Monday, 6 March 2017

Rope string with Yew Dee

Rope string with Yew Dee

The Zen n Zia facebook group posted this very cool Rope String at the same time as Eni Oken’s Shading Zentangle group posted the Yew Dee tangle challenge. So I put the two together and voila!
I love this rope string! I know it’s supposed to be rope, but it reminds me of a gnarled tree, and I may just be using this string for trees in the very near future.

You can find the rope string step out here
The Yew Dee step out is here
Here is my line art

And here is my finished piece

Monday, 27 February 2017

All Things Hamadox

All things Hamadox


The Diva put up the Hamadox challenge by Diana Shruer.  Original post with step out sheet here. 


So basically, Hamadox is a mashup of Hamadail and paradox.  Now that’s a pretty cool tangle. I wasn’t particularly pleased with the outcome when I did a typical paradox center, so I rounded it off a bit and I was much happier with the results.  You can see what I’m talking about in my video here:

Originally, I didn't notice that the sheet on Diana Shruer's page showed the rounded edges - in fact I just noticed now as I was searching for the link to share here.  That would have saved me a lot of time trying to figure it out - woopsies!


At the bottom of this page you'll find the 3 pieces I've done with Hamadox.  Click on the link associated with any of the photos to see the full posts and line art etc. for each piece.

1st attempt - full post here

2nd attempt - full post here

3rd attempt - full post here

Do you have a blog with a Hamadox Zentangle post on it? Add the link to your Hamadox Zentangle post below so others can view your work!  (please do not link to your main page, just the post with a Hamadox  zentangle on it)

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

3rd attempt at Hamadox

3rd Attempt at Hamadox

Hamadox Zentangle with Distress inks
Hamadox Zentangle with Distress inks

I just love this Hamadox thing! This time I used my trusty Distress inks to play with the colouring.   I wasn’t initially going to do any background colour, but I dropped my wet paintbrush on the paper as I was reaching for my water, and well, que sera, sera.


I’ve included loads of progressive pics here, so have a gander and follow me along on this little journey.  If you have any questions at all about the processes I used, don’t be shy, I’m happy to answer!
Oh! But before we get to the progressive pics - here's a video on my little twist to Hamadox.

Just the line art, though I did almost forget to take the pic and started some of the colour.

 Here I've done the ribbons with my usual makeshift paint palette made of up the tinfoil from my smoke pack.

 I've started to fill in the colour here, then dropped my brush and worked a bit on the background

 Everything looks better with a little pink!

Almost done! Just need to shade and highlight!

And finally the finished piece...

These are the main inks I used here:

And this is the pink I used as well:

Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Ink Pads, Mini, Victorian Velvet

Monday, 20 February 2017

2nd Attempt at Hamadox

2nd Attempt at Hamadox


So this is part 2 of my Hamadox adventure.  You can see part 1 here.  This time around I got a little more playful with my Tombows and with the Hamadox pattern.  I remembered to take a few pics this time as I went along. Hope you enjoy!

Finished piece:

Hamadox Zentangle
Hamadox Zentangle

This is the work leading up to the finished piece:

Please feel free to ask me any questions about my work - I'm happy to share any experience or technique or whatever you might want to know :)

Friday, 17 February 2017

1st Attempt at Hamadox

1st Attempt at Hamadox

Hamadox (Diana Schreur): what a funky idea! It's a mixture between paradox and hamail.  I didn't like the way it looked when I first tried it out (you can see a bunch of my attempts in the background paper of my lineart picture). So I tried a little something different.  Give me a few days and you'll be able to see the video of how I tweaked it to my liking.

In the meantime, I had fun with this piece.  I used my Towbow marker to give that orange pop of colour and I love it.

That's my puppy's fur in the right corner of the pic - she was hogging the natural light from the window :) 

Hamadox Zentangle
Hamadox Zentangle

And here is the line art, a few moments after I started shading  - woopsies!

You can see there in the background that I played around with getting the hang of this before I started on the tile.

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Valentine's Day Tangle

My Tangled Valentine


It took me a few days to get this one done. Quite a few layers of stuff going on here.  The fun part is that I used very few tools to put this piece together.


Of course I used my microns, but more excitedly, I used one Tombow red watercolour marker and the clear brush that comes in the set to add all of the red and pink in this piece.  I used my trusty HB Staetdler pencil to shade beyond the reds/pinks, and that’s really all I used.  Usually, my little “art table” (which is really more of a tv dinner tray on wobbly legs) is filled to the edges with all sorts of pens, markers, pencils, pencil crayons, etc. etc. ad nauseum.  Not this time though – Paper, microns, pencil, 1 marker, 1 marker blender and one blending stick.  I’m pretty proud of that, and very impressed with the lack of clean up required after.


Here is the finished piece:



Here is the line art



The tools I used


Wednesday, 8 February 2017

2nd Attempt at Neuron Zentangle

2nd Attempt at Neuron Zentangle


So I went for the Neuron Zentangle again, but this time I also included Hamail in order to prepare myself for the Diva challenge of Hamadox. It involved using Paradox and Hamail Zentangles.  More on that to come…


I used my trusty copics for the colouring in the Hamail, and then just a basic HB3Staetdler pencil for shading the rest – and as usual, I used my copic microns.  This time, for the background, I used the grey copic markers as well.  (links for these items at the bottom of this post).


The Hamail tangle took me a few tries before I could get it right and even still, I struggled. The original walkthrough can be found here:


Here is my before piece:


And here the finished piece:

Neuron and Hamail Zentangle
Neuron and Hamail Zentangle

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

1st Attempt at Neuron Zentangle

1st Attempt at Neuron Zentangle

Okay so the title here is a bit of a lie - this is actually my second attempt at the Neuron Zentangle, but the first one was so awful I wound up using the paper as a tester for combination colors.  Yeah, it was that bad. 

Seems to be the general consensus that not many are fond of this tangle - yeah, me neither.  I might do a few pieces with it - but really, it's not very fun.  It's kind of like a tangle within a tangle, or more to the point, a string within a string. But - it was a challenge, and I may have a few more of these pieces up my sleeve.

I used copic markers for the colouring in this, hb3 pencil for shading and copic microns. I used a white pencil crayon for the highlights.

Here's the finished piece:

Neuron Zentangle
Neuron Zentangle

And here is the before shading piece

These are the copic markers I used for the colour

Saturday, 4 February 2017

2nd Attempt at Jo's Dreamy Process

2nd Attempt at Jo's Dreamy Process

So here I go again on my own (you can thank me for that ear worm later). This time I used prismacolor watercolour pencils instead of distress inks.  Maybe it's the paper, maybe it's just me, but I preferred working with my distress inks and foil and bottle caps.  At least that piece did what I wanted it to do, where as with the watercolors here, they didn't always behave as expected.  It also took a whole lot more layers to get what I was going for.  It was a lot harder to get the colours to POP!

But enough of the complaining - at least I learned that the watercolour pencils work quite differently than the distress inks, and as long as I remember that, this was not a wasted effort. But holy hell it took a lot of time! (There I go complaining again, I truly thought I was done with that.)

I did still keep with my minimalist theme, and used the bottle caps again as well as just one brush.

So here is the lineart:

And here is part of the colour done, after so many layers I nearly went blind...  I used a white watercolour pencil to brighten the middles, then blended it.  I thought diluting the centers with more water would do the trick, but alas, it did not.

And here is the finished piece

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

My Struggling-Artist's Attempt at Jo's Dreamy Watercolors

My Struggling-Artist's Attempt at Jo's Dreamy Watercolors

This is gonna be a long and involved post – because wowzas! So much to say about this!


First off, Jo Flaherty, what an amazing artist! She’s found her “voice” (that’s what we say in the writing community) in art.  She makes the most beautifully whimsical pieces that are eye-catching and soothing at the same time, as well as completely unique!  Eni Oken featured her as an artist this week in the Shading Zentangle FB group and Jo was kind enough to show us how she does her work.  What a wonderful pair of women to bring us this challenge and share their artsy ways!


Like I said, I’ve admired Jo’s pieces for quite a while now. I was so stoked to give this a try.  Sadly, I didn’t have the materials Jo uses, and had no means of getting them. But did that stop me? Heck no.


I have distress inks, and I love them, but they are the cubed versions you can see below.  Not ideal for this type of project. Or so I thought.   I wanted so badly to use their color palette that I figured I’d get creative.  First, I needed something to smudge the distress inks on…  I couldn’t get what the kit suggests, or other artists suggest, so I looked around my kitchen, and came up with nothing.  I sat on  Yes the foil that keeps my ciggies fresh in their little packs, and I dug them out and flattened them.  A few tests later and I realized they were perfect for smudging and diluting the distress inks! WIN!
my couch and sighed… then looked over at my cigarette pack (I know, I know, smoking is bad, but let’s focus here). I spotted the tin foil.


Then I needed to wash my brush after every color. Yes, my one brush. With the distress inks I only needed a bit of water to clean the brush.  I was not going to walk into the bathroom or kitchen every few minutes… so I looked around.  I drink a lot of bottled water, and with bottled water comes bottle caps.  So bottle caps with a few drops of water became my diluting and cleaning station.

It may be makeshift, but in a pinch, this proves that if you can't get the tools you need, you can work with the tools you have - with a bit of imagination.


Alas, here it is. Many hours of work and layering and more layering later, with tin foil palettes, only 4 different distress inks, 1 brush, a bunch of bottle caps, some microns and a gelly roll white pen and I have my finished “dreamy” piece.


Thank you Jo and Eni!

And as always,

Be kind – to yourself, to the earth and to others.

Line art which I obviously almost entirely forgot to take a pic of.

Monday, 30 January 2017

All things Mak-Rah-Mee!

All things Mak-Rah-Mee!

All things Mak-Rah-Mee! Eni Oken put up Mak-Rah-Mee by Michele Beauchamp (aka Shelly Beauch) as last week’s challenge on her Shading Zentangle fb page.  Loving this tangle! There is so much more I can imagine doing with this tangle, but alas, time to more on to the next.



This is my summary post of all of the Mak-Rah-Mee experiences I’ve had over the last week or so.  The Mak-Rah-Mee Zentangle pattern's original tangle step-out can be found here.


A special “Thank you” to Eni Oken who posted this Mak-Rah-Mee challenge on her amazing FB page “Shading Zentangle”.  Be sure to stop by her website and check out her very cool books!



At the bottom of this page you'll find the 3 pieces I've done with Mak-Rah-Mee.  Click on the link associated with any of the photos to see the full posts and line art etc. for each piece.




Last but not least, here is my video of a nice and basic Mak-Rah-Mee Zentangle design.

Check out the posts associated with each tangle!

First attempt here
Second attempt here
Third attempt here

1st attempt

2nd attempt


3rd attempt

Do you have a blog with a Mak-Rah-Mee Zentangle post on it? Add the link to your Mak-Rah-Mee Zentangle post below so others can view your work!  (please do not link to your main page, just the post with a Mak-Rah-Mee zentangle on it)

Sunday, 29 January 2017

3rd Mak-Rah-Mee Zentangle with Diva Challenge

3rd Mak-Rah-Mee Zentangle with Diva Challenge


Here’s my 3rd Mah-Rah-Mee zentangle attempt, and I incorporated Diva’s Moebius challenge into the piece.  Or more to the point, I worked the Mak-Rah-Mee into the Moebius challenge.  Either way, the ribbon itself was not an easy task, and I’m not too happy about how it turned out, but at least I gave it a try!


Since my video for Mak-Rah-Mee is ready, I figured I’d add it here too if anyone is interested – it’ll also be included in my “All things Mak-Rah-Mee” post soon to come.

Here is the finished Moebius piece:

And here is the line work

Friday, 27 January 2017

2nd Attempt at Mak-Rah-Mee

2nd Attempt at Mak-Rah-Mee

Well this piece was fun! Gotta love color! I used prismacolor pencil crayons to get this effect thanks to Eni Oken's amazing book.  You can check out her books here.

Other tools used:

  • tile
  • Copic .03 and .1 microns
  • staedtler hb3 pencil and smudge stick

Here's the final piece:

Mak Rah Mee Zentangle with Colour
Mak Rah Mee Zentangle with Colour

Here's the piece after shading

Here's the line work before shading

Thursday, 26 January 2017

1st Attempt at MAK-RAH-MEE

1st Attempt at MAK-RAH-MEE

Eni Oken's challenge this week is Mak-Rah-Mee.  And what a fun tangle it is! It's a blast to shade, and all of those funky ribbons are so versatile, there is nothing that makes this tangle not fun.

Here's my first attempt at Mak-Rah-Mee finished

Mak-Rah-Mee zentangle
Mak-Rah-Mee zentangle

And here is the line work:
(pardon the photo, it was taken with my tablet)

Monday, 23 January 2017

Hands On!

Hands On!

So I'm way late in getting this out there - this was the challenge for ZEN N ZIA's FB page, the Palm Zentangle challenge from January 9th. (See, told you I was way late). 

As you can probably see from the pics, this was a large piece and took a very long time to do - but wow, was it ever fun!

I got to play with all sorts of fun toys - here's a brief list of the items I used:

  • distress inks
  • watercolor pencils
  • copic skin color markers
  • copic greys
  • white gelly roll pen
  • Paint brushes, sponges, tinfoil, water bottle caps and lions and tigers and bears oh my!

Bit did I ever get to try out a bunch of new techniques.  If you have any questions about how I did a certain section please feel free to ask, I'm all about sharing :)

And now, on to the pics!

Before color/shading

Close ups: