Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Foxfire Daily: Zentangle, and a note on Artist's Sunday

So I didn't post on Sunday. I know, I know, your dear wildland Fox promised a scheduled post every Sunday, paying it forward to other artists' works, but I was at my mother's on Sunday, with my computer... but without a power cord. (And the battery had done its slow-motion-explosion thing for the second time since I have owned my Mac, and I can't afford to replace it right now... argh...) So there was no Artist's Sunday because I am a forgetful Fox. My apologies. The regular scheduled Sunday will resume this weekend.

With that out of the way... Zentangle!!! What the devil is that, you ask?? Well, I asked the same question. Turns out that a lot of the pattern doodling that kids just *did* in class when the teacher wasn't looking is now considered an abstract artistic therapeutic expressional technique for men, women, boys and girls of all ages and all walks of life. But Fox, what does that mean in not-artist and not-therapist language...? *ahem* It means that it's an art form that is now used by therapists (and parents, and kids, and... well, you get the idea) to draw out things from the subconscious. Call it artistic meditation, if you like. Turns out there are special techniques and methods, and you can get certified as a teacher of this Zentangle technique, and there are special kits you can buy, and all sorts of money-making mumbo jumbo...

It's also *just* an art form, but then aren't most art forms more than one thing anyway?

And here I thought it was just abstract pattern art that I (and everyone else in my class) doodled as a kid. It's turned into its own art form, much like the classical styles, and people are making money off of teaching other people how to do it, and selling "kits" to "tangle" with, and...

I suppose my point is, I don't know how to feel about this - the moneymaking part of it, anyway. I loved doing it as a kid, but I feel like I've lost the trick of it... but would I pay someone else to help me re-learn how to do it? Would I spend money on a "kit" to teach my kids how to "tangle"? As well ask if I feel it's necessary to go to art school to be an artist (but that's a whole other post...)

Now, don't get me wrong; I've seen what people are doing with these techniques and some of it is absolutely fantastically awesome. But I find it hard to believe that it's necessary to charge for learning this sort of technique. Do a Google image search, and I bet you could learn just as much...

So what do you think? Is Zentangle legit? Is it worth spending the money on classes or kits the same way one would spend money on, say, a chainmaille weaving class, or an oil painting seminar, or a sculpting class?

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Foxfire Daily: Worktable

 Fox's work today: some crystals, a chunk of raw (unpolished) amber, some painted bone bits, an ear cuff, and a delicate little labradorite pendant. Still practicing the basket-weaving technique. Better photos coming, I promise!

And a Wyrmling Interlude... the 2-yr-old decides it's time to practice her color words with Mommy's pens. This is what homeschooling looks like for an artist.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Artist's Sunday #1: Church for an Artist

I'll come right out and say it. I don't go to church. I find them... unpleasant. Not because of the religion, but because... well. There are several reasons, and this post is not about those. Instead, I will do as I came to do, and show you one of the ways I find church at home, as I feel it was meant to be: a communion between like-minded individuals.

What does communion mean? Community, sharing, supporting and loving one another, a coming-together for a common goal. Right? There's also the body and blood of Christ thing (which is a form of sharing), but that's not what I'm getting at. So what does this have to do with an artist's church?

This: sharing love of one's passion with like-minded individuals (and one's audience!) is, to me, one of the finer forms of church and communion, celebrating one's fellows and their gifts, their talents and skills.

I am going to celebrate other artists' works here, and on the Studio's Facebook page, and I'm going to attempt to do this every Sunday. This is my first attempt at scheduling my posts, trying to do something orderly... (I'm normally an exceptionally chaotic person, and I do my best work surrounded by my own personal forms of said chaos.) So, from deviantART today, I'm going to share some of the Studio's favorite works.

Today will be dedicated to some of the more unusual and unique uses of artistic mediums I have ever seen, that inspire me to find my own new, unusual, and unique methods of combining my own mediums.

Alkhymeia uses wire wrap techniques and 
Polymer Clay to create super-unique wearable art:

AmberSculpture's amber and wood necklaces... 
earthy, elegant, gorgeous, and totally unique:

Kanzashi is an intriguing Japanese art of fabric folding. 
SincerelyLove makes them into wearable pieces:

And last but not least... cucumbers! Yes, cucumber jewelry. Take a closer look,
you might be surprised. Ilionej took a school workshop topic and turned it into this:

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Fox's Muse: Help Pick One!

As my self-imposed hiatus ends (I hope) and I feel some measure of renewed dogged tenacity for my work (enthusiasm's running a bit low, so all I've got to work with is stubbornness), I feel this is an appropriate time for a request for feedback.

I am attempting to create a simple logo that I can paint/engrave/imprint on my work as a signature. I have created three different versions of a simple line kitsune. I don't know which I prefer.  So I need some help!

Look at this picture (ignore the weird winged thing in the upper left hand corner and concentrate on the foxes please) and tell me which you like better:

1. Sitting-up Fox
2. Long-ways Dancing Fox
3. Curled-up Fox
4. Find a way to use all three!!! 

Copyright Leigh Evans 2013. 
Do not steal, use, alter, or redistribute without permission.