Thursday, July 27, 2017

Guest Diva Challenge # 326

It's all about fitting in? I guess fitting in was never really my thing. Didn't really do what everyone else was doing -  just did my own thing. Considering I was making fine lace in my twenties and now am doing zentangle in my thirties (I had no lace and have no zentangle buddies who are in my age group 😑)... 

Here's my 'nzeppel monotangle 😀can you tell that I heart rainbows? 😂 Done with a black sakura micron and my new collection of Staedler Triplus Fineliners and the trusty colour pencils. I've been very into working with colour recently I've realised, even my last black and white piece was infiltrated by coloured gems. 

I know I know... the purist in me is also screaming that Staedler Fineliners are water based and hence not archival with a tendency to fade... 😩I blame magpie tendencies! They were so colourful! I couldn't help myself! 😵

Talking about rainbows and fitting in, the fraternal unit invited me to go with her for a free guided tour of an exhibit at the local art gallery featuring artist Yayoi Kusama: Life is the Heart of a Rainbow. Interestingly enough, Yayoi Kusama suffered from psychological disorders and credits art for her having remained alive to date. Her pieces tend to feature repetitive patterns (sound familiar?) particularly dots and nets (although her explanation on dots and nets was that her hallucinations featured dots and nets and she was inspired by them). She finds comfort in flower and pumpkins so they are also a recurring theme in her work. 

She has various paintings, installations and photographs on exhibition. Here's a couple snapshots I took at the exhibition last night. Enjoy!

Friday, July 21, 2017

It's a String Thing #204

Something borrowed and something blue😯.

I must admit to having being intimidated by the complicated string that was put up for the challenge but *breathes deeply* the engines got revving and off we go🚀!

The something borrowed was easy. Since I have no tangles of my own ALL my tangles were borrowed (purk, stripling, lazy eights, 'nzeppel, finery, flux, tipple, lichen, fife, 'dillo - wow that's a lot of tangles I just realised😝) but the something blue😕? The suggestion was bluebonnets but it wasn't quite calling to me, so I went for blue gems 💎(I needed practice on on my gems anyway).

I felt like doing something more nature-y🌿, more organic... 🌸 so I TRIED (see the emphasis) to use tangles that were a little more organicky (?). 
Not quite sure if I hit the feel I wanted but I'm quite pleased with the way it turned out. I still think I need way more practice💪 on my gems - either that or I need to abandon my inexpensive Faber Castel colour pencils and go more upmarket - oh wow I swear I felt my wallet cringe. 

Also sharing some other of my recent tiles:

I wanted to do a little bit more practice on peanuckle after the last Diva challenge when I did my little mush-house 🍄. And I wanted to finally use waybop (which I had hunkered down on a few posts back) on a tile. I was surprised at the way florz interacted to create almost a radial like web effect  - I swear it wasn't intentional! But hey! That's the magic 🎩and wonder🎇 of zentangle!  

Monday, July 17, 2017

Mush! - It's a String Thing Challenge #203 and Diva Challenge #325

This was my submission for It's A String Thing # 203.

They wanted something old and something new so I went with Marasu - a tangle that I had recently learnt from CZT Mabel , and Hamail - which I had never tackled before (I confess to having "cheated" 😔- I went to to search for radial tangles to fit the feel that I wanted to achieve and I found Hamail which was perfect for what I wanted). I tried to go for a yin yang Zen feeling - did I get it down?😅 

Starting with the String Thing Challenge, it appears that the last few days were meant for new things and new adventures 😀! 

I tried my hand at auraknot - a tangle that has intimated me and taunted me from afar! I was too chicken 🐔to take up the challenge, but I finally did🍗! 

Whilst on the "new adventure" train, I wanted to try something different with one of my rainbow tiles🌈.

So I set to work and then promptly got stumped at how to complete it 😓 But the cosmos 🌌 has its way of making things work out and TADAH 🎉 this week's Diva Challenge was the answer! 

But wait! Peanuckle? Another one of those scary monster tangles? Wasn't one this week more than enough! Oh man oh man oh man... but I NEEDED to finish this tile💪!

So I did.  

I tried my best on Peanuckle.  Think it came out a bit too straight and unpeanutty(?)  but I do think it completed my roofing quite nicely. All in all I'm pretty stoked with how this tile turned out👻.  Nine tangles were used to create this little mush-house (as opposed to a mush-room geddit geddit😁). 

Peanuckle was perfect in that it gave the contrast that I was looking for without completely obscuring the colours of the rainbow tile 🌈 - Guest Diva Jessica must have used her super secret "zentangle-senses" to detect my problems, discretely giving me the "answer" in the form of her Guest Diva Challenge so as not to expose her secret zentangle superhero identity! Oops 😳 did I just give it all away? 

😀Thanks for the rescue now-not-so-secret zentangle superhero Guest Diva Jessica (oh wow that's a mouthful)! 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Guest Diva Challenge #324 - all purked up!

I'm so pleased that I managed to get my It's A String Thing Challenge #202 submission in in time and I'm strangely and surprisingly proud to have my tile featured in the post (although I think all submissions get featured but that's besides the point!😂). Thank you!

This week, I decided to practice my Purk (or what I lovingly refer to as alien eggs 😀). So with another rainbow tile 🌈 (I love me my rainbow tiles 🌈 - you can check out the beginnings of the home made rainbow tile 🌈 adventure here)... 

I love 💖my rainbow tiles🌈!

I did me some alien eggs 👽...

I usually fill in my tiles quite densely but for some reason I decided to leave these "open" - I think I was too busy enjoying the colour splash🎨! It's really a different experience tangling on rainbow tiles and I strongly recommend that everyone shoulder try it at least once👍! It's quite easy to make them tiles 😍!

I still think I need a lot of work on my Purk, which leads me to this week's Diva Challenge that has me all purked up (pun intended)!

I started small with a Bijou sized pink tile with black and pink microns. I accidentally drew the heart off centre 😕 and "corrected" it with tipple. 

Then I decided to go big! With multicoloured microns!

Am all purked out! 😳

Sunday, July 9, 2017

It's a String Thing Challenge #202 and watercolour rainbow tiles!

In the first chapter of pencil adventures, I tried using, amongst other types of pencils, a 0.5 mm mechanical pencil to do my shading but did not having an enjoyable experience, finding it "scratchy", uncomfortable and unsatisfying😓. The outcome was also not quite to my liking as some of the pencil marks could still be seen even after shading😕. 

In this latest adventure, I swapped out the mechanical pencil lead that was loaded (which I cannot even remember what is) and reloaded with a "high graphite" 2B pencil lead and oh my! 😵The experience was completely different😁.  

It was smooth and enjoyable - almost comparable to using a traditional pencil. I am, from now onwards, going to swear by this particular brand of pencil lead for 0.5 mm mechanical pencils (which wasn't particularly more expensive compared to the other brands of pencil leads available) 😍 (until I find something nicer😏). It also means that I can use pretty mechanical pencils! Yay! 💖(*bimbo moment over*😳)


Thank you to Trudi who left a comment on a previous post of mine, introducing me to the "It's a String Thing Challenge"! I was so excited 😂when I read about it.

This was my entry! I hope I got it sent in time, the time difference is confusing!


And finally, my weekend adventure!

I watercoloured up some Strathmore tiles with my Tombow watercolour brush markers (that I got as part of a kit attending another one of CZT Mabel's classes - yes I know that CZT Mabel rocks!😜) - I love love love the effect🌈🌈🌈

... and proceeded to tangle... 

It was so enjoyable tangling on the rainbow 🌈 tile, observing and appreciating the variations in colour as you tangle your way along. It really forces you to have a smile on your face - though i do admit I was half worried about "ruining" the tile before I started but once the string was drawn, I was alright. 

I can't really decide if I like the outcome better than the usual mono-tone tiles but I definitely had a different and perhaps more enjoyable experience working on this piece! I think I am going to make more rainbow 🌈 tiles! 

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Home 家

This is Home, truly 
Where I know I must be 
Where my dreams wait for me 
Where the river always flows 
This is Home, surely
As my senses tell me
This is where I won't be alone 
For this is where I know is Home 
- Home performed by Kit Chan, written by Dick Lee 🏡

For Diva Challenge # 323- Home, I made an attempt to sketch our national flower🌸, the beautiful Vanda Miss Joaquim orchid (I know I know, my drawing skills generally leave much to be desired😟) to tangle with printemps, sandswirl, zedbra and gimli.  

As a first, I tried using two different shades of the same colour (a purple Sakura Micron, as well as a lavender Copic drawing pen) in an attempt to differentiate the petals, using a silver Sakura pen to try and add some shadow (and pizzaz🎇), and then coloured it in with my trusty colour pencils.  

I once again turned to my new love💖, the Blackwing Pearl pencil (OMG I think I fell in love all over again😍) for complete the image with a little bit of shading. To read more about my new love and my pencil explorations with different kinds of pencils, check out my previous post here

The lyrics shared above are from a locally written song, performed a number of years back by a local artiste at the National Day celebrations - I was humming and singing it the whole time I was working on the orchid - it's a great song IMO, so do check it out!😀: 

I realise I sometimes end up humming or singing when I'm working on my zentangles. Does it happen to anyone else?

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Leading the way(bop)

The official Zentangle site recommends using a wooden (non-mechanical) 2B pencil - but I couldn't really find anything online that says why or whether there is a clear difference between using a mechanical pencil vs. a wooden pencil. 😵 Thusfar I've been using the trusty blue and black Staedtler Mars Lumograph pencil - a staple in most children's pencil boxes I believe! 

So I went on pencil adventures ✏ over the weekend! 

This was done using a 0.5mm mechanical pencil. Observations on mechanical pencils v. traditional pencils? You had to be pretty careful "angling" the pencil to avoid hard scratchy lines that don't seem to "dissolve" no matter how hard you try to blend the little ^$@*^*😡 [please don't zoom in to check... but I can assure you there are particularly scratchy patches 😓]. It somehow seems less enjoyable using a mechanical pencil 😕- I missed the smoothness of tradition. The mechanical pencil was "scratchy" at times (although this may have been because of the pencil lead... I'm not sure what I had loaded but I've bought a new pack to play with😗). But the allure of mechanical pencils is clear - no need to carry a sharpener, your pencil will always be "sharp". 

I continued my pencil adventures into the tangle I undertook to try over the weekend - Waybop

It's always been one of those oh so pretty tangles that looked oh so complicated😰! But I'm glad I took the plunge and am loving this tangle. Both were done with the help of mechanical pencils, this time a 0.9mm. With the 0.9mm it was much easier to lay on the graphite and the feel of the application was more similar to that of a wooden pencil. However the feel of the plasticky pencil body (as opposed to the warm wooden feel) still left a little to be desired. Whilst the thicker lead meant that it was less "scratchy", I felt it made it more difficult to work the edges.

Does anyone else have adventures to share about using mechanical pencils?

I wasn't really sure how Waybop would look like in a full tile... so the only thing to do was...  

😆Grey toned Strathmore drawing paper (that I had hacked up), pink and black Microns, Grade 3 Koh-I-Noor white charcoal pencil, Sakura Gelly Rolls and another new pencil that I was trying out (queue dramatic fanfare🎉) - the famous / infamous Japanese Blackwing pencil.

It was substantially more expensive that a Staedtler Mars Lumograph💰. Purchased individually, it cost 3 to 3.5 times more. But OMG I think I'm in love😍. It's such a lovely soft pencil that literally GLIDES smoothly on to the drawing surface... blending easily (but not too much to be smudgy)... and this was the "balanced lead" version💖! I also got my hands on a "soft graphite" and I'm now dying to try it too! 😎I can't wait!