Monday, February 25, 2013

Tangling for ArtOMat

“You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
― Maya Angelou

Zentangles on blocks in a row

Recently, I discovered a new way to open up channels to my creative process by learning how to Zentangle.  Do you know about Zentangle?  It is a doodling type process where a structured pattern is created using pencils and pens.  If the spirit moves you,  you can throw other mediums into the mix.  It's an intuitive activity where the general rule of thumb is little to no erasing in the course of creating the work.   Basically, it's a go with the flow, at least that is how I approach it.

Adrift - Digital Zentangle

Tangle in Blue - pencil, pen, watercolor
Zentangles are usually no larger then 3.5 x 2.5 the same size as an artist trading card.  The size makes it ideal for art on small wood blocks; give or take an inch.

The idea to create Zentangles for ArtOMat didn't come to me right away.  As I was exploring the technique, my daughter said to me, "Mom, those designs would look great on the art blocks!"  Walla, the inspiration was born.

The Tangle in Blue is one that is on the next batch of art blocks I'm currently preparing for shipment.  I used pencils, pens and watercolor to create it.

What I love about Zentangles is the liberating feeling I get by just sitting down and letting the lines, shapes, and circles "tell me" what it wants to be.  It's a funny way of putting it but I think its a thing many artists experience when they begin a work.   So essentially, you can say, I'm hooked  because the lack of conformity is a language I understand very well.  No boundaries - just go for it  The one exception is that repeat patterns work very well in Zentangles but that is an exception I can live with and welcome, in fact.

I just about have all the new work completed for ArtOMat.  Half the artwork has been mounted on the blocks.  Some of the recent work is shown in the image at the top of this blog post.  It's always an exciting time when new work is shipped out.  I never know where the blocks will vend.  I learned recently, that the previous batch was vending at The Cosmopolitan in Vegas - super exciting!  It's thrilling to share my work.  It feels down right good because we artists that contribute don't do it for the money.  It's more like random acts of kindness.  We do it to share our work and hopefully in the process add a ray of sunlight in a person's day.

Pebble Garden Zentangle, pencil, pen, watercolor


  1. I love your tangles!!!I'm an art-o-mat artist also, and I have taken a couple of zentangle workshops - I'm going on a retreat in the mountains in April - can't wait. They all look wonderful for the Art=0=Mat - great idea!!!!

  2. Vickie, thanks for sharing your thoughts and lovely comments. It's always nice to meet other artists that contribute to ArtoMat.

    I haven't done the workshops. I borrowed some books on Zentangles from the library. I discovered it by accident and can't say exactly how or where. Probably as I was surfing around looking for inspiration and ideas. Yeah, my daughter thought the tangles would work well on the blocks and I must say, I'm pleased with the new batch.

    Let me know when you create some tangles. I would love to see it.

    Thanks again! :)


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