Sunday, April 17, 2011

New quilting inspiration

Yesterday I took a class from the Asheville area's first and only Certified Zentangle Instructor. I had read a lot about Zentangles and had tried some of the designs in pen on regular paper - there's nothing like using the proper tools to get a job done.

And I'm one of those people who never could draw.

These are drawn with a very fine archival pen on 3.5 inch tiles of fine paper. Shading is done in pencil with a lead smudger (called a "stump") to even out and soften the strokes. No erasers permitted!

The "no erasers" rule is a little like quilting with a high speed industrial machine - it takes very little time to put in a lot of stitches, but if you decide what you did isn't working, it's hours to remove them. It's better to figure out how to make the best of it.

The main thing I wanted to get out of the class is the almost random way of combining patterns, something that art quilters do all the time. I've always been more comfortable with planned, regular motifs and background fills, but some quilts, like the one I have on the machine right now, need less formality.

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