Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thankgiving experimentation

Quandary, Betweed and Tipple

I wanted to see how Quandary would work as the basic structure for a tile. It has possibilities, but I'll need to experiment a little more. The Betweed invokes little pine cones, especially with the touches of green and brown, and the shading within the shapes. The shading around the edges could be more graceful.

Crescent Moon, Striping, 'Nzepple, and ??

I made this tile last night. The look of it is unusual compared to what I typically draw and was completely unintended. I did not envision this result at all. This is true of many tiles I draw since choices are spontaneous, but this one looks so different. Why is that?

The string was new for me. I wanted to experiment with putting down a small area in the center of the tile, a larger one just around it ("behind it"), and a third area larger still. The rest of the tile remained blank.

The tangles moved from the center outward, beginning with Crescent Moon, then Striping in the area behind that (which kind of looks like a smooth, striped stone), and finally random 'Nzepple in the largest area behind that. When the tile reached that stage, the periphery looked too bare, and the 'Nzepple area cut off at one edge was distracting. I decided to fill in the rest of the tile with very large Tipple but realized soon enough that the background (which now appears to be the foreground) was moving in another direction, becoming the great wormy Bunzo-esque things that emerged. I find it interesting how the small area at the bottom center appears to be behind the 'Nzepple.

Before learning to tangle, I would never have created these kinds of images because I lacked a visual language that could translate them from idea to paper.

Here is a pencil drawing I did many years ago, around 1990.  I actually minored in art as an undergraduate, though I did this drawing years after finishing my B.A. (in psychology). I have kept this drawing in a corner of my office all these years because I felt at the time (and still do) that it revealed something personally significant and beyond language. The forms seem like another language. The style of Zentangle has a different character, but it is very similar in the sense of seeming like a language.

This is the only other drawing of this type that I did in 1990. I did these two close together in time, which is fairly obvious from the similar mood each expresses. I remember wanting the horizontal strips to suggest lined paper, and the forms to suggest words written on the lines.

I feel something more fine arty about these pieces, a certain complexity that seems less decorative than Zentangle, and it appeals to me. Zentangle also appeals to me, both visually and conceptually. I especially appreciate Zentangle for what it has taught me about being brave and putting it down on paper, it being the vision, the movement, the will to express something important that cannot be spoken easily, without feeling stopped or discouraged by inner criticism.

Just one more before signing off for this evening...Of the many tiles I've drawn since starting to tangle in 2012, this one echoes some of the feeling from the 1990 drawings. What creates it? I cannot say. On the back, I wrote:

4/18/14 --Friday night -- hard semester -- lots of work -- too much winter. Is spring here yet?