Let Freedom Ring


Freedom has its life in the hearts, the actions, the spirit of men

and so it must be daily earned and refreshed

– else like a flower cut from its life-giving roots, it will wither and die.

— Dwight D. Eisenhower

I always look forward to Saturdays and checking out Erin’s blog, The Bright Owl.  She posts a wonderful Zendala ready to tangle.  It’s just a matter of downloading the image and printing it out.  I usually print it on thin paper and then trace it to card stock.  This allows me to make changes, if I care to, or just tangle the piece as it is.  There are lots of other folks who enjoy creating a weekly Zendala.  If you have time, check out Erin’s blog (TheBrightOwl.com) and view the beautiful work submitted by lots of creative people.

Independence Day is fast approaching.  Truthfully, I wasn’t thinking about this as I started my Zendala, but when I put the finished piece into the scanner and viewed it, I realized that the colors I chose are perfect for the fourth of July and the upcoming Independence Day celebration.

Zendala Dare #63

I used tangles I haven’t drawn in quite a while, they include:  LoopLopp by Ksenija Vojisavljevic, from Tangle Patterns; Rouch, by Rose Brown, also from Tangle Patterns; and Crete, by Alice Hendon from The Creator’s Leaf.

Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave a comment.  It will be so appreciated.


Rain, Rain, Go Away


Bad things do happen in the world, like war, natural disasters, disease.

But out of those situations always arise stories

of ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

Daryn Kagan,  an American Broadcast Journalist

I feel like I’m late posting my ZIA (Zentangle Inspired Art) for the Diva Challenge.  This week seems to be flying by so fast.  There are already 45 +/- posts so far.  If you want to see some eye candy, take a detour to I Am The Diva (http://www.iamthedivaczt.blogspot.com/) and check out some beautiful artwork.

Each week, Laura finds time to share her life and also come up with a Challenge that gets her followers thinking.  This week she has posted some devastating pictures of the flooding in her homeland (Calgary).  Her challenge is to keep all those experiencing Mother Nature’s rath in mind as we tangle a tribute to them. As I read some of the posts from other entries, I realized that Mother Nature has spared no part of the world.

I found it hard to start this drawing.  All I could think about was water.  It can be so beautiful and serene, crystal clear and shimmering, or devastatingly ferocious, brown and muddy, destroying anything in its path.   My heart truly goes out to all those experiencing loss and turmoil in their lives.  Although I feel I could never truly capture all I feel seeing their distress, I offer my humble tribute.

Diva Challenge #124-"We Are Calgary"

I chose blues and green for the beauty of water, not it’s ugly destructive qualities. I used the tangles Tadpole, by Suzanne McNeill (on left in teal), Orbs La Dee by Anneke van Dam (center) and Isochor an official Zentangle® pattern.  The background is spotted with blue raindrops.  I used Prismacolor pencils and fine-line pens to color the tangles.

Rain down your comments — they are so appreciated.

I’ve Been Busy


“I try to keep it real. I don’t have time to worry about what I’m projecting to the world.

I’m just busy being myself.”

Demi Lovato — an American singer-songwriter, musician and  actress.

Zentangle Inspired Art Group has been featuring a Tangle of the Week challenge.  This week’s TOW is hosted by Cindy F.  She has chosen Facets as the tangle to use.  This tangle is authored by Maria Thomas on Zentangle .com

You can see the breakdown for this tangle at:  http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs023/1101168872594/archive/1103991260417.html

My ZIA is drawn on 8.5″ x 8.5″ white card stock, which seems to be my size of choice lately.  I used String #52 (from TanglePatterns.com) to give it shape and colored it with my fine-line pens as well as Prismacolor pencils.  In addition to Facets, I added Printemps (top, next to Facets), the flowers (also top) are a version of daisy I’ve seen on the web and connected with free-hand curl-li-ques.  The spiral pattern is a variation of Eddy by Suzanne McNeill found on TanglePatterns.com.; and the tangle on the lower right side is one of my own called, Geos.  The instructions for Geos are on this blog as well as my Flickr account:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/80288200@N03/9122981750/in/set-72157631846455437.   

TOW - String 52 - Facets

You might be interested to know that the blue of the Facets is actually the same color pencil for all three.  The variation in color was achieved by varying degrees of pressure on the pencil.  I used a blending pen to even out the strokes and then highlighted with white pencil.

Thanks for stopping by.  Your comments are like sunshine and water are to flowers.

Butterflies Are Free


Linda, from TanglePatterns.com, issued a new String, #58.  I was eager to grab my pencil and draw the String on 8.5″ x 8.5″ white card stock.  If you look closely at the picture below you will see the fine pencil line of this String.

Zentangle #266-String 58 I was inspired to use the tangle Lightbulbs by Suzanne McNeill because it was a featured video by The Rainbow Elephant’s, Paint Lady.  She shared the step outs and tips on how to draw this interesting tangle.  You can check it out for yourself at:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aVpM6MYdkK8

I then proceed to surf the web looking for other interesting patterns.  I stumbled across Carolyn Boettner’s Facebook page “https://www.facebook.com/pages/Doodle-Daze-Designs-Zentangles/146843615370106” and found some beautiful artwork.  The designs to the right of Lightbulb are inspired by Carolyn’s artwork.

Zentangle #266-String 58 1 I also added Purk, by Maria Thomas, from Zentangle.com and a free-hand butterfly.  My title was inspired by the butterfly.  Actually, Butterflies Are Free is a 1972 movie with Goldie Hawn.  Most of you may be too young to remember it.  You can see it on Amazon.  It’s a cute movie about a boy trying to break away from his overprotective mother.

Zentangle #266-String 58-shadedThe tangle on the bottom left is called Maelstrom, by Linda Dawson, and was a recent addition to the TanglePatterns.com site.  The other tangles I drew are not official patterns, they just seemed to flow from my pen. I shaded this ZIA using graphite pencil.

I felt the piece was not finished until I put some color to it.  I just seem to like my artwork in color, even though “official” Zentangles are suppose to be black and white.  I used my Prismacolor Pencils and fine-line pens to add the color I thought it needed.

Zentangle #266-String 58-colored & shadedI hope you like this one.  It was a challenge to draw and kept me busy for hours.  Do take time to leave me a comment.  Thanks for stopping by.

I Did It My Way


Every Saturday morning I look forward to seeing what form the Zendala Dare will take.  This week’s Dare is very appealing to me.  Let me show it to you in its original form.

Zendala Dare #62 1

There are always so many decisions to make.  Do I leave it just as it is?  Do I change the form.  Do I use tiny tangles, grid tangles, or flower tangles?  Do I leave white space?  Any of these choices are fine, but one has to pick a direction and take the first steps.  This is  what I came up with for the Dare.

Zendala Dare #62This shows the Micron .01 pen I first added.  The rest of it is drawn with pencil to be later covered by Micron ink.  I realize in the true “Zentangle®” tradition, things are drawn in ink only, an eraser is not used and rulers should be avoided.  I must admit, I don’t always follow those rules.  After all, it’s my art.  Accomplishing the end result is my choice.  I can achieve it any way I choose.  Aren’t we all doing this for fun?  You all might think I’m very uppity.  Believe me, I was never this way when I was younger. I followed all the rules!  But now that I’ve reached my “golden” years, I feel it’s time to start enjoying myself and do things my own way.

Here’s Frank Sinatra singing “I Did It My Way.”  I think this tune is perfect for this blog post.  If you have five extra minutes, check it out.



He was a bit before my time, but, I think, he recorded some awesome songs.

Here’s the completed Zendala Dare drawn with Micron .01 pen and all the pencil lines erased.

Zendala Dare #62 2To my eye, this Dare is a bit plain.  It lacks color and shading.  My next decision was how to add color.  Do I use colored pens or pencils?  Do I get out my watercolors? Do I just shade it and add no color?  Decisions, decisions!

I have not used my watercolors in quite a while.  An idea sprung into my mind as I prepared myself some lunch.  I spied my container of plastic grocery bag.  The million, kazillion bags that are so overused in our society today.  I never throw them them away.  I stuff them into larger garbage bags and then take them back to the store.  So, I always have those pesky bags on hand.  I grabbed a bag and cut it into two one inch strips.  I then added water to dilute the watercolors and stirred till the color was pleasing.   I crunched up the plastic into a small balls and carefully and delicately dipped it into the liquified watercolor.  I touched the plastic lightly to my picture, dabbing it around the page.  I did this with two colors, teal and blue.  After it dried, I opened up my tin of Prismacolor pencils and added a bit of color in similar shades. I used a Derwent Blender Pencil on the Prismacolors.  The final step was to shade with a graphite pencil.  Here’s the finished piece.  By the way, it’s drawn on 8.5″ x 8.5″ white card stock.

Zendala Dare #62-colored &  shaded

I’m hoping you like it and have not been bored by my description.  Thanks so much for stopping by and taking a peek.  Any comment you’d care to make would be greatly appreciated.

The Spirit of Sharing


“What an artist is trying to do for people is bring them closer to something, because, of course, art is about sharing. You wouldn’t be an artist unless you wanted to share an experience, a thought.”

— David Hockney, is an English painter, draghtsman, printmaker, stage designer and photographer. He lives in Bridlington, East Riding of Yorkshire, and Kensington, London.  Hockney maintains two residences in California, where he lived on and off for over 30 years: one in Nichols Canyon, Los Angeles, and an office and archives on Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood.

Out of the latest challenge from “I Am The Diva,” creativity was forced out of many minds.  For myself, I believe I came up with several new tangles due to this challenge.  I’ve gotten a couple of requests to post the step-outs.

The first is a design that was introduced to me many, many years ago.  I hadn’t thought about it, or ever used it in my artwork, until this challenge.  It has also been requested that I post a step-out.  I have named it “Hooked.”  I would have preferred Linked or Link but those names were already taken.

Zentangle Pattern - Hooked

The second design I had time to do a step-out for is “Geos.”  This design just showed up as I was drawing.  The geometric look is a hint to its name.

Zentangle Pattern - Geo

Both these patterns were submitted to TanglePatterns.com.  I do hope Linda will publish them as so many more tanglers will see them, as my blog does not have a large audience.

I offer them to you in a spirit of sharing.  Thanks for stopping by.  Your comments are very appreciated.

To Think In Ink


From time to time

I make it rhyme

But don’t hold that kind of thing against me.

Oh well, what the hell,

So it won’t sell.

What I want to tell

Is what’s on my mind.

‘Taint dishes, ‘taint wishes, it’s thoughts

Flinging by before I die

And to think in ink.

— Marilyn Monroe


Just watched a Documentary on HBO about Marilyn Monroe.  If you have HBO, I highly recommend you watch it.  It shows a side of Marilyn many of us were not privy to when she was alive.  I found the story of her life sad and emotionally moving.  She dabbled in poetry, loved to read and kept journals which were discovered in someone’s attic.  I wrote down one of her poems, verbatim, from the show.  I thought it personified why I blog.