Monday, May 12, 2014

"It's a String Thing" #39 Tiles

This week's string line flowed with soft curves and a little loop - a graceful string line.  The tangle patterns were similar in feel and when blended together masterfully by these participants, the results became pure Zentangle® magic.  Let's take a look...

The first tile arrived from last week's honoree, Lily Moon from Hungary.  She said it was a "great choice of tangles".  With apologies for grammatical mistakes she wrote, "Your challenge made me smiles and I drew with really gladly this tile :)"

If she hand delivered this I would hug her!  First for her brave attempts at English and second, because her artwork is so very lovely.
Lily captured the gracefulness of the tangles and her shading accentuated them.  The darkened edges highlight her beautiful border.

Claudia (Beewatch) from Switzerland continues her study on Renaissance tiles ~

A wonderful study, it is. She also coined a phrase about Zentangle® that just may go down in the history books.  Remember Claudia said it and you read it here first :)  She wrote," occurred to me what a soul-pampering thing zentangling is, isn'it. I'm so grateful for this gift."  
Zentangle is a soul-pampering.  Thank you, Claudia.

Nevada's Ken Zutter writes about his entry here on his blog.

He combined the Diva's challenge with this one and worked in a marvelous Meer into Laura Harm's new tangle that you can see on her fabulous blog by clicking here.  That is very clever!

Germany's Manja Aufgebauer said that this "has again been great fun!"

She made it look like lots of fun - perfs in Mooka, darkened lines of Mak-rah-mee, Msst in the corner and Meer wrapping around.
Manja also posted her tile here on her blog.

Florida CZT SindyP 's note brought a smile.  Upon finishing her tile she said, "There! Now I can get my work done."
That sounds somewhat like having dessert before dinner!  It's a grand gathering of tangles all dancing and interwoven.  She used Msst as an aura for her other tangles - fabulous idea!  She followed with a second picture  -

She added white highlights and made the observation that the Renaissance tiles afford her an opportunity to add "color" to a tile while still considering it a pure Zentangle piece.  

Massachusetts' Sharyn Penna said that curvy lines were her "comfort zone."  She said that she "added some of Sadelle Wiltshire's Si Weed to accent the Mooka, both are sprouting out of Meer."
Now, that is fun - and incredibly interesting.   Sharyn's Meer is simply mesmerizing. 

British Columbia, Canada's Joyce Evans sent in this bluesy tile ~

Of it she wrote, "I started this one with a blue watercolour wash background then added String 036 and Mooka, Meer, Msst and Mak-rah-mee."
Her lines are smooth and even with airy space between the tangles.  It has such a soothing, serene feel.

Lucy Banta from New Jersey wrote, "I really enjoyed learning Meer and Maj-rah-mee and think they'll be very useful in future tangles."
Lucy used perfs in her Mooka too, and shaded it to add dimension.  Msst running sideways is a great idea.

Angela Carstensen from Germany opted for a monotangle.  She wrote:
Although I like all of the patterns suggested, once I had finished with the Mak-rah-mee, I realised that the tile was done. Keeping it simple this time. I am looking forward to seeing the other offerings, though. Especially for inspiration on using Mooka more loosely than it usually ends up in my pictures.
 Her words can be read repeatedly.  They are a wonderful testament to the Zentangle method.  Beginning with no expectation of what the finished tile will look like and being pleasantly surprised with the outcome.

Angela's outcome is a marvelous monotangle of Mak-rah-mee and her shading adds even more elegance.

Cathy Cusson took time from her hectic end-of-year teaching schedule to send her tile in -

She, like Lucy Banta, used Msst on its side.  She wrote, " I really never thought of using msst in any direction other that at the top of a piece like rain. I thought I would use is horizontally and actually, I sort of like it."

It is a wonderful use for the tangle.  See also how she tangled Mak-rah-mee and then added Mooka to either side.  An A+ for the teacher!

Jocelyne Pigeon-Bernier from Quebec sent this ~

Her note read:
Here's the project #39 for this week. I titled it: In the ocean. The Mak-rah-mee item reminds me of a sort of "bibitte" tentacle with lots of bubbles in the background. ;-)
I had a lot of fun drawing this tile.
Mak-rah-mee does look very sea creature-ish just like she said, especially with those long reaching arms. She used a very nice variation of  Msst by adding little bubbles instead of dots.  What fun!

CZT Anna Houston from British Columbia, Canada, happened on an unexpected sideways Msst.  She wrote -
,,,Interesting challenge this week. I drew the string, drew my tangles going outside the strings (obviously), shaded it and held it up this way and that, to see where to sign it. Signed it and then and only then did I realize Msst was going sideways... Oh well. So be it. LOL
That makes three artists discovering the horizontal happiness in Msst!
Anna's Mooka laced Mak-rah-mee is gorgeous.

Germany's Henrike Bratz said, "... It was fun and the big black space was a surprise.... I really like MakRahMee and Meer. Mooka is still difficult ."

It is fun to think of tangling that way - and so true.  She was "surprised" by the black space - a happy thought.  Henrike's details are lovely:  perfs in Mooka, graceful lines of Mak-rah-mee, elegant shading.

England's Ragged Ray presentation is a tile within a tile ~

Of it she writes -
Another great selection of tangles. Meer makes me want to stroke it, like the gills beneath a mushroom, and Msst is one of those where you think it won't add much, but then it does. And Mak-rah-mee - well, I had a wonderful time, sending loops and strings all over my page. And I wanted to catch my enthusiasm, and the tangle's own liveliness - so I made it look like it was running off the tile. If last week I made a nod to Rick, this is one for Maria, an attempt at that magical thing she does with tiles on tiles.
Thanks for encouraging the adventures!
So much to take in...the holes in Mooka, the light and dark loops of Mak-rah-mee, layers of Meer and rays of Msst - oh my!!

Also from the UK, Sal sent in this tile -

She said, "Here’s mine with, clockwise from the top right, magma, metal plate, meer, marasu, mi² and marble."
Sal added other 'M' tangle patterns and the combination is really pretty - especially with the darker Marasu through the middle.

From Spain, Annie Taylor wrote:
A lovely combination of string and tangles to get our teeth into this week....but goodness me! I couldn't get them together at all! I gave up trying to work with the string after the bottom right hand corner....but enjoyed the challenge despite 'failing' it...Mooka and Mak-rah-mee just took over!
That would not be a 'failure' but rather a 'triumph'!  Just as Henrike was surprised by her black space, Annie was surprised that Mooka and Mak-rah-mee 'took over'.  Those are the tangled moments that are meant to be savored - especially when the results are amazing.  Annie's bit of white is a true highlight.  You can also see her work here on her blog.

Joan Delony said that she "loved all four of these tangles."
She followed with a second tile -

She said that she "wanted to try a renaissance tile with this challenge....I did Msst in pencil thinking the gray would add depth to the drawing, but it didn't show up well in the photo."   Her Meer border is a first in this challenge and what a fabulous idea.  Her white Mooka pops and the black beading of Meer is lovely.

Sherrill Herron said that after watching her two young granddaughters this was "relaxation."

She added that she was "amazed how this turned out."  That is a happy thought, too.  Note how Sherrill flipped Meer, added darkened lines and sparkle to it, and overlapped it - it's magical!

Another fellow Floridian, Sue, sent this with thanks for the challenge as it provides a "place to practice and share our works."

Sue has a first here for Msst - she drew it from the middle of her tile and continued it up and down - a wonderful idea.  Her darkened spaces around Mooka turned that negative space into a focal point.

Australia's Kylie Vitnell said that this was "great fun as usual" -

She also posted this tile here on her blog.  She tangled Meer in just two corners and filled the backgound with Msst.  She also managed to have Mooka come from her Msst and mingle with Mak-rah-mee - with all of that alliteration, I must say her work is marvelous!

Annemarie sent her tile from the Netherlands - 

She added light and dark lines to Mak-rah-mee as well and they are so nicely interwoven.  Msst from the arc of Meer is wonderful.
Annemarie also posted her tile here on her blog.

From Australia, Rachel Godbee said, "...more practice needed by me for Meer & Mooka I think."

First, that is what we are all here for - the practice (don't forget the FUN) and the sharing of the process, so many thanks to Rachel for this pretty tile.  She stacked Meer and it naturally flows in peaks and valleys while Mak-rah-mee and Mooka are curvy compliments.

From South Africa, Brenda Urbanik sent her tile with Mother's Day blessings ~

Her Mak-rah-mee and Mooka are so graceful. and her shading adds a dramatic effect.  She also completed this tile -

This is a fabulous way to use Meer.  Brenda also posted her work here on her beautiful blog.

From France, Juul said that while she was "not happy with her tile" it was "fun doing, so that's what's important isn't it?"  Yes, that is what is most important.

The nature of  Mooka make it impossible to color in, but Juul found a way to add drama by alternating the rows of black and white.  Meer dripping into Msst is a wonderful idea.
She signed her note with this ~
Merci pour les gentils mots que tu as, pour tous les participants chaque semaine!
I must say that my participants make it easy to do and I am grateful for Juul's kind words - and Google translator :)

From the Netherlands, Ingrid wrote -
So much fun this week drawing Mooka. I love, love, love this tangle pattern. I had to force myself to stop, otherwise I probably still would be drawing Mooka’s at this moment.  While I was drawing, the string turned into a tree again. ( ok, sort of……) I did this before and I don’t know why, but they just pop up. Love that Zentangle way.

Yes, you have to love that "Zentangle way" - and this fabulous tile.  That Mooka is marvelous, just marvelous as are the wavy lines of Msst.  Ingrid also wrote, "Wishing you, and all the other mother’s of the world a very happy Mother’s Day."

A very warm welcome to Bobby Johnson, a "newbie tangler" from Atlanta, Georgia, who said that the challenge was "great fun."

Bobby's angular darkened spaces around accent the curves of Mooka, along with the aura are very striking.  Meer with random darkened lines and Msst layered over Mooka are wonderful touches - not to mentioned the shading!  He also posted his artwork here on his blog.

Sue Agnew from Arizona wrote about creating her tile -
Here is this week's challenge (not an understatement). Mak-rah-mee is a lovely tangle but I practically go crosseyed trying to keep track of the sides of each loop. I have problems with Mooka because of its ambiguity, so I made it less ambiguous, but then apparently I made Mak-rah-mee ambiguous by not having tail ends ... I guess it is an endless loop. Now that I look at it, I put the sparkle in the wrong place on one of the Meer sides. And the three tangles aren't playing together, just hanging around on the same tile. However, making time to draw this week was a victory in itself!
What a treat to be privy to the thought process of a talented tangler.  Sue said it best - that the biggest victory is making the time to tangle.  And while she had misgivings about Mak-rah-mee as an endless loop, that too is an idea for the rest of us to use as is Meer moving to/from a vanishing point.

Charlotte Carpentier from California is just a month away from her CZT seminar - so exciting!
She wrote -
I was experimenting with some different white pens, so lines are fuzzier than I like, but I had a lot more success with Mooka after watching your video. Now if I could only round them instead of making them pointy!

Charlotte's tangles glow in shades of white and Meer is elegant with golden accents.

Eden Hunt is back with a beautiful tile -

In her note she lamented not having enough time to draw and wanted to get back into the practice of Zentangle.  This is a great way to restart.  Eden's white space is such a nice compliment to the wonderful rows of Meer especially.  The sneak peek of Mak-rah-mee is sweet!
She also posted this tile here on her blog.

Susan Green from Maryland sent in her lovely artwork with sage advice -
"Mooka holds it's own weight. Love Mak rah mee. It's like a starting point .Tangle it first and let it guide you."

She completed her patterns on both light and dark tiles.

Tangling the free form patterns first and letting them guide you is a great tip and what an adventure it promises as Sue shows us in her work.  That is an innovative idea to use Meer as a border.

Jane Glotzer from Colorado wrote -
Happy Mother's Day to you and all the tangling moms!...
Had fun with this week's challenge--it's always so interesting to see where the string and suggested tangles will take me! I never know where I'll end up when I start. I absolutely love Shelly's Mak-rah-mee--how those ropes can twist and intertwine--what amazing things she does in her work!! I also used the fabulous Mooka, and Meer. Didn't find room for the Msst, although it's been doing a bit of that around here, and now there's supposed to be a Mother's Day snowstorm tomorrow--ahh--springtime in Colorado--75 degrees one day and snow the next!
It really did snow in Colorado in mid May - that's is amazing.  And so is Jane's work.  Her darkened background really shows the tangles off nicely.

Jane also wrote these inspirational words -
So funny, after I had mentioned the "P" (perfectionism) word in my note to you last week, Maria's posts were all about not trying to look for or work for the perfect. Art is not perfect--sometimes mistakes take you in totally new places. I wholeheartedly agree with all she said--and it's certainly not like I think my work is "perfect"--I only meant we all have our own personal standards that we try to live up to. An artist's blog I read said she likes to think of all of the "oops" in her work as outstanding opportunities presenting suddenly--how fabulous! I'm pretty pleased with my end result this week, although I can point out all that isn't to my complete satisfaction, but then, there's always next week! :)
Jane referred to Maria Thomas' posts which you can read by clicking here.
We can all use the encouragement that the acronym for OOPS provides-

Montana's Vicky Brison wrote, "..I was diligent in preserving the sting in this challenge but blew out the boundries! There is just no containing the mak ree mee ... I love this tangle and find my self using it everywhere..."
What fun to "blow out the boundries"!

From the UK, Jenna Wheatman wrote -
Here is this weeks entry. I loved this weeks challenge I have had to wait till yesterday and today to have time to play and I now feel very relaxed, my line work is much better thanks to new pens. I use to hate mooka but only because I was terrible at it. I think I have mastered it now, as I have found a nice rythme, the trick is definately keeping your lines even and that just needs practice. The other 3 tangles I have not used before. I used mooka to give the boundary for meer and mooka blends very well with mak-rah-mee. I was not too sure about msst so just added some thinner strings with curls and dots for a nit of detail.
Jenna's combinations make for another masterpiece of tanglations.  Her Mooka is plump and pretty and what a great idea to wrap Msst and have it trail off.

Melissa Lemmons sent in this light and lovely tile -

She said, "Mak-rah-mee is one of my favorite tangles as is Mooka. I love the way this came out."
Melissa filled in the background with Msst which serves as the perfect backdrop for her graceful, and nicely shaded Mak-rah-mee - very pretty!

AND now, the tile for honors this week was sent in by my fellow Floridian, 
Cheryl Anne Day Swallow...

She calls her piece "Mother and Child" and it is a Mother's Day delight.  Here are her notes -
Childs hair was created by using 1 piece of Mooka
Mothers hair was created by using Msst
Childs wrap was created by using Meer
Mothers pin was created by using Mak-rah-mee

Cheryl again wrote a poem to accompany her tile ~
Don’t make a sound, don’t make a peep
Mother and Child, are trying to sleep
They had a fun day, Zentangling with friends
They have to rest, so they can do it again.
While it is true that Zentangle, in its purest form, is non-representational, this tile tugged at my heartstrings.
Cheryl Anne's work is simple and sweet, very imaginative, and so fitting for the week.  

Congratulations Cheryl Anne!!  I have a little something coming in the mail for you.

Many thanks to the talented tanglers who sent in their artwork for the rest of us to learn from and enjoy.

Special thanks to the creative minds behind the challenge this week -

Msst - all official Zentangle® patterns
Mak-rah-mee by CZT Michele Beauchamp

Stop back tomorrow for "It's a String Thing" #40!


  1. A great selection of beautiful tiles. Thank you Adele for your kind words :) Congratulations to Cheryl. :)

  2. Wundervolle und fantastische Arbeiten!
    Beste Grüße,*Manja*

  3. What a truly stunning selection of tiles this week, Adele. You really are so very good at presenting all the work in its best light and giving us lovely positive criticism. The only thing I miss is YOUR contribution to the String Thing...aren't you ever tempted?? Axxx

    1. Yes! I often do the challenge but seldom post my tile. I don't want to influence anyone's idea of what a particular tile could look like. That said, I could add it in on Mondays. I'll consider the suggestion:) Thank you for your kind words!

  4. Thank you for hosting this challenge so gracefully. And yes, I would love to see your tiles as well!