Pat Mathes,CZT
Facebook: GramTangles

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Botanical wonders

I have been working on a tile (6"x8") that started with blotches of watercolor.  The idea was to turn it into a botanical piece.  So here are some WIP photos, with the final at the end.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

The Last of the Twelve Days of Zentangle

Hope everyone had a great Christmas.  I did, spending time with one son and talking on the phone with the other one.  Christmas morning with grandchildren enjoying the magic of Christmas!

I just realized I did not post the days 10-12 of the Twelve Days of Zentangle!  Day 10 was a wonderful black tile with paradox as the string.  This created a string of triangles.  Then the string was filled.  I filled a partial part of the paradox with my weighted printemps.  The rest I worked the triangle with separation and shading.

Day 11 was prepared by gluing 3Z Tiles together, creating a six-pointed star form.  The first one was made with Renaissance tiles.  It was framed with a variation of Auraknot.  What this photograph doesn't show well is the inner frame is gold.  I love linework, and this one was right up my alley.
The second part of Day 11 was another star created with black 3Z tiles, making a nine-pointed star.  White pen was then used to outline the stars and then tangled.  I enjoyed this and can see potential in this patterning.
Day 12 was again made using 3Z tiles, inserting the points into the one above.  I did not have any more Renaissance 3Z tiles, so created one as a pattern and put it in my tan journal.  Then a string was created marking the tree into "stacks" of tangles.  The brown and black Micron was used back and forth, with white chalk highlighting at the end.

I thoroughly enjoyed creating the "tiles" of the Twelve Days of Zentangle this year.  I may have to go back and do last year's for the enjoyment of it.  

A day seldom goes by when I don't draw in some form - in my journal, practice pages, a project piece, aimless is my enjoyment.  If I only have a few minutes, for some reason, I pick something up and maybe add to it, or add some lines or auras.  There are some days that the zen isn't present in my drawing, and I will put it down.  I might pick it up again later, but some days I know I'm not in the frame of mind.  I may be overthinking my art that day, or doubting my art, or feeling overwhelmed.  So I sit back and flip through my journals, or my art that is stored on my computer, and just enjoy the moment of looking, not doing.

I have a lot more practicing and polishing to do on the techniques learned at the retreat I attended with Sharla Hicks as the instructor.  I have been learning that I can let my forms flow.  I don't have to follow everyone else's light, but create my own light.  And I think that is the best lesson I have learned to date in my art journey.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

12 Days of Zentangle - Days 8 and 9

Day 8 was fun.  It was supposed to be on a bijou tile, but I used a regular sized tile.  The final creation is a crown - I put it in one of my floral arrangements.

Day 9 was constructing two tiles of brown and black.  You put the two tiles together and cut them, then put them together to make two brown/black tiles.  Then work on them in Black ink and White ink in a symmetry.  The first one was the molygon that Maria used in the video.  The second one, I used Squid.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Twelve Days of Zentangle - Days 6 and 7

This is a fun venture and it is so mesmerizing watching Rick and Maria's videos. 

Day Six released Zenangle's new pattern, Toodles.  I absolutely love this pattern.  I did my tile on gray paper - using white highlights.

But then I couldn't just let it go - and did another one in Zendala form, using The Bright Owl's template #116.  I used Black Micron PN, Brown Micron 05, gold Gelly Roll, and Terra Cotta prismacolor.

Day Seven was started using a prestrung Renaissance Zendala.  I didn't purchase the project pack, so just picked one from my tin of prestrung tiles. This was a fun exercise in just doing line work, alternating with Black Micron PN, Brown Micron 05, and white Gelly Roll.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Twelve Days of Christmas - Days 4 and 5

I am caught up until today's email arrives with the next project!!

Day 4 is a study in Diva Dance led by Rick.  He is such a scholar of Diva Dance - I love watching him with it.  So we worked through two different ways of using Diva Dance - one the straight way and one in a Rock n Roll movement, interlocking the two.

Day 5 is an endeavor in working with both a black and white zendala, combining the two with cutouts.  So with this one, we worked with kissing Mookas outlining the cutout parts, and crescent moon in the adjoining areas, auraing the outside of the entire area.  Then with the Brown Micron, adding in some pepper style tangles.  In the black area, a version of Knightsbridge.  All in all, a fun zendala.  And it fits in with my trying to work on doing assymetrical zendalas.

12 Days of Zentangle - Days 1-3

I have been following along with the Twelve Days of Zentangle videos this year. 

Day 1 went back to the basics, with a twist on all-time starter tangles, using the "Z" string, black Micron PN and white Zentangle tile.
Day Two was an interesting process.  First, the black tile was prepared, cutting out a circle in the middle.

Then the top piece was prepared, with a string in the middle for the circle area.  Poke leaf and poke root were worked around the edges, and then Tripoli in the center.  

The tile was slit for the first piece to slide on top - creating a dome.

Day 3 was the new tangle pattern Rumpus.  This is a lovely pattern, and it was finished off with enthatching (pen flicking) for emphasis.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Diva Challenge 345

I wanted to take the time to participate in the last challenge of 2017 which is to create a holiday tile or zendala.  Not only does this fit the bill for the Diva Challenge, but I can post it in my facebook groups to wish everyone a happy holiday season.  I used Lila Holter's pattern Hollydays, and turned it into a poinsettia/holly zendala.  I used a technique learned in Sharla Hick's retreat, of pen shading.  But I kind of made it my own by combining it with some polychromo color added to it.  I also wanted to experiment with some gradient shading on the edges because I want to use this method to finlize an Opus tile I am working on.  Anyway, my end result - my wish to everyone for a very Happy Holiday Season full of family, friendship and love.

Friday, December 8, 2017


I had a prompt I was following:
"Just as the sun rose over the landscape, shards of yellow penetrated the deep blue water to reveal life beneath the sea. Tentacles of deep green seaweed danced to the music of the current. In the deepest depths of the water, life was awakened with the bright morning sun. Creatures of the sea revealed their secrets"
This is what I came up with. I used an Alcohol Ink background I created in 2016 I made a copy of it on watercolor paper and then started letting the background speak with patterns. This is part of what we learned at the retreat with Sharla Hicks, letting the patterns in the background rule the piece.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Retreat work

I only completely finished one piece while at the retreat in Wisconsin with Sharla Hicks.  It is my "Don't Stop at Ugly and I think I might frame it with those words lettered on it because it really was my ugly and she showed me how to fix it and continue on.  Had I been at home - I would have stopped, frustrated, and probably tossed it.  Instead, here is the finished piece.

While at CZT Karen Sandoval's house after the retreat, I finished my pen shading practice piece - it now has the proud name of "Black Rose" as that is what Sharla indicated that was her take on it.

November is almost over!!

I have had a busy month.  I spen  first week of the month in Dallas with my son and his family and went to the Nascar race at Texas Speedway.  Had a wonderful time.  Flew home for one day and packed for a retreat in Wisconsin with Artist Sharla Hicks - her Dancing With Petals and Leaves.  If I can ever say go to only one retreat - make it Sharla's.  Here is the link to her page  It was a phenomenal experience and I learned so much.  Now I just need to process it.  I will continue to create my Zentangle Inspired Art, but I know there will be so many botanical twists to it and I can't wait to really start creating.  In the meantime, I needed some down time and went to my mac 'n cheese - a zendala.  This is actually done with The Bright Owl template No. 72.  The blues are shades of prismacolor, and the yellow is chalk pastel pencil.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Inktober 29-30

No. 29.  Aquafleur is a thorn in my side.  I am not usually happy with my attempts.  This time I am.  I tackled it a different way, and ran a band of Hibred across it.  The mooka strands give it a spooky look, and then I teamed it up with a frame and ripped screen background.  I love mixing types of patterns - organic, straight lines, blossoms.

 No. 30 is a feather prompt.  I think this is the first time I have done this type of feather.  It was interesting to put it together.  The Trigue pattern finished it off.  But it cried for some color, and agin the frame.

Inktober 26-28

No. 26 prompt was for a "floralish" tile.  I used Panzee by Melissa Sansom and Fleavy with Leef-a-vin.  The linework on this ended up being very dramatic.  The pop of blue worked, thanks to the inspiration of Melissa.

On No. 27, I was following a prompt to use circles.  I decided to use this opportunity to create an assymetrical zendala.  This is something I find somewhat difficult to do.  Most of my zendalas are geometric in nature and very symmetrical and  balanced.  But I like the otucome.  Patterns used are mooka, twisted rope, holliaugh and Kwazeela.

No. 28 - I was doing some white ink work with my dip pen.  I used a new Pen White ink on green cardstock.  The white ink had such a brightness to it - love the ink.  The pattern I followed here was Dancing Trees by Aleena Light.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Dip pen collaboration

CZT Debbie Thingvold and I had an art date today at the local coffee house.  She just purchased a wonderful glass pen (mine will be here Monday - she is such an enabler).  So we were playing with a couple of types of ink.  The lighter blue is a strong metallic and the darker blue is more of an iridescent.  So I took the tile and started, and then Debbie took the tile and did some more work, and back and forth.  It was fun watching how the inks worked with the glass pen.

Diva Challenge 338

White on black - that is the challenge this week.  I used a white Uniball gel pen with some white charcoal shading.  I still need to work more with the black tiles.  I seem to have a problem with the white soaking into the tile.  I had to go back over  this twice to make the white stand out.  I tried white India ink with my dip pen, and it was worse.  So I switched tiles and am more pleased with this one.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Papyrus Tile

This was a different paper to use - papyrus given to me by fellow CZT Susan Mayes.  It was a harsh background to work on - the fibers were difficult to work over.  So I resorted to a light touch with the micron and it flowed much better.  The pattern I used is one from the Zentangle Mosaid Kitchen Table Tangles called Well, Well, Well.  It is becoming a favorite of mine.

Inktober 23-25

No. 23 is done using violet and orange.  The photograph doesn't do it justice but I was surprised by how the colors worked together.  I appied the color with pastel chalk pencils and some prismacolor. 
No. 24 is a zendala using The Bright Owl string No 112.  The color is watercolor enhanced with colored pencil.

 No. 25 uses Zentangle string 216.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Inktober 20-22

Another variety of tiles for Inktober.    No. 20 is a collaboration of the RB2 reticula filled with various fragments, combined with an "It started like this" string that evolved into something from a science fiction dream!!  No. 21 is a simple line art tile created from a background made with shaving cream and ink spray.  No. 22 is another line art piece, following a video from Fantasies by Roan whose line work I admire.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Inktober 15, 16, 17, 18 and 19

My Inktober tiles for the 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th.  A variety of tiles, some with prompts, some not.  Quite a variety of style, huh?

Saturday, October 14, 2017

More Inktober Posts - 9-14

I have neglected posting my Inktober tiles - so will post a grouping now.  I have done them each day - mostly posting on various Facebook groups and instagram.
No. 9

No. 10

No. 11

No. 12
No. 13
No. 14

Monday, October 9, 2017

Zendala String 107

I love creating Zendalas.  This one began with String 107 from The Bright Owl.  You can see that string/template here.  I wanted to play with gray today so here is my result.