Monday, January 30, 2012

Non-Dominant Hand

The Diva decided to throw a blast-from-the-past at us this week, and echoed a Challenge from last year. The challenge of completing a tile with our non-dominant hand. YIKES! As a kid I tried to train myself to be ambidextrous...with no success. I am a confirmed right-y. Which is fine...until the Diva askes me to tangle with my left hand! Rick and Maria encourage this, too. It's a great exercise in approaching something familiar in a different way.

So, I did it. I just sat down and put my mind (and my left hand) to it and completed my tile. I wanted to see it through so there'd be no chance of me neglecting my tile and leaving it half done.

It was difficult. But I actually enjoyed the process, though I felt awkward and frustrated with my lack of control. I'm not thrilled with my tile. But maybe I came up with a new tangle! Does anyone know of a tangle such as the one on the lower right hand side? A grid-based collection of converging mind is spinning trying to come up with a great name, just in case it doesn't have one yet.

This tile features Juke in a modified form (I didn't mean to modify it; I just goofed and ran with it), Mysteria, Meer, Crescent Moon, and the Tangle- Without-a-Name-Yet-But I'm-Working-On-It-and-Please-Let-Me-Know-If-You-Are-Aware-of-this-Tangle's-Existence-by-Another-Tangler.

If you visit, please, PLEASE do me a favor--leave a comment! It doesn't have to be on this post--I had very few comments on my last two entries last time I checked (a mere two comments anyone visiting?), so explore a bit and leave me some feedback!

Don't miss Caroline's tile, posted under "Bonus Moebius." Who's Caroline? Read the post and find out!

Off to continue trying to make the most of this Monday,
Amy in TN

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Bonus Moebius

I (Amy) completed only one tile for the Diva's Moebius Challenge this week, but I have another design to share with pride--my daughter Caroline's creation. This is her first actual contribution to the Challenge. I am so happy she asked me to post it! Caroline did this today in her Tangle-a-Day calendar (visit to learn more about Carole Ohl's wonderful calendar!), but I cropped out the rest of the calendar page since the other days on this page have not been tangled yet.
Featuring Rick's Paradox, Meer, and a combination of Bales and Knightsbridge.

Caroline is 13; she began tangling in March last year. It's one of our favorite ways to relax together and we frequently seek each other's feedback on our designs. She has designed some great tangle patterns that I look forward to sharing with you in future posts.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Moebius Logo Tile

Hello again! It's been a busy week. I'm glad to sneak into my blog for a little while to share some of my recent Tangling activity. The Diva this week served up a second challenge to heighten awareness of Moebius Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder that her son was born with. The logo for the Moebius Syndrome Foundation is a striking Moebius Strip in a tri-looped configuration, quite reminiscent of a Celtic Knot.

Before shading...
I was so eager to start on this challenge, and as I love drawing simple Celtic knots, it wasn't difficult translate the logo to my tile. I did use pencil, though (I'm not sure-handed enough to tackle that one with a pen just yet!), and had to make a few adjustments on my lines. True to Zentangle philosophy, I did not use an eraser; I just kept my initial lines very light, and hoped the stray ones would have a very minor appearance in the finished design. Once I had the logo drawn on my tile, I was very cautious in moving forward. I wanted this tile to be special! I had a hard time choosing which tangles I wanted to use, and was unable to get closure on my design until today, Saturday--the end of the challenge week. So much for staying on top of things and finishing early!

Completed Tile!
I embraced purple again (and wore my purple velveteen pants on Tuesday the 24th, which was Moebius Syndrome Awareness Day), and this time I experimented with the water-soluable properties of my Albrecht Durer Watercolour Pencils by Faber Castell. On the logo, I used dry pencil, but in the negative areas I used a thin brush and water to activate the pencil and smooth the color around. The specific colors of the pencils I used are Purple Violet (8200-136), Violet (8200-138), and Mauve (8200-249) which was the deepest purple, and did not look at all like what I consider to be mauve!

I'm sharing both the unshaded and finished versions of my tile. The tangles here include 'NZeppel with a Cockles 'n' Mussels development in the central part, Bales, a square tangleation of Pweeko, and Tipple. The design in the center is a sneak peak of a tangle I developed over Winter Break. I have yet to settle on a name for it...I'm thinking of Fleurry or Fleurish as a play on both the flower-y and the snowflake-y qualities it has. I'll try to get some step-outs drawn up soon so I can introduce it formally.

Featured Tangles: Tangleation of Cadent, Ibex, Meer, a single unit of Tripoli, Shattuck, Pweeko, Tagh, and Mooka.

I'd  also like to mention the design that now appears in the title bar at the top of my blog. Ever since I began visiting Zentangle blogs, I've always been impressed and delighted by the designs that the author/artists feature in their title bars. I've been wanting my own special design. But oh, the pressure of developing a just-right design! I also wanted to try to add my own unique feature. Years ago I carved a fish (it's a molly fish) for a group art project. It was my adventure into soft-block carving, though I'd had the supplies for a long time before I got the courage to start carving designs. I don't carve often, but every time I do, I wonder why I don't engage in that process more; it is so relaxing! Like Zentangle. So when I wanted to add some artwork to the Tanglefish title bar, I thought of my molly fish soft block carving, and decided it needed to be a part of the blog. I will probably re-do periodically, as my print did not come out perfectly, and I'd like to experiment with different tangles around my fish. And perhaps some tangles on the fish! I've thought about that, too. (Where's my white Sakura Gelly Roll?) But this is my first effort, and I thought it deserved some time up there at the top of my blog. And since you can't see the full design up there, I thought I'd show the full width here.

So...what do you think? Post me some comments! And come back to see some directions for Fleurry. Or Fleurish. Which should I name it? Any other suggestions?
~Amy in TN

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Purple Passion

The Diva has served up a Purple Haze challenge for us tanglers this week...I encourage you to participate! Why purple? In honor of Moebius Syndrome Awareness Day, which is coming up on January 24th. The Diva's youngest child, a precious baby a little over a year old now, has Moebius Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder. So, you can imagine how important this cause is to her, and--by the associative property--to all of us tanglers who get inspired by her wonderful blog (,  whether we contribute to the challenges or just look at the stunning submissions which Laura (the Diva) turns into lovely slideshows.

Here is my first Purple Haze Challenge tile. I employed Scarabou, Onamato, Sedgling, and Gneiss, and Static.

Though I tangled mostly in traditional black, I added purple with an 05 Micron (with touchups in the solid area assisted by the Pigma Brush pen, same ink as the Microns).

I also used a black Graphic 1 marker (again, same ink as in Microns) to get a bolder line when I began Sacarabou.

This was my first time drawing Scarabou (it's the curvy one that crosses through my tile). It was surprisingly harder than I anticipated, given that I usually use lots of curves and swirls and feel pretty comfortable with them.

I added tiny little dots to my Static on this tile because all the other quadrants featured circles, and Static just didn't seem to fit in. At first I was bummed that I hadn't thought of that before drawing Static...but I found a way to tie it in and make it work.

The purple midtone/shadow was added with  Albrecht Durer Watercolour Pencil, which is a Faber-Castell product. I have numerous colored pencil sets, and this one just seemed to be just right. I have a super-nice set of these--120 colors!--but the winning color is "Purple Violet." Go figure. (To get clinical, it has an ID number, too: 8200-136.)

This week I've improved: I finished this tile on Monday (first day of challenge!) and it only took me 'til Tuesday to post it!

I plan to post another by the end of the week...but I haven't done it yet, so I can't promise. Stay tuned! And plan to wear purple on January 24th!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Domino Delight

Since the first week of January I have been enjoying a different surface on which I tangle...dominoes!

This is not a new surface for me to work on...I used to embellish dominoes with PST (Polished Stone Technique), rubber stamps, decoupage, and other paper-arts techniques. But I didn't actually draw on the dominos. Having seen the beautiful tangled domino pendants of Paula Dickerhoff, a CZT in Alabama (visit her at dominoes can be seen under the "Products" tab), I decided I wanted to try it, too. I first tangled with Microns, but I was too impatient to wait for the ink to dry. I smeared my first attempt, so I wiped it clean with rubbing alcohol and searched for a few Sakura pens that I had bought a while ago that feature permanent ink: MicroPerm and IDentiPen.

Both pens work great and dried quickly on the dominos; the IDentiPen offers thicker tips (it is dual ended) while the MicroPerms offer thin-line precision comparable to the Micron.

I enjoy how the pen glides across the smooth surface. I am not sure if I will be able to find a way to add shading to my tangled dominoes, but I'm okay with that. 

Here's a peek at the fun I've had: 

And below are some dominoes that I tangled with Undine. One features constantly changing embellishment, while the other is an all-over version of Undine.
Dominoes are a quick way to sneak some tangling in first thing in the morning or just before going to sleep at night. There several things I could do with these, like turning them into pendants or magnets or tiling a surface like a picture frame or a box.

I have not yet sprayed any sealer on these. I have some Krylon spray acrylic that I am going to try when I get a chance; I'll have to provide an update with the results once I've tried it.

I'd love know if you've tangled dominoes before, or if you are now eager to try. My daughter tangled her first domino today.

Happy Tangling!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Unfinished Business, Postoned Projects, and Undine Hope...

I'm back! Did you miss me? I doubt it--there are so many luscious Zentangle blogs to enjoy, I'm sure you didn't even notice that it's been over two months since my last entry (which was only entry #2!) to this barely-established blog. I'm pretty sure you forgot about me (if you ever even knew about me), and it's okay--I understand. Who wants to follow a blogger who abandons her forum after two posts? If you did wonder if/when I'd ever post again--thanks! Here I am! If this is your first time visiting Tanglefish, welcome. I hope it won't be two months before I post again! I have lots to share, and I can truthfully say I've been composing fabulous Tanglefish entries in my mind during my extended cybersilence...they just never made it to the glowing screen due to reasons everyone can probably relate to--lots going on in my family, at work during the last few weeks before Christmas, and then, of course, the holidays themselves...not enough hours in the day to squeeze in everything I'd like to do. (As Coach Sue would say, "Blah, blah, blahbity-blah"...)

But you know who else is back? The Diva! (aka Laura Harms, CZT) And I KNOW she was missed! All over the world! She took a well-deserved break from her blog and her weekly Zentangle Challenges, but she posted a new challenge on Monday, and for the first time ever, I actually did the challenge on Monday! Well, it was probably early Tuesday morning by the time it was done, but I'm confident it was still Monday when I started (didn't look at the clock) and that even when I finished, it was still Monday somewhere in the world.

New Year, new habits that I am trying to establish. Like trying to take care of unfinished business, embracing projects that I've postponed, and also doing things early if I can. Sounds good, right? It's taken me a few days to get it scanned, but here is my first Zentangle tile featuring Laura's versatile new tangle, Undine. This tangle is so cool and so fun to experiment with! I like parts of my design...other parts, not so much. In fact I disliked one part of it so much, I actually "Bronx Cheered" it. This is the first time I have employed Bronx Cheer, the all-purpose blooper camouflage of Zentangle. Instead of adding a stem, though, I added curling stalks. Don't ask me just happened that way! Then some dots jumped in...and I finally capped my pen before I could add any other elements.

So, for better or for worse...Here it is:

In addition to 3 versions of Undine and a Bronx Cheer berry with improvised curly, Klimt-y tendrils, I included Sez, Mooka, Meer, and a tiny triangle of Rick's Paradox.

I have used Undine in another little composition, too. I will share...but that might have to wait until the weekend.