Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Mandalas and Borders

During the past few days, I have been exploring mandalas with inspiration (once again) from one of Ludmila Blum's excellent Bunte Galerie videos. She shared a technique for creating a symmetrical design on a blank mandala using tracing paper, a thick marker, and a pencil to begin, and then the usual tools to complete the design. It seemed so simple and ingenious, I had to try it. I used bristol board, copic markers, and micron pens to make the mandala pictured here. Watch her video and give it a try:


I have also been having fun with drawing borders in my journal. For example:


I've seen tangled borders in many different books but haven't felt much interest in making any myself until this last week. I've been suffering from a slight case of creative inertia and realize that it has probably been due in part to format fatigue. I had grown a bit tired with the 3.5 x 3.5 inch format, the bijous were too small, and the opus tiles are definitely too large for me at this point.  I have also been looking for a way to integrate drawing into my very regular journal-writing practice. Borders offer a nice way to focus tightly on one tangle (or two or three) while creating something more useful and exciting than a sketchbook entry. Drawing elements of a tangle to create frame feels a little like practicing scales on the piano. My thanks to Kass Hall's lovely book Zentangle Untangled, which is offering just the right kind of inspiration and support I need just now.