It’s Been Awhile!

Being silly in the passenger seat

Hello!

I hope everyone has had a fun, productive, interesting, and adventurous 2017 so far! I have been super busy myself with making art, teaching classes, and travelling! The year kicked off with a bang with four awesome classes I taught for three different groups, I also created a lot of fun art for my DesignByHumans and Redbubble stores, as well as commission work! Then, my husband and I made the 1,200 mile trek back to Portland, Oregon!

Tangling away
  The calm before the storm
Tiles pre-stained with coffee and tea leads to amazing student tangle work

 

I’m now ramping up business and hoping to start offering some public classes in Portland and surrounding areas. Tangles on the Oregon coast, anyone??? If you have an art studio, winery, or coffee house that you LOVE going to and think would be a great place for a Zentangle class, let me know and I’ll see what I can do to set something up!

My class workspace

The classes I taught in January and February were SO fun! We did Zen Gems and feathers, stained tiles, beginner’s lessons, and some more advanced techniques for returning students. It was really neat to see some returning students and how far they’ve come in their confidence to complete patterns, or see the patterns and have that “Ah-ha!” moment of understanding just how simple the steps really are.

Beginners class tangles
Feather gems and intermediate tangles

I think my favorite classes will always be beginner’s and first-timers. It warms my heart to see people who didn’t believe they had creative or artistic talent take pride in the tiles they completed. Zentangle® is always about the process and the method first, artwork and artistry last.

Such talented tangle artists my students are

In December I was hired to complete a commission project, my clients wanted their first names in a tangled piece and then a bigger piece with their last name. I decided to do their last name in a mandala…it turned out AMAZING!

Close up shot of mandala inking

Which is good, because it took me 40 hours to complete that one piece…it would have been a bummer if my vision didn’t turn out…ha! I’m offering prints of this commission, with your own last name of course, in my Etsy shop. Check it out if’d you like your own!

Tangling on watercolors

I am so excited to be back in the Portland area. Since we’re travelling in our motorhome full time, we are popping back and forth between the Oregon Coast and Mount Hood areas, with stops in between, too! Both locales give us the option to pop into the city pretty easily. I’ve already visited a few of my favorite places and some friends, too!

The Brave Little Toaster taking a break in Bend Oregon

I’m really looking forward to the coming months and hope to share some exciting updates with you along the way! Let me know how your year is going so far in the comments!

Cheers!

Sarah, Zen & Zin

 

How Do I Support Artists?

I have received a lot of questions lately from friends, family, and strangers, about how they can support me and other artists they know. Some folks don’t have the funds or the space to buy art from us, or they just plain don’t know where to start. So, I thought I’d share a guide to help those who want to support artists like me. Some of these things will be specific to me as an artist, but it will still help you determine how you might support your own favorite or local artists, and can also apply to musicians, dancers, and entrepreneurs.

Keep in mind that artists don’t necessarily have the luxury to make art all day, every day. Instead we’re working on our accounting, maintaining households, bugging people on social media to like and follow them, and trying to find additional streams of income. Many even work full or part-time jobs in addition to working as an artist.

So, how can you support your favorite artist?

LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE, AND SUBSCRIBE!

Money and exposure go hand-in-hand and are the best ways you can help an artist. If you don’t have money (Welcome to the club!) or room in your budget to spend, you can still help your favorite artist! Sharing the artist’s social media posts and telling your friends and family about the artist, what kind of art they make, and how they can purchase that art. Exposure leads to the possibility of future sales. If you know an organization or an art gallery that might like to show a new artist, give them a referral!

REFER, REFER, REFER!

For Certified Zentangle Teachers™, like me, we also appreciate folks who take our classes and refer their friends to take our classes. We’re also interested in new venues to teach at, so if you know a venue that would benefit from a Zentangle® class, let them know about your favorite CZT!

Buying an artist’s designs is also a great way to support them. You’re not only contributing to their piggy bank, you’re also showing the rest of the world their art by displaying it. It’s also a great confidence boost for the artist to actually make a sale. Many towns and cities hold art nights and art walks, take the time to attend these events and talk to artists. Many times you can even buy small prints of their art as a way to support them. Every little bit helps.

And, here are some ways you can support me specifically (Many artists have the same streams of income, so check out their websites and social media to see how you can help them):

  • Connect with me on social media and share my posts! When you interact with your favorite artists on social media, you increase their exposure! This means we have more opportunity to sell our art and products to more people! So, please do not hesitate to like, comment, share, and subscribe! Every social media platform gives you the opportunity to “Turn On Notifications” so you can be notified when we post!
  • Subscribe to my newsletter! This allows me to communicate with you directly and know that you’re receiving the message 🙂 Plus, it means you’ll further stay connected and know when I have new products, classes, or artwork available!

 

 

  • Buy my art. This one seems pretty straightforward, but if you buy art you’re not only financially supporting your artist, but hopefully your friends, co-workers, or family members will see the art and want to buy some, too!
    • Great reasons to buy art – birthdays, holidays, graduations, anniversaries, baby showers, bridal/wedding showers, retirements, good grades, promotions, new homes. Basically, any time you might give a gift, give art!

  • Etsy – buy art, supply kits, and coloring books! Favorite my shop and share it with your friends!
  • Design By Humans – buy prints or wear clothes with my designs on them, I gain a commission, you look g
    reat, and your friends mights be interested in wearing cool art, too! (Are you starting to sense a pattern here???)
  • Coloring Books – buy my coloring books!
  • YouTube – YouTube allows artists to monetize their videos, so please subscribe, watch, like, comment and share to help us earn a few extra bucks. Plus, who doesn’t like watching fun videos?

 

 

 

  • Skillshare – I’ll be teaching on Skillshare this year, so you get a chance to learn Zentangle on your own time! Skillshare teachers earn a commission, so make sure to recommend lessons you liked!
    (Skillshare IS a paid subscription-based program, but it is
    cost-effective and you can learn more than just Zentangle!)

 

  • Order a commission! If you’re looking for one-of-a-kind, custom art the best option is to order a commission! Contact me directly to let me know what you have in mind and I can provide you a quote.
  • Give me money…. ok, not really…. maybe…. but if you’re feelin’ it, go right ahead 😉 (But, I’d rather make you art and trade it for money!)
  • Book a class – Contact me directly to book a Zentangle class for you and your friends! If you know a local business like a wine bar or cafe that wants to hold art classes, refer refer refer!

  • Tell your friends! Direct referrals are always the best way to gain new followers and potential customers.

 

If you’ve made it this far through the post, thank you for taking the time to consider how you can support me and other artists! As a token of my appreciation, here’s a coloring page that you can print out and color!

Support Artists Free Coloring Page

When you’re done coloring, take a picture and share with me on social media or email me to show me your creation (info@zenandzin.com)!

Cheers!!

Sarah, CZT, Zen & Zin

*THE ZENTANGLE® METHOD IS AN EASY-TO-LEARN, RELAXING, AND FUN WAY TO CREATE BEAUTIFUL IMAGES BY DRAWING STRUCTURED PATTERNS. IT WAS CREATED BY RICK ROBERTS AND MARIA THOMAS. “ZENTANGLE” IS A REGISTERED TRADEMARK OF ZENTANGLE, INC. LEARN MORE AT ZENTANGLE.COM.

A 2016 Reflection

Wow! I cannot believe it is already 2017 . Oh, wait, yes I can. 2016 was a wild year, it went by so quickly yet SO much happened. My husband and I fulfilled our dream of living and travelling full-time in our RV, we plan to continue to do so in 2017 with just a slightly altered travel schedule (i.e. not travelling coast to coast and back in 4 months!). We’ve also both committed ourselves to growing our craft, he’s a writer and I’m finally identifying as an artist!

christmas-card-picture-jpg

I’ve grown a lot in 2016 from figuring out what I want in life to realizing I can make my own decisions as I go. I’ve really started to feel like an artist and have given myself the permission, time, and space to learn new techniques and further my Zentangle® practice. I think this has really helped me as a teacher too, as I am more connected to the art and the method than ever before.

I even finished my Master’s degree in Adult Education and Training!

grad

I also learned that, as an artist, I have a lot more opportunities than I previously realized. I’ve started to partner with some different companies and I hope in 2017 we’ll see a lot of awesome projects come out of those relationships.

DBH
Adding my artwork to products on Design By Humans! Click on the picture to head to my store!

I am also focusing more on supporting other artists whether its buying their art, or donating to a GoFundMe campaign when someone is struggling. What goes around comes around and I love to help other artists when I have the opportunity to.

coloringbook
The first of many coloring books available on Amazon and my Etsy Store! Click on the picture to head to my Amazon products!

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This year has also been a tough one on me personally, as well as for my husband….and I know it’s been extremely difficult for a lot of people everywhere. And while the challenges have really tested the strength of my faith and my resolve, they’ve also strengthened me and remind me why I do this…why I love and teach Zentangle, why I create art, and why art is so important. In a year of uncertainties and emotional roller coasters, art has helped us all get through. It’s soothing, it’s expressive, it’s escapism. Art is awesome that way!

whyczt

So, join me in 2017. Support art and the artists than share their craft. Take a Zentangle class. Buy an original or order a commissioned piece of art. If it’s me you’d like to support, yay! If not, I hope you have a local artist you’d like to support, they’d sure appreciate it!

Here’s to an amazing 2017! Cheers!

More Fall Inspiration…with leaves! And Free Coloring Page!

This week the Diva (#289) challenged us to include some leaves in our tangles. I went outside, and luckily I’m in Michigan right now, and found some beautifully colored and uniquely-shaped leaves to inspire me.

First, I took some photocopies of these leaves so that I could experiment.

I tangled on color and black-and-white photocopies… The colored ones turned out better I think. Here’s a collage of those:img_20161017_164648

This black and white photo copy worked out well, I tangled in Metallic and Glaze Gelly Rolls from Sakura. I love the stained-glass look achieved in the top left corner!

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I then traced the outlines of a couple of the leaves and used them as a string to tangle within.

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I also attempted to use them with my Yupo paper and alcohol inks…

 

img_20161017_104115

…it didn’t work but the in-process pictures look pretty neat 🙂

 

This challenge (combined with some insomnia) also inspired me to work with more floral and organic tangles and doodles…which led to me starting a new coloring book. I was “adult coloring” long before the fad set in, and coloring is what led me to Zentangle, so I still hold it near and dear to my heart. I also love that tangling has given me the courage to try my hand at designing and drawing my own coloring books. I have one in my Etsy store already, and now I have two more in the works.

 

Here’s an example of one page, feel free to download it, print it, and color it. Please don’t redistribute, but share a link to this post with your friends and share your colored masterpiece by posting it on Instagram and tag me @zenandzin_czt or post onto my Facebook page to share! Or, post on your own blog and comment with a link back here! 🙂 I just want to see what everyone comes up with!

page-1-blog-freebie

Cheers!!

 

Sarah, CZT, Zen and Zin

 

You Know It’s Fall When….

I have been working on getting involved in different weekly challenges, it helps me focus on patterns I may not otherwise choose on my own and helps me get involved in the Zentangle community. I am a bit of an introvert, so it is all too easy for me to stay in my comfort zone of alone-ness. This week there have been two challenges, The Diva’s challenge of Guordgeous and the Facebook Square One group’s Antique focus.

Guordgeous just has fall written all over it. It’s so guord-y and pumpkin-y, it’s quite lovely this time of year. And for some reason this pattern as alway eluded me… I can never quite seem to get the hang of it, so I will continue to focus on it for the rest of the month and see if I can grow to love it.

Antique is another pattern that is beautiful, I tend to stay away from the less-than-abstract patterns, but this one is fun and works well as an autumny tangle.

 

img_20161015_143725 img_20161015_143612 img_20161015_143513 img_20161015_143406

Scallamp Step-Out and Deconstruction

Hi, friends!!

Here is the deconstruction/step-out of my pattern “Scallamp.” I’ve also included a video I shot of myself tangling this pattern with some filler possibilities! Leave a comment to let me know what you think and if you have any questions!

Scallamp was inspired by a lamp I had from Ikea. It tall and had a paper shade with papier-mache-like strips spiraling around it and vertically. It was pretty trippy! It took me a year of playing with the lines and curves to come up with something that was easily repeatable and met a lot of the requirements for a tangle pattern.

scallamp-step-out-sarah-uram-czt

 

 

Always Learning and Growing!

As a Certified Zentangle Teacher I am constantly learning new patterns and techniques to bring to you, my students! This week I was introduced to a lovely new pattern and I have been obsessed with it. To boot, it was also part of The Diva’s Weekly Challenge. I have not participated in The Diva’s Challenge, something has always come up or I’ve been distracted, so I am really excited to participate this week!

I encourage you to check out her blog, she’s pretty amazing 😉

So, here’s what I’ve been working on for Weekly Challenge #287

blue-dreamcatcher fall-dreamcatcher

red-dreamcatcher black-n-pink-dreamcatcher

I am really excited about this pattern and its applications. For those of you in my Alumni group on Facebook, be expecting some new videos coming your way showing you how to use this pattern and how to fill it!

You can find stepouts to Dreamcatcher by CZT Daniel L. here

If you’d like to get inbox updates on new posts from Zen and Zin add your email here

Until next time!

Keep calm and Tangle On!

Sarah, CZT, Zen and Zin

What’s So Great About a Certified Zentangle Teacher Anyway?

As you peruse this website and my social media posts, you may start to ask yourself, Why Zentangle®? You may wonder why not hundreds, but thousands of people are so drawn to this method, this art form. And why do so many choose to learn from a Certified Zentangle Teacher. I mean, it’s just doodles and lines and circles, right? Right.

RIGHT!

The simplicity behind the Zentangle® method* is what makes it so great. And once you start you realize it’s not JUST doodles, but intentional strokes of the pen, it all starts to make sense. It is abstract, too, so you don’t have to worry about making things right or perfect. It’s all about the process.

So, why do you need to learn from a Certified Zentangle Teacher, like me? You don’t. There are tons of wonderful books, blogs, and Facebook Groups to help you learn on your own. But, I can nearly guarantee you won’t enjoy learning alone as much as you will with a CZT and with your closest friends. There is camaraderie that takes place when you learn with your friends and develop new skills together. And the CZT is there to help guide you and encourage you along the way. I designed Zen and Zin Parties so that you could experience the learning of Zentangle n the privacy and comfort of tor home and with your favorite people. It is just that much more fun!

So, why am I writing this?

It’s been a rough week for me. I’ve been uninspired, unmotivated, and even a little stubborn against trying to get out of my own funk. I couldn’t find it in me to do ANYTHING-no tangling, no journaling, not even coloring. And then someone sent me a picture of what they did this week in their weekly get-together. Beautiful tangles. I could see the passion coming through in their strokes and I was excited and inspired again, because I had a part in their journey.

It brings me joy to see my “alumni” get together after the party has ended to continue to learn and grow together. I get to see friendships strengthen, confidences grow, and creativity blossom over and over and over again. How cool is that?

whyczt

As a CZT I am here to help you learn and grow. And I am learning and growing right long side you. Even though I am “certified” it doesn’t mean I’m perfect, knowing all the names of patterns or how to do them. It doesn’t mean that I don’t have bad days or that I am always happy with the results of my tangling, regardless of how great the process was. It doesn’t even mean I get every stroke right or can teach anyone better than another CZT or better than they can each themselves. It does mean, however, that I am committed to learning, to growing, to making mistakes, and to help you do the same!

So, come learn with me and enjoy the world of Zentangle!

Cheers!

Sarah, CZT

*The Zentangle® Method is an easy-to-learn, relaxing, and fun way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns. It was created by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. “Zentangle” is a registered trademark of Zentangle, Inc. Learn more at zentangle.com.