An optimal start of the day begins always with a well balanced breakfast. I understand that not everyone can spend a lot of time op preparing and therefore I would like to open this blog post with a healthy, cheap and  tasty recipe that is ready in an instant and gives you lots of energy.

Mix 30 gr oatmeal flakes, one egg and three tablespoons of yogurt (with or without sweetener) in a small fireproof jar (cone shaped) and put 3 minutes into the microwave. Also soy yogurt is okay. You can easily deposit the “pudding” on a small plate and decorate it with  dried/fresh summer fruit  (also a ready-made “coulis ” looks  nice and tastes delicious)

In the night of the 18 th on  the19  th June, clouds of light were seen in the northern countries. This special phenomenon can  be observed only a few times a year, usually around the 21st of June. The luminous night clouds sit at an altitude of 75-80 km (much higher than the ordinary clouds that linger around 20 km). Normally, you can’t see those clouds, but at this time of the year the sun barely gets on the horizon while it stays dark elsewhere everywhere. It may not be as spectacular as the northern lights but I still thought it is worthwhile to place a pic that was taken above the city of Groningen in the north of the Netherlands.

Whether it’s winter or summer, I always like to tangle. The original Zentangle method of Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas has become very popular all over the world. Everywhere you can find enthusiastic tanglers who, just as me, find relaxing moments in our hectic world, thanks to this fascinated way of drawing.

Below you can see Dilip Platel and his wife Malathi (both CZT in India), between a group of proud students, showing their finished tiles!

Even in some hospitals, the Zentangle method is taught. While tangling,  the thoughts of patients are focused on  the work they are doing at the moment and that makes their stay a little more pleasant.

A thicker pen and a slightly larger tile makes tangling easier   for children and older people and  offers them also many advantages.

Unfortunately, as in all sectors,  “copycats ” are appearing into the Zentangle world.  Stealing things from others for their own sake  is known in all times and happens everywhere. Some people have no difficulty with this way of behaviour. For me, however, it’s hard to become a fan of a copycat! The discussion on this subject has led to tensions between the front and the opponents, and I deeply regret that.

The technology, the Internet and the social media bring us many advantages. So much information is available and that is of course a wonderful case. Yet there is also a negative side to this progress: we  become more narcissistic. Being just normal isn’t good enough anymore. We only let ourselves seen from our best side on the social media.  Everything should be great,  we always want to become more and more and preferably as soon as possible otherwise it becomes boring.. That picture is not true and ultimately it will give frustration and emptiness. I honestly admit that sometimes I have lesser days, days when I have no inspiration, that I do not feel good… but I am sure that everyone has such days , that’s quite normal.  It is good to stay honest with yourself and accept that. There is always a silver line behind the clouds…

By drawing I feel happy and there is no time to mull. I liked drawing when I was a child and thanks to the Zentangle method I found back my old love. As I wrote in my previous post, I see tangles popping up everywhere. While surfing, I  bumped into a nice motif, depicted on a pillow:

I made some little changes.  Below you can see the steps to make this pattern that has been named Zanda. I like to work on Zendalatiles. I just took the first piece of that word and replaced the e by an a.

 

 

Zanda can be very usefull on mandala’s.  On both tiles you see variations of this new pattern in both the inner and outer ring.

 

 

On the white zendalatile you can see a variation of Copada, Hibred and Tippe next to Zanda. Here the “diamonds” of Zanda were filled with the fragment D1 and for the filling between 2 rings I chose perfs. In the size of the diamonds you can of course also bring variations.

On the tancoloured tile I have chosen as extra tangles for Printemps and Olspin, the” diamonds” of Zanda were filled with the fragment Q5 and also here Perfs were used  between Zanda in the center and Olspin.

Both Zendala’s were drawn with black pens, white gellypens and ordinary colourpencils.

But this pattern can also be used as a background or in a grid.  You can form the same row or you can jump as I did here. Next to Zanda, the following tangles were signed: Dewd, Printemps, Fescu, Keenees and Baton. I took a light tan background and colored it with ordinary pencils and a white gellypen.

Occasionally I still have contact with former students. Marianne Repriels sent me a cool movie that she had found on the Internet. You can discover in the video below how you can make a beautiful image on your sheet using a thread and some paint. It is very simple:

Marianne sent me a very successful result:

I could not resist and tried this technique also a few times, with different thread thicknesses and different kinds of paint. It was  a pleasant experience, ready in an instant:

 

2 other examples, surrounded by tangles:  CO2 on the drawing with different shades of acrylic paint and a variation on Suzanne’s Fluhr’s (link) Aloha on the drawing with black ecoline paint, finished with green colourpencils.

 

 

In the meantime,  Project Pack 3  has been released on the newsletter of Zentangle.com.  It is certainly worthwhile to try out drawing ribbons with 2 pencils which you can finish with tangles and colours of your choice. It is an easy way to receive beautiful ribbons. I have chosen to  fill my ribbon with Surfs up.

Used tangles are: Sandswirl, Fassett, a variation on Hollibaugh on the left tile, fragments C11, F5, D4, K14, Hibred on the right tile and Courant alternating with black surfaces in the background. The drawing was finished with ordinary colour pencils and a white chalk pencil.

I hope you enjoyed this post and  I would like to finish with a nice quote from Rick and Maria:

Many people think there is power in the Zentangle Method. We believe the Zentangle method allows you to discover the power that was in you all along.

Last winter I followed the series Narcos on Netflix. Great acting is being done in this exciting series based on the life of Pablo Escobar.  He was a true familyman who spent a lot of money on charities in his hometown Medellin, but on the other side,  he was a ruthless man, involved with drugs and not afraid of corruption and murder…

 Rodrigo Amarante composed the beautiful soundtrack: Tuyo

I wish everyone a lot of beautiful, relaxing moments during the summer, keep the head cool, don’t forget the animals  and until next time!

Een éénvoudige string om te starten en twee leuke tangles: Diva Dance en Abeko. Dit was een fijne challenge die ik gemaakt heb op lichtbruin papier. Na het aanbrengen van de schaduw werd de tile  afgewerkt met een paarse pen en een witte gelpen.

An uncomplicated string to start and to fill with two lovely tangles: Diva Dance and Abeko. I enjoyed this challenge very much and chosed to draw on a light tan tile. After shadowing,  I finished the composition with a purple pen and a white gellypen.

Een tijdje geleden heb ik een kaart gemaakt met gedroogde bloemen waarrond Tripoli werd getekend. Voor deze challenge heb ik eigenlijk iets soortgelijks gemaakt: een Zia met  gedroogde Hortensiabloemetjes  en een mix van Tripoli en Maryhill. Ik heb getekend of licht bruin papier met een blauwe pen en blauwe en paarse kleurpotloden. Dit was voor mij een heel ontspannende challenge!

A while ago, I have made a card with dried flowers, surrounded by a variation on Tripoli. For this challenge, I have chosen for the same idea: a Zia with dried Hydrageaflowers and a mix of Tripoli and Maryhill.  I have used light tan paper and coloured pens and pencils (blue/purple)This was for me a very relaxed challenge!

De opdracht was om een monotile te maken met  Drupe. Het is een tijdje geleden sinds ik deze originele tangle nog eens gebruikt heb. Ik vond het niet meteen éénvoudig om met dit patroon een mooie compositie te maken tot mijn oog viel op de driehoekjes. Ik begon met een lint als string en vulde de 3  open plaatsen op met Drupe en Perfs. Wat schaduw, een wit accentje en een beetje kleur maken de tile af.

The challenge was to create a monotile with Drupe. It is a while ago since I have used this pattern on one of my tiles. At first instance, I didn’t find it easy to make a nice composition, only with this tangle. All of a sudden I saw the triangles and I decided to start with a ribbon (as a string). I filled the 3 open spaces with Drupe and Perfs. With a little shading, some highlights and a touch of colours, I finished this tile.

The challenge was to create a monotile with Drupe.

De uitdaging was om de tangle Pais te gebruiken op een plaats naar eigen keuze. Ik koos voor een combinatie van Tropicana, Popsicles, Widgets, Msst en Pais. Eerst besloot ik om gewoon in zwart/wit te tekenen maar besliste toch uiteindelijk weer om een heel klein tikkeltje geel en oranje toe te voegen. Dit was een leuke challenge waar ik veel plezier aan heb beleefd.

The challenge was to use Pais on the tile, the exact place was not important. So, I chose for a combination with Tropicana, Popsicles, Widgets, Msst and Pais. First, I wanted to draw only  with black/white, but as usual, at the end, I decided to add a little bit of yellow and orange colours. This was a lovely challenge that I enjoyed very much.

Door de mooie vloeiende string kwamen de tangles D’Rua, A-Dalfa en Dex goed tot hun recht. Samen vormden ze het woord Dad, een eerbetoon aan al de vaders.

Thanks to the lovely fluent string, D’Rua, A-Dalfa and Dex gaved a nice composition. Those tangles formed the word Dad, special made for all the fathers.

Zelf gebruik ik Puf niet regelmatig en daarom was het fijn om deze challenge mee te doen. Puf is eigelijk niet zo’n moeilijke tangle en je kan hem mooi combineren met andere tangles zoals hier met: Leafslide, Stircles en Patience.

I don’t use Puf a lot and just therefore, it was nice to join this challenge. In fact, Puf is not a difficult one and you can easily combine this tangle with other ones. I have made a composition with Leafslide, Stircles and Patience.

 

Deze keer  stelde Adele een heel speciale uitdaging voor: de grid-string van Helen Williams. Eenvoudig maar heel leuk om te doen en er zijn 1001 mogelijkheden. Ik heb enkele vlakken ingekleurd met kleurpotloden en 3 tangles gebruikt: Jester van Marie Browning, Beadlines en Fescu.

This time, Adele posted a very special challenge: the grid-string of Helen Williams. It is very simple but pleasant to do  and there are 1001 possibilities to give your drawing a personal touch. I coloured some spaces with ordinary colourpencils and used 3 tangles: Jester of Marie Browning, Beadlines and Fescu.

Vandaag ben ik begonnen met Pokeroot, één van de oudste originele tangles. Ik heb dit patroon getekend op een  tankleurige prestrung Zendalatile. Ik ervaar daarop tekenen als heel ontspannend en heb Pokeroot slechts aangevuld met paar éénvoudige tangles: Verve, Boucle, Tipple en Clob. Een beetje extra kleur vind ik altijd supermooi uitkomen op deze Renaissancetiles.

Today, I started with Pokeroot, one of the oldest and original tangles. I have drawn this pattern on a tan prestrung Zendalatile. I enjoy very much drawing on this kind of tiles. Below you see that Pokeroot is  surrounded by a few other uncomplicated tangles: Verve, Boucle, TIpple and Clob. I always  love to add a little bit of colours, especially on these Renaissancetiles.

As promised, first a bit more about the unique train routes in Switzerland. For a long time I wanted to do that, but it was always postponed… And then it was finally so far…

The Bernina Express  is classified by Unesco as a World Heritage  and shows you in a very comfortable way the most beautiful landscapes of Switzerland. I started this experience in the small authentic village of Bergün (Graubünden).

Aaaaah! Oooooh!

A smile, a wink, a conversation… If you want to do that when  you are travelling alone, you can meet many people and have a lot of fun.  Everyone enjoyed the fantastic train ride that brought us through spectacular views to  Italy (Tirano).  After a break of a few hours we drove back towards Switzerland. Due to the long, severe winter there was still a lot of snow on the tops, but the alpine pastures were already flourishing under a radiant spring sunshine.

During my stay, both in Graubünden and in Wallis, I discovered many well-known “tangles ” on the facades of the houses. With some lookup work you can certainly nominate them:

 

 

After a few quiet days in that tiny little village I left with the Glacierexpress  to Zermatt.  This route also offers breathtaking views  in a pleasant atmosphere. This calmer period lies between the much busier winter and summer seasons and the prices are lower. The trains are not yet fully occupied, there is a lot of space to move around and I like to make a chat with fellow travellers coming from all parts of the world.

 

 

If you are in Zermatt, it is absolutely a must to book a ride on the steepest train in the world that takes you to Gornergrat , located at 3089 meters altitude.  As a reward you will get a fantastic view of the Matterhorn and the surrounding massif. This was the absolute highlight and purpose of the trip.

On the picture below the top of the Matterhorn is just hiding behind the clouds but that was only a very short time. I recognize this particular mountain from thousands and I am glad and gratefull I finally saw this beautifull giant in reality. He surpassed all my expectations!!!

It was possible to travel from Liège in one trek to Bergün but this seemed too heavy for me (because of the long sitting). That’s why I chose   for an extra night in Freiburg , the capital of the “Black Forest” with a very attractive “Altstadt ” and certainly worth a visit.

10 minutes before the return journey, there was an unexpected obstacle on the rails in  Freiburg, which caused that all trains got delay. Directly long queues of nervous people appeared in front of the information counters. The tracks and seals constantly changed.We all had to keep attention  to become on the right train and the right track on time. You felt the tension rising everywhere.  I don’t like busy places anyway… and the temperatures literally ran very high that day.  Coming back home safely gave a pleasant feeling of satisfaction. After an extensive story and a long night’s rest I started the next day full of new energy to the familiar life of every day, in which drawing plays an important role…

My first work was a contribution for Annette’s 13 th Mosaïcproject. When merging some tiles I discovered a nice surprise: unexpectedly, one of my own patterns Tupi appeared.  Below a copy that Annette sent me. If you would like to see more results with all participants, please click on this link:

Later, entries for Joey, Adele and Laura followed. As I wrote before, I regularly follow them.  By joining, you continually learn  new patterns, create new combinations and compositions,… Your technique concernning connecting tangles, making shadows and using colors improves. The drawings below were both drawn using the same template. The first drawing was made in the period when I  started to tangle. The second tile has been created very recently.  If I will  do this challenge again next year, my drawing would look completely different. I like that, there’s always movement.

 

 

If you  have difficulties to choose your tangles, please surf to www.tanglepatterns.com or Elatorium  . These sites have great databases and also offer different challenges.  Also on facebook you can find challenges but it is impossible to make them all, and that is not necessary. You have to make choices. Just choose which challenge you like and then go for it, even if it’s just for yourself.

With regard to the colours, I occasionally browse through a magazine and/or take a look at the Internet for new clothing collections. Most certainly you will find inspiration to compose a nice colour palette.

Below I posted a  contribution from Margarete Gilge  which she made for one of Ela’s daily challenges.  It’s a lovely composition with beautiful variations on Ilac, Egyp and Bunny Border, made on a gorgeous pastel coloured watercolor background.

Occasionally I also look  on Pinterest where I have found  this unique work of a (for me) unknown artist. It reminds me very much of one of my own patterns on which a variation is made. Do you recognize this tangle in the middle of the tile?

More and more people love tangling and every day you see new patterns popping up.  I like to admit that I’m also regularly “on the hunt”.  In the Art Nouveau and Art Deco  I have already found inspiration.   Also now I have formed a new tangle, based on the picture below.

Immediately, my eye felt on the Hexagon, hence the name and after some drawing I came to the following motif. It has become completely different than on the original image. It is very important to draw the small hexagons as similar as possible to the same height. Then you can easily connect them and it becomes very simple to form the (double) squares that you can fill up. Below you see 3 variations. Another option is to leave Hexa transparent and to draw a different tangle behind it. That way gives more depth and that’s what I did it in a composition of Hexa, Safflower, Dewd, Msst en Nik.

Hexa can also be drawn as a kind of framework that can be filled with different tangles and/or fragments. Just like on the  Zendalatile, I have drawn on grey paper with a black pen and finished with a touch of colour (pencils) and the inseparable white (gellypen and charcoal). On my tile I used the following patterns: Cheers, Olin, 2c Ribbon and the new pattern LZ by Anita Westin:

and one more, just for fun to finish with a composition of Tripple Tipple, Adalfa, Ditto, Blooming Butter, Msst, Golven, CO2 and Hexa.

To get in touch with other cultures can sometimes be very enriching. Some people have more talent than others to be happy, they are not perfect but honest and don’t want to harm or dominate others.  I sincerely admire those attitudes.

Enjoy the  music, the colours  (with even here and there a tangle), the immersive rhythm and the cheerful atmosphere on this joyful video clip of Sona Jobarteh from  Gambia:

I wish everyone wonderfull summerdays, the talent to enjoy the moment and to listen to your heart!