Friday, February 28, 2014

The Final Ensemble finished

10.5" x 10.5" Ensemble of tiles

This is the second 9 tile ensemble I've completed for the Retreat to Paradise (April 3-6) in Melbourne, FL.

The tiles are then "exchanged" randomly between the other participants doing the same "strings" and we all end up with a totally different piece of art than we started with. The tangle pattern names of each tile (and my name) are on the back of each of the tiles. 

You get sort of attached to these art works as they do take quite a bit of time to complete.  Totally fun.
But I AM glad to be done and off to do other things.  We did get our supply list for the retreat the other day and I bought myself a "self healing" work table mat (which is something I've always wanted anyway).  

I have finished typing the program booklet for the big Hawthorne Park Art show (March 9) and it went to the printers today. We have 160 pieces of hanging art and about 40 pieces of table art (sculpture, wood carving, porcelain, etc.)  So it was a bit to type up.  Another load off my shoulders.  I am feeling lighter and lighter.  

My adorable 23 year old granddaughter arrives at the Orlando airport at 9 am tomorrow morning. NY has been snowy and cold!!  I'll bet she'll want to head straight to the pool!!!  And fall asleep as she probably has to get up at 3 am to make at 6:15 plane!  I promise I'll slather her with sunscreen.
We expect 80+ for the next 3 days.   

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Getting close to the end of February already!

25: Schway 26: Windspinner, Lacey, Ripples, Poke Leaf, Well (or Knot Rickz), Cubine, Brabs, 27: Patchwork Seminole, Telis, Gommi, Heartfully, Phen, 2-n-5

Rainy morning in central FL so great moment to finish up the calendar for this week AND combine it with the Diva's challenge to take a gridded pattern and "bend" or curve it.  I particularly like how Patchwork Seminole turned out on the "27".  I had sort of forgotten about that tangle.  

We are off to a regular doctor appointment this afternoon for my hubby.  I must remember to take my "kindness project" tiles with me.  Doctor's offices are such a good place to leave "unexpected or abandoned" art.  

Hoping for some warmer and dryer weather ahead for my granddaughter coming from NY on Saturday.  Everyone cross your fingers.  

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Paper Weaving and Print making Combo

Two hand made book marks...7" x 2" Paper

I am taking a workshop this April from Cherryl Moote and so I went to her website and found some wonderful crafty paper ideas that sort of fit with some of the things I like to do.

You can download the patterns here.
They are free to share.  
The ones I did are the "easy" ones.  I think I'll stick with those.  The directions are on the link and you can just run off copies on copy paper.  Be sure to run a few extra.  

I combined my love of stamping and mark-making with this project by applying a fairly transparent craft acrylic paint first and when dry did some stamping on that in another color.  I left the back white which is what you see when you cut out the designs and fold them up.  Next time I think I might apply a light coat of a contrasting or yellow would be nice here.  

I cut them out with a craft knife, folded and glued the book mark them on gelli plate printed deli paper with YES glue and then let them dry under weights for a few hours.  Then cut out around the outside edges again.  You might want to glue them a slightly heavier paper instead of deli wrap.  Just to give them a little more strength.  
I think one could coat them with a coating of gel medium to strengthen them too.  

Our art show (March 9) here at Hawthorne Park sells our donated cards and book marks to earn money for our group.  

The Mailbox Cover

10 x 19   1/2 of the mailbox cover

Acrylic paint on linoleum.  This is 1/2 (the other side is folded back and is just plain blue.  That is because that side of the cover will face my neighbor's mailbox and so won't really be visible.  

The cover will have magnets attached to the back side so that it can be removed from the mailbox in the summer when we are not here in the park.  Or sometimes people do seasonal ones...and like to switch them.  The subject is for my hubby who is model train buff.  "318" is actually our house # here in the park.  I am thinking I'll extend the track out to the right edge and behind the train, have them wind around the little palm and disappear behind the cloud of smoke.  

I am not sure but am thinking this will need to be "sealed" with some sort of clear acrylic coating before it is ready for prime time.  I am hoping to get it up before before Easter!!!  It only took me all winter to do this!  Hahaha.

ps.  Just got word that my clown painting in the Leesburg show got an honorable mention "merit award"!  Oh yeah!  How fun.  

Monday, February 24, 2014

Calendar Triad for Feb 24

22: Scoodle, Mist, Pokeroot  23: Quil-tee, Chartz  24: Squirk, Demi, Mak-rah-mee, Knightsbridge, Zander

I chose to do this three-some as an ensemble.  It seems they go a little faster that way and suddenly time is getting crunched.  It's do the taxes, get ready for two art shows, prepare for company, type the Art Show booklet, etc etc.  Ya know?  It's the first time I've used MY own tangle pattern in a Zentangle.  Also finally found the name for one of my favorites: Zander.  

The days are counting up toward my CZT training too and I am hearing from Rhode Island now and again.  Got my new Zentangle kit this week.  What a lovely surprise!  Lucky me.  

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Enjoying the Museums at Ringllng Estates in Sarasota, FL

William Woodword "The Greatest Show on Earth" Oil

Guiseppe Arcimbole (painted between 1600-1620) Ringling Art Museum

I have a special place in my heart for clowns (you have seen my recent clown paintings posted a while ago).  

If this mural at the top was in place during my last visit to Ringling…I don't remember seeing it.  Anyway it's amazing. I was there last Wednesday on a bus trip with other friends from Hawthorne Park in Leesburg, FL.  The Museum and grounds is in Sarasota.  It is by William Woodward and the title is "The Greatest Show on Earth".  Oil on canvas.  264 x 504 inches.  

Imagine the amount of paint this took!  And the amount of time to complete!  It's interesting to learn more about him as an artist.  Click here.  If you click on "murals" you will see the original sketches for this painting with him in front of it.  It appears that the "gridding" he did for it was done with ropes (which makes sense).  Be sure to find this on the web site and click on it and enlarge it.  He also points out where the seams are in the painting.  The movie on the website also shows him with the mural. (and other murals).  

The second painting is a pair of Fruits and Veggies people that I thought were wonderfully fun.  I just posted the one I liked best.  Very fun day.  We had super weather.  

Friday, February 21, 2014

Using white space

19: Bunzo, Golven, Cruze  20: Squirk  21: Cubine, Borbz, Printemp

I am double dipping with the calendar today as the Diva's challenge this week is to use "white space" in your tangle.  

Sooooo...I am using some white space in my tangles for my calendar!!  I do think that just like "fill", white space is very dramatic in a tangle.  I even left part of the #21 as white space.  I tried to pick a few tangle patterns I don't use often like bunzo and cubine.  I like the new tangle Squirk.  Lots of interesting variety.  

Nice and warm in central FL but our forecast is like 7 days of rain ahead.  OH boy.  

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Wrapping Paper on the OUTSIDE

I was just getting ready to send off a gift certificate to a friend for her baby shower when suddenly I remembered that some mono print crazy persons (like me) decorate their mailing envelopes with mono prints and their gelli plates and stamping.  Since there is no wrapping paper per se for this gift I thought this might suffice for "hand made wrapping paper". Sort of.  Of course the mailing stamps will cover some of the right hand corner when I mail it.  

And because it's all acrylic, it's all waterproof and indelible and not going anywhere on the trip!  Ha!

So this was two layers of mono printing and then some stamping on top of that when dry and of course it dries in an instant. 

I have finished watching Jane Davies' DVD called Scribble Collage and Hand-painted papers.  OMGosh.
You is to die for.  Now I need to watch it like 10 more times.  Just kidding.  But several more to be sure.  It is just chuck full of great ideas.  

Jane uses palette paper (slick) as a surface for her brayers when she rolling out paint for her stamps or stencils.
After awhile she just tears it off and throw it away...but if you think of it, you can just take a baby wipe or a wet paper towel and wipe it off.  If you remember to do it while paint is wet, that is.  Sometime you get busy but then, oh well.  

I had some large size palette paper that I cut into a good size for me...about 6 x 10" and then I stapled them at the top and so I made my own "pad".  

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Zentangle Calendar Feb 18

Well, my gosh.  Here we are on the 18th of February already.  Whew...

It's about time for winter to moderate a little and let us all think spring soon, right?

Friday, February 14, 2014

Zentangle Calendar: 13, 14, 15 of February

13: Voga  14: Loveline, Starmap, 15: Bridgen, Phen

Today was a great art day...lots done and I actually got a few things done around the house too!  I think I finally got a good night's sleep!  The olympics has been keeping up past 11..I love the ice dancing.  Some amazing things happened in the men's short program last night.  Wow.  Guess it's not all over yet.  

I made it to day 14 with 14 different heart tangles and had about 6 left over.  Thanks to Helen Williams who was inventing them as fast as I could copy them!  What an amazing talent she is!!!  Although not all of those I put in my calendar were hers.  

I am almost done with my last ensemble for the Paradise Retreat in April.  Which is good as I have a ton of company coming in March.  Now I am focusing on getting my piece ready for the Leesburg Art Association show and typing up the show booklet for the Hawthorne Park art show...the entries for that should be in by a week from Friday.  That has to get to the printer by March 1 or thereabouts.  

Incidentally on #13, I glued a piece of deli paper on first (with pink stripes) that I did in acrylic on a gelli plate.  That deli paper is so swell!  
Hope everyone had a good Valentine's Day. 

Washi Tape: Valentine Fun

The top photo shows nine strips of Washi tape being painted with acrylics at the same time.  Then the second photo shows one piece of tape pulled off.  

You can find the video how to for this here.
I think I have probably put this reference on my blog before as this is not the first Washi tape post.  

I am using Nexcare "gentle paper" tape usually found in the band aide or first aid section of your stores (I found mine in the dollar store).  It is 20 yards of 1" tape.  I can't remember the cost but under $3 I am sure.  

Then I store the tape (as shown in the video) by winding the side by side onto large plastic drinking straws (the kind you buy for smoothies and shakes).  Or you can pick them up in fast food places too.

When you paint/stamp/stencil your tapes you just stick them to a shiny surface like a plastic placemat or a piece of clean acrylic.  Whatever. I like to leave them to dry overnight before I wind them.   

It's a fun activity and I adore the can use them to bind the little Kindness books.  I use them to decorate envelopes.  I just stick the straws (with tapes on them) in a cup on my art desk and they come in handy for lots of things. 

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!!! 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Ensemble two thirds done

2nd Ensemble for the April Zentangle Retreat 2/3 done

This is a 9-tile ensemble and these are first 6.  
I worked on it today in the hospital waiting room while my hubby was getting some routine work done.  
It was a long testing procedure so I was able to spread out on the children's work table with my thermos of coffee and work away.  It sure does make the time go quickly.

Actually I have done 15 of these tiles, as I did the first 9 tile ensemble quite a long time ago.  Then I got busy with other things.  You know how it goes.  I got inspired because Margaret Bremner finished hers and posted it.  (Enthusiastic Artist blog to the right side under blogs I follow).  

3  more to go and I'll be all set for the "Retreat to Paradise" which is getting closer all the time...April 4-6.  Cool day in central FL today but nothing like what is happening in Atlanta and the Carolinas.  My sister in S Carolina has like 6" of snow!!!  YIKES!  We will be up to 80+ by Wednesday of next week for our bus trip to Sarasota for the day.  Yippee.  We will be at Ringling.  Hubby and I have been twice but we love that spot.  

Incidentally I did leave two Kindness Tiny books at Shands Hospital in two different waiting rooms while I was there today!  

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The Kindness Project

Random acts of hear more about them about this time of year...Valentine's Day.  But this was such a delightful idea I thought I'd share.  

People are always asking me..."after I have created 50 of these Zentangles...what shall I do with them?"
Well, I have a lot of ideas, of course, but here is a new one.  

Make little "Random Acts of Kindness Tiny Books".
And just leave them places for people to find.  
Inside you can put some nice thought.

I have decided to add on the cover..."this is a surprise gift for you" so people know that it is not something lost...but rather something they are supposed to find and keep or pass on.  

If you go to you can find out more about how this started.  And get some ideas of some sayings to put inside yours.  Although you may have a poem or something you have written or found you like better.  

I like to keep mine anonymous.  But some people put their email inside and so then they get feedback from folks who find it.  You'll see such a response on the blog site.  The blog site founders suggest all kinds of places to leave them...from on the bus, at a cemetery, on the school secretary's desk, to a grocery store shelf, in a hospital at the nurses station, in a doctor's office...anywhere.  Just a tiny bit of kindness scattered about with your lovely piece of art work.  I used just drawing paper for the cover and on some I put colorful tape for the binding but just scotch tape will work. I tuck 3 or 4 in my purse in a zip lock bag.   

Where will you leave your Zentangle?

Valentine Zentangles coming to a close

10: Heartfully  11: Aquafleur  12: Jailed Johnny

Well, we are drawing to a close on the "heart shaped" tangles now.  Whew...THAT was a challenge!  Two more to go!  I want to thank Helen Williams for her wonderful blog on which she has been doing a similar thing and inspiring me to find new tangles!!!

Now I am beginning work on typing up the Fine Arts program for the show coming up on March 9 here at Hawthorne Park. I think this is the 4th year I've done this.  Problem is, of course, that everyone puts their application in at the last minute (I am the same way) and so all the typing comes at one time.  I have to get it to the printers at least a week before the show too.  Sigh.  

Also working on framing/art presentation for the Leesburg Art Association show and have to have my piece ready by Feb 22 for that one.  In between teaching Zentangle classes and keeping up with two book clubs and...yadda yadda.  You know how it goes.  

82 in Leesburg today but rain predicted.  Only one degree in the Chicago area.  BRRR.  At least I am not seeing quite as many minus temps this week around the country.  Maybe we are past the worst of it?  

Monday, February 10, 2014

Quil-tee by Ginny Stiles


Sometimes it's a wonder what possesses me to think I can do something.  

After attending a fantastic quilt show and taking photos of some of the materials used in the quilts...I found a pattern I really liked and I "wondered" if I could possible figure out the "step outs" (which means directions in Zentangle talk) to making it. 

Taking the pattern down to the BARE minimum and then working your way back up takes some outside-the-box thinking.  It often requires looking at "negative" shapes instead of positive ones.  

Anyway, I thought it was kind of fun but it took me a good hour and a half of "futzing" around to work myself back into steps that would be repetitive so that someone else could do the pattern too.  

I hope one of you out there will try it for me and see if it is repeatable!  It's not the easiest tangle but not that hard either once you get the hang of it.   

Saturday, February 8, 2014

A little more clownin' around

Well, enough clownin' around for today.  But I think this is fun.  I did decide that coating the canvas with Daniel Smith Watercolor Ground, let dry, then lightly sand with fine sandpaper was a better surface to work on when you are working with pens.  I used a #.03 Micron.  I used a combination of wc, acrylic, and Pitt artist pens.  

Now I need to think about how to display them.

Incidentally I have met all these clowns.  They are local folks here in central Florida.  

Clowning Around

4 x 4" camvas
Rainy day fun here in FL today...includes working on tiny canvas.  These are 4" x 4" gallery wrapped canvases and I am doing a series of 4 clowns.  I am using pen and ink first and then watercolor and a touch of acrylic here and there.  They will be sprayed and perhaps covered in gloss mat medium...I haven't decided.  

Canvas can be prepared for watercolor several different ways.  These were just scrubbed down with water and soft cloth to pull up the pre-primed gesso and smooth it down a bit.  I added the gold/yellow wash while the canvas was still wet from that. After completely dry I drew the image using .03 Micron black ink. The paint came last.   

Another way to prepare it is to thin some Daniel Smith Watercolor Ground and coat the canvas.  When totally dry,  lightly sand with a fine tooth sandpaper.  I have prepped a few more of these that way just to compare how that works with the ink.  I have not done much ink on canvas but I sure saw a lot of it at the outdoor fairs this winter.  

As I work I am wondering how to display these.
They could actually be hung separately with tiny bits of wire.  But I am thinking of mounting them together on an 11 x 14 canvas that I have prepared as a background in a circus theme (multi media).  But this is all in the thinking stages yet.  If any of you have worked with ink on canvas and have ideas or hints, let me know.   

Friday, February 7, 2014

Happy Hearts

Lacey, Crescent Moon, Heartvine

Sometimes I just have to "tangle ahead" while I have a few moments.  Last night waiting for the Olympics to start I had about half an hour.  Am excited to see the opening this evening.  

The color just seems to be needed with the hearts.
I used wc in #7 and touches of iridescent pen.  #8 is all iridescent pen.  And #9 is colored pencil.  

Rainy and cooler today in central FL...around 60 for a high but moving gradually and steadily back up to 80s by mid-week next week.  We should see sunshine again by Sunday.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Zentangle Calendar

4: Scrolled Heart, Pozer 5: Hearty 6: Striping

Yes, I know I am a day ahead.  Wild week going here and so when I got going this morning I went ahead and did Thursday.  I have to be off leading a book group at church on Thursday.  I just kept things simple for that day!

I really like how "4" turned out.  Both those tangles are very nice together.  A new tangle friend suggested "Hearty" for "5" and mine is a variation, of course, but I do like it.  Linda Farmer has it on, of course.  "5" is done with Inktense pencil which when wet becomes permanent.  Great pencils...and are intense color.  "6" is done with Dr. Ph Martin's Hydrus liquid watercolors.  

I taught 12 beginners in a Zentangle class yesterday morning.  We had a good time and I think I have made some new tangle friends there!  I have started adding Wheelz to the beginner tangle list because it is so easy and dramatic. 

Have you seen that there is are some Zentangle apps now for your tablets?  I have an iPad.  The best one so far is called "Tangle Library" by Sandy Bartholomew.  I have several of her books.   

Monday, February 3, 2014

Zentangle Calendar for February begins

1: Da Deal, Heart-line, 2: Zinger, Heartrope, 3: Heart Strings

Well, Ground Hog's Day and Super Bowl have come and gone.  Whew.  We plunge right into February!  And with Valentines just around the corner I have challenged myself to include a heart somewhere in my tangles up to the 14th.  Heart shapes are a delight to tanglers, so that should not be a huge problem!   Helen Williams has opted to do something similar so I am keeping tabs on what she is up to.

All the colors are iridescent pens.
84 now in Central Florida.  We are all back to the pool.  The Mt. Dora art fair managed to avoid major rain..just a few sprinkles on Sat.  I saw some exciting art and am inspired to try jumping off on some new ideas.  

Saturday, February 1, 2014


Today I began to put together some of my mono-prints and stamps and Washi tape to get my Valentines started.

Some of these prints are directly on the card.  But most of them are layered on deli paper with my Gelli plate (or ghost printed) and then when dried glued to the card with gel medium and pressed and dried under weights.

I have added some stamping to some of the cards and a few stencils.  I have a Happy Valentine stamp that I like so I am using it in various places. 

I am finding the Washi tape looks totally cool on the ENVELOPES!  

I have 12 grandchildren so that keeps me busy making Valentines!  I have to get started early!!! I like to have them in the mail by this Friday if possible.   

AND I am planning to try to work a small heart into all my Zentangles for my calendar up to the 14th.  There are quite a few tangles out there that have heart shapes in them.  Now where are they?  

Happy Super Bowl tomorrow AND Ground Hog Day!