Saturday, May 8, 2010

Blame it on the antibiotics...

I might possibly regret blogging this... but I can't help it, it's just my weird personality. I can't imagine that I will be able to sell the last 10 copies of Cloth, Paper, Scissors with my November 2009 Zentangle article... BUT you NEED to know that Quilting Arts (publisher of CPS Mag.) has my article available as a free download from their site. You just need to sign up as a member (free). This is great news especially for the overseas folks who have to pay $10 just to ship the whole freakin' magazine, when all they want is one article.

Speaking of the article, in the category of "Imitation=Flattery?"...  I was perusing the site for Art Unraveled - another art retreat a bit like Art & Soul - when I found this class called "Zenhancements." I am assuming the teacher was influenced by my journaling article in CPS since her center sample, "Freehand Nude" has two tangles from my article's example "Stuff on My Desk." The calendar tangle and the stacked wood tangle are in the background. I was a little surprised to see someone teaching this, but I shouldn't be so naive, I know. When I thought about it a bit longer, I realized I was actually more surprised that the show co-ordinator had accepted the class proposal. I know that Art & Soul asks us to verify that we are teaching our own techniques and projects - or that we have permission from the originators. With Zentangle, that means being a CZT. But, perhaps, by creating her own new technique name, she was able to get around the issue. I don't know. But if anyone is taking this class at Art Unraveled, could you get back to us and let us know what the class was like? I am terribly curious!!


  1. I have been "doodling" for years, i love doing black and white "thingies"...i found you in my CPS mag last year, the article you spoke of...i love your work... and i love that there is such a thing as "Zentangle"...i had no idea it had a name, it was just doodling to me.
    You rock.

  2. Hi Sandy!

    Rena here. I am so sorry you were/are put off by my being inspired by your beautiful work. You were also so lovely to comment on my blog. Unfortunately, at the same time you commented, I got targeted by someone in Russia who started spamming me from many different email addresses and I am STILL wading through hundreds of meaningless comment submissions to find the good ones, like yours. I just installed the Akismet plugin, which has thankfully stopped the flood. Ugh! :-P

    Maybe (or not) you'll be happy to know that I am, indeed, enrolled in Maria & Rick's Zentangle Certification Course next week. I'm really looking forward to it! I have always love creating repetitive patterns which I do now in a Moleskine Japanese Portfolio (giant long single sheet of paper folded like an accordion) plus mixing the patterns with rubber stamps and collage.

    I honestly was never aware that anyone had "dibs" on a pattern and I am deeply sorry that I offended you. In my CZT welcome letter, they invited us to share our patterns, so I was under the impression that everyone was welcome to try out and expand upon patterns submitted. Again, if that was overstepping, I am sorry. Please let me know and I will take down that picture, redraw it with a new background that does not include any of your patterns and re-post it.

    I am a lifelong artist. I am a professional portrait painter, irreverent cartoonist, instructor of colored pencil and other drawing media, including pen & ink. I see patterns EVERYWHERE, like the the bamboo flooring of my house and the stars above (both of which I used with Freehand Nude). I see it in the Mexican tilework so abundant here in San Diego, in fabric, in crops, flowers, nature, architecture...everywhere.

    So...I'm kind of at a loss.

    Linda Young, Art Unraveled's creatrix, is one of the most professional and conscientious people I've ever met. I underwent a very specific submission process, as did all the other instructors. My class, as detailed on the AU website, includes not just Zentangle patterns, but also the incorporation of rubber stamping and collage. Obviously, I can't give it all away beforehand, but I assure you there will be a wide variety of cool stuff that I will be presenting, rather than just renaming/repackaging a strictly Zentangle class.

    Anyway, if you'd like to discuss this further, please post a comment to that effect and I would be happy to call you.

    I appreciate you airing your concerns, as well as your commitment to the integrity of Zentangles. I think you are an extraordinary creative power who is an inspiration to us all.

    Peace and blessings,



  3. I can totally see this both ways, especially after reading the perspective of you both. I can see how Sandy might have felt like her work had been lifted but I also think that with something like Zentangle, and hey art in general, none of us can claim 110% originality these days - everything is inspired by, borrowed from or influenced somehow.

    I am using lots of Zentangle patterns from Sandy's book, from tangles I have seen online as well as ones I've designed based on others and patterned influences from life in general. I am planning on doing CZT in October.

    I don't know what the right answer is here but I think if we see imitation as the best form of flattery and perhaps acknowledge the influence of others, everyone can share this wonderful art form together.

    Even Rick and Maria would not claim to be the "inventors" of all things Zentangle - as I say on my blog, Zentangle is a wonderful coming together of pattern design, doodling and drawing that brings together many ideas over centuries and consolidates it into something meaningful and cohesive.

  4. Maybe I'm confused, but I was certain that explicit permission is given to people who have not been through the training to teach classes in Zentangle, as long as they do not claim to be CZT when they are not, the proper terminology is used and links to the official site are given.

    I researched this specifically, on their blog. Since I've been doing pen and ink drawings like this for a very long time --- I just didn't start them with intent or plan the patterns I'd use. Rather, my designs evolved as I went. The classes I've taught in the past had nothing to do with their site because it wasn't invented yet. I don't mind sending people there now but training is not an option for me unless they are willing to come to Jacksonville to give it... even then it may be out of my price range.


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