Every once in a while - actually, pretty darn often (thankfully)! - people generously recommend I check out something on the internet which they think I'll like. I don't troll the internet a lot because it's such a time suck, but yesterday, after a lot of good hard work, I was needing a break so decided to look at a link a friend had recommended.
I am officially hooked!
The site is called Zentangle. It's a simplified method of doodling, something I've pretty much always done, but they've taken it to a whole new level. My son Andrew saw what I was working on last night and enthusiastically told me he really liked them. You can read how to do it on the site, so I won't go into details about the how-to, but I will warn you - it can be very addictive! I did them for about 4 hours yesterday until 1 in the morning - and got up to walk at 6:10. Yikes! Silly me! But they really are very fun. The website doesn't give away the techniques for starting - understandably they prefer people to buy their products, but you can find a lot of videos on YouTube showing people doing them. What I do like on the Zentangle website is their newsletter which generally seems to have an example of a "tangle" in it. These are done on a 3"x3" piece of very nice drawing paper with a Micron 1 pen. Serendipitously, a friend gave me a beautiful notebook and one of those very same pens when I celebrated quitting my tutoring job, so I was already equipped!
I like the restriction in size and their idea of dividing the square into sections so you have some restrictions to start with. That makes the whole idea more manageable and gives you a chance to use a lot of different "tangles" (i.e. different patterns) on each page.
I find it to be very relaxing and meditative to do these. My art-brain kicks in and feels like it's getting a massage the whole time. Very pleasurable.
But now tis time to get back to painting. I have so much to do, I'm having trouble fitting everything in! But it's all such great stuff!