Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Falling Leaves....


We are having a Beautiful Fall here in the Inland Northwest.  I have a particular love of painting leaves, especially in fall.  In the past I've painted them primarily in watercolor and love the shadows they make.  Here's one I did a while ago Autumn Breeze #3 using just watercolor. 

I like the way the shadow colors overlap the Zentangle art form and wanted to experiment with that a bit. I went to my local art supply store Spokane Art Supply: and bought some Strathmore Mixed Media paper to experiment with it.  I also bought some Inktense pencils for even more fun as I had tried my Mom's Inktense bars this summer and liked them.  This is a study to find out what worked and what didn't for me.  As far as the Zentangle work goes, I found that the Sakura Sensei pens stood up to the surface of the paper better than the nibs on their pigma microns. 

The paper worked well with dry mediums, as in the dry Inktense pencils and the dry pastel pencils, but it really didn't care to get too wet as I found that the colors did not spread out like on a watercolor paper.  I plan to try acrylics on it next with less water to see how it goes.

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Fun Continues

Hello again!

I just had to add color to my latest Zentangle piece, it's in my blood! 

I used Inktense water soluble sticks and pencils to do the job and while I was in the middle of painting, I noticed that a photograph taken by my brother in law, Lorne, of the Peace River Valley at sunset, was peeking out beneath the drawing.  My subconscious mind must have noticed it first because the colors I chose just about matched the photograph!  I photographed it with the Lorne's Photo on top so you could see what I mean. 

Here's the finished work: "Peaceful Sunset".  My humble homage to a great river.

Don't forget to sign up for my Zentangle classes, first one is November 10th from 10 to noon at New Moon.  $35.00 for adults and $25.00 for kids under 16.  Contact me for details!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Tangles for a Rainy Day...

It's a cold rainy day in the Inland Northwest and I've finished the ink work on "Rainy Day Tangles".  I love the bold graphic look and not sure if I want color or just shading or what.  So I'll let it hang around for a bit while I make up my mind.  It may the the largest Zentangle I've done to date at 8x10.  I did it on Arches cold press watercolor paper thinking that I would paint it with either watercolor or inktense or acrylic ink and this paper would accept it best.  What I did find was that because of the bumps in the paper that the Sakura Pigma Sensei 04 pen which has a hard nib, worked better on this surface than the Sakura Microns which got too wobbly when they hit a bump!  Now for a relaxing cup of tea and then back to work for me.

There are still places in my upcoming Zentangle workshops for all ages and all levels.  The first one is Saturday, November 10th at New Moon at 906 S. Cowley Street, Spokane, WA.  Contact me at 509-995-1647 to find out more and sign up for a workshop.  You can also send me an email at  Hope to see you soon!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Color Garden Zen - Something NEW!

This summer I was having a nice Chinese dinner with my family when I opened a fortune cookie and it had two fortunes which read:

"To reach distant places, one has to take the first step."

"A new chapter in your life is being written."

Turns out both were correct!

This spring I was struggling with life events and did not feel any real desire to paint, but my hands just have to do something.  By chance, I found on the Internet and it opened up a world of possibilities in a small manageable way.  Not only that, but I found that when I made these little 3 1/2 square drawings, my shoulders relaxed and I felt Calm and more able to handle what was happening in my life. 

 I felt compelled to do more Zentangles, and also to find out more and tell others about it.  I noticed (because that's what I do, I notice stuff), that when I shared this small easy art form with others, that they too found peace.  Hmmmm, I thought, there is something really deep that is taking place here, and I must pay even more attention.

Well, serendipity being what it is, I got into the Zentangle Certified Teacher seminar on a cancellation and before I knew it, I was in Providence, RI along with 97 other people from all over the world who wanted to learn more about this practice. It was a wonderful few days where I met so many nice folks from so many diverse backgrounds. 

We learned about how to teach the philosophy of Zentangle and the different patterns.  It resonated with me because my heart felt goal is to really help people through art in meaningful way and Zentangle fits the bill for all of that.

So now I am offering Zentangle workshops in Spokane and you can contact me via this blog to find out dates, times and costs or visit my website page: 

I am also available to teach private classes or group classes in your home or work place.

Visit for more information.

I hope you too can find some peace and well being in doing a Zentangle. 

All the best to you,


Here is a Zentangle which was completed at the seminar:

Zentangle by Loretta West