Previous month:
April 2013
Next month:
June 2013

All tangled up

I've been a little absent lately... getting totally "tangled" up in a new obsession... Zentangle! It's something I'd seen and tried about 2 years ago and never really got too far. But then I saw that they were offering a beginner class at my local scrapbook store with a CZT (certified Zentangle teacher) so, since I've been trying to get out of the house more, I signed up.

What a difference a class makes!

Beginning Zentangle Class
I learned why I wasn't successful my first time around... my impatience was making it so that I didn't take the time to approach the patterns correctly. Our teacher, Lori, taught us 8 different patterns to get us started. We did some practice tiles for those, and then we used the patterns to tangle on 2 "real" tiles.

Beginning Zentangle Class Practice Tiles
I was hooked!

I had a few books already at home from my previous foray into Zentangle, and then ordered a few more including one called One Zentangle a Day that gives you daily exercises and teaches you new patterns and ideas on how to incorporate them into tiles and ZIA (Zentangle inspired art.) I've been doing that pretty much daily since I got it and I'm really having fun. In between those exercises, I've also started doing some ZIA in my sketchbook. It's a total 180 from my attempts two years ago, and I'm loving it!

Here's the first one I did:

Zentangle Inspired Art 1 - Gwen Lafleur
Then, after going a little nuts pinning stuff to my Zentangle Pinterest boards, I decided to get a circle template to use in my designs. (Of course, the size of the piece plus the use of a template and colored pens is part of what makes this ZIA instead of a true Zentangle tile. I learned all the lingo in my little class. lol.)

Zentangle Circles 1 - Gwen Lafleur
I also decided that I'd like to do a really large-scale piece to eventually frame and hang somewhere. I thought I'd do a practice run for one of the main elements to see how it would turn out - I love it! As you can tell from my friend the sea dragon here, I'm thinking of an underwater theme. (I sketched him and then tangled inside of the sketch.)

Zentangle Leafy Sea Dragon - Gwen Lafleur
Then this last weekend I went back to circles again. I think this one is my favorite so far:

Zentangle Circles 2 - Gwen Lafleur
And that's what I've been up to in my spare time recently! I've got a few other things to share, so hopefully I'll be back to update again soon. In the meantime, it's time for my Tangle a Day :)

100% of my Heart

Just popping in to post another layout I did recently that I never got around to sharing.

100 percent of my heart
Another photo from Easter with all of the kids. I was doing a challenge to use numbers on a page and decided to try one of those pie charts. I see them everywhere but, as usual, I'm late to the trend party!

100 percent of my heart close-up
I miss my kiddos... need to make plans to get back home for another visit.

On a roll!

Just popping in with another layout. This was for another Studio Calico NSD challenge - this time to use stamps to create your own background paper. I really like how this one turned out, but the weather here has been kind of dank lately, so I didn't get good lighting on the photos (what's new?)

The pictures aren't that dark and grainy in real life. These are from Easter... and my favorite thing? Facial expressions are priceless. Especially the top one with Eraleigh and Aubrey looking askance at William while he fussed. You can really see their personalities here. Such cuties!

So-Funny-and-Adorable-CloseI'm also taking the Pop off the Page 2 class this month (more like following along really... lol) and was inspired to add some of that layering to the page. I really like this look but don't usually do it, but I think it turned out well.

And here, I tried to get a picture of how I did the stamping. I used several different sets and did lots of layering. I'll have to do this again - it was fun.

That's it for now... I'm off to play. I'm taking Julie Balzer's Gelli plate class online and just got a new brayer so I can really experiment. And tomorrow, I'm back at the scrapbook store in Westbrook to try a Zentangle class! Should be fun :D If it's going to be a rainy weekend, it might a well be a crafty one too!

Your eyes do not deceive you.

Not only two posts in a week, two posts with layouts.

I'm still doing some of the challenges from NSD at Studio Calico and last night I did one to use stencils without mists. So, I pulled out my recently acquired mono / Gelli printing skills (I use the term "skills" very loosely. lol.) and used the Studio Calico Sundrifter stencil with acrylic plates to make some cool background paper. And to go with that paper, I could only use photos from the Muse show last month.

The monoprint is the one with the blue and gold. I added some silver Inka Gold rubon waxy stuff and some red liquid pearls.

I added some brads, sequins, and metallic puffy stickers from the stash, along with a glitter and washi tape border.

This was fun. Maybe I'll actually start doing layouts again. Who knows?

Aside from that, I've been in serious Instagram withdrawl over the last 2 days. I can see my feed, but every time I try and post a photo it crashes. What's up with that? Last 2 app updates = epic fail. Anyway. Off to play a little more and finish the laundry.

April's Project Life pages

I've been using National Scrapbook Day to do a little scrapping. April's project life is done! And I even started May!

So without further ado, here are the pages for last month... plus one that I decided to add to the end of March. Not really that many, but it all evens out.

Project Life 2013 March p16

Project Life 2013 April p1 inside
Project Life 2013 April p1 inside
Project Life 2013 April p1 inside
Project Life 2013 April p1 inside
Project Life 2013 April p1 inside
Project Life 2013 April p1 inside

(I didn't realize that the "O" had fallen off before the photo until I was editing these. I found it and stuck it back in after I took pictures, but I'm too lazy to re-do it. But it's there!)
Project Life 2013 April p1 inside
I also did a layout for 2 of the challenges at Studio Calico - one to use buttons, and one was to use 5 patterned papers on the layout.

You're a Star
The lighting was bad when I took the pictures last night, but you get the idea. A few close-ups:

You're a Star close-up 1
You're a Star close-up 1
That's it for now! I'd like to do more of the challenges, but with this and the mixed media night I went to on Thursday, I may have hit my limit for now. lol. We'll see, I guess!