Zentangle Patterns Aquafleur, Pepper and Dra-wings

View the accompanying YouTube video by clicking on this link.

Today seems to have disappeared. I have been lost in arty pursuits since around 10:30. It’s now 14:49. The video that goes with the drawings has finally uploaded. The three drawings I started in the video are now all completed and shown here.

It’s actually been a lovely way to spend a Saturday. It’s beautifully sunny out, but there’s a coolness in the air that is absolutely delightful and so reminiscent of many early Septembers in the past. All I want to do is curl up in bed and listen to the sounds of the world outside; a car every now and then, the varied sounds of a rugby match, the twitter of birds and the clattering of jackdaws.

All of this has been a lovely soundtrack to do my art to! And I suppose I should talk about that.

Yesterday, I took a look at the tangle pattern Aquafleur. As I was drawing it, the way I made pen strokes reminded me of two other tangle patterns – Pepper and Dra-wings (or Drawings). So, I decided to look at them in today’s video.

One of my YouTube subscribers had left a comment saying they weren’t sure how to get their Aquafleur to spiral inwards like mine did. So, I started the video by showing how to do that.

And it was rather fortuitous that I was asked about that as it meant I had an example of Aquafleur to compare to Pepper and Drawings! The similarity is in how the various segments are shaped. But by some simple adjustments, you end up with three different end results.

Although I left each drawing incomplete at the end of the video, I did show in the Pepper and Drawings tiles how I was planning to add shade and light to them. I wasn’t even sure I would complete the Aquafleur, but I am glad I did.

I’m not sure whether I have a favourite out of the trio of tiles. Each has its own charm and allure.

Zentangle Tangle Pattern “Aquafleur”

To watch the accompanying tutorial video on YouTube, just click on this link.

Aquafleur is a lovely, organic tangle pattern that creates layers as you draw. The result is reminiscent of a flower, coral, seashell or sea plant. It’s also a bold, high-contrast tangle with a lot of dimension. It’s not a tangle pattern I can remember tackling, and the version you see above is actually my second attempt! I misunderstood the Aquafleur deconstruction by Zentangle Inc.

Like most tangle patterns, Aquafleur is quite easy to construct once you’ve made sense of the pattern’s step out (deconstruction).

I used a graphite pencil and a paper stump to add shadow to the purks (nestled orbs). Highlights I added using white charcoal on the purks and a white Gellyroll on the black sections.

But this design needed something a bit more. So, I got a dip pen and a bottle of gold acrylic ink and added stripes of gold to the Aquafleur. Then, I added a few sprigs of golden leafy loveliness to the design and called it done.

I rather like how this has turned out. I particularly like the opulence of the gold against the very graphic black and white. I decided to leave this motif and the sprigs as they were, nothing else added to fill the piece of paper. I could add a drop shadow around the Aquafleur to lift it up. However, I like it just as it is!

A flowy, abstract pen drawing.

Click on this link to view the accompanying YouTube Draw With Me tutorial video.

I was asked to look at the absolutely beautiful work by Angel_Draws on Instagram, use the work as inspiration, and explain how to create similar texture and volume.

I chose to use an extra fine Twisbi Eco fountain pen. The paper is Moss toned paper by Fabriano, which measures approximately 12.5cm square (approx 5″). For the shade, I used a Prismacolour Ebony graphite pencil. A General’s white charcoal pencil was my choice for the highlights.

I’ve had a go and done it my way, that’s for sure. I enjoyed creating lines that give the illusion of volume in the drawing. Adding shade and light really brought the appearance of folded space out.

It’s also complex, intricate, convoluted, and maelstrom-like, reminding me of roiling, billowing clouds. The textures of clouds are fascinating to me at this time. I’ve seen some amazing ones recently.

I’m not sure if this drawing is finished or whether I’ll add more of the frilly stuff around it. Only time and a good night’s sleep, or several, will tell!

Exploring Stylised Flower Motifs

This morning I wanted to do something fairly simple, soothing and relaxing. So, I chose to look at some variations of a stylised flower motif.

The version I started with is in the centre bottom of the design.

I used various Distress Watercolour Pencils and a water brush to add colour.

The white and gold highlights and patterns were added using gold and white acrylic ink and a dip pen.

Finally, the more intense shade was added using a graphite pencil and a paper stump. I even put some graphite around the gold foliage surrounding the design.

Overall, I’m quite happy with this one. I like the mostly monochrome blue/teal colour scheme on the grey tile. I wasn’t sure bout the gold patterns, but now it’s finished, I think It’s turned out just fine.

Exploring Zentangle Pattern ‘Bucky’ and some organic motifs

Click on this link to watch the accompanying #DrawWithMe video on YouTube.

This morning I had no idea what I wanted to draw, so I visited the random tangle generator on tanglelist.com, which suggested Bucky.

Bucky is an official Zentangle pattern that I’ve never drawn before. I had to look up the deconstruction, which you can find on Zentangle.com. So, in typical Angela style, I threw myself in at the deep end by using a ‘crazy’ asymmetric grid (the middle section in the artwork). It worked out fine in the end, but not with a few mis-strokes!

I thought I’d add some organic patterns/motifs to balance out the rather geometric Bucky pattern.

To add shade, I used an Iron Green Inktense pencil with a water brush to produce some colour gradients. I really wasn’t at all tidy and controlled about this. And you’d never really have known that if I’d not said it! I tried embracing the fluidity and random nature of a watery medium and it worked out just fine.

I used a white charcoal pencil and a paper stump/tortillon for the highlights. That meant I had to re-ink the black hexagons, but that was fine.

Finally, I drew Bucky in a more regular grid at the bottom. I didn’t film this part, but it worked out just fine, I think.

Indeed, I’m fairly happy with the overall result. I like the monochrome colour scheme; it gives coherence. The one thing I haven’t done is add shadow and highlight to the narrow bands between the sections.

Exploring a square Zentangle fragment

Click on this link to view the accompanying video on YouTube.

Time seems to fly when I get engrossed in a task. Today, that was exploring a simple Zentangle fragment – a circle in a square.

In Zentangle terms, a fragment is the basic unit of a repeating pattern, whether repeated as is or rotated/reflected.

It is always a lot of fun to see what kinds of fragments I can develop using the chosen one to spark some creativity.

It’s always lovely, too, to work on toned paper, in this case, it’s from Fabriano and is in the colour ‘Clay’. Whenever I use toned paper, I realise I’m drawing in shadow and light; the paper is the mid-tone. This is why I love to colour plain paper with Distress Inks or NeoColor II water-soluble wax crayons. The colour immediately becomes the backdrop for dark and light and a strong contrast ‘twixt the two extremes.

In art, chiaroscuro is the term used for the use of high contrast between light and dark in a composition. In drawing, this is affected by using a coloured background, and black and white ink or media are used to create the drawing.

As I was typing this, I realized I’ve long loved working in this way. Since my early days of exploring my artistic nature that started some 20 years ago, I discovered I loved to use coloured paper with white and a black or much darker tone of the paper to draw with. It was far more fascinating to me to draw in light and shade rather than tones of grey graphite on white paper. It was my chosen way to work when I did some life drawing. When I go out and about sketching, I will colour the pages in my sketchbook with Distress Inks and use black and white pens/pencils to draw on them. The shapes of shadows and highlights fascinate me; everything becomes very architectural.

I’ve often mentioned the only oil paintings I’ve ever done and how three-dimensional they appear. When people see them for the first time, they’ll touch them because they think they are dimensional and are always surprised to find out they are totally flat. The high contrast I favour in my work creates the illusion of volume.

This little journey down the pathways of memory has allowed me to make some connections. I’m smiling as some pieces of the jigsaw puzzle that is me fall into place, clicking together satisfyingly.

There are times when I have to work with black pen on white paper, but there are many times when I can choose what colour paper to use. And going forward, I think much of my entangled drawing that isn’t for colouring books will be done on toned paper.

Zentangle Fengle variations, Pokeleaf and Mooka

I enjoyed drawing this design, though I wasn’t sure of the grubby-looking graphite and white charcoal on the big leaves. However, I persevered and am now fairly happy with this design.

I started with the Zentangle pattern Fengle and drew it in two different ways. The Fengles are stacked on top of each other.

Rather than try to squash another Fengle in, I elected to add some large, furled Pokeleaves, and of course, some Mookas had to grow with them.

The paper I used to draw on was a piece of Fabriano Toned paper in sand. The paper becomes the mid-tone of the design, so it’s perfect for using both graphite and white charcoal to add shade and highlight. Which I did, and the leaves ended up looking rather grubby.

So, while the video was uploading and processing, I completed adding all the shades and highlights. Then, I re-drew all the black and brown lines. Next, I added dotted highlights using white Gellyroll and Posca pens. Finally, I used a brown Arteza Everblend marker pen to fill the background gaps and draw around the design.

I’m so glad I added so many white dots to the pokeleaves and mookas. They just lifted the colour so much. The richer brown background also helped with this, though I think I need to tidy up the edges somewhat.

For someone who really doesn’t like using graphite/white charcoal in this way, I’m quite pleased with how this has turned out. I’m so glad I remembered I had this toned paper in my stash!

Oh, the patterned background is actually my drawing board! I decided to decorate it with all kinds of patterns and motifs. I’ll finish this side, seal it with some tough spray varnish, then start on the t’other side! Inspired by Zentangle’s Maria Thomas’s suede mat.

Another Flowy Zentangle Inspired Pattern

In today’s video, I started drawing this design inspired by one by Doodlillusion on Instagram. I’d been asked to look at this one by a YouTube subscriber, so today I have.

I definitely used Doodlillusion’s art as inspiration, drawing it in my own way. I trust that I can show and explain how I approached this kind of pattern, along with some hints and tips and various ways of working with it.

I’m quite pleased with the end result. I like the graphic black and white. Something I need to consider more in my monogram and other explorations, maybe!

Exploring Mark Making and Pattern #DrawWithMe

Click on this link to view today’s video on YouTube.

I had a lot of fun with this sketchbook page. It’s well out of my ‘comfort-zone’ as there are absolutely no black lines, not even the lines that define the basic shapes.

This is inspired by illustrator Kate Sutton, whose Domestika course I started watching yesterday. And there’s another project I have on the go that is inspiring me to explore this kind of drawing.

I’ve tried this before, but felt so uncomfortable with it that I gave up very quickly. Today, I was determined not to use any black lines at all. Instead, I picked a colour palette of just four colours of Arteza EverBlend markers. For each colour, I chose a similar one from my set of Zig Writer pens.

I started by creating the collage of simple shapes using the markers, overlapping them so that the colours mixed. I was careful not to mix the pink and green; I didn’t want to make mud!

Once I was happy with the basic design, I used the Zig writers to add patterns made from simple marks. To begin with, this felt really awkward, uncomfortable, and just plain wrong. However, the more I did, the easier it became, and the more I liked what was happening. I’m so glad that I persevered!

I dug out a white gel pen to add some brighter, lighter marks and to play with the ‘stitching’ to the top right. The idea that I was using pen ‘stitching’ to connect shapes and patterns amused me.

Using the white gel pen reminded me I had other gel pens to use, and use them I did.

I love the translucency of the marker pens and the way that the patterned shapes seem to float. The use of monochrome colours in these shapes, along with white, just gives an airy, delicate feel to them. I can now see the value of this way of using no black line. I have a lot more exploring and experimenting to do. My mind is ticking over how I can make use of this in a project I’m developing at the moment.

As eager as I am to continue my explorations, I have an errand to do first. But when I return home, well, I’m going to try out some of my ideas both on paper and digitally and see where this takes me.

Entangled Botanica – Part 2 – WIP

Click on this link to view today’s video on YouTube.

A lovely half hour or so adding some more elements to this drawing. A nice way to start the day for sure!