I see in 3D

Halloween is a little over a week a way and things are starting to get weird. On their own these 3D glasses aren't so odd but I'm loving the creep factor this head form is bringing. That wig below is a little sneak peak at my Halloween costume. The glasses don't have much to do with my outfit other than I can't stop thinking about the classic movie theater pics from the 50's which is the same era my costume falls into. (Another hint)!

So why the glasses? In my studio I came across this 3D sketch pad I'd forgot I had. Basically anything you draw on the paper in black pops off the page when viewed through the glasses. You know, good ol' fashioned fun with optics. I wanted to give a few sheets to the winners of October's mail game but I'd also need to send them 3D glasses. What to do, what to do? Make some of course! 

I used 3D glasses I already owned as a template but then I cut almond shaped eye holes for the lenses instead of the classic rounded rectangles. I added some zentangle type patterns to emphasize the blue and red halves.

Wanna see in 3D?* If you'd like a pair of your own sign up for my monthly wrap up to play the mail game. I'll be sending glasses to Novembers** winners. Every month three people have the chance to get goodies in the mail from me!

*The author is aware everyone already see's in 3D. 

** November 2014 winners of the mail game will get 3D glasses. Sign up here!

Starz and Stripez: Patriotic mail

  After/Before. Using patterns: 'Nzeppel and Papyrus

After/Before. Using patterns: 'Nzeppel and Papyrus

The US flag is a malleable thing. In it's nearly 240 years it's had 27 official versions though there was no designated arrangement for the field of stars until the 1912 introduction of the 48 starred flag (source). Did you know that?! The fact the flag has changed forms many times makes it seem less sacred. More sacred are the rights written within the constitution that imbued us with the ability to use the flag as a symbol to herald or question our country. Whichever you prefer. You can paint it on your jean shorts or create fine art.

So there you go! I'm doing my patriotic duty by playing with the form of the American flag. If you break the flag down to it's simplest form it is two fields awaiting manipulation. Perfect for Zentangle and watercolors.

  After/Before. Using patterns: Sand Swirl and Sun Up Sun Down

After/Before. Using patterns: Sand Swirl and Sun Up Sun Down

  After/Before. Using patterns: 'Nzeppel and Worms

After/Before. Using patterns: 'Nzeppel and Worms

  After/Before. Using patterns: Hollibaugh, Hibred, and Shattuck

After/Before. Using patterns: Hollibaugh, Hibred, and Shattuck

Air mail inspired envelopes were perfect for mailing these notes. This project got me thinking of some American friends who now live internationally. I know they get home sick sometimes so I figured a little patriotic note in the mail around the 4th would be a welcome surprise. (Though if they're reading this it's maybe not such a surprise. I'm bad with figuring out the lead time for international mail).

It's easy to DIY air mail envelopes.

Supplies:
Envelopes of any size
Artist Tape
Water Colors
Paint Brush

Use artists tape or another low tack tape to mask off the edges of your envelope. Paint red diagonal stripes leaving room for blue stripes. Follow up with blue leaving some hints of white. The thickness of your paint brush will be the thickness of your lines. This would be a special addition to any note in the mail and could be created in other color palettes.

I'm a fan of red white and blue year round but in July I like to use the palette for patriotic fun. Last year I wrapped gifts and the year before I also made note cards but with washi tape. 

For more inspiration on the American flags form I've got a Pinterest board exploring its red white and blue textures. Happy 4th of July everyone!

Zentangle in color

A few weeks ago I shared the tangle pattern I created called Onion Drops and I included a list of patterns I found that have a similar twisting feel. Many of them I had never tried out before so I'm following up with some sample tiles to see how some of those patterns work. I think I found a new favorite in Sand Swirl. You'll also notice the line work on these tiles is in color! I've been having fun playing with a pack of Stabilo pens. Usually I draw with a black 01 Micron (0.25 mm line). These create a 0.4 mm line so the line work is still fairly fine.

If this is the first time you're stumbling upon Zentangle check out my introduction to the practice here. It can be a great medium for adding a handmade element to correspondence.

   Left Tile:  Echoism, Sand Swirl, and Onion Drops.  Right Tile:  Kandy Ribnz, Inapod, Onion Drops, Tipz, and Leaflet.

Left Tile: Echoism, Sand Swirl, and Onion Drops. Right Tile: Kandy Ribnz, Inapod, Onion Drops, Tipz, and Leaflet.

   Left Tile:  Sand Swirl, Echoism, Worms, Pais, and Onion Drops.  Right Tile:  Leaflet, Inapod, and Echoism (It looks rather different here because I added Onion Drops inside the hollow parts and rounded the pattern more).

Left Tile: Sand Swirl, Echoism, Worms, Pais, and Onion Drops. Right Tile: Leaflet, Inapod, and Echoism (It looks rather different here because I added Onion Drops inside the hollow parts and rounded the pattern more).

   Left Tile:  Worms and Prestwood.  Right Tile:  Pais, Echoism, Worms, and Onion Drops.

Left Tile: Worms and Prestwood. Right Tile: Pais, Echoism, Worms, and Onion Drops.

For reference here are links to create the patterns used above.

Echoism 
Inapod
Kandy Ribnz
Leaflet
Pais
Tipz
Worms 
Sand Swirl
Prestwood 
Onion Drops

 

New Zentangle pattern: Onion Drops

One of the things I love most about Zentangle is that it's a great go-to creative outlet when creating birthday notes and wrappings. Hand drawing something is an automatic way to make something unique and special for someone.

Are you thinking Zentangle what? Here's an introduction I wrote a couple months ago.

Today I'm sharing my first Zentangle pattern. I developed this because while Zentangle is about being slow and thoughtful I wanted something that would flow from the pen a little quicker than some of my other favorite patterns. Something I could easily incorporate into those unique special somethings I was just mentioning. Searching the hashtag #oniondrops on my Instagram you can see many cards I've crafted with this pattern.

Without further a-du, here is the video and illustrated step-out for creating the Onion Drops pattern.

Why call it Onion Drops? I'm not a big fan of onions but those little purple ones are the first thing I thought of when I looked at this pattern. So Onion Drops it is.

For the Zentangle familiar you'll notice that I'm filling in some of the empty spaces with Tipple.

I haven't seen this pattern in Zentangle land but there are a few patterns I've come across that feel like they're part of the same family tree. Links to those patterns: Echoism (also one of my favorites), Inapod, Kandy Ribnz, Leaflet, Pais, Puffle, Tipz, Undling, Cruffle, and Worms.

I'd love to see how you interpret Onion Drops. Please send me images of your creations or tag them on social media!

What is this Zentangle you speak of?

  Patterns used: Drupe and stylized Hollibaugh (ATC sized tile with watercolor pencils)

Patterns used: Drupe and stylized Hollibaugh (ATC sized tile with watercolor pencils)

You've probably seen some Zentangle sneaking into some of my blog posts and fairly often on my Instagram. I haven't given much explanation about it but I am doing so now. In my own words, at it's simplest, Zentangle is a mindful drawing practice using pre-determined patterns for infinite artful outcomes. When I first introduced it to a friend she called it doodling with structure. This is true and at first glance it may seem that way. It can be much more.

  Patterns used: Shattuck, Keeko, Hollibaugh, N'Zeppel

Patterns used: Shattuck, Keeko, Hollibaugh, N'Zeppel

Many creatives deep in a project have the experience of the world receding and find themselves in the moment of making. A meditative state. The creators of Zentangle wanted to provide that gift to anyone who had the desire to lose themselves in the same way. Pre-designed patterns can provide that gateway. 

For an explanation in the words of the Zentangle creators go here.

  Patterns used: Mooka, Verdigough, Flux, Hollibaugh (with watercolor pencils)

Patterns used: Mooka, Verdigough, Flux, Hollibaugh (with watercolor pencils)

Honestly when Zentangle first came into my life I was a bit skeptical. I was thinking "Well I'm pretty creative. I don't need a crutch to make stuff". But it was my mom who introduced me to Zentangle so I wanted to keep an open mind. Shortly after she retired from teaching she became a Certified Zentangle Teacher and started a business with a fellow retired colleague. I had a direct resource when I finally decided to explore it.

  Patterns used: Hollibough, Rain, Scoodle, Flux, Mooka, Cadenc

Patterns used: Hollibough, Rain, Scoodle, Flux, Mooka, Cadenc

The catalyst for breaking into the kit my mom had given me for Christmas 2012 was the calligraphy class I knew I'd be taking (spring 2013). I wanted to practice doing things slow and steady with a pen. I've never been huge into drawing for drawings sake so I knew I'd need to practice being slow. I was correct. As I learned calligraphy I found you have to write much slower than your mind thinks. I used Zentangle as the warm up to calligraphy and it found its own spot in my creative routines. I know it's March of 2014 but I'm officially naming 2013 my personal year of the pen when Zentangle and calligraphy practices started in my life.

  An early experiment combining watercolor pencils with the patterns Hollibaugh, Tipple, and N'Zeppel on an ATC sized tile.

An early experiment combining watercolor pencils with the patterns Hollibaugh, Tipple, and N'Zeppel on an ATC sized tile.

I've found I'm most happiest in this world when I consistently have something I'm making. Sometimes there's not enough time to start a new project. Other times projects need a break but the desire to make is still there. Zentangle is perfect for those windows. At the end of the day if I'm craving to work with my hands I sit in bed and work on a tile.

As I mentioned earlier in this post Zentangle has popped up on my blog as hearts for Valentines Day, gift wrap for a friend, mail art, and crafts in Australia. 

Favorite Resources
The Zentangle Website and blog
I can lose time looking at this book.
Starter Kit (If you take a class you're provided a smaller starter kit with tiles and pens).
Curious about classes? Find a Certified Zentangle Teacher near you.
If you're reading this and you live in Northern California (Butte and Yuba Counties) take a class from my mom!