Flower of Life…Zentangle Style

Hi!

You may have noticed I didn’t post last week. The week completely got away from me…I was so busy setting up our SoCal CZT Round Up (read: cleaning the shop) that I really had no time, and by the time I did, it was already Sunday!

When Diva posted this weeks challenge (#349) for the new tangle from Zentangle HQ called Rumpus, I had already started another piece I am working on for a demo-type class for the San Diego Book Arts Guild. I am using blank coasters to tangle on (with gel pens, not Microns) to use as covers for some yet to be determined book form. The timing is pretty short, so I thought I would use a simple-yet impactful grid tangle. I came up with Fife, one of my favorites, in a rather wonky grid.

While I was working my way through it, I thought…gee…this looks like the Flower of Life pattern I am constantly drawing with my compass. And so I decided to look into it, and wouldn’t you know…Fife is an abbreviation of Flower of Life!

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Fast forward to Rumpus now…and I’ll be darned if it isn’t the same concept. A free form Flower of Life!

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I still have to think about the book form I am going to use, so I’ll post that when I figure it out.


I was at the UCSD campus for a study I was participating in, around the Engineering Department, and saw this amazingly huge rock teddy bear. It made me think about the enormity of things sometimes.

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Tasks have seemed daunting lately. As I clean and sort and file and get things ready for closing the shop, I feel a little overwhelmed.

I felt that way when I was trying to come up with a class schedule for February. For 2.5 years, I have been trying all kinds of days and times and concepts to put classes on the schedule, and if I am lucky I get about 5-6 students a month, spread out over 2-3 scheduled classes. There is simply no way of knowing what times work best for people.

So I decided to try something new. You pick the time that is right for you, what class you want to do, and if I have it available, we are a go! Still working out some details of how to word it on the web site, and how to block off my calendar for when I am out of town, but I think this is going to be much less stressful for all of us.

Individual, private lessons will be slightly more, but bring me a party of 2 or more and I’ll keep my original prices in tact.


And the SoCal CZT Round Up was a huge success. We had a lot of fun tangling, talking, and eating really good snacks! There were 16 of us! (And I was so busy doing stuff I forgot to take pictures!)

We have the next one planned for March 3, from 10-3, still at my place. We will be looking into other locations for future gatherings, so if you are a CZT in the SoCal area, make sure you are in our FaceBook Group to get the updates.


Finally, I did remember to photo the other Never Ending Card I did!

These are just so much fun to make!

Fun time is done (I prefer writing to most of my other icky tasks, like accounting and web site maintenance…)

Make Stuff…You Will Feel Better!

Surviving the Void

Yes…it’s that time of year again. And this year hit me a lot harder, and took me deeper in the void than usual. We had mom’s interment last Friday, and the 9-ish hours drive each way really took a lot out of me. The interment was at the Southern Arizona Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Sierra Vista, and it really is a beautiful place with sweeping panoramic views. I did a lot of cemetery visits this trip, including Tombstone and Black Oak in Elgin. It was interesting reconnecting with family in this manner, and realizing I am the senior family member now.

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I’ve tried really immersing myself in my art during this time. I did a lot of work with the Dot Rods™ and nearly have the video tutorial edited to post (hopefully by next week!)

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I’m really getting into trying lots of different things, and putting the materials I have to work for me. Here is some of the preliminary work that goes into a painting…selecting and prepping the palette.

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And the final products! (This was a Christmas gift for my Sig-O.)

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And that was a lot of fun.


It was also nice to have the Diva back this week after the Christmas break. (I know…I took a break too!) Her challenge this week (#346) was a Duo-Tangle of Phicops and Huggins. I really had not done Phicops before, but I really enjoyed it. and I tried to do a wonky gridded Huggins, as opposed to my usual Crazy Huggins and I think it was successful!

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I only have 5 more pages left in my little Cub from Iona Handcrafted Books, so it will be time to move on to a new one soon. (While I have more than a few blank journals at home, I found this one on their website while I was finishing up this post. Drool.)


I also finished (and blocked, and mailed) a knitting project that I started in New Zealand in October.

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Waiting now for some knitting needles that Santa ordered me for Christmas so I can start the next one. I plan on knitting (and stitching) my way through baseball season this year. Nothing like dedicated time to work on these things. I grew up listening to baseball on the radio, so I can look up from my work when something is going on, and not miss a thing!


Sometimes, the simple act of writing things out is a vital part of a healing process. In the case of this blog post, it worked. And while I was writing, the sun came out. Maybe the void won’t swallow me whole now.

Happy New Year from Mike and I.

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Hoarding in the Afterglo

Yes, I am a hoarder. I can finally admit that over many years of fully participating in the hoarding process. I saved bits and bobs of things to make things out of. I had lots of bright, shiny ideas and never followed through with them, resulting in clutter and disarray to the point where I had no workspace left.

I think once I came to grips with the “why” part of my hoarding (that’s a VERY long story) I was ready to deal with it. And deal I did. With the encouragement of a coach, I organized what I wanted to keep, purged what no longer served a purpose, and made a very positive change. Here are a few before and afters:

I replaced the sewing table tops with larger ones, so there is automatically more room there, but since the move around, and purge, the room seems twice as large! And…on top of that, I have been pretty productive!


Since I am basking in the afterglow of having a nice workspace again, it is only right that this week’s Diva Challenge (#344) is a Use My Tangle (UMT) of Afterglo by Carole Ohl, CZT. I have not done this tangle since my very first month tangling, and I did not have fond memories of it. So trying it again (I am still on the white pen kick in my black Venice Journal) I kept an open mind.

Diva #344

I am really learning a lot about shading with this new paradigm of graphite. I think it works really well. And don’t those look like poinsettia?

I also did this one for the Square One Facebook tangle this week, Hypnotic:

Square One - Hypnotic

I’ve also been playing with my Dot Rods™ now that I have space to work. I made this as a peace offering to a friend that I’ve had a falling out with. Don’t tell her though, as I have not yet given it…lol. (I don’t think she reads my blog anyway.)

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I layer them in. Makes it so fun! (Notice the smallest one has a bend in it. An important reminder that they should not be exposed to heat, as I tried to heat shrink that blue tube onto it and it melted a bend. Better to use medical tape to make grips, I think.)

I am cutting and packaging more Dot Rods™ this afternoon, so they should be back in stock in the Online Store tomorrow. I will be out of town from the 13th to the 19th, so if you have orders you want in time for Christmas, they need to be in by the 11th.


A final note on the hoard clearance before I get my rear in gear to go out and work in the garage…I found this completed quilt top, along with the backing and binding fabric in one of the boxes. Circa 1995, the colors are nice, but they just aren’t me anymore. Waffling on whether to donate it or finish it and gift it.  I did such a nice job piecing it!

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And my new “altar” is my favorite part of the room. The lady in the picture is my Grandmother, Ethel Beatrice Kirkham Pyeatt. She always looked and acted like a movie star. She lived quite the life. And the doll is called Gene Marshall, a 1940’s & 50’s movie star, costumed in her role from Shooting Star (imaginary movie.) I used to have over 50 of these dolls in various costumes (another really long story) and sold most of them. I lost the few I had left (another REALLY long story relating to the hoarding issue) and this is the only one I replaced, because she reminds me so much of my Grandmother. She had still been in her box since I received her in 2015!

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Ok…enough from me for the week. Back to work, lots to do! Make Stuff!

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Dude…DEWD!

That’s right. A tangle named Dewd. I had done Dewd previously in my Venice Journal as part of the Project Pack 1 videos:

Project Pack 1 Dewd

He is a cute little Dewd. Diva chose this for this  week’s Challenge (#343) so I felt compelled to do it again. I started on a Black Tile that I had spray dyed with some sparkly substance.

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Then something went horribly wrong when I got the idea to try Trans-zending on it.  With a Purple Moonlight Gelly Roll. What was I thinking?

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Remember kids, not everything turns out like it did in your head.


On a less terrifying note, I have been working my way through Ornament samples for class on the 9th.  I am setting up stations for each ornament, so you can make as many as you like, and skip the ones that you don’t fancy.

Bijou makes a couple appearances on the list this year.

And again as a bell. (Credit Dorian Eng, CZT for this one.)

And a few cut outs that come out cute (There are more shapes too!)

And another one of Dorian Eng’s Designs.

And a little something I whipped up yesterday!

I’m sure I left our a few, but where would the fun be if I revealed everything? Class is on December 9th…come play with me (and take care of that pesky holiday shopping.)


So last week, I was off to the airport, to go to Guatemala. Sometimes, as we saw with my Dewd tile, things don’t always work out. From the time we left the house to the time we got to the gate, the plane filled up, and I didn’t get a seat (oh, the joys of flying stand-by.) So I drove home.

Strangly enough, I did not actually have a Plan B (very unlike me.) I decided to make the best of the “alone time” to start on my major rework of my home studio space. It was starting to not be much of a work space anymore, but more of a hoarders paradise.

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Panoramas make the room look a little creepy. I am currently over half way done, so I’ll show you a little piece for now, so you can monitor my progress.

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I actually had to wait for the trash to get emptied today, and a load out to the shop, so I can finish loading out what is getting tossed, and what is getting donated. I am pretty pleased so far, and have been concentrating on putting things away when I bring them in here, not just piling them on my workbench. It was starting to look like this all the time:

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I am grateful to have this lovely space, but I have not been taking very good care of it.

And, since I hadn’t planned to cook for Thanksgiving, I treated myself to dinner out. I live across the street from a very large Indian Casino (Pechanga) and I made a reservation to eat this:

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It’s a good thing I had other nice stuff for you to look at!

And, I know I promised this a long time ago, but with all the construction going on in our backyard I wasn’t able to get it done until now. Glass Pens. Coolness.

Still learning to edit videos. Still learning to speak English most days.

Have a great week!

Bunzo! Black is the New White!

OMG! I am MEGA impressed with the new white Gelly Roll pens!

So much so, I can’t seem to put them down. I carried that over into this week’s Diva Challenge (#342) for a DuoTangle of Rick’s Paradox and Bunzo. Now, some of you know that I love Bunzo. It is one of my all time favorite pen killers. I can carry on with it for a very long time. BUT…I have never done it with the white pen because, well, the ability to do fill like that just was not there. Until now.

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WOW, right? I worked through a few of the videos from Project Pack 1 and have been so impressed (coupled with last weeks BIG Bales.) I plan on filling up my Venice black journal with this!

I’m so happy with this, I added it to the December class schedule. So come get your Black Zen on with me on December 2nd. Click here to reserve your spot, and we will work through the Project Pack (and you will get all the supplies!)

I also had some paintings to finish this week for submission for the 6×6 4 Peace exhibition for Artists for World Peace, benefitting Native Eyes, providing eye care for Native Americans.

They will be featured in the pop up gallery and online, and will be sold during the event with the proceeds going to Native Eyes. I am really proud to have participated in this!

Hey, and if you really dig the dots, beside to check in with next week’s blog. I have some big news on that front, and something you really need to have!

I’m going to keep it a little short this week, the December schedule is up and I have to catch a plane (Guatemala for Thanksgiving!) I’ll be back on Friday, so I will be able to fill orders then. 

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Wibble Wobble

Well, I am a little behind this week. My usual goal is to have a post up by Tuesday afternoon, but here it is, Thursday.

While I have lots of excuses, none of them are all that valid. 

But, while I was in my meetings today, I tangled, and I present my version of Wibble by Shawna Martin, the Use My Tangle (UMT) for the Diva Challenge (#340.)


The tile was something I found in my box of prepped backgrounds (on a white Zentangle tile. It had a lot of greens and yellows in it, so that leads me to believe it may be a Color Burst by Ken Oliver. I do so many of these sometimes I can’t remember. Whenever I have my paints out for something, I always “sop up” whatever is left with tiles and let them dry. Makes for an interesting challenge, using colors. I did a lot of rounding here, making it pretty graphic looking. Music notes? Interlocking J’s? I dunno…but I like it.

I tend to tangle my way through training sessions so I pay more attention to what is being presented. It helps my brain focus. I have a little pile of started tiles to finish, as well as some blanks and colored backgrounds. This was a partially started tile:


And this one was sprayed with hibiscus tea through a silicone coaster I found at Daiso (Japanese $1.50 store here in California.)


I feel pretty productive when I do this.

I found a cool new toy from one of my art supply wholesalers…a lap desk/easel! It folds up really nicely, and has a drawer to hold all my pens. I can neaten up bu just closing it up! I’m nearly sold out of the first order, but if enough people like them, I will order more.


Click on the Home button to go to the main web site to order them.
I also got the new White Gelly Rolls sets. I have to say I am really impressed with the ink, which I truly believe is reformulated. I am having a much better time doing fill work with them. And check out those awesome metallic pencils. They look marvelous on black paper (and tiles!)

It’s not too early to give your family a wish list for me to fill up for a great Christmas gift! I am always happy to do special orders, and put together custrom packages.

I may have a few kits left for the Fall Tangles after Saturdays’s class. I did a few more samples…check them out!


After posting this, I feel like I’ve been drawing non-stop all week. Gosh!

And thank you to all my fellow Veterans for your service to our great country. And to my civilian friends, than you for your support. Without you, it would be really hard to serve.

Dia de Tuna

What? Oh, that’s right, you all know it as Dia de Muertos or All Saints Day, but around here, we call it Tuna Day. It’s Mike’s birthday (call sign Tuna…remember Maverick from Top Gun?)

So of course, I started doing cards for the man who has everything. He (at least pretends to) like my art, and often gets a chuckle. So I did this one for him, and my Diva Challenge (#339) for Fall/Halloween.

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I mounted it on a plain black card, and practiced my calligraphy skills to write on it and in it. So now you know why I had to wait until today to post this (didn’t want to ruin the surprise!)

I also finished up (on time!) the Inktober Tangles challenge from Stephanie at www.everythingis-art.com. I am pretty pleased that I caught up in time to have a big finish (much to the detriment of my to-do list for the shop.)

I have 2 other projects I need to catch up on, but I will whittle down the to-do list a bit first! I feel like I am that plate spinner at the circus this week. I’ve been trying to get a video clip filmed on Glass Pens, but the jackhammers and concrete saws in the backyard say otherwise. I think they have finished most of that, so  I should be able to get it done now.


Don’t forget all the cool classes coming up in November!

I will be teaching this awesome Fall Tangles class both in Temecula, AND Santa Barbara.

Fall Tangles

And if you have not yet taken a Zentangle 101 class, you can do both in the same day, as I have that on the schedule for both locations.

And Risa is teaching Pointed Pen Calligraphy on the 18th, just in time for working out your Christmas cards!

And of course, Fun with Alcohol Inks on the afternoon of the 29th.

Alcohol Ink on Toned Tan - Tree

Sign up for these great classes to reserve your space!


Ok…back to tasks, and ticking this one off the list!

Love to you all, Make Stuff!