In our Zentangle method, we think of tangles (patterns that can be drawn with simple strokes in a predefined way) as basic colors like you might find in a tube of paint.
You can mix tangles and create new ones (we call those "tangleations"), just as you can mix two colors to get a third. And just like colors, you can apply tangles to many surfaces with many tools in many ways.
Sally Houghton, CZT, recently emailed:
Ever since the seminar in October 2011, I have been thinking about the day Maria told us about the dream she had over and over again as a child (about discovering a new color). I just loved that story and have retold it to the kids I teach often.
I also remember Rick saying, "Imagine cadent coming out of a tube like paint!" Well, that put an image in my head that has never left.
It's been a blessing to me when talking to the kids. The first time I retold it, a fourth grade boy had just said, "Well, why do we all have to do the same thing? Can't we do something original?"
So, I said, "Well, think about when you open a box of crayons or paints. You have all the same colors to use as everyone else does, right?" He agreed with that, so I continued, "Everyone uses the same colors, but they put them in different places on their paper and color in different shapes with them. When they are done with their picture, do you think it always comes out the same?"
He knew what I was saying, but I kept going, "Where you put your patterns and what shape you fill in with them makes a different image each time. And, just like crayons or paint, you may mix a couple different colors together to make a new color, or shade a bit with them, and those are other ways you make them your own original work."
Anyway, I've told that story and carried it around in my head for so long that when I got my sketchbook in the mail from the project being run by the Art House Co-op, I immediately turned to the center of the sketchbook to relieve the image from my mind. I told [my friend] about it on our ride to the CZT gathering in Longmeadow last Saturday and she asked me to send her a picture. She really liked it and said I should share it with you. So, here it is. I hope it does Maria's dream some justice.
Thank you so much for sending that, Sally. It's beautiful and conveys the idea elegantly!
Click image for larger view of dream.