I've been posting a lot of drawings on Instagram lately, mostly of animals. This post I wanted to highlight another frequent player in my sketchbook -- zendalas.
The word is a hybrid of Zentangle and mandala. Zentangle is a type of drawing that involves the use of structured patterns, while a mandala is an intricate circular symbol from Hinduism and Buddhism that represents the universe. I just draw mine for fun and relaxation, so I'm going to use the word zendala rather than mandala.
I pretty much always have a zendala going in my sketchbook. I work on them when we're watching TV or hanging out with Ransom in the living room. Here are a few that are in my current sketchbook (which is almost full thanks to the 100 Day Project).
Lately I'm digging the ones that fill up the whole page the most. Much more dramatic.
You should try drawing some yourself! You just start in the middle and grow from there, adding shapes and lines and dots and bumps and whatever you feel like. I rarely finish drawing one in one sitting. No rush.
Don't worry about being precise, mine certainly aren't. I've found that the more detail you add, the more it appears precise. I suppose our eyes get distracted by all the pretty shapes.
A while back I painted some zendalas all smooshed together. Then I ordered it as a laptop case from my Society6 shop (I use the case for my iPad, not a laptop. Not that that is important...). I think it turned our rather lovely.
Creating Some Structure
This post is going to be me talking to myself about getting on a schedule. It’s pretty much just for my own benefit, but I’m letting you in on my internal conversation ...
I have four ongoing projects right now.
1. 100 Day Project I have already written a lot about this, but I am drawing an animal every day for 100 days. I post these drawings to my Facebook and Instagram (@laurakatherin) accounts , so make sure you are following!
2. Bug Coloring Book I've also written a bit about this. For over a year I've been having this as a goal, and it's GOING to happen. Even if I only sell two copies, I want to get this printed.
3. Art Licensing If you don't know, art licensing involves renting out your images to manufacturers who then create products (pillows, plates, journals, anything really) using that image and you get royalties. I think my work would do well with licensing, I just need to know how to go about it. So I'm taking an e-course from Laura C. George to learn the biz -- the lingo, how to pitch to manufacturers, how to negotiate a contract. I'm excited about this!
4. Children's Book One of my good friends has written a children's book and asked me to illustrate it. I only have a few sketches so far, but this is also something I've never done so I'm excited to learn as I go.
So that's kind of a lot. I'm trying to work a little bit on each project each week, but that doesn't always happen. It all depends on nap-length and my motivation. Lately I’m least motivated about the coloring book, because I think I’m now on the editing/formatting part, which I’m more intimidated by.
I'm thinking of making a weekly schedule, one I can loosely stick to and that will hopefully make me feel more structured. I do love structure, which I know is not very artist-like of me. Here’s what I’m thinking...
So that doesn’t necessarily mean I’ll work on said project on that day. Just that if I do end up having time to devote to my art business, that is how I will focus my efforts.
You can see already I’m off schedule because its Thursday and I’m blogging.... that’s because yesterday was a crap nap for Ransom and I still want to get a post in this week.
So that is a loose schedule. I’m talking to myself here, because I know my tendencies. I don’t want to introduce any new guilt into my life for not sticking to my made up schedule. But it is nice to have goals and structure.
Alright, I’ve gotten to the end of this blog post and Ransom is still napping... (knock on wood). Let see what else can get done!
I’m trucking along on this 100 day project. Today is day nine (only 91 to go!). I picked up an animal book in the children’s section of the library for inspiration.
I love progress pics. You can never get it back — how it looked before. I often forget to take them with these quick drawings.
My own baby bear is fighting off a yucky cold and is being pretty cuddly and pathetic today.
I think I’m done drawing bugs for my coloring book — for the moment at least (I’ve said this before). Now I need to focus on editing my bug drawings and formatting my coloring book. I plan on self-publishing through CreateSpace. My goal is to get it all done this year, and who knows, perhaps start working on a new one.
I’ve been feeling pretty energized with my art lately. Making these little commitments — blogging every week and drawing an animal everyday — have helped. I have a couple of other projects I’m working on as well, but that’s enough updates for one blog post.
Is there any particular animal you’d like to see me draw in the next 91 days?
I’m diving into the 100 Day Challenge again! I’ve decided to draw an animal everyday for the next 100 days. I’ve already got two days under my belt, and I consider that an accomplishment. Especially considering my 17-month-old is deciding to wake up before 6 and take shorter-than-usual naps.
Every day I continue I am going to pat myself on the back
I have loads of inspiration on the bottom shelf of our living room bookshelf. That’s where Ransom’s picture books live. For instance, the reason I drew the crocodile ...
Excited to see where this challenge takes me!
A place to share the process. A space to be honest about the triumphs and trials of my daily life as an artist and mama. Writing motivates and refreshes me.