Monday, June 17, 2013

Weekly Challenge #123

Happy Monday everyone!
First of all, as always - a few house keeping items:
  • If you're NEW here (and there've been a lot of new additions to the party!) I'm working on creating some tutorials to help you out.  You can click on the links above or:  See "Getting Started"  and "Tutorials
  • To see all the past weekly challenges - click the tabs above
  • Please grab the button for the Weekly Challenge (on the right  sidebar) to display on your blogs! share the fun!
  • The limit of submissions to the slideshow is TWO, but please feel free to post as many as you like to your blogs.  I will take the first two presented to each challenge. 
  • I know that some of you have told me that the paypal button does not work, and some of you have had no trouble, i'm not sure why it's inconsistent, i've redone the code a few times... If all else fails you can donate to my paypal address which is madam_diva ( a t ) yahoo ( d o t ) com - also to those people who donated this week... THANK YOU SO MUCH.

Happy Monday!!
This week i've managed to hurt my neck some how.  It hasn't been fun.  My chiropractor is on mat leave, and i haven't managed to get out to find a new one... plus, i'm kinda sketchy about neck adjustments, so i want to make sure i trust the person moving those bones around...  So i spent a large portion of this week grumpy and in pain.  Some angles are more difficult than others, like, say - looking down at a Zentangle tile. :( sad face.

This weekend B-rad went off to celebrate Fathers' Day with his Dad and his brothers for their annual Boys Only fishing trip.  He left bright and early Thursday morning.  Me and the little boys took this opportunity to go on a road trip to Calgary, AB.  Artoo had an appointment in Calgary on Friday morning, so my parents came along to make a weekend out of it. We had a lot of fun - and went to the Zoo even though it rained.  Chewie loved the Zoo.  He loved seeing the elephants and the hippos and the giraffe, but both boys loved the Penguins.  We finally got home around 9:30 on Sunday night - exhausted, and anxious to sleep in our own beds so i haven't downloaded the pictures off my phone yet.

This week we are lucky to have CZT Maria Vennekens as a guest blogger!  We attended the same CZT training course back in 2010, and she has been a regular contributor to the challenge.  This post - it's a doozy, i'm not going to lie.  I'll be very interested to see your contributions and your thoughts on the process.  I have my own thoughts that i'll share later after sitting with this one for a bit.

Weekly Challenge #123: "Guest Post: Is it a Zentangle?"
As a CZT I often get the same question: How creative is the Zentangle method when everyone works with the same given patterns? The answer to that question is not so difficult.

When starting with the Zentangle method you do not need creativity.

In a beginners class your CZT will give you a lot of information about the Zentangle method and also will teach you some patterns. You copy them and have a nice personal piece of work.

Because everyone has a personal way of mark making the Zentangles turn out totally different,  even in the first lesson.

Later your creativity makes you play with the patterns.
You alter them, combine them in different ways, or you invent and deconstruct new patterns.
This only is possible trough the creativity that has been developed from the moment you start putting your pen to paper (again).

The answer to another question I got lately is not so obvious;  Zentangle plays with patterns but can you do a Zentangle without using existing patterns or tangeleations* of them? My first thought was: of course I can. But when I sat down and tried, I found this is quite a challenge.
before shading

after shading

I did a tile and a zendala and found myself thinking and planning what, where and how I would draw.

I really missed the Zen part of Zentangle; the repeating strokes that slowly built the pattern without the need of thinking and planning. I think that ‘Zen’ part is essential to the Zentangle method. So, did I make a Zentangle?

The challenge for this week is: can you do a Zentangle without  using existing patterns or tangeleations* of them? And what are your experiences while doing so?


*patterns and tangeleations as far as you know

Maria Vennekens is a CZT that lives in the Netherlands. Half of the week she works as a primary school teacher. The rest of her time is divided over her husband, house and garden and  growing bonsai trees. Besides that she teaches calligraphy and Zentangle in her own studio and elsewhere in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. She also likes walking, reading and exploring cultures on other continents than Europe. The only wish she has,  is to have more hours in a day!
You can get in touch with her trough  or take a look at her website (most in Dutch)
If you have a blog, add the site-specific URL where your tile is posted to the linkey machine below! Don't forget to link back here so that others can join in the fun! (if you don't know how to find this, you can see my half assed tutorial here)

Also,  please feel free to come back often and visit the links of those people on the linkey machine - don't forget to leave a comment or feedback, everyone loves feedback. ;)

If you don't have a blog but still want to participate, you can email your tile to me and i will post it here. (please email to weeklychallenge(at)mail(dot)com)I just ask that you put in the subject line:  Challenge # ________

The deadline for each weekly challenge is Saturday night so that i can round everyone up by Sunday. What this means is that i will stop adding tiles to the slideshow on Sunday. You're still more than welcome to do the challenges and add your name to the linkey machine.
I will be more diligent with the linkey machine - by editing out the ones that don't work, the doubles, the links that lead to nowhere, the links that go just to blog home pages (this is why we need those site specific urls), and the spam. And there is some spam.  PLEASE do not put your *home* page in the linkey machine... please? for me??


  1. I totally agree with your boys, Laura! Penguins are the coolest animals ever. ;o)

    Right now I'm not quite sure what to make out of this challenge so I guess I have to sit down, read it again and think about it. ^^

  2. I really don't get it zentangle and doodling are a lot a like before I had ever heard of zentangle I was doodling and some are very much the same so with all this said.....I am confused on what to do

  3. Sounds like a real challenge! Will have to perform some mental gymnastics to come up with patterns that aren't already in use.

  4. What a challenge it was to try and convince myself that there is a pattern not already stepped out for us. I am sure I will find out that there are others that have done exactly what I did, instead of looking at patterns and eliminating them I just looked at patterns, so I am sorry if I step on someones toes, it is not intentional! Maria thanks for the challenge and Laura, I can't wait to see what you come up with! I am sorry you are hurting!

  5. I am also not convinced on this week's challenge and whether I have tackled it in the right way. Luckily I am obsessive about patterns when out and about and take lots of photos. I used three of those for my piece. Hope your neck gets sorted soon Laura.

  6. This is my first challenge so we'll see how this goes! I am excited for the challenge.

  7. Hope I was on the right track, sure did make me think!! Thanks

  8. I was momentarily stressed about this challenge when I first read it, but I ended up having a blast! I can't believe I created a hockey-inspired ZIA. :-) Go Bruins!

  9. I don't think I got this one right, but I gave it a try and it has taught me that I need to be looking at more things around me new patterns.

  10. Interesting challenge. I guess it poses another question for me and that is what have we gained no matter what the answer to the question is.

  11. This is a tall order, since there is nothing new under the sun! How can I check if a pattern already exists? Right in one! I can't, so if I do this challenge it will be a case of hope joining faith!
    I do hope you will be charitable, Laura!!!!!

  12. So now who is going to sit down, make all the instruction cards and submit them to the big directory in the sky? Some of these new creations are too good to let disappear. We need to preserve and share them.

  13. A tricky challenge! I doubt I made it. Being new to tangling I only got swept up in the magic of relaxing and kept forgetting to watch out NOT to use the official patterns, all the more so that I don't know them all by far, I only have tried a dozen so far. Thanks for the challenge!


tangle me some zen, baby!!