Artistically, I am returning to my sketchbook in a focused manner of renewal. Since I transferred my creative energies into the digital arena- excitedly adding one application after another as my pocketbook allowed- it seems that the good foundations of drawing maintained with a sketchbook got pushed aside.
Regardless of the wonderful worlds I can go to with digital tools, at the heart of it all I love to draw! So quite recently, I picked up a few new books with the hope that they would help me return to drawing with a vengeance. As the very first post for this category, "I Hear a Light in the Dark", I want to pass on a super little book that is taking my drawing to exciting new places. This book is Totally Tangled by Sandy Steen Bartholomew, published by Design Originals, 2010.
Totally Tangled is a softcover book with only 51 pages. It introduces you to a method of drawing called Zentangle, and is written for both artists and non artists. The purpose of this drawing method is to draw patterns in a meditative manner, and therefore help you reduce anxiety and become more confident in your drawing abilities. The book itself is not presented in a step by step process, but is open ended offering good flexibility. Make sure to check out the website and have a good look into what tangling is all about: http://zentangle.com/index.php
I have two images here. As a beginner in tangling, the first image is an example of some of the initial patterns the book shows. The second image is a thumbnail of one of the very first drawings that then came naturally to me. Simply as a result of following the Zentangle idea. For the first time, I'm drawing with imagination that I've longed for and have a foundation to build from. This transformation happened literally overnight. Should you try this method, I hope you too will find a renewed ability in your drawing. That your work will experience a spark of imagination that you did not have before. That you will rediscover your sketchbook as a very pleasurable and relaxing tool. Sketching has now become my favorite way to unwind!
If you are visiting this page as a photographer, or as an artist other than a visual artist and believe you cannot draw- then give the Zentangle method a try. Maybe you too will find the 'zen' aspect as contagiagious as I have.
I used the following in both images:
400 series sketchbook [60lb./light texture/acid free/premium recycled paper] ,
Pigma Micron 01 (.25mm) black pen [pigmented/archival quality/non-bleeding]
drawing pencil [of H hardness].
I used colored pencils in image #2