Category Archives: Art & Talent

The Times They Are A Changin’ or Living Life on the Fly

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Both the titles above are apropos to my life as I’ve been involved in quite a number of things since my last post. So let me start with the fact that there’s been a date change for the “ZenXpressions” showcase (see more below).

I’ve been busy teaching and taking classes and have put up pictures in the gallery for you to look at.

When I returned from my cruise I had scheduled a Zentangle workshop at Botanica.  We ended up with 34 students and it was a great learning experience for my and the students.  One student in particular came with some of her work (she had started creating about a month prior to the class) and her talent was remarkable! There were lots of talented people in the class but her’s in particular was extraordinary.  I encouraged her to look into becoming a Certified Zentangle Teacher.

Apple Collage

Apple Collage

As a teacher, I realize that I need to stretch my own abilities past what I already know.  Elizabeth St. Hilaire Nelson was teaching a paper paintings collage workshop in Lincoln, Nebraska, which I took advantage of since it was only four hours from my home.  It was three glorious days of making our own printed papers and learning her technique for creating paper paintings.  From afar they appear to be impressionistic, but when you get up close and personal you realize that they are made of painted papers. How fun is that?  All of the students who were there did a fantastic job…we had people from all walks of life, from fabric artists to surgeons.  The night before we left, my roomie and I held a “soiree” (I really like that word, I’m going to start using it instead of party when I have people over…reminiscent of a by-gone era)!   Everyone brought something to add to our stash and we had a great time talking art, techniques and learning about each other.  My piece is shown to the left.  For my first try I was pretty pleased, more so with the background pieces than the apple and foreground.  My favorite part of the project was painting the papers; I need more practice on my collage skills.

OF NOTE… there has been a change of date for the “ZenXpressions: A Showcase of Zentangle Inspired Art.  It will now be held Final Friday, September 25, 2015.  The only thing that has changed is the date, SO DON’T PANIC!!  Those of you who have already registered, I will contact you directly about this.  For the rest of you, it gives you time to continue creating your Zentangle inspired art pieces to show.

WHAT I WANT YOU TO UNDERSTAND:  This show is not just for those of you who think you are “qualified”.  This show is to share Zentangle inspired art with the City of Wichita.  Many times the voice in our head tells us that our work isn’t “good enough” or “I’m not as talented as so and so”, or “I don’t have enough of a creative mind to share what I’ve done.”  Well, let me tell you, do not to listen to that negative part of your brain!!

JUST DO IT! You would not believe how creating a small sketch, coloring in a coloring book, trying your hand at a painting, scribbling in a notebook, or making something out of twistee ties helps to fuel your creative brain and fuel your life to help you with the choices you make.  So start making your Zentangle inspired art pieces, register for the show and begin to find your artist within!!

Click here for all the info you need!  Fun, food, drink, and prizes will all be part of the show…so join us and also help us get the word out by inviting to the event (here’s the Facebook invite).

Hula Hannah

Hula Hannah

In my February 4, 2015, post I mentioned that I am on the Creatively Fit journey with my own artist within.  I’m almost finished with my certification and want to share part of that journey with you.  In my earlier post my “aha” moment was to “be in the moment” — a revelation to me.  I am so enjoying just painting and playing now, and watching as my artist within becomes stronger with each passing day.  My perspective on things has changed and my imagination has begun to become a bit more imaginative.  I admit I still have a lot to learn. Whitney Freya’s book, “the artist within – A Guide to Becoming Creatively Fit” is a wonderful book, full of insight, storytelling, creative exercises and principles. Going through her program and book has been amazing and I learn something new each day!  This year I’ve created more things than I think I’ve done in the last 20 years!  Even down to the silly little twistee tie hula lady (one of the exercises – pull out stuff from a junk draw and see what you can make).  Actually, I think she’s my favorite.  I’ve named her Hula Hannah and she sits in my dining area to remind myself to be silly and see what I can conjure up!  Such a simple little thing, but again such a revelation.

Links are included throughout this post if you want to know more, but suffice to say that I can now start sharing this artFULL and colorFULL journey with you!!  The first step will be to offer what is commonly called “Paint and Sip” classes.  These are painting classes, which I’m calling Viva Art & Vino, that last around two hours or so — you bring your own bottle of wine, a friend or two or three, and have a fun evening of painting, socializing, and embracing your personal creativity. No previous experience necessary!!  The second portion of the journey will be Viva Art & Life, for those of you who are interested in exploring and utilizing art as a form of life inquiry, to better understand yourself and others, and find out what it is you really, really want – to be, to do, to have. Again, no previous experience necessary!!  The Viva Art & Life series will be session programs, anywhere from a weekend to a series of classes for a certain number of weeks.  There will be more on that in my upcoming blog posts.

As of right now the Viva Art & Vino classes will start on June 18, 2015, and will be held at Three Pea Consignment, 4729 E Central, Wichita, KS (Southwest corner of Oliver and Central).  Take one or take ’em all.  I’ll send out an email and blog post letting you know where you can see what paintings we’ll be doing, what dates they’ll be offered, and additional information.  That should occur by the beginning of June.  I’m currently working on the website and it should be up shortly.

A portion of the class proceeds will be donated to Circles USA – Wichita, a national nonprofit that is helping to resolve poverty.  Special store discounts will also be offered if you find something in the Three Pea you just gotta have!

New Classes for May 2015

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New Zentangle classes scheduled for May!

May 9, 2015 – Beyond the Basics: String Theory & Embellishments

May 9, 2015 – Shades of Gray

May 9, 2015 – Double-Header (includes both of the above classes)

May 14, 2015 – Black & White Zendala Gift Box

Zendala Box

Zendala Box

Zentangle Art Show In Wichita!!

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Please note that “ZenXpressions: A Showcase of Zentangle Inspired Art” has had a date change.  The new Final Friday date will be September 25, 2015.  All other information is correct.  Thank you for your understanding in this!  B.

IT’S HAPPENING!!  THE COMMITMENT HAS BEEN MADE!!

On Final Friday, July 31, 2015, in Downtown Wichita, Kansas, at Tessera Fine Art Gallery there WILL BE AN ART SHOW dedicated to all the Zentangle enthusiasts in the Wichita and surrounding area!

Sandy Hunter, CZT

Sandy Hunter, CZT

This art show is going to get the word out to the people of Wichita that Zentangle is taking over!!  Let’s show them what Zentangle is all about!!  My goal is to share the wonderful world we have become involved in and let them know that you don’t even have to know how to draw a straight line to be an artist!  We are ALL ARTISTS, with creativity inside of us just waiting to be nurtured and let out.

Think about it…how many of you, when you first came to learn Zentangle said, “I can’t draw”, “I’m not an artist”, “I haven’t done any art since high school”, or…. “I remember loving to create when I was younger, but family and work got in the way and I just didn’t have time”, “I wanted to be creative but I never thought I was good enough”, “It takes too much money to buy materials”, or some other such thing??  But when you sat down and someone shared with you, you found a voice, a wellspring within you, a gleam of light showing you the way, and you realized that, “YES!  I can create this wonderful piece of art!”  Remember the fun and joy?  How we looked at each other’s tiles and were so excited to see how everyone’s was different and unique?

Brenda Lee Shaver, CZT

Brenda Lee Shaver, CZT

I am so looking forward to having you participate in this great event.

CLICK HERE to find all the information you’ll need to participate and/or attend the show.  SCROLL DOWN the page to download the event entry forms (there are two pages).

I’m counting on you to share with others you know who are Zentangle enthusiasts.  Invite friends, family, and coworkers to the show.  Share it on Facebook and other social media to help me spread the word.  I could always use some volunteers as there is a lot to be done.  If everyone can do one little thing, we can get this big thing done!!  All my volunteers will get recognition!

LET’S REACH FOR THE STARS!!

Happy Tangling!  Bonnie

 

Could it be? Yes it could! Something’s comin’, Somethin’ good! – Part 2

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Did I ever tell you how I got involved with Zentangle?  I have always been involved in the craft world – sewing, crocheting, dabbling in watercolor and painting, cake decorating, calligraphy, jewelry making, taking workshops here and there of crafts that were of interest to me.  I came from a family of artists (dad is a comic book artist, uncle was an illustrator)  and although I tried my hand at watercolor and painting, I always felt like I was never much of a “real” artist.  I made the joke that my family had the fine art gene and I got the arts and crafts gene.  I really wanted something that I could call my own and feel like I was good at.

Enter the world of Zentangle.  I was on the internet one day and I honestly don’t even remember where I saw it, but suddenly there was this black and white abstract drawing that caught my eye.  I followed the links and finally ended up at the Zentangle.com site.  I got so excited!  They actually had a kit I could buy!  So I did…I bought it and started creating some Zentangle pieces.

I really enjoyed the process.  It was fun, it was easy, I didn’t have to buy a lot of supplies, I could take it with me pretty much anywhere because it was small and portable.  I had found my niche.

Then I saw in the local newspaper that a gallery downtown was going to have an exhibit, and that I could participate!  The exhibit was called “Crazy 8’s” and was to be held at Gallery XII on Douglas in downtown Wichita, KS (a picture of that first piece is shown below).   I was SO excited!!  I decided what I was going to make for that show, completed it, framed it and took it down to the gallery.  I invited friends and family to visit with me on the evening of the program (it was on a Final Friday) and people actually showed up!  What a great feeling that was, and it propelled me to the next step.  I talked to the gallery owners adjoining Gallery XII and they seemed impressed with what I had done.  So I consigned a few pieces to them and lo, and behold, I sold some!!  And, boy, did that make me feel good!!

Because I knew Zentangle was a fun and easy art form, it was not hard for me to make the decision that I wanted to share it with other people.  Since the founders of Zentangle, Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas, hold a certification program for those who want to share the Zentangle art method with others, I made my way to the East Coast to participate in that certification process.  It was there that I really came to understand the value of Zentangle in people’s lives.  Not only was it a fun and easy process, but there was a whole other realm to it.  It increased my focus, created a different mood and state of mind in me, provided  me with artistic satisfaction (Yay!  I really AM an artist!), and increased my overall sense of well being.  It was uplifting!!  Something I knew so many of us need in our everyday, hectic lives.  If it could do all this for me, I knew it would be beneficial to anyone I was able to share it with.  I became so much more grateful for having found it and for the privilege of being able to be certified to share it.  You can learn more about the Zentangle method here and here.

BUT WHY AM I TELLING YOU ALL THIS??

Because in the next couple of days you’ll see a post that will tell you about an upcoming Zentangle show where YOU can exhibit YOUR work!!  I can’t tell you how excited I am to be on this journey with you, knowing that many of you have allowed me to share the Zentangle art method with you.  What a joy it has been to me to see you “take off” with your Zentangle projects!  How it has provided me with such pride when I see your work at one of our “Tangle and Talk” gatherings, or in a store or art/craft show somewhere in town, or on Facebook when you share.  I feel like I have brought “Tanglers” into the world –kind of like giving birth!  And now, on the next portion of this journey, I will be honored to have a way for you to share your love, nay, addiction, to Zentangle with the people of Wichita!

So STAY TUNED…notice will go out in the next few days giving you the WHERE, WHEN, AND HOW!!

Happy Tangling!  Bon 🙂

My first Zentangle for the Crazy 8's Show - Notice the string is in the shape of the number "8"

My first Zentangle for the Crazy 8’s Show – Notice the string is in the shape of the number “8”

Could it be? Yes it could! Something’s Comin’, Somethin’ good!

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My plan is to make an announcement at the beginning of March which could involve all of you if you are interested!!  All I’ll say for the moment is…START TANGLING!!

In the meantime, though, in honor of Valentine’s Day, here’s a video on how I made the little box pictured below.  Would make a great little trinket box for Valentine’s Day, or a birthday, or for any occasion.  Just tuck a little treasure inside.  If you need Zendalas, let me know.

Kudos to Cris Strovilas Letourneau for the video, and Dorian Eng for the creation!

B 🙂

Zendala Box

Zendala Box

Zendala Box

Zendala Box

ROAD TRIP…

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I read a joke recently —

“How are you?”  “Fine.  For details, read my blog.”

Of course if you were to read my blog you wouldn’t find much.  I keep telling you that I’m busy and that I’m going to get better at doing this thing.  Has it happened?  Not yet, but life is a journey and I’m a work in progress.

That being said, I would like to catch you up on what’s been happening on my side of the planet.

The holidays certainly kept me busy.  As some of you know, I work part-time for the UPS store in Wichita.  Needless to say, from about the middle of November through the end of January it was soooooo busy that I didn’t even get a chance to put up a Christmas ornament, let alone a Christmas tree.  That being said, I did enjoy time with my family on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.  January kept us busy at UPS with returns and such.  I think things are finally calming down, though, which is good, because quite honestly I really thought I was supposed to be retired.

During that time-frame, I re-ignited my interest in my art and started painting.  I did a number of pieces, mostly for family and friends. Most of it is abstract, you can see some of the pictures I’ve posted.  But I’ve also been working at tangling more often, and have posted some of those, too.  Over the holidays, a friend of mine in Virginia, Kathy Strauss, introduced me to Whitney Freya and Creatively Fit.  What I found through Creatively Fit was another piece to put into my toolbox.  I am currently working my way through Whitney’s online certification program to become a Creatively Fit coach.  You’re probably thinking, so what does a Creatively Fit coach do, Bonnie, and why are you telling me this?  Over the past several years (I became a Certified Zentangle Teach in 2011), I have come to realize that I’m on a journey of opening up myself to creating — both art and my life.  I find it fascinating that the road has opened up to me to begin painting again.  But not just painting; enjoying myself and immersing myself in the PLEASURE of art. I’m so much of a “business person” that I see everything as a “business”.  My family laughs at me all the time because everything I hear about, or think up an idea about, I’m like…”hmmm, how can we make this into a business?”  What I am beginning to see in myself, though, is the PLEASURE of art for art’s sake.  I’m not famous, I’m not perfect, I’m not a “professional” in the sense that most people would consider an artist to be, but I am so thrilled to just being in the moment.  And this is where I think the whole key lies.  Instead of “working” or trying to “do”, I’m finally just “being”.  And that’s a HUGE breakthrough for me.

I’m anxious to see where that journey leads me.  I know that I’ve become more excited about what I’d like to share.  I’ll still teach, but instead of being “the teacher” (as in standing in front of the class saying, “Now, class…”), I hope to be a guide.  A guide to those around me who also want to take that journey on the road to “being in the moment”.  I’ll still probably stand in front of a group of people who want to learn the Zentangle method, but I feel a shift in my thought pattern and I hope that will come out as I share in future programs.  Let me know the next time you take a workshop with me if you see any of that shift.  I’d sure love to know if I’m an inspiration to you.  I don’t want to be droll, dry, or dead.  I want to share my excitement, my passion, my joy with you in the act of creating.

Am I beginning to sound a little too far in the clouds?  I hope not.

Take the journey with me and let’s see where we land, shall we?

I do want to tell you about some new classes I’ve put up.  If you go to the workshops/demos page you’ll see two new classes there – BEYOND THE BASICS: String Theory and Embellishments, and SHADES OF GRAY.  These are going to be really fun classes and you’ll enjoy the deeper, richer experience you’ll have with your tangling through them.  Interested in both classes?  I’m holding a DOUBLE-HEADER.

Once I finish my course work in Creatively Fit, I’ll receive my certification there and will be preparing to share that, probably sometime around May 2015.

I almost forgot!  I’m also headed to Lincoln, Nebraska, to take a weekend program from Elizabeth St. Hilaire Nelson.  Her collage work is extraordinary and I am super excited about learning from her.  Her story is awe-inspiring and you must look at her work.  Click here to see it.

Will it be another three months before my next blog?  Who knows.  A couple of roads keep coming to my mind…the long and winding road (Beatles) and the Yellow Brick Road (leading to Oz and home).  I’m on the road and I’ll keep you posted at the stops along the way 🙂

HAPPY TANGLING, B.

Pink Circus

Pink Circus

Bijou Tile - open

Bijou Tile – open

Bijou Tile - closed

Bijou Tile – closed

LOVE

LOVE

Heart ART

Heart ART

From my Journal

From my Journal

So here’s the scoop…

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I am appalled that I haven’t sent out a message in two months!  But what can I say?  Life gets in the way all the time.  I joke with my friends that I have no idea how in the heck I was ever able to work a full-time job because, as of right now, I don’t have enough time to do all that I do and fit a full-time job in!!  I never understood what people meant when they said they “retired” and didn’t have enough time.  Well, that’s the case.  Between the regular grind of just doing household chores, shopping, and keeping up with my family, I find that all the other activities I want/need to do eat away at what little time I have.  I do work part-time, so that takes up several days, and I still do my classes so that takes up some time.  But I have been trying to do artwork of late and that, along with helping out a new project get off the ground (I’ll tell you more all about that in the paragraph below) has been keeping me hopping.  I’ve been trying my hand at Gelli printing (which I am enthralled with), collage, papercutting, and in general, watching YouTube videos on how to create things (I guess that REALLY takes up time).  I WANT TO DO IT ALL!!

But here is one of the newest projects I’m involved with…ThomGallery.com.  It’s been quite a crazy ride over the last month or so.  You can read all about it at the blog on ThomGallery.com.  The core people of the project have been trying to get the program off the ground and we’ve run into some obstacles.  We originally had a beautiful Victorian home in the downtown area that we were beginning to fix up, but the lease fell through on us.  So now we are looking for a new home.  I’ve posted a picture of the original place we had, so if you know of anyone who has such a marvelous piece of property that they want fixed up, we’re willing to do the work (we’d love to trade some of the leasing fee in exchange for that work).  We’d like it to be somewhere in the downtown area and have lots of room for all the visions we have in mind.

Original THOM Gallery

Original THOM Gallery

Please “Like” our Facebook page here.  And bookmark ThomGallery.com.  We have our First Annual Muse Art & Talent event scheduled for November 15, so keep checking the website for details.  We are looking for artists to participate, so if you are interested in that download the entry form here.

Finally, if you are interested in helping us financially, we have a GoFundMe campaign going.  Anything you can offer would be so very much appreciated.  

AS A SPECIAL THANKS TO YOUif you donate $5 or more you will receive a bookmark from me; if you donate $10 or more I will make you a Zentangle tile with your first initial; if you donate $25 or more you will receive an original matted Zentangle tile; if you donate $50 or more you will receive all of the above.  If you donate $250 or more you will receive one of my abstract paintings using three colors of your choice – paintings are one of a kind, so I cannot tell you what they will look like.  Some pictures below are representational only.

IF YOU DONATE, please let me know by commenting below or sending me an email – emeraldcitytangles@yahoo.com.

Love to all of my followers who put up with my ramblings!!  B 🙂

Zentangle - Collision

Zentangle – Collision

 

Green Abstract

Green Abstract

Horse & Rider

Horse & Rider

Beginning of Collage

Beginning of Collage