The Urge to Create

Long time no see! Again. I’m sorry but after posting in April I kind of entered a little “slump” and I really lost all desire to draw or create any kind of art, even Zentangle. This sometimes happens and I’m not really sure why this happened – although I think I’m starting to discover a pattern: This tends to happen whenever I participate in any drawing challenge I decide to join on my favourite ATC-site Whenever I’m joining I’m really into the theme of the challenge and I really want to give it my best. However, this seems to leed to me failing at creating any ideas that I like and that I really want to realise for the challenge. Maybe I’m pressuring myself too much? I don’t know.. Even when I tried to be more relaxed no ideas came to me and when the day of the deadline came I had nothing to offer. It’s really frustrating…

Most interestingly this time Zentangle helped me out of this state. At the start of the year I decided to create at least one piece of Zentangle art per month and I didn’t get around to it until last Thursday. Since it was a holiday, I decided to sit down at the table und just “get over with it” now. I drew a string, jotted down 20 tangles that came to my mind and I took the 20-sided dice my husband gave me and just rolled it until the tile was tangled. The combinations were definitely surprising but positively so. Still, on several occasions (especially during shading) I’d really would have liked to just go and leave it like it is… doing something else… But after I had finished the tile, I felt really great and the desire to create something was totally back. That’s why this tile will always be in my heart:

Tangles used: Cyme, Diva Dance, Hollibaugh, Hypnotic, Pepper, Ruutz, Shattuck

I had to work on Friday but on Saturday morning I sat down again at my desk and created yet another tile, again with the list of tangles and the trusty dice – and I really like it, too. Kind of have a feeling that I’ll have to add a little Pepper more frequently on the future because it really spices up my tiles (bad pun inteded ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). Here it is:

Tangles used: Auraknot, Diva Dance, Hollibaugh, ‘Nzeppel, Pepper, Shattuck

I even have a third tile half-finished here which I couldn’t finish yet because suddenly some really good ideas for my ATC drawing challenges popped up. I’ll have to work on them for now since the deadlines are approaching quickly (and I’m very happy that I finally have something to offer after dropping out so often before!), but it feels really good to have something to come back to in breaks or after the ATCs are done. Now I have to hope that the ideas work out fine and that I can draw and craft them as I want to. Wish me luck!*

And, of course: Have a good time tangling!

* If you stumple upon a paper die in the form of a revolver (preferrably a modern-looking one) with a maximum size of 15mm / about half an inch, please DO let me know asap (even if asap ist in 2020 XD). My research so far has been without result, I only found pasta and cookie cutters, but I do have this one idea that I’d love to make real and I need this die or 20-35 die-cut mini-guns. Wouldn’t want to cut stamped guns by hand… although I’d do it if that was the only way” >:-)

Nihon no Zentanguru

Time flies by, the wedding is over and finally I’ve got some more time to devote to Zentangle – although I already started tangling again in the last weeks before the wedding for obvious tangling reasons: stress relief! I haven’t finished anything but just took my time to tangle some here and there and it worked like a charm. Although I must say that I’ve been so tired recently that pretty much anything made me zoom out…

Now I still have some wedding-related things to do, but I said I wanted to start posting again here in August and here I am! Actually I wanted to start with some artwork, but today I stumbled upon a post by Anya Lothrop CZT on her German blog and I just had to write about it here. The post was about her recent trip to Japan and the state of Zentangle in this intriguing country. Even if you don’t know any German, do visit! The pictures are very nice. ๐Ÿ™‚ I myself am a big fan of Japan and have been there only last year on a nearly four week vacation. Well, vacation isn’t quite the correct term, since both my now-husband and I went there to study Go, an ancient board game both of us really enjoy (studying Go is fun most of the times but it can be tiresome and feel like work, too).

Of course, I also enjoyed shopping – not for clothes since that wouldn’t be any fun for me but for art supplies. And that’s where Zentangle comes in. When I went to the epic Tokyu Hands in Shinsaibashi, Osaka which was my favourite store during the trip, I found a small but select Zentangle corner there:

Zentangle supplies
I have no idea what the colourful kendama is doing there in the middle if the Zentangle supplies!

Zentangle books close-up
And a close-up of the books – I assume you are familiar with the original versions of these books? Isn’t it amazing how different they look?

I was really thrilled to find Zentangle in Japan! I was even tempted to buy a book but instead bought some more light-weighted art-supplies. I was hoping that I might go back to Japan again soon and I though that by then I’d have a larger selection to choose from – of course the weight of my luggage at this point in time was NO reason at all for my decision… ๐Ÿ˜‰

What about you? Have you already found Zentangle books or supplies in your vacation abroad? If so, I’d love to read about it!

My new Toy: Zentangle Mosaic App

Dear all,

I’m so sorry that it’s been so quiet lately. A cold and an extremely busy private life laft hardly any time to tangle in the last few weeks, I wasn’t able to complete any Diva Challenges or even complete 1 tile in the last few weeks… This week and the one to come will definitely be very busy, too, but I have high hopes for the time after that.. Please bear with me.

I just wanted to leave a “quick” note (oh my, these quick notes really grow fast!) her so you know this blog isn’t dead and that there’ll be new stuff kinda soon. And to tell you that I have a new toy: The brand new Zentangle Mosaic app, an official app released by Zentangle HQ! It was released in the Google Play Store (and in the Apple iTunes App Store) only 4 days ago and I stumbled upon it today already, what a coincidence! I downloaded it right away and it looks very pretty indeed! You can do lots of things there and I haven’t tried out or figured out all of them yet. But for a first quick evaluation I’d say it is very similar to Instagram or Pinterest: You upload your own art or someone else’s art (you have to have this person’s permission), you can appreciate somebody’s art or the whole artist, leave comments, exchange private messanges. You can organise all the artwork by creating “mosaics” (similar to pinboards on Pinterest) and by using hashtags for tangles and other occasions (e.g. for a CZT’s course).

Here’s what the Zentangle HQ wrote about the app.

Here are a few screenshots I took from my smartphone to give you an idea of how it looks:

Here’s the menu – you get the idea of how much you can do here. Still have to try a few things out. ๐Ÿ™‚

One example for the waterfall

Another example for the waterfall

This is the detailed view of the first tile I uploaded into the app

My first impression of this app is that it has a very nice user interface although all those options are a little overwhelming. You will need some time to really get used to it (I still haven’t worked out how to add my artwork to the waterfall ^^; ). The “waterfall” is especially nice as every X seconds a tile or artwork is replayed by another (you can choose how fast you want to have them changed). Of course, you cann also scroll down.
The tagging is very useful to find exactly what you need – however, this will only work well if everyone plays along so I’d advise you to check out the recommendations by Zentangle HQ.
The artwork in the app is absolutely gorgeous. What I have seen so far is original artwork from Zentangle HQ (haven’t seen any of it yet published before) and CZTs, I haven’t seen any non-CZT artwork yet but since this is a brand new app with 100-500 downloads yet (according to Google Play store). The private messaging function is great and I do hope very much that group messaging or some kind or forums will be added.

I’ll add a more thorough review when I had the time to play some more with this app.

If you are interested in purchasing a subscription and are as ignorant as to how a yearly subscription is paid for as I was, here are a few warning words: If you want to pay with a gift card, do NOT (!!) enter the code before you are asked to during the subscription process for this app. Do better than me. I first cashed the gift card then continued to buy the subscription which led to me having to pay the subscription in another way and having 35โ‚ฌ to spend on the Google Play Store. And I have no idea how to spend so much there… Well, but I’m happy if you don’t fall fo this. And I hope it helps, if you cannot pay with gift cards at all, please let me know!

What do YOU think about this nifty new app? Feel free to leave me a comment here or drop me a message in Mosaic if you’re active there!

New page on the blog: Diva Challenges

It’s gotten a bit quiet here lately but rest assured that my motivation is still in very good condition. However, a cold and life in general knocked me out a bit and left little time for tangling. I hope to be back soon with lots of new stuff and I hope you’ll be back so read it, too.

For today I only have a short announcement: There’s a new page here on the blog! I created a page specially for the Diva challenges. It’s meant as some kind of overview and I’ll include all the challenges I finished so far. Of course you can still search for the posts by clicking on the category “Diva Challenge”, but I thought it might get messy over time with old and new challenges mixing up. I’m also currently filling a flickr album with my contributions. However, these won’t be in the original order and appear as I finish them (at least that’s how it will be for now). I’ll include the link to flickr as soon as there’s 25 pictures or something like that so it will be worth paying the album a visit.

I hope you like the new page! If you do, please let me know. I’m thinking about doing something similar for the “One Zentangle a Day”-project, too (which I AM working on still although I haven’t uploaded anything in quite some time).

Now I’ll go back to “work” – this week’s Diva Challenge is waiting! ๐Ÿ™‚

Have a nice evening and keep on tangling!

Happy New Year!

Hello everybody,

I hope you had a wonderful Holiday season and a great start in 2016! I wish all of you health, success and of course creativity and lots of fun and relaxation tangling away!

I’m sorry it was so quiet in the last few weeks. I’ve been very busy with preparations for Christmas, which didn’t really leave time for updates from me. Then I went home for the Holidays where I don’t have access to a scanner.. which was a BRILLIANT excuse to be very lazy and not tangle at all for 12 days although I had been looking forward to tangling excessively.. Oh well. I’ve been active on Twitter though, so if you’ve got an account there or just want to take a look, please come around! You can find all necessary information in the box in the menu on the right.

Do you have exciting plans or even resolutions for 2016? For me, 2016 will be a very busy, definitely stressful but also a wonderful year (as far as I can tell now). More on that as it comes.ย  Zentangle-wise this year will be very interesting! For instance, I discovered only a few days ago that my dear sister has caught the Zentangle virus, too! Her first tries are gorgeous and I’m positively excited to see her next works and how her style will develop!

Yesterday I discovered that not only a new book by Beckah Krahula (The author of “One Zentangle a Day”) will be released in a few week’s time (I knew about that before), but also a TON of other Zentangle books. Many of them are in German and they are no translation of English works. The hype definitely reached Germany now. A few of those books are veryy tempting and a few of them will be released around my birthday. An evil combination indeed!

I already bought a new Zentangle book this week (I might be writing about it if you are interested in reviews of German books, too?). Zendalas never really appealed to me until very recently and now I’m dying to finally tangle one. But that might take a few more days.. You can see nothing much has changed over the year: Many plans and little time… ^^; If I can only finish half of what I’d love to do, I’ll be extremely busy. It looks like a very busy Zentangle year! Now I’m almost glad that I wasn’t able to get one of those Tangle-a-Day-calendars by Carole Ohl (although still sad..).

But let’s see what life has in stock for each and every one of us. I do hope it’s only good things.

I’ll be back very soon with my tile for this week’s Diva Challenge!