Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Caution, curves ahead, or not!

WooHoo! School is OUT and post-planning is done (although there is always more that could be done to prep for next fall... sigh) and now I have about 10 days to clean everything that hasn't been cleaned in, well, lets just say a while and leave it at that...then we have plans! I also have 6 months worth of errands and doctor's appointments and things that are too hard to do when you are stuck in a classroom all the time. Whew! I am going to go to a friend's house on Friday to sew for a while, so that will be fun.

This week's Zentangle challenge was to use ONLY straight lines with no curves. Tough. I am all about the curvy patterns. SO this is what I came up with (thanks to LonettA for the inspiration for the white 'wash' with a black pattern on the black tile - her challenge tile from last week is awesome!).

I like that the white highlights on the Paradox make interconnecting curves... even inside a pattern that is all lines! Ha, I snuck some curves in, anyway!

I got a little creative with the Footlights pattern and squared off the parts that are usually round. The woven pattern was a make-it-up-as-you-go-along, the rest are familiar old friends. 

This one was just for fun and to let my fingers do a little curving after all those lines. Ahh! That's better! See you next week!

Friday, May 22, 2015

White on Black and other color adventures

Greetings from the sunny side of the end of the spring semester! School is out for the kids and I have only two more days of post-planning before MY summer begins... I survived the first year of teaching! And most importantly so did my family, and all of my students (some of them just barely!). A few of my students will be, shall we say, revisiting physics again sometime before graduation, but it was largely of their own doing - or NOT doing as the case may be. I did my best by them and just like in many other aspects of life, you miss 100% of the shots you don't take.

So this week's Zentangle challenge was to use white on black or tangle on something unusual...

I happened to have some black card stock and I have been getting really comfortable with my white gel pen lately doing drawings on brown paper, so I went for the white on black. I actually used a pencil to shade the white shapes a bit, and a white pencil to do some 'shadowing' as well. I chose tangles that began with A (Arc Flower), B (Beadlines), C (Chemistry), D (Drupe) and F (Frickle)  as I was in the middle issuing grades and it seemed appropriate to get all those letter together for a little party.

I received a very nice visit today from a parent of a student that I spent some time with this semester coaching through some rough patches with the material. She expressed her gratitude for my attentions and told me that I had made a difference in his attitude and enthusiasm and confidence in himself. I was so glad that she shared that with me. I have had perhaps more than my fair share of really wonderful teachers in my time and thinking that maybe someday I could be that teacher for some student was an inspiring thought as I have gone through the process of becoming a teacher. Her contention that I have had such a positive effect on this student as a first year teacher is more than I could hope for.

I wrote a couple of teacher thank you notes for my own children's teachers this week. As a way to make them special I included these little pieces on the front of each card. I am really liking drawing on the brown paper. I need to find some that color that is a little better quality than the kraft colored  card stock I am using. It is a little coarse and soaks up the ink a little more than I would like which slows down the strokes and makes them wider than I would like in places where I pause.

I have another exciting thing to share... I received in the mail today my copy of the Cloth Paper Scissors Zendoodle Workshop Summer 2015 magazine to which I contributed two technique articles. There are some really wonderful things in this magazine and I had a great time paging through it for the first time.

I also heard from the publisher of the book I was in last year that they have taken some of that artwork and put together an adult 'coloring book' that will come out in June. That should be interesting, not exactly how I intended that art to be used, but if it gives someone some pleasant, creative time then I am happy with it. I haven't seen it anywhere but on-line yet and it will be a few days before it is available I think.

Friday, May 15, 2015

I'm just glad I'm still standing...

Nothing really inspiring this week. I actually did my first trial of this week's Duo-Tangle challenge much earlier in the week before the tidal wave of papers and projects snuck up behind me and broke over my head. I haven't come up for air since then, even to post, much less to draw anything else. So here it is... my Dex/Bunzo duoTangle - and a VERY happy birthday to Laura!

My six year old daughter watched me drawing this one and asked me to show her how to draw Dex. So we did a little lesson and I helped her with the skeleton grid and she did pretty well...                 Then she wanted to do a few more so we started a piece together. Sadly she got a little frustrated and didn't finish because hers "doesn't look like yours!" - of course I keep telling her that is OK! Maybe she will try again soon and I will help her get things set up a little better next time so she feels more successful.                                       So, if I survive the last week of school I may see you again next week. First I need to make it through 28 Literature Review papers written by sophomores who were mentally 'done' with school a few days before they wrote these papers. **sigh**

My version of our learning project

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

I see Jellyfish!! And the instructions for a new pattern!

Good to be back after a few weeks hiatus! It is getting crazy here at the end of the school year. I usually ended up running pretty ragged before I was working just keeping up with the schedules of the three kids and all that happens at the end of the year. With a job that is also on the same schedule it is even nuttier!

However, I have a step-out to share and i just had to share my interpretation of the UMT "Brella" challenge from Laura Harms this week. Sadly, I had no Star Wars inspiration (since it was presented on May the 4th (be with you) day), unless "starfish" is close enough. I immediately saw the 'jellyfish' possibilities in Brella...

I also see an old quilting pattern called "Hidden Wells" in its overlapping lines if the "tops" are not all pointed in the same direction. This is the second piece with Brella done the 'standard way'.

Now if you turn all those tops so that groups of four are all pointing at the same corner you would get a pattern like this...

Do you see the resemblance? It is a really fun pattern made out of sets of strips and if you can avoid the bias stretch on the diagonal cuts you are golden.

A few weeks ago I posted a few examples of a pattern I called 'Cobbles'. I finally got around to drawing out the steps and here they are.

Let me know what you think of the new pattern... is it a 'tangle' or just a pattern? 

Have a great week!