Inktober Tangles 2021 | Day 31 “Eke”

Eke, by Zentangle Inc, is the last tangle pattern in the Inktober Tangles 2021 challenge.

It was a bit of a challenge as it seems so simple and not much you can do with it. But I managed to get creative!

So, that’s Inktober 2021 done for another year. I feel rather weird about it. I feel I’ve got that sense of satisfaction when something is completed successfully. But there’s also a sadness and an emptiness that comes with the ending too.

I’m in a liminal place at the moment – a point in time where I’m between an ending and a beginning. Quite fitting given that it is Hallowe’en, which is a very liminal time. A time where the veil betwixt the living and the afterlife is thinnest. A time where in older, pagan times, the time of harvest was over and winter was beginning to take hold.

And that quite happily fits how I feel today really. I do have a project to focus on from tomorrow – the Adorable Dogs colouring book. However, I’d like a focus for a daily practice that helps me keep my hand and eye coordination tip-top and encourages creativity too.

So, I already have some new A5 sketchbooks in my stash, and I’d like to continue this practice of filling a page a day. Or maybe one page over two or three days so I don’t take my focus away from the Adorable Dogs. I also think videoing this practice and sharing may be useful for some people.

It won’t just be tangle patterns, but other patterns and motifs that I use a lot in my artwork, whether coloring books or the more abstract art or mandalas I create.

It’s also making me re-evaluate whether to take part in CZT training, but that will only take place if there are online sessions.

Later today, I’ll be posting a video where I look back over all the Inktober Tangles 2021 sketchbook pages I’ve completed. I’ll post the link in a separate post.

Inktober Tangles 2021 | Day 29 “Tree Leaf” by Debbie New CZT

Tree Leaf is a lovely tangle pattern by Debbie New CZT . It is, to me, an unusual way of drawing a branch of leaves, but it works out. I have to say that I fell into my way of drawing branches where I use the gaps to attach the leaves. Either way seems to work just fine and dandy for sure.

The branch I kept fairly consistent in my drawing today. However the leaves…it was fun to use my favourite shapes of leaves, and a few others. A couple of berries and acorns have sneaked their way in as well.

This tangle pattern makes it really easy to layer leaves; very useful for me in my work creating coloring books!

To add colour to the leaves (and berries), I’ve used a whole host of media – Pitt graphite matt pencil, Graphitint pencils, Graphitint paints, Inktense blocks used like watercolours, and Sakura metallic, starlight and moonlight gelly roll pens. I also used white Gelly Roll and Posca pens to add the higlights.

I’ve not done much in the way of shading. There comes a point when I really need to take a break from the work. I’ve reached that point with this page. I may return to add shadow and more highlight, I may not. Regardless, this page is a great reference for me going forward. In fact, I have an idea to incorporate it into one of my other drawings I’m working on at the moment.

Tomorrow, I’ll film my thoughts and reflections as I look back on my week in art. But for today, I have filmed a video of the drawing and colouring of the small branch in the top left.

Inktober Tangles 2021 | Day 28 “Effie”

Effie, by Annett Rumpler CZT, is a lovely floral tangle pattern and one I’ve enjoyed creating variations of, and also different ways of adding colour. For the more brightly coloured flowers I’ve used Sakura Gelly Roll Moonlight, Starlight and Metallic pens along with a damp water brush to create gradients. Just another way of using supplies in a stash! Add the colour before adding detailed lines, however.

It’s been a really interesting month with the Inktober Tangles 2021 Challenge. It’s prompted me to explore patterns, create variations. This is something I don’t do much; I tend to draw intuitively.

However, I now understand the benefits of this practice, and I intend to continue to do this kind of stuff going forward. I had started doing this in an A4 sketchbook, but I’ve found the size of the page a bit daunting and everything looks a bit disorganised. The A5 sketchbook I’ve used has been the perfect size. If I need more space for more variations/ideas I can turn to a new page.

That means I’ve had to order some A5 sketchbooks!

I did film the drawing of the first few Effies, and here’s the video :

Template Thursday

It’s Template Thursday! So the uncoloured template will be available in the facebook group in a little while.

Inktober Tangles 2021 | Day 26 “DEX”

Dex is a grid-based tangle pattern by Zentangle Inc. It’s interesting to add variations to. Indeed, I’m sure I recognise some of the variations as other tangle patterns. I expect there’s going to be a lot of overlap.

Inktober Tangles 2021 Day 25 “Round Square”

Round Square, by Karin Guzzetta CZT, has turned out to be an interesting pattern to try variations out on.

At first sight it seems a rather, well, boring pattern. However, with just a little creativity, it’s become fascinating rather than boring. From adding ‘auras’ and patterns, to threading laces through the pattern, to inverting the dark and light areas, and even changing the shape from square-ish to triangular, this has become a pattern full of possibility.

I’ve just realised that I didn’t try adding white (or coloured) patterns to the darker borders in some of the patterns.

Will it make it’s way into my artwork? I don’t know. I can see some interesting optical illusions going on in places. A bit more forward planning with the ‘laces’ running through the pattern could have a really interesting effect, maybe.

However, these will have to be shelved for now as I do need to turn to other work for the day.

Inktober Tangles 2021 – Day 24 – Zigoli

Zigoli is a lovely repeating kind of pattern, full of possibilities of variations. It’s one that interests me as it will lend itself so well to the arches I love to include in my entangled artwork.

I haven’t really experimented with shadow and highlight here, but I know full well how they can really sculpt a drawing.

Although I’ve put my variations together in ribbon form, they would work well in a grid format, but also as individual motifs as kind of carved stones or ‘gems’.

So many possibilities … so many …

Inktober Tangles 2021 Day 23 and Sketchbook Saturday

Inktober Tangles 2021 Day 23 “Ple-A” by Apple Lim CZT

This was a new tangle to me, but not any more!

It took a while for me to understand it’s basic structure. Then, it was experimenting with it to fill (mostly) a page of my A5 sketchbook with just a few possibilities.

I did start adding shadow and highlight, but went on to focus on patterns in both black and colour. I may return to add those shadows and highlights to increase the illusion of volume.

Sketchbook Saturday – My week in art

It took nearly an hour for me to look back on my week in art. I didn’t think I’d done this much as I’d been unwell for a few days and needed to sleep a lot.

In the video, I share with you my observations, reflections and lessons from all of this work.

Inktober Tangles 2021 | Day 20 “Oysteroid”

This tangle, with it’s use of heavy lines for shadow/dimension is just up my street. Or so I thought. I ended up experimenting with how the thicker lines can change whether the layer appears to be growing up from or digging down into the page.

I enjoyed varying the inny or outy nature of each layer in the pattern, but I’m not entirely sure I’ve got the shadow and highlight right for the innies!

I’m going to put it down to sheer tiredness. I had a poor night’s sleep again. I’ve been up since before 5am and I’ve done nearly a day’s work already, and I still have more to do. But first I really do need to go sleep for a while. I’m just about falling asleep at my desk.

Template Thursday … on a Wednesday?

Wednesday is the day give a sneak peek of this week’s colouring page/template for the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

I’ve only done part of the template so far, and the video is in real time and I try to vocalise my thought processes as I draw.

Inktober Tangles 2021 | Day 18 “Moonpie”

Moonpie

Moonpie is a tangle pattern by Zentangle Inc. It’s based on crescent moon, another pattern by Zentangle Inc. In keeping with that, I divided the triangular segment up in the way that crescent moon is drawn – in circular arcs. Next, the addition of patterns to the segments.

This motif is something that is a familiar feature of my art, usually nestled betwixt arches or other elements of the design. The variations are endless.

Shadow and highlight, and/or colour really helps to bring these drawings to life.

I thought it would be fun to add stems to some of the moonpies. Some end up looking like flowers, others like very architectural seedpods! And, of course, I started the whole page with a couple of wobbly moonpie pies!

Matt graphite pencils?

I have long disliked using the humble drawing pencil to add shading to drawings. It’s also rather reflective, giving a sheen to the drawing that obscures the pen lines, no matter how carefully the graphite is blended out.

Towards the end of last week, a video popped up You-Tube for some pencils that claim to be matt graphite pencils. These are the Pitt Graphite Matt pencils by Faber-Castell. I watched the video and the review for them seemed to be fab. So, I had to get some to try.

In the same video, Staedtler Mars Lumograph Black pencils were mentioned as having less shine than traditional graphite drawing pencils. So, I thought I’d try those out too.

The result? They are a lot less shiny than traditional graphite pencils! They don’t blend out as far as traditional pencils do, which is fine by me as it really helps to keep the shading in the area you want it.

There’s still a little shine with them; graphite is a shiny material. When I was a science teacher, it was always surprising to myself and my students how slippery a piece of shiny-grey graphite feels. It really is shiny too. So that doesn’t surprise me. So, it’s not the graphite that’s less shiny itself, it’s what is included in the mix.

Carbon and charcoal pencils are duller, but messier and impossible to erase if you need to. I think this may be one of the ingredients in the pencil ‘leads’ in both makes. The Mars Lumograph Black also seem waxier, though I’m not sure of that yet.

I’ve only been using these for a couple of days, and so far I much prefer them to traditional graphite pencils. Time and use will tell if they become my go-to drawing pencils for shading.

Inktober Tangles 2021 | Day 16 “Ecstatic” by Jem Miller

I wondered what I was going to be able to do with this tangle, which is essentially a series of zig=zags that become broken and smaller so that they seem to be wearing ‘hats’.

Surprisingly, I found it a really interesting tangle to work with, especially with the addition of shadow and highlights. They really bring the tangle alive.

It is, however, fun to add ‘dangle’ elements to the peaks of the design, both above and below, or ornaments that act like finials atop roofs.

I think there’s a lot more exploring of this pattern.