Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Composites for Zentangle tangle settings...

8.5 x 11" copy paper
Ink and colored pencil graphite and acrylic paint

One of the goals and purposes of my over-zealous interest in putting together "groups" of Zentangle® patterns (regardless of the actual month it happens to be now) is to enjoy seeing new tangle patterns in a "setting" rather than just as a step out or sample. 

My goal has been to include at least 4 or 5 new tangles each month.  This month was quite extraordinary as almost ALL the tangles are new.  For some reason I have come upon a great number that caught my eye.  Only five of the tangles are familiar to me:  a version of Hollibaugh (on day 23), Black Pearl (on bright green background,  and the background behind days 17 and 18 which is Printemps in graphite.  Also Agora which is day 2 has been used before. There is also  a version of Striping in the center area that is an old friend.  

The new tangles are Puffties, Trills, Sextant Border, Side Eye, Gemma, Hamsix, Dayz-E Fleur, Banner, Funsin, and Auwacka Too.  

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Diva Challenge: Black and red

Black, white and red challenge/ink and colored pencil
Veezy, Inowi, and a variation on "Well"

8.5 x 11 copy paper
Ink and  Prismacolor pencils

Whatever you do, do NOT look at the date on this calendar.
I know, I know.  2017?  January? WHAT is that?  

What has happened is that I got caught up in Tangle A Day calendars for my daily Zentangle several years back.  So after awhile you need to push out to something else and I found Tanglalendar which is a sub group of calendar nuts that is doing their calendar a different way.  Stephanie puts out the blank formats for free, we download them and do our daily Zentangles as we wish.  Posting on her Facebook group.   

None of us makes much effort to let the # on the days even show up so it's not the kind of calendar you would actually use to track days!  Obviously we don't even stay in the squares!  It's totally fun.  (Although many people do this differently than I do.)

You can also download free blank calendars online.  
SO…I have this phobia about practicing my tangles on this format.  And since I work fairly quickly, I have done all 12 calendars for 2016 already. You can actually find them under "Zentangle calendars" on the side bar on my blog.  Crazy.  

My goal is to use at least 3-4 brand new (to me) tangle patterns on each sheet.  

Washi Tape made easy

Home made Washi Tape 

I think this is the 3rd time over the years that I've posted this "recipe" for home made "washi" tape.  (My sister will know exactly what I am doing!)  I probably do this twice a year so I keep my tape supply available whenever I need it!  Great for decorating cards and letters, journal pages, collage work, etc.  I think these are tons nicer than commercial washi tape!  

I use first aid cotton tape that you can find in any drug store or dollar store.  And I lay it out on a non-stick surface.  Freezer paper works the best, I think, but this time I used waxed paper for the first time and I think it went fine.  I taped the wax paper down to my work table first.  2-2.5 feet across.  Then I laid out the paper tape in strips across the waxed paper leaving just a tiny bit between them.  After I apply the first coats of base paint you can't even see the spaces anymore.  

(I just use inexpensive craft acrylic paint form hobby store or WalMart).  Pick bright colors that you enjoy…some dark and some light.  After the base coats dry apply more printing, stenciling, spattering, and line work however you like to do it.  Mostly I love just random marks, but you could be as planned out as you wish as you might want a certain look.  Gold paint spritzed on with a tooth brush on a dark back ground is very effective.  Fine line work with fine liner bottles is very effective too.  You might just want stripes or dots painted on with a Q-tip.  Hand made stamps work well and I enjoy using stencils printed on with make sponges.  Let dry again.

I wind my tape onto "smoothie" drinking straws and stick them into a cup on my work table so they are handy at all times.  Voila.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Baby Owlet under a Mushroom

Acrylic 11 x 15 gallery-wrapped canvas
"Owlet and Mushroom"

Evidence of me gridding this image is still on the canvas, of course.  So the background is yet unfinished.  And some little details I'd like to add here and there yet.

The class was taught by Wausau artist, Cindy Markowski.  
Just a short one day class…10-2.  Since I do very little acrylic I found it refreshing to try it out again.  

I think he'll turn out "okay"…nothing spectacular but it was fun.  Cindy had lots of tips on feathers and eyes.  

And it was a lovely day to avoid noticing the north woods weather.  Yes, you guessed it…rain again.  Really a deluge all day and storm after storm has roared through. 

No winds this time thank heavens.  We are all recovering still from a big wind storm last Friday that left 73,000 homes in the northern WI without power for as long as 4 days!  Ours was out 30 hours and that was bad enough!  Temps around 70 but so damp and dark.  Not a very fun opening this year.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Christmas in June

8.5 x 11 wc pencil and ink on copy paper

You knew this would happen eventually.  That I would flip out and post Christmas in June.  You knew it right?

Well, you saw November so what could possibly be next?
I love how I can look at this and see lots of tangles and think about other possible ways to use them!  

At present I am just putting them in plastic sheet protectors and enjoying them as a sort of flip book.  Can 2017 be far behind?

A Garden in Madison, WI

Small landscape Moleskin sketchbook
watercolor and ink

Such a nice day in Madison, WI on Sat June 11.
Our grandson Ben graduated from high school!!!  We drove the 4 hours south to be with the family that day.  
We gathered with my daughters and with Ben's other grandparents and some friends for a picnic in the garden after the ceremony (Madison West High School).  It was 95 that day in Madison!  This was our 5th grandchild to graduate from high school (only 7 more to go!)  

This building is actually Julie's garage with a pergola out front of it that you drive under to get into the garage!  Never seen anything like it…covered in gorgeous vines that will flower soon and some roses as well.  

Lots of beautiful shade and lovely plantings left by the former owner who was quite the gardener!!!  I never knew there were peony "trees".  Yup.  I looked it up.  THERE ARE!  And a ton of different plants I've never seen before!  Lots of work thinning this garden out!  I could stay all day and paint there!  

Thursday, June 9, 2016

En plein air painting in WI on Thursday June 9

Chippewa Retreat Resort in Manitowish Waters, WI
There were nine painters this morning.

I took some liberties leaving a lot of things out of the 
sketch but this was my first time in this size Moleskin sketchbook and
I did have some "issues" with the paper.

I drew everything in ink with a fountain pen….no pencil.
Added color afterwards.  I think the sketch needs a few more dark darks.  

Friday, June 3, 2016

Tools of the trade...

8.5 x 11 Calendar/ink and colored pencil

As I started these calendars back in Florida as a relaxing respite from packing hassles…I am not finishing up the year with respite from the unpacking hassles.  Note: if you look closely you will find my birthday AND Thanksgiving hiding in the calendar somewhere.  

6 x 10 Log Book

I picked up a little "Camp and Cottage Log Book" at a garage sales a few years ago and stowed it in my studio up here in the north woods.  It is published by NorthWord Press here in Minocqua, WI.
I loved the empty pages AND the little "botanical" type paintings on some of the pages.  The art work is done by Laurie Caple and they are precious.  So the little maple seedling to the left is already on the page.  

The tools are my addition and were sketched while I waiting to hand tools off to my hubby during a project.  I loved the one on top which I had never seen before.  I know that it is used to cut copper pipe.  I am not sure what you call it.  

The paper is a gloss coated paper sort of slick to work on like a Bristol paper.  It takes ink fine but is not too happy with watercolor.  I may try colored pencils next time.