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Stars and Stripes - Bold and Beautiful

July: the month that I proudly display our US "stars and stripes." For thousands of years, stars and stripes have adorned so many things found in the art and culture of every nation on Earth. The patterns hold intrinsic beauty and value as well as varied symbolic meaning; like our own flag. Maybe these are some of the reasons that you find so many star and stripe patterns in our world of Zentangle;® people love them!

When I was shopping for my season's supply of garden flowers; both annual and perennial, I spotted this attractive three-dimensional metal star in the floral boutique. What a perfect form to turn into a flower pot, I thought - and even better, one to embellish with Zentangle (ZT) patterns. So I did! My custom star WITH strips hangs on the fence next to the gate that welcomes students to my recently opened art studio. I needed a way to mark that entrance since my ordered sign hadn't arrived in time for my studio opening. But for anyone looking for a house where Zentangle is spoken, this is a sure sign; follow the star! And this one is adorned with bold stripes in various ways.

The flag undulating in the wind makes such beautiful, serendipitous patterns. There's a tangle that I'm not even sure what it is called or who created it, but I've dubbed it "hills and valleys."It so deftly represents that undulating, wavy beauty of stripes in motion, just like those of the flag hanging on my front porch beam snapping to a fro in the Colorado breeze. I use the pattern all the time because I love the bold character and movement so much. You've seen it in my studio wall mural tree, on my tangled mask (previous blogs), and here are some tiles from my "Tangle a Day 2015" sketchbook with "hills and valleys" but less stripy; also note my use of black and white stripes:

Another example of bold stripes is shown here, in my "Tangle a Day 2015" series of sketches, of the aquafleur tangle by Rick and Maria :

Last, I wanted to share one of my very first ZT tiles. It's a fun idea I'm sure I copped from somewhere.The stripes or layers are filled in with different tangle patterns. (Note that my lines were not as confident at that time as I was still a beginner. I like looking back on early work; it reminds me of how much I have advanced.)

There would be so many possibilities with this "Princess-and-the-Pea" fairytale idea. Doesn't it look like the stacked mattresses atop the pea that so irritated the princess? These are that tangles I was learning at the time. Teaching tangles with this format would actually make a really great class!

Well, I hope I've inspired you to get our your preferred pen and play with some of the stars and stripes out there in the ZT world! Have fun with the never-ending possibilities.

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