Zentangles are fun doodles

Zentangles are doodles. If you have not discovered this drawing fad just google them. That said I think they are fun. It is relaxing create patterns and to generate ideas for stitching.

I found this Video which I thought readers would enjoy.

I have become fascinated with these little doodles with intent and the primitive patterns they create. Embroiderers only have to look at ethnic embroidery around the globe to see people of all races embrace pattern and pattern making.

Zentangle is a term coined and marketed by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas.  As you can see the key idea behind it is doodling with the intention of building areas of pattern. If you want to read more about it you can check out their blog called Blog Zentangle

Or this video

I found this resource site which covers how to create a zentangle the regular way with pen and paper. Anyway check them out if you have not done so before and try doing one and then think about how you might stitch it!

The Advantages of keeping a Visual Journal

screenshot of websiteNo matter what you call them art journals, sketchbooks, visual diaries or my favourite studio journals, and no matter who you are , artist, fiber artist, web designer, etc the reason a designer will keep one is similar.

Ben Mounsey in his Core art skills series sets out to convince digital artists and designers that there is still a place for a paper based sketching and developing a recording practice. In Part 2, The Sketchbook, Ben offers advice on what to focus on, when you are out and about.

Much of what Ben says in Core Art Skills: Part 2, The Sketchbook can be applied to textile practitioners. Make yourself a cuppa and take 5 to improve your skills and pop over to read his article

Work in Progress Wednesday: New Challenges

Work in progress report is due so once again here I am being accountable to myself. As regular readers know this year I am participating in the Crazy Quilt Journal Project 2012.  Last month I really did wonder if I was going to find the time to do a block but I managed to work one in time and shared a photo of it here on the blog.

I decided I would not leave it so late again! This week I managed to piece a block for March. It’s Autumn in Australia hence the colours. So here is the block ready for embroidery and embellishment.

Crazy quilt block un embellished

The other thing I wanted to do this year was to regain my drawing skills. The year to date has been so busy that once again I have not found time for drawing. Over the years I have done less and less drawing as a busy life got in the way. I rough out ideas in my studio journal and work with photoshop and illustrator on the computer but I have not been able to maintain a habit of pencil to paper in a process of honest observation.  At the start of this year I thought I would try and set aside time to do so and reclaim some sort of skill level in drawing.

Well, it is March and I constantly review my progress and I did not like how this particular goal was progressing. I realised that unless I took on a simple challenge and made myself publicly accountable I was not going to get around to polishing those very rusty skills! So I decided to take on the EDM challenge (Every day Matters drawing  challenge)

Every Day Matters was a weekly drawing challenge started by Danny Gregory on his blog of the same name, but over the years it has grown to a yahoo group, a facebook group and flickr group. There is a list of little drawing challenges. The first is “Draw a shoe”. I kept it simple and that is what I did!

EDM drawing challenge of a shoe

The challenge is described as

A weekly opportunity to draw a particular object or type of object from your “everyday” life. Some past challenge topics have included one’s shoe, desk lamp, bed, mug or cup, purse or backpack, favorite toy or well-loved object and others.  Some people find that having the discipline of a weekly “assignment” encourages them to make drawing more a part of their everyday lives. Doing it in the company of like-minded friends just adds to the pleasure and motivation. Also, it’s fascinating to see the world through each others’ eyes. It takes the concept of “pen pals” to a whole new level. There is no voting, no ‘winners’ or ‘losers.’  This is about personal enjoyment.

The challenge has been going for a few years so the list is now quite long. For those who worry about taking on stitching challenge a few weeks late I have started this drawing challenge a few years late! The list of items to draw is well over the 320 mark! To be honest I will be happy if I draw half of them as for me the aim is to regain the habit of drawing.

Drawing lets you see and observe the world in a particular way but drawing is like playing a musical instrument if you do not do it regularly the skill become very rusty indeed. So now I have to go through the discomfort of drawing and being intensely annoyed at myself for letting the skill slip over the years. I try to be kind to myself and say that in that time I have developed a whole new set of digital skills but I want both! Hopefully some readers will enjoy seeing this process.