Saturday, February 6, 2016


There is a fun new tangle from Zentangle and it's the challenge from the Diva this week. You can find step-outs for Molygon on the DivaCZT's blog here. The how-to was available to CZTs for about a month before it was shared publicly, so I had done a few tiles before the Diva issued her challenge.
Tangles: Black Pearlz, Molygon, Tipple, Tripoli
The shapes of Molygon struck me as being somewhat feather-like, so I tried doing a feathery Molygon tile. I needed to separate off a bit of one end to accommodate the quill part of the feather.
Tangles: Molygon, Pearlz, Tipple
The shapes are also reminiscent of bananas. :)
Tangles: Beadlines, Crescent Moon, Molygon, Pearlz
And one more, for good measure. I used gray ink in a few places.
Tangles: Crescent Moon, Molygon, Parabola, Pearlz, Sindoo

Monday, January 18, 2016

Amulets with gems

Here are more of those gorgeous gems that some folks have been doing lately! I started one on a round tile and it seemed rather magical, so I've decided to call them amulets.

The first was on a tan, pre-strung, zendala tile. Doing the gems on non-white paper is a little tricky because you don't have the white background to give translucence. To counteract that, I began with some white pencil in the gem areas.
4.5" diameter; pen and ink, brush pens, colored pencil on paper
Tangles: Emingle, Pearlz, Snaylz, Tipple and hints of Parabola

I tried another, again on a pre-strung Renaissance tile. This time I limited the 'gems' to red and blue. I also added a little copper foil in the 'suns' at the outer edge, but it's hard to see here.
4.5" diameter; pen and ink, brush pens, colored pencil on paper
Tangles: Black Pearlz, Cubine, Pearlz, Tipple
I was really pleased with a turquoise stone I'd drawn on an ATC recently and wanted to try that again.
4.5" diameter; pen and ink, brush pens, colored pencil on paper
Tangles: Finery, Floo, Pearlz, Tipple, and hints of Crescent Moon

Again on white. I wanted to attempt opals. Something's not quite right about them, but I'm not unhappy for my first go at it. I think there may be too much color.
4.5" diameter; pen and ink, brush pens, colored pencil on paper
Tangles: Tipple and Zewm

Here's another one on white paper, the same pre-strung tile as the first one here, this time with all the colors that make the translucence wonderful.
4.5" diameter; pen and ink, brush pens, colored pencil on paper
Tangles: Beadlines, Black Pearlz, Pearlz, Snaylz, Tipple

I expect I'll be doing more of these. They're just too much fun!

For two good tutorials about drawing these gems check the links on my recent post about gem ATCs.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

"Rope" string idea

Tangles: Amaze, Finery, Zander plus 'sparkle'
I've been using this string idea lately and thought others might be interested in trying it. Here's the how-to:
You can make only a few spaces to fill, or keep your lines close together and make several thinner spaces, in which case you may like to use 'border' tangles.
You can keep it quite simple.
Tangles: Beadlines, Black Pearlz, Tipple
Or go to town with tangles!
Tangles: Betweed, Crusade, Paradox, Printemps, Shattuck, Unyun
Below, I filled the corners and the adjacent 'rope' parts with Paradox, leaving just two initial diagonal sections for something else.
Tangles: Black Pearlz, Ing (curvy), Paradox, Pearlz
And, of course - since there is no pre-determined up or down in zentangle - you can decide to lay it on its side!
Tangles: Crescent Moon, Gottago (with pearlz), Ing,
'Nzeppel, Prestwood variation, Shing

Check out my "flying birds" string idea here.
Check out my two-pencil string idea here and here, and a Diva challenge here.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Gems ATC swap

You may have seen some beautiful, colorful gems making the rounds on various Facebook zentangle sites. They're gorgeous, fun, and somewhat addicting!

So many of the zentangle patterns are a delightful way to present and surround these vibrantly colored jewels. Lisa Fedele, another CZT, has organized an artist trading card swap of gems plus zentangle.

Here are my six cards for swapping, plus an extra - in thanks - for the intrepid organizer.

I'm quite pleased with the turquoise in the middle card, and less happy with my attempt to add a fossilized fly to the amber in the top one!

The color is achieved with water-soluable pencils, color pencils, and white ink. In some of the small pearl areas I used "Liquid Pearls" - a fun addition. I also glazed all the black backgrounds so they shine a bit.

Interested in trying this yourself? Kae Yoshino seems to have originated this craze. You can read her tutorial about creating these gems here. Eni Oken, another talented artist also has a gem tutorial here. Have fun! And don't say I didn't warn you! ;)

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Surprise, surprise!

I often begin work with a random colored or gray wash, let it dry, and then look at it various ways trying to see what's in there. Sometimes I do a wash that could develop into a house or a tree, other times I leave it more open. That's when the surprises come!

Here are some recent "Oh, that's what it is!" pieces.
"Koi Pond"
(c) 2015 Margaret Bremner
3.5" square zentangle tile

Acrylic wash, colored ink, colored pencils
Tangles: Floo, Seljuk, Tipple
"Distant Dragon"
(c) 2015 Margaret Bremner
3.5" square zentangle tile

Acrylic wash, colored ink, colored pencils
Tangles: Chebucto, Croon, Dex, Flukes, Narwal,
'Nzeppel, Romanancy, Tagh
"Among the Ruins"
(c) 2015 Margaret Bremner
3.5" square zentangle tile
Acrylic wash, colored ink, colored pencils
Tangles: Crescent Moon, Emingle, Featherfall, Narwal,'Nzeppel
(c) 2015 Margaret Bremner
3.5" square zentangle tile
Acrylic wash, black and colored ink, colored pencils
Tangles: Diva Dance, Knightsbridge, Pearlz, Seljuk
These will be mounted on canvas, painted around, and able to hang on a wall.

Monday, December 7, 2015

How "Morning on the Silk Road" came to be

"Morning on the Silk Road" is approximately 8"x10" on some sort of smooth mat board. It began with an acrylic wash in pink and yellow, giving me oranges, too. The early drawing was in oranges, browns and reds: all warm colors.

I didn't take a photo of the wash without any ink drawing, but I think you get a good idea of what I started with from the first picture. 

Just before I took this photo, my brain had an argument with itself:
A - There's a little tree, right there. 
B - Yes. Make the trunk simple. 
A - Okay, good idea. And the top should be green. 
B - WHAT?!?! Are you nuts!? 
A - No, green is good. It will be different. 
B - Right. It will stick out like a sore thumb. 
A - It will be a highlight, a point of interest. Green. 
B - You're crazy. Go ahead. Mess it up. 
A - Going green!!! 
B - Hunh. That's not bad. 
A - It's great!! YAAAY!!

Below,  the foreground is done. I found a tiny moon in the upper left. I used the bump on the right-hand tower to make some interesting stone features. I realized that the bright yellow was a focal point and I think that's when the title came to me. I often forget to leave space for the title and signature and have to squeeze them in somewhere, but I remembered this time! I added a bit of green in the three trees in the background.

Some folks thought it was finished at this point, but I was quite bothered by the division in the wash around the upper left corner and across the top. I had to do something about that.

I tangled across the top so that odd band doesn't show and it now looks to me as if I'm looking out of a fancy tent. I realized that I didn't like the green trees in the background and that I wanted the little green tree to be the only green, so I took the green out of the trio of trees. I added a bit of pink to the sky on the right to divide the white area. The shadows are blended and more subtle.

You can see, around the edges, where I've tested colors. :)

I like how the image is contained by the border (almost), and how the path and the border lead the eye around the picture. I also like how the eye bounces between the little green tree and the bright sunlit sky and tower in the background.

And there it is, pretty much finished. Now for a frame.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Trees, trees, trees!

Dilip Patel was the first CZT in India, although he's no longer the only one. He is the guest challenger this week at the Diva's challenge and he's asked us all to use zentangle to depict trees.

Here's my first offering, "Blue Spruce". It needed to remain fairly simple, always a challenge for me!
Tangles: Featherfall, and Tidings
I have several small frames, with mats already cut, and I decided I should use them (duh), so I've been doing some small work to fit. These are slightly smaller than tile-size.
"Gentle Breeze"
Tangles: Aquafleur, Floo, Knase, Pearlz,
Printemps plus Auras
I was looking at someone else's response to this tree challenge and she said something about 'monotangle'. What? I decided I'd better go back and read the directions. In true response to this challenge - a monotangle tree - here is a Bouclé tree, leaves and trunk, no background.