Sunday, March 31, 2013

Oh, What a Zentangled Web We Weave

Adding Tangles for Zentangle Class
I was delighted recently to discover a Zentangle course online being offered by My Creative Classroom. Marie Browning, CZT, author of Time to Tangle with Colors, is the instructor. I've had one and a half lessons so far and can't wait until the next one. She introduces several new tangles each lesson and is very personable and quick to communicate with her students.
Her second lesson covers shading techniques, which is the trickiest part to me. It's also the part that gives your work it's pop and depth. She gave me some advice to use better materials, which I'm trying to do with good quality watercolor paper. I have a notecard packet on rings I keep just for a handy reference. I love color and thought I'd submit some tangles on lime green. It's not as striking as on a white background, but I found out that adding a white highlight (Marie's suggestion) helps. Also, by happy accident, I discovered that adding this with a Prang white pencil gives a light pink highlight instead of a stark white one. I love the effect. I'll post later some examples.

I had also purchased a Made in the Shade: A Zentangle Workbook by Cris Letourneau, CZT. Between the two, I hope to start giving my work much more depth. I'd definitely recommend both books.

I've also registered for the Zentangle seminar next November with Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas, the founders of this wonderful art form. Right now, it seems like such a long way away, but I'm glad I registered as soon as I heard about the additional seminar they've added. It, along the the two earlier seminars in June and October of this year, are already filled. I've also never been to Rhode Island, so this will be fun.

Student work
Student work
My Zentangle Club at school has gone really well this year. I started with only 6th graders because I'm working with that grade this year. I also find that the younger students are more enthusiastic about clubs and don't question themselves or their abilities as much. They also don't have access to some of the other clubs reserved for 7th and 8th graders, so this would be special to them. The students have been very enthusiastic and have created beautiful tangles. It's also probably the quietest club on campus. Everyone concentrates so hard on their tangles, you could hear a pin drop in my classroom. I'll definitely continue the club over the next two years (yes, I'm retiring after that!). The best feedback has come from reactions from the students themselves when they talk about how much this is relieving their stress at school. It's so good to know that I can help make a difference.

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