Zentangle is an easy to learn method of creating beautiful images from repetitive patterns. The concept was created by Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts as a form of meditation – a type of art that provides a sense of freedom and well-being!
Their motto is “Anything is possible – one stroke at a time.” So I set to work on a Zentangle Apple. The approach and term were coined due to the almost meditative trance that happens when you create in a free form doodle type of manner and it was a perfect apple for me to create tonight because as you all know from yesterday’s post – I’m feeling a bit burnt out – lol!
Give it a try – art is therapy. It engages the mind so throughly that it can put distress and pain aside for a bit. The nice thing about art is that first and foremost it is for you – you never need to show a soul. Pick up a pen and piece of paper and doodle – I promise you – it will take you somewhere else. Even if the zen only happens for a little while – tangle yourself up in it and enjoy!
Some days I have a hankering for simple things. A glass of iced tea, a good book (the kind made with paper), and taking a moment to sit in the sun out on the front porch and throw the ball for the dog.
Pattern for me is calming because it’s based on rules and guidelines. I always seem to go back to my lovely patterns even one as simple as a grid and circles. My new site design will have these elements – I think they will suit The Feeding Edge well. I can’t wait for you to see it!
Don’t worry it’s nothing radical – just lines an circles…. like yesterday and today but a bit different. You’ll see.
I’m amazed by the wonderful people I’m meeting and their support and encouragement keeps me going.
This piece was inspired by them – their love surrounds me everyday and this week it is especially needed. As most of you know, I get an I.V. infusion of a biologic medication called Remicade to help control my Ankylosing Spondylitis. My usual schedule is every 5 weeks but due to my insurance changing in October, I’ve needed to stretch my last two infusions out to 6 weeks last time and it will be 7 weeks next Monday by the time I get my next dose so I’m struggling a bit this week. It always amazes me that the pain just rears its ugly head when the Remicade starts wearing off.
At heart (no pun intended) I’m a romantic, an idealist, and a hopeless optimist. I’d like to think that with continued awareness of AS, folks will be more open and less judgmental of people dealing with disabilities and chronic pain. We just do the best we can everyday – it may just be a bit less then most – but our hearts are open to possibilities and – apparently – Apples!
Day 88 was created with watercolor. Click on the image for a larger view – 399 Hearts and…. an Apple!
Wikipedia says that a pattern comes from the French word patron (I thought that was a tequila) and is a type or theme of recurring events or objects that repeat in a predictable manner. I’ve always been interested in creating patterns and have experimented with them in my art. I’ve been fascinated about the idea of creating patterns that are at once predictable (which is necessary) and spontaneous (which goes against the rules.) I’ve written before about my love of the hand drawn line and my need to create art that isn’t digital – I don’t think much in life repeats in a “predictable manner” which is why I love working on this concept.
I had the idea to create an apple pattern today and it took some time to work out – how big would the apples be, how would I create the repeat (there are so many ways!) and then I saw it – the way the stem and leaf could touch and make almost a pinwheel or cross in the negative space – I guess I might have seen it sooner if I had just been using photoshop but where is the life in that – the “predictable manner” to me anyway loses some of the spark of life. I’ll go with spontaneity or chaos – suits me better.
Day 60 was created with watercolor is a wet on wet technique that is of course very unpredictable 🙂
Day Eighteen (October 18th) was my first Paisley, but I did it in black & white and since then I’ve really wanted to do a companion piece in really bright colors. The pattern is almost identical but there are slight differences since I don’t digitally color my work – I create it all the old fashioned way – I sketch it out, refine the design, and transfer the design to good paper before drawing it out in ink before laying in the color – usually watercolor or gouache and occasionally in Letraset Pantone Tria markers like today. The colors are extremely vivid and are a great way to get color consistency from one area of the design to another unlike watercolor where I’m looking for the inconsistency and blended movement of the color.
I sat in on a WEGO webinar this evening. It was about health activism in chronic pain communities and it was very informative. But I’m having trouble trying to figure out where I fit in with my Art Apples. What I’m trying to do is to find a way to capture people’s interest who know nothing about AS and because they are intrigued by my endeavor – they stop and have to pay attention to what Ankylosing Spondylitis is. I think I’m trying to bring awareness but I don’t think I fit into the activism area. As time goes by – I’m sure this path I’m on will lead me where I’m supposed to go.
Day 53 was created with pen & ink and Letraset Tria Pantone markers.
My cat Bittie couldn’t stay off my lap today – and Ella my sweet Border Collie/Aussie mix was attached to my side.
I’m very excited to have my studio and plethora of supplies at hand.
I have to share with you a couple of emails I got from my Dad tonight – see below – perhaps we can all tell him he needs to blog here at The Feeding Edge! He’d be great at posts on food and travels. He’s an amazing poet too!
Email one, subject – Observations: Driving through southeastern Wisconsin this afternoon, I tasted the finest apple in existance… I’m quite sure it was a Honey Crisp. Magnificant! Pure Mana from the gods. The farm had the most incredible barn; perfectly round with a stone foundation up 6 or 8′ and a wood shingled roof. I did a u-turn and went back to photograph it and wantered into the garage to view an assortment of 15 or so varieties of orchard fresh apples. Three were recommended and I tried the Honey Crisp… lucky me! the farm has been in the same family for an incredible 171 years. Oops, they just served my salad. Eat more apples!
Email two, subject Saga Continues: So when the Ceasar arrived it was under dressed so I sent the poor bartender back to the kitchen. More thick, heavy (this is Houlahans’s but dressing like Outback) dressing was a major improvement. The salmon arrived dried up and I let the bartender insist on ordering another; much better the second time. I should really wear a t-shirt denoting “warning’ I’m the most particular patron you’ve ever served.” Bon Soir
What a day. Dad suggested I do an apple of paramecium. Check out this site on these little creatures. I thought it was a great idea (by the way – ideas welcome) but I thought maybe you might all prefer paisley.
Traveling home tomorrow – I’ll be creating day nineteen on a plane.
Day Eleven and hanging in there. We all caught a bit of a bug – I think my brother Jason got the worst of it but my niece and nephew, Parker and Beckett seemed to weather the storm no problem. Parker and I rolled out cookie dough and cut out shapes for close to two hours this afternoon and covered them with frosting and sprinkles – I think she may be another family artist in the making! Cutting out cookies with the cookie cutters made me start thinking of puzzle pieces and the colors are a nod to Parker’s pallet choices!
I’m posting a bit early for today – on my way to Maine this afternoon.
I’m running around furiously pulling together all the necessary art supplies I’ll need. I’m glad I’m going for a nice long visit because I have to check a bag anyway and vials of ink, tubes of paint and sharp scissors aren’t carry on friendly. I’ll have some really great sketch time on the plane and hopefully soon I’ll get myself a wireless tablet for quick digital and tree friendly sketching!