Dip-WHAT?

Ok…so I glazed over this the first time I saw one, thinking it was a cute idea, but I like my tiles flat. But then I started thinking about it…when are my tiles ever ALL flat?

This week, Diva challenged us to do a Diptych (#318). In the traditional sense of the word, a diptych is:

a painting, especially an altarpiece, on how hinged wooden panels that may be closed like a book.

an ancient writing tablet consisting of two hinged leaves with waxed inner sides.

(Thank you Google!)

In the Zentangle world, it is a tile, folded in half, with some sort of representation of a hinge connecting the two, with the designs mirrored on each side. If you are on the Mosaic app, there is a video in the Kitchen Table Tangles of it.

It just so happened to coincide with me seeing a really cool ZenGem done in just white on a black tile, so I decided to use a black Zendala so I could try it out. I used only a white Gelly Roll, white Chalk Pencil, black 01 Micron, and some silver relief paint.

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I found it fun, but not sure if I could pull of an exact mirror. I will try that on another tile and report back.

I have been playing around a lot with the relief paint, so I could stock it in the shop.

Speaking of shopping at CharKat’s, it should not be too long now that you will be able to go directly to the products I use on this page to get them for yourself, and support an awesome small business! Plus, you have the added benefit of getting things that I have tried, and know to be effective.


I did one of those silly word quizzes on FaceBook today, where it analyzes the words most often used and it was pretty obvious that I put a lot of work into this website and my art…Screen Shot 2017-05-30 at 21.25.22.png

I kinda like it!


Because the web site is being worked on, I have been burning up a lot of creative energy lately finishing up things at the shop and at home in my “to-to” piles. We all have them, I am sure, but I always feel like mine are mountainous. It can be a little overwhelming to know you haven’t finished something you were really enjoying working on, or you get a block when it comes to working on it. Prime example is this mandala, that has been holding my easel hostage since August:

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The other day, I decided I was tired of it mocking me, and sat down and started coloring it (Derwent Inktense Pencils, blended with water.)

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And then at the end of that day:

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I have most of the outer edge colored now, too. I’ll get back on that this weekend. Then a little inking…a little embellishing…who knows. But at least I’ll get my easel back!


I also finished up the beauty. I am thinking of using it on my Christmas cards this year. Colored with Tombow Brush Markers.

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Some weeks are a lot more productive for me art-wise. This was one of those, I guess. I leave all the final pics on my desktop to use in the blog each week before filing them.

These were from TangleU, using Pan Pastels:

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Some tiles from my “started but not finished” pile. I sometimes start these to show someone a technique or a tangle, and toss them into the pile without completing them. I am trying to get better about it, as I don’t even remember when I started most of these.

Crazy Cadent Molygon

Tripoli Fassetts

Some more pointed pen practice:

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And there always seem to be rocks laying around…so they get tangled on too! Trying out a lot of things with that pointed pen.

And if that wasn’t enough to make your head spin a bit…This is for my friend Inga, for a screen she is putting together full of tangled pieces. It is actually 6 pieces, I taped them together in the back to start wand do the tangle Waybop to use as a string. I just tangled them without any real concern about matching them up. I think it came out pretty cool!

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Ok…Enough playtime for now. I have to get packed to head up to SF for a Giants game tomorrow. I hope they win!

Make Stuff!

Golden Molygons

I have a confession to make. Since TangleU, I have become a bit obsessed with pointed pen tangling. To the point (pun intended) where I have been trying to make it more portable (per a suggestion from Cherryl Moote) by converting a fountain pen. So far, I am still experimenting with this, as I’m not completely happy with how runny the ink seems, so I will be trying different things here until I like it. (Regular fountain pen ink tends to bloop up and if I am not watching it carefully, said bloop ends up on my paper…)

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But, when I switched back to my regular dip pen with gouache, it seemed much better.

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I am finding the Zentangle tiles a bit tricky, as they seem pretty rough and fibrous. Smoother papers work better for this. So that led me to try some Kuretake Gold Sumi Ink I had on black Artist Tile paper that I cut to a Zendala size. And what better way to practice than on this week’s Diva Challenge (#315) for a foray into Molygon. Molygon was featured on Kitchen Table Tangles with Rick & Maria on the Zentangle Mosaic App this week, and after watching the video, I thought I would give it a shot with my golden ink.

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I figured to not do any shading on that, but I may go back later and try it with a gold Pan Pastel and see how that works.


I have been VERY  productive busy bee this week. Not only did I get a good portion of my office cleaned up, sorted, and filed, but I finished a few things.

First up, another book from Cherryl Moote’s class at TangleU. The closure is a wooden dolphin that Elaine gave us on the last day as a reminder of the event, so I drilled some holes in him and used some muted turquoise ink to distress him a bit. IMG_4971

I also finished my Visigothic Versals project from the workshop we had with Risa Gettler. I think we may hold it again in the fall, so don’t feel left out.

The World VV Project

It is a pretty big piece, so  you would have to see it in person.

And today, we had a great meet up with the San Diego Tanglers Friendship group at the Bernardo Winery. Nancy Robinson, CZT, gave us a great tutorial on Zen Gems, and I made this turquoise lovely.

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If you would like to see some great examples of how to draw and color these, check out this free download of Tim McCreight’s Practical Jewelry Rendering. Not only does it cover stones like this, but also cut gems, gold, silver, and pearls. And did I mention that it is free?

I did a few more in my journal as well..

And I think I really like the new Dingbatz. So much that I managed to make a giant one on a journal page I was working on in an art journal.

Dingbatz Bridge

And in addition to all that, I drafted a new logo for the web page, but you will have to wait to see that.

Gotta get to making dinner now!

Return to…Normal?

Whew. Whenever I travel, I love where I go and what I do, and by the end of my journey, I am always glad to be home. When I travel for TangleU (Continuing Education-thype event for Certified Zentangle Teachers) there is also a euphoria of spending an amount of time with my tribe and kindred spirits. But there is also a Post Conference-Funk that Cherryl Moore so eloquently wrote about here.

I am going through the post-euphoria phase, trying to finish quite a number of unfinished projects, but also pleasantly surprised with that I accomplished. We had so many great classes this year, it was an amazing learning experience, and really pushed my boundaries into a few things I had a previous fear of…like using a pointed dip pen for about anything, much less tangling. But that turned out to be something I really took to!

That was so much fun! Another one was the Pan Pastels. I purchased them quite some time back, and never really quite “got the hang of” working with them. I have a few more pieces to finish of this, but you get the idea.

TU Pan Pastel Hibiscus Tag

And I would be remiss if I didn’t again evoke the name of Cherryl Moore, because I spent not one, but 2 classes with her. So far, I have finished one of my journals from her Thursday class.

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Leather cover, Arches Text Wove interior. I have one more like that to fold and finish tonite, and then to figure out my finishing for a cute Coptic stitch book with 32 lb bond and a watercolor cover (yes…I will share that when I finish it!)

Nysha Nelson also had a very interesting class, where I actually completed tiles. We looked at different color combinations and shading techniques. It was quite nice to see what differences there were in everyones tiles from the same set of instructions.

Needless to say, I had a great time, and got to share space with some amazing people!

I also got all my Diva Challenges done while I was gone, but didn’t get them posted. So starting with #312 – Coffee, Tea or Me? I spilled out the last drop of wine from my glass and let the tile dry. I tangled it with a purple Pigma Micron PN and shaded with a purple chalk pastel.

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And then there was #313 – Earth (Amanda) Day. I have to confess that I took this with me on the trip to work on, and finished it just as that day was announced. The background is Art Graf water soluble pigment/graphite. I used the sepia colored one and water to cover the page, then erased through several different stencils to get the shapes. Tangled with a Pigma Micron PN in sepia and then “colored” with Peerless Watercolors.

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It reminds me of the U.S. Forest Servies’ commercials with Woodsy Owl. I think they were in the 1970’s. Woodsy Owl says Give a Hoot…Don’t Pollute!

And finally, this week, #314 – Use My Tangle – Scallamps by Sarah Uram, CZT. I thought this tangle had a lot of potential, so I decided to pair it with some corner Dingbatz that were featured in Kitchen Table Tangles recently.

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And I know you want to know about that cute book! That brings me to the 2nd week of my recent trip, after TangleU we headed to Austin, Texas, to spend time with the most adorable G(r)ay Batman on the plant. (He can’t say his “R”s well yet…)

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We did lots of fun things; went to Natural Bridges Wildlife Ranch, where we were nearly eaten by an ostrich poking his head in the car, explored a cave at Natural Bridges Caverns, and spent a lot of time in the pool.

But, I also had a side trip to collect on my birthday present. Most of you know that I am rather obsessed with handmade books, so when I saw a segment on Iona Handcrafted Books that someone shared on FaceBook, I knew that was a place I needed to be. Be sure to check out the video on their website, so you can see why I was jazzed!

It smells so good there. I purchased a photo album gift for someone…and 2 books for myself. The smaller one is a “Cub 25” that they do not have listed on the website. It has bamboo paper, and I am finding that it really likes just about any pen I have put to it. And it has enough tooth to shade well, and enough thickness to tangle (or write) on both sides of the paper. It is tangle sized too…which is a fun, but the thicker pages are a bit of a chore to hold open in the smaller format. (read, I will tangle in this every night till I fill it up!)

The smaller book was to hold me over until my big one was finished and I picked it up on the way to the airport (really close by if you are in Austin.) This one is 7.5 x 7.5 inches, has yummy butterscotch leather, a dark brown lace, and a a vintage rosette/back plate from an old door knob on the front flap that has Celtic knots on it. 100 pages of watercolor paper. I can’t wait to take this on our Australia/New Zealand trip this year!

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I cannot say enough nice things about these books. All their paper is meant to be used on both sides, so no bleed through even with a fountain pen. I am thrilled!


On the note of what is going on with the shop/website. I am taking some time this month to do a complete reset on both. There is a very limited class schedule this month, and I will post a couple of Open Studio times when I get a minute. The website is in process, and I hope to be live with a whole new and very unique shopping experience for the Zentangle® enthusiast. Bear with me…

Make Stuff…You Will Feel Better!

 

Waybop or Knot

I’ve been working on a “secret” project …putting together files and samples to teach Celtic Knot Drafting on March 11. So this week’s Diva Challenge (#304) was right up my alley, as it involves the new tangle from Zentangle® headquarters called Waybop. I’ve used this a few times already, and really like the interwoven quality of the tangle. I decided to carry on with the February heart theme and play with this. I am dipping into the pile I have of pre-dyed/colored tiles. This one was watercolor sprayed with alcohol while it was still wet. The accent tangle is a deconstructed minimalist Cyme.

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And as far as the “secret”…here is a preview –  On another one of my pile of colored tiles.

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Class is on Saturday, March 11. Space is limited, and it is already filling up, so reserve your spot soon! 

I’ve been on a bit of a roll this week, keeping up with both my watercolor class (that ends on March 7th) and my online journaling group (goes all year.) Here is a Zendala I did recently, using one of Jenny Perruzzi’s Zencils for collaging on one of my journal pages.

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And…I finally finished this bracelet I started about 3 years ago.  I’m shocked that the cats didn’t knock it over and spill the beads in that time frame.

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But, alas, I need to get on with my callligraphy practice, and work on the handouts for the Celtic Knots class (yes, there will be handouts!)

Heading out to Palm Springs and Phoenix this weekend. Sammy Hagar at Morongo, visit Mom, and see the Giants play the Reds in a Spring Training game. It’s a rather quick trip, so we won’t be in Arizona long.

Make Stuff…You Will Feel Better!

Quill You Be My Valentine?

Wow! What a week! And other than Flyboy getting called into work this morning, it is shaping up to be another epic week.

Being a Certified Zentangle Teacher (CZT) makes you part of a really diverse, really cool family, with one common goal. No matter where you are from or what you do, you instantly have community from that one thing. I had the great fortune to meet up with one of my fellow CZTs this week, turning a FaceBook friend into a real-life encounter. Flyboy and I went down to San Diego to have dinner with Suzanne Fluhr and Mr. Excitement himself! And of course, gelato happened.

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We started another calligraphy class this week, but I had to do one more Boxed letter for Valentine’s Day!

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On Saturday, we started off the day with a lovely Valentine inspired class applying quilling to Zentangle. We explored the basics of quilling, shapes, and building structures. I am pretty certain everyone had fun. There was a lot of laughter going on. And I think some great creativity. I can’t wait to see what they tangle them into!

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Of course, I had to finish one of mine quickly for this week’s Diva Challenge (#303). I’m not saying who gets it…but I am pretty sure you can guess.

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A few students stayed on for a 2nd class on Black Tiles, so I made that a little Valentine as well. So many cool applications on Black Tiles, and everyone is quite unique!

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On Sunday, I took a book making/color pencil on velum class from Helen Schafer Garcia at the San Diego Botanic Garden. While I did get mine fully assembled, I will have to finish my drawings later.

The gardens are beautiful this time of year, with as much rain as we have had, there was no shortage of fun things to draw. I am particularly fond of succulents, for their mandala-like qualities.


Whew! Busy week! Fun Week.

And off to finish that other journal cover for tomorrow’s class.

 

Some Gave All (And Just a Little More)

I sit here writing this on Veteran’s Day (Remembrance Day) and it makes me think about a lot of things. Most of my readers/followers know I spent a good amount of my life in the Military (Navy 1981-85, Army 1985-1993 and 2005-2012) and around the same (Dad served from 1952-1974.) Between me, my dad, and my grandfather, we have covered every war and conflict since World War II. I cannot begin to tell you what this means to me.

Daddy in Vietnam

Daddy in Vietnam.

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Me, with the Multinational Force and Observers in Sinai, Egypt.

I learned a new technique this week at our San Diego Tangle Club…Found and Tangled. You basically repurpose book pages into new poetry and tangle on them (look for a class on this after the first of the year!) This page from Dante’s Inferno called my name, and was a fitting tribute to my brothers and sisters in arms.

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And if you are in the Temecula area, I have a monthly free Zentangle class for Veterans and Active Duty Service Members. 3rd Wednesday of the month (November 18th this month). You must pre-register, and seating is limited to 10 free students (and your guests will receive a $10 discount.) (951) 972-3015 or CharKatTangles@gmail.com.


So this week’s Diva Challenge (#243) was to give “Just a Taste”…tangle a little bit. This is REALLY hard to do! Some things you just keep wanting more and more of! So, in order to limit myself a bit, I used a black tile. Cyme (Zentangle) and Heartswell (Helen Williams).

Diva #243


Join us on MeetUp. I have a new Monthly rotation coming up, Mandala Monday. 3rd Monday of the month, we will explore different mandala techniques.

The December schedule will be finalized later this week. Late November and December focus will be on making gifts and ornaments (using Zentangle and a variety of other methods.) Here is a bit of a teaser:

Glass Ornament

Namas’-cray my friends…stay crazy!