Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Increasing Creativity and Productivity with Sketchbooks

For the longest time I thought that sketchbooks were something sacred that needed to be beautiful from beginning to end.  Then I went for years having several sketchbooks — one for continuous line quilting patterns, one for play, one for geometric and/or piecing designs, and one I carried with me to museums to sketch and jot notes in… and that was a mess.

Many artists use just one sketchbook at a time and work from front to back until it is filled — then they move on to the next sketchbook.  This is more the idea I am going with now, except I keep two — one is for Zentangle and the other is for everything else.

I keep my tangles separate because these I actively use as a reference. Referring to them for tangles as I work, either in a book or on a tile, etc. 

The other sketchbook is for anything else. If I am trying to figure out something, I pull out that sketchbook and work there. If there is a tangle I am unsure about, I work there. If I am jotting notes about an artist or a quote, that is where I put it. It is far less messy; and because it is in one place, I can find things easier than when I had five sketchbooks going at once.

That’s the beauty of being an artist, I guess.  Finding your pattern in the chaos, where you fit and can express your vision the best.  I want to help get you to a place that increases your focus and creativity, helping you create some of your best work.  Anything is possible one stroke at a time, right?  Until next time... Get tangled!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

What a bit of shading can do

How often do you think things are boring? Visually, something isn’t interesting, doesn’t captivate your attention. An event fails to wow? You can’t relate to what a speaker is saying because there is too much technical jargon and not enough life…

Drawings can be like that. Great contrasts of values, black and white that pop from a distance yet don’t hold the eye longer than the few seconds it takes to disseminate the image. One way I have seen that adds interest to hold the viewer is shading to add depth. A tile tangled with good value contrast can be nice. That same tile with shading can be truly stunning.

If we can add interest to a tile with a little graphite — what can we add to life with a little grey by way of inclusion, acceptance, breathing…?