with the eventual effect. The gelly roll pen is picky about going over areas multiple times, so I filled in some spots with a white pastel pencil.

String: Hexagon with opposing corners connected
Tangles: Jonqual, Knightbridge, Nipa, Shattuck, Aura'd negative space.
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, Sakura Gelly roll pen, Derwent pastel pen, recycled 60# sketch paper

For the shading exercise, I picked Festure, Nipa, Pokeroot and Shattuck. This exercise had us draw a Zentangle with four patterns of our choosing, then chose the light source and shade accordingly. I had a fairly hard time actually picturing the effect of light and shadows with this one. The light is supposed to be coming from the upper left.
String: Cockeyed T
Tangles: Festure, Nipa, Pokeroot and Shattuck.
Materials: Pilot Precise V5 Rolling Ball pen, 4B pencil, recycled 60# sketch paper
cat icon

I am the Diva's Weekly Challenge #216

This week's challenge from I am the Diva was to use 'Brella by Bunny Wright, CZT. As the challenge was issued on 4 May, nods to Star Wars were encouraged.

Star Wars didn't make it into my Zentangle today and it is a bit chaotic. But, that chaos is kind of reflective of my state of mind. I like how the Fandango across the top came out, and the nest 'Brella in the center. My string lead parts of my design, but in the end, several tangles overwrote the idea of the string. (It was a crossed Z.)


String: Fancy crossed Z
Tangles: 'Brella, Mooka, Flutterbud, Opus, DL Sunray, Fandango, Fans
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, recycled 60# sketch paper
cat icon

It's a String Thing #91

Entry for Tickled to Tangle's Tuesday Challenge: It's a String Thing #91

Guidelines were to use Tickled to Tangle's string based on the Roman Numeral V and the tangles: Zin, 2-N-5, and Vano.

I love how this came out. I keep the shading very blocky and minimal to highlight the near art-decoish look of the tile. When I was creating this, I had it upside down from how I scanned it. But I felt the way I scanned it has a better balanced feeling.


String: Adele Bruno's Roman Numeral V string
Tangles: 2-N-5, Vano, Zin
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, recycled 60# sketch paper
cat icon

Working through One Zentangle a Day , Day #1

When not looking for challenges, I'm working through the book, One Zentangle a Day, by Beckah Krahula. The Day 1 Tile:

Create a Zentangle using Static, Tipple and Crescent Moon.


String: String #5
Tangles: Static, Tipple, Crescent Moon
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, Sakura Gelly Roll White pen, recycled 60# sketch paper

My shading needs work, but am happy with the composition.
cat icon

It's a String Thing #90

Entry for Tickled to Tangle's Tuesday Challenge: It's a String Thing #90

Guidelines were to use String #90 and the tangles: Garlic Cloves, Laced and Lanie.

Kind of lost the plan in the lower left, but happy with the rest of it.


String: String #90
Tangles: Garlic Cloves, Laced, Lanie
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, recycled 60# sketch paper
cat icon

Early Zentangles

My earliest Zentangles where I was still getting a handle on composition and value.

26 April:
String: non specific
Tangles: All About V, Fescu, Knightbridge, 'Nzeppel, Triangles, Tropicana
Materials: Ball point, recycled 60# sketch paper

26 April:
String: rough Z
Tangles: Bales, Betweed, Paradox (well, an attempt), Screen, Sparkle, Xyp
Materials: Dip pen, recycled 60# sketch paper

27 April:
String: String #149
Tangles: All About V, Camelia, Chimes, Droplets, Flux, Hepmee, Pegs, Planateen
Materials: Ball point, recycled 60# sketch paper

29 April:
String: String #135 (modified)
Tangles: Beeline, Boomerangs, Flicle, Ix, Kuke, Phen, Screen
Materials: Uniball Vision Needle Micro, 4B pencil, recycled 60# sketch paper
cat icon

Learning to Tangle

Ran across Zentangle through a friend and decided to give it a shot. Needing some direction, I tried I am the Diva's most weekly challenge: #215 Labyrinth.

I drew the labyrinth in as a string and then allowed it to fade to the background as I filled in the spaces around it, picking new tangles each layer out from the center. My labyrinth was a bit off center, so follow the river path to it.

I'm still very new at this, so there's no shading, and I haven't quite worked out a line density that I like yet. But overall, I love the result of this.


Tangles used: Kuke, Flux, Tri-Po, Half Onion, 'Nzeppel, River, Tipple, Fescu, and Hepmee.
cat icon


I know, I never update. I never feel like I have anything of substance to say. So the first update in a year is of a new kitty!

His current name is Rascal. Rascal is the name he came with and I can't think of a good Hallowe'en name for him, so Rascal he'll probably remain. I'm told he was named for his personality. (With the exception of Spook, I know lots about each litter of all of my pets, and I've picked the troublemaker in each litter...there's just something about them that draws me, even from pictures. :) )

And speaking of pictures, here are a few of him:


Collapse )

His reception went almost as I predicted. Boo hissed at him and hid. Spook hissed/growled and then had a 15 minute staring match. Winter cried and barked inconsolably for an hour (during which he got 4 bloody noses and a bloody tongue (and that's with being held back), ate a bowl of kitten chow, and brought 3 cat toys out of the bathroom (where Rascal will live until I trust everyone enough for him to be loose without supervision) for Rascal - though Rascal wants nothing to do with the loud, drool-y, overly-excited dog, can't say I blame him). I finally crated him in the basement.And he and Summ sniffed noses through her crate and the baby gate, before she took off for the bathroom (accidentally stepping on him in the process) and stuffed as many toys of his in her mouth as she could (6) and made a beeline for outside. (My prediction was that he'd get a cold reception from Spook and Boo, an overly enthusiastic reception from Winter, and a predatory reaction from Summ. I'm pleased to be wrong on that last account, though still no unsupervised interaction.)

My neighborhood had its big yard sale today, and Rascal was quite content to be carried (on leash) around to all of the different yard and get pets from about 20 different people. Only stopped purring once, and that was when a loud dump truck barreled down the street. And he was just as good in PetsMart. Just sweet, attached to my clothes with his claws, and purring away. He was nervous, but well behaved.

He's big for 12 weeks. My friend, M, who rescued their mother a few weeks before the litter was born, was at the vet with me (in fact, that's where we did the ownership transfer, because he had to test negative for FIV/FeLV for me to consider keeping him), and my vet kept asking if M was sure on their birth date, because he's already 4.3 pounds and maturity-wise is closer to 16 weeks, but M is sure of their birthday, as they were born while she was a her mother's birthday party. I'm happy about that, because his size makes him less fragile and less vulnerable to damage from the dogs. His paws are bigger than Boo's, so I get the feeling he's going to be one big cat.