Monday, July 10, 2017

Weekly Challenge #324: Guest Post - Jessica Davies


Hi everyone! The Diva is on vacation and I’m tickled pink to be her first guest blogger. My name is Jessica and I’m a CZT from Maryland. I am passionate about the color pink and enjoy just about anything glittered, sparkled or salted, thus my business name of Salted Pink Studio. :-)

Like many of you, I first met Laura through social media: this website, Instagram, Facebook.  Social media connects us and creates a virtual home for us to gather. We follow each other, applaud successes, speak up and comment, lend support when needed, and share our talents. Thus, when Laura asked for guest bloggers to help her out over the summer I was quick to raise my hand and give her the time off. That’s one of the things I love about the Zentangle community: we really do support each other. It’s a great tribe.

When it came time to choose a challenge for today’s post I knew I wanted to start with the first step in the Zentangle Method: gratitude and appreciation. Gratitude for Laura and how she’s created and curated this blog over the years, appreciation for our collective and individual talents, thankfulness for this art form and how it has shaped our experiences and paved the way for friendships (Laura, Amy, Camille, Patti, I’m talking about you!), built community and fostered a sense of family. I love this community of tanglers, online and in real life, you who are in my tribe, and am so grateful to be a part of it.



While this tangled heart demonstrates the love and connectedness, there’s also a secret to it. It stays mum on the fact that I’ve never been a big fan of heart shapes. That’s right, I don’t like heart shapes. I find they are often too cutesy, too Valentine-y, too reminiscent of middle school, too saccharin. For reals! I never liked heart shapes, y’all! Never. That all came to a screeching halt in February when I started having some pretty serious health issues stemming from, of all things, my heart.



Tangling has been a comfort, stress reliever, opportunity and therapy for me these past few months. I started tangling hearts as meditation or prayer, focusing on healing my heart with each stroke of the pen. I tangled in the hospital, in recovery, when frustrated, when I got good news or bad, when I was bored with TV or when I couldn’t sleep at night. As I tangled more, the hearts became small “thank you” presents to my medical team and friends, and a way for me to talk about the realities of living with a serious medical condition.



In true Zentangle fashion, the journey doesn’t end with just some random tiles. Nope. The tangling boosted my confidence, both in real life and as an artist, and led to experimentation with different mediums and patterns and pens. When the docs cleared me for regular activity I suddenly had new teaching gigs, my social media presence expanded, my heart grew exponentially as I was able to talk about my experiences, and now I’m guest blogging for The Diva! All from one very real and very tangled heart.



Weekly Challenge #324 "Tangled Heart"

In gratitude and appreciation for all we are and all we give to each other in this community, I invite you to create a tangled heart this week. Let’s show each other the love!

Start with a heart shape as your string and then tangle. I found some cut out hearts and traced those on my tiles for consistency, but do what works for you. Go whimsical with freehand hearts, put one on a tile or many, use color or not, go small with bijou or big with opus, tangle inside or outside the string, stick with the white tile or go black … whatever your heart calls you to do.

Here are a few examples to get your wheels turning:

 (tangled heart 4, 6, 7, 8)







Post your tile using The Diva’s linky wizard below. You can also use the hashtag #DC324 (Diva Challenge #324) and #tangledheart for your social media posts this week. Be sure to search those hashtags and double tap / love / show support for your fellow tanglers too! Trust me, they’ll be grateful.

I also invite you to follow me on social media: on the Zentangle Mosaic App I’m JessicaDaviesCZT, on Instagram you can find me as @saltedpinkstudio, and Facebook is a combo Salted Pink Studio -Jessica Davies CZT. (Someday I’ll get around to unifying all my accounts.) You can also reach me at jessica at saltedpinkstudio dot com if you’d prefer to send an email.

Thanks for hanging with me this week while The Diva takes a break, and I look forward to seeing your #tangledheart!

If you have a blog or host your images on line (like on Flickr or Picassa or Pinterest), 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 love the challenge as much as i do, please consider leaving a tip (tip jar in the side bar).  I write this blog for free and have no plans to make it a paid for service in the future.  Buy me a cup of coffee, or a new Micron pen!! Click the tip jar on the side for a monthly tip, but if you just wanna throw a few bucks my way THIS LINK will give you a one time option.    A very big thank you to those who have kept me in hot cups of joe. ;)


35 comments:

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  2. Wow! Your hearts are simply divine. Great challenge and I'm so glad Zentangle helped you through your real life challenge.

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  3. Well Jessica, like you I don't like hearts. But, after reading your story I decided to join your challenge. Thanks for your work and sharing. Your tiles are gorgeous!!!

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    1. For me, it helped to find a shape of heart that I liked. The second photo of the cut-out heart ... I used that as a string for almost all the others. It was easier not having to draw a freehand heart every time. Give it a whirl and let me know how it goes! And thanks for joining the challenge!

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  4. So happy you are doing this post Jessica! I'm hoping your heart challenges are on the mend. Blessings to you! Your zentangle hearts are beautiful and inspiring! And your words touch on how I feel about Zentangle as well! šŸ˜Š

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    1. Thanks so much, Deanne. I'm super thrilled to be doing this post too! :-) Keep enjoying the Zentangle love!!

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  5. Thanks for stepping in for Laura, Jessica. I'm not too fond of hearts either, but I will be happy to work on one, first to thank Laura for all she does, and second to wish you well with your heart issues. Love the inspirational ideas!

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    1. Thank YOU for reading and joining the challenge, Jean! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with. <3

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  6. Thanks for a great guest post from the heart! I enjoyed the heart challenge!

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    1. Thanks, Britt. Your heart outlined in green is lovely!

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  7. Great challenge Jessica. I don't do hearts all that often, but I like to do them freehand. They end up a bit wonky, but that's how I am. :-D This was fun. Thank you for doing the challenge this week. And a big thanks to Laura for all her work and getting great tanglers to fill in for her.

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    1. Wonky hearts are fantastic! I really enjoyed the bright colors in yours too. Thanks for participating in the challenge this week, Melena.

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  8. I enjoyed this challenge more than I thought I should! I am not using hearts regularely, more seldom than sometimes. I don´t use pink very often either. But your hearts are inspiring and now I think I will do some more! :)

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  9. So glad you enjoyed it, Anita! These challenges are perfect opportunities to stretch out of our creative ruts. So reach for that pink, tangle more hearts, go back to black and white, whatever ... just keep tangling! :-)

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  10. Jessica, after reviewing your heart work, I would like to say they are just stunning. Everyone of them. Are you on Mosaic? I would like to see more of your work. I want to wish you well with your medical problems and my wife and I sincerely hope you have fully recovered and see no more of that kind of heart problem. But do continue to do hearts in your art work. I really feel like our group is a family as much as you do.

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    1. Hi Duane. Thanks so much for the compliment! Yes, I'm on Mosaic as JessicaDaviesCZT. I look forward to seeing you there!

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  11. Wow Jessica. For one thing thank you for being there this week. 2 I just love the hearts you did. So inspiring. I have just started this year but I can see progress and with time practice and patience I hope mine will look as well done as yours.

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    1. Hi Tara. Thank you for welcoming me this week while our Diva takes a break! Keep tangling!

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  12. Such a beautiful story. Thank you for your resilience and courage. Many blessings to you for even more teaching opportunities in your future. :)

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  13. Jessica, all your hearts are exquisitely tangled. Thank you for sharing your heartfelt story.

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    1. Thank you so much, Shelly! I'm glad you enjoyed the story and the accompanying tiles. It's been a true honor filling in for the Diva this week. :)

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  14. Hi Jessica! Thanks so much for sharing your story and your stunning hearts. I'm not the "hearts and flowers" type and I'm always vexed by heart inspired challenges but this was a joy to do;-) Thanks for stepping in with a great challenge!

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    1. As a fellow not-a-hearts-and-flowers person, I hear ya sister! Until recently they've been totally vexing and just blah. When you get away from the cutesy crud they seem to flow better, though. And you've got the right idea by thinking of the heart as your string. Good going! <3

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  15. Jess, hi, I am also one of those anti-heartists... In my opinion hearts as a subject are overused. If you don't know what to do, do hearts and people get all softy. But, as everyone else, in your 'tangled heart' case I see the point and hence I participated. It amazes me that with all the medical stress you had you could still draw such magnificent (he)artwork. Hats off for you, Jess, and I wish you a long and happy, tangle-crazy life.

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    1. Hi Susie! Thanks so much for your compliments and heartfelt words. And thanks for overcoming the anti-heart sentiment and participating in this week's challenge. :-)

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  16. What a beautiful guest post and beautiful hearts as well. I wish you lots of good health and happy tangling!

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  18. I AM SO EXCITED TO SEE MY ZENTANGLE SISTA! ..for those of you who don't know Jess personally, I got to sit right next to her when I became a CZT - I knew when I surveyed the classroom for a place to sit that she would be a kindred spirit. (esp. with PNK hair!) :) Your work always inspires me - I ADORE these hearts - I have shared them with my students to show off how a pop of color can make things shine! :) SOOO good to see you here!

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    1. CAMILLE!!!!!! You are such a dear, fun friend! Thanks for the encouragement and constant inspiration. Even though we're on opposite sides of the country, I feel your creativity and energy regularly. Love you bunches!
      And hey, just wait 'til next Monday. ;-)

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tangle me some zen, baby!!