Ok, so, I don't like it. I don't like anything about it. I'm cranky. Ugh.
This tile is part of the Diva Challenge this week, using a tangle I don't prefer, called MacDee. (Everyone's taste is different, and this one--which I'm sure many folks will love and do beautifully--grates on me.) It's basically a plaid.
Can we talk about how plaids remind me of the uniforms I had to wear to school as a kid in a hyper-religious elementary school and high school? You would think I could get past this at my age, right? The first thing I noticed when considering doing this challenge was that memory. I sat with it for awhile and found some humor in it. I'm not sure whether my aversion to plaid arose from this, or whether it's just one of those patterns I would never have liked anyway. I suspect the latter.
So when I saw the challenge, I knew I it would be hard to complete. The other tangle is called Squid and I'm tempted to title this, "Squid in a Net," or, "Halloween Squid." LOL.
However, I did it--I sat down and worked it even though I didn't like it. It gave me practice, and practice is always worthwhile. That's the great advantage of an art challenge: being forced to work within constraints and with things one may absolutely adore--or may really want to ignore, like this one. I thought long and hard about whether I should skip this week, and finally decided I needed to do it and observe what happened as I did.
What I observed: monkey-mind came up big-time. It whined and complained the entire way as I drew. How ugly it was going to be. How pointless. How people who like this sort of pattern would do gorgeous things with it, compared to my effort. It wouldn't shut up and it certainly wasn't restful. The thing is, I was aware of it, and I'm usually not, but I am trying to be more mindful as I work. While I didn't get the benefit of Zentangle's® usual calming effect, I was able to observe how much monkey-mind wanted to stop the process and do just about anything else.
Monkey-mind is a quitter. Monkey-mind wants to give in to aversions and dislikes and turn away. Monkey-mind is frequently (even usually) afraid, annoyed, and unhappy.
But I don't have to be.
So I just watched, and kept working. I don't love the result. So what? I do love that I got the practice, and that I learned from it--about myself and about art.
There is always something to learn, and this challenge made me wonder how one works with colored pencil on a paper with this much "tooth." I have so much more to learn about working with colored pencil.
There's a reason these are called challenges. Wonder what the next one will bring?
I'm a textile artist (traditional rug hooking, punch needle rug hooking, and other textile arts), long-time meditator and coach, focused on learning about the interplay of art, creativity, and mindfulness every day.
NEXT INTRO TO ZENTANGLE CLASS:
No immediate group classes scheduled (I'm always open to hearing about a good venue in the Cambridge-Somerville area). I am always happy to teach 1-1 and/or in a small group in your home.
Come and amaze yourself!
SITES TO WATCH:
Insight Meditation Society
Oxford Rug Hooking School
Zentangle: The Official Site
Green Mountain Rug Hooking
Massachusetts Tarot Society
Skillful Meditation Project