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Tangled Tuesday No. 10

Although I’ve done a decent amount of tangling this week, I’m afraid I’m approaching today’s Tangled Tuesday post from a place of slight discouragement. Oh, I’m still deeply in love with tangling… but lately I’ve found myself becoming “stuck” more and more – stuck for ideas, stuck for inspiration, stuck on trying to learn new techniques that should come with practice but just aren’t working for me. And I worry that I’m stagnating, allowing the whole getting stuck thing to keep me in a rut of repeating the same old stuff over and over and over again, and becoming a complete bore to myself and others in the process.

At times I’m frustrated and impatient, increasingly feeling as though I’ve taken myself about as far as I can go on my own. I keep thinking way back to the early days of web design when I taught myself HTML and designed some simple sites, but needed to take it to the next level – that is, build on the basics I’d learned on my own by going to school and getting my web design certificate – before I would be able to do anything bigger and better. Translated into the tangling world, I’m chomping at the bit to get to a CZT seminar already – to learn from the experts, to be properly trained, to draw on others for tips and inspiration, and then take what I’ve learned to grow creatively and share with others – but doing so seems miles and miles away. And when some kid who’s doing nothing more than making potato salad as part of an ironic Kickstarter campaign has managed to raise tens of thousands of dollars from thousands of backers ($53,739 from 4,175 backers at the time I’m writing this post), while my own little non-ironic campaign oozes along at the speed of molasses… well, it’s a little disheartening.

Anyway, enough of my whining! Actually, writing out my struggles has helped somewhat… though I debated as to whether or not I should even share this post. On the one hand, I’d far rather keep this space positive and upbeat – but on the other I do want to be honest and authentic, and right now, at this moment, I am honestly and authentically feeling a little discouraged. I guess if you’re reading this I decided to post it after all – and if you’re still with me, I thank you for listening.

And now, onward. 🙂

New Tangles

This week I learned Floating Disks, Florz Variation, Flying Geese, Footprints, Frond, Germie, and Gewgle, all from Joy of Zentangle. (If you’re following along in Joy of Zentangle you might notice that I’ve been skipping a few of the designs. This isn’t because I didn’t like or want to do them, but because I’ve previously learned them through one of my other books. As I mentioned in an earlier post, there is often overlap and some repetition between the various Zentangle®1 books.)

I also learned Land Girlz and YAH, both designs which were posted this week on TanglePatterns.com.


Carrying on in my alphabet series, I’m well into designing the letter H and should be finished and able to share it in next week’s post.

Finished Projects

I’m so happy to say that I’ve finished the letter G!

Zenletter G

Zenletter G

Coming Soon

This week’s tangling goals include:

  • Photograph my previously-completed set of four Zendalas and set up listings to sell the originals in my as-yet-to-be-opened Etsy store. (Hey – I have an update! The framed pictures have now made it from a bag in the trunk of our car to a bag on a shelf in the mudroom. Now to get them into the main part of the house so that I can photograph them…)
  • Carry on with my Zenletter collection.
  • Continue adding products to Ten Thousand Tangles.
  • Create pieces for new sponsors.


Previous posts in this series are all tagged Tangled Tuesday.

For background on how I discovered and got involved in Zentangle, and links to further information and resources, check out my blog post For the love of tangling.

You can browse my entire tangle gallery at Ten Thousand Tangles.

And, if you’re interested in having a little piece of my art for yourself, please click on the GoFundMe button below for more information and also visit my Zazzle shop Ten Thousand Tangles. (Pssst… links to my international Ten Thousand Tangles shops are in the Alphabet Salad sidebar – just click on the appropriate flag and you’ll get to the place you need to be!)

1 The Zentangle® Method was created by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas and is copyrighted. Zentangle® is a registered trademark of Zentangle, Inc. Learn more at zentangle.com.


NaBloPoMo July 2014

Laurel Storey, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 32 comments… add one }
  • ElaineLK July 8, 2014

    I’m sorry to hear you’re feeling discouraged. You do such beautiful work, and from what I’ve seen, it doesn’t look to me like you’re repeating yourself at all. I really don’t understand this Kickstarter thing or why people would donate to such silly things. At least you’ve kept your dignity and self-respect by offering your work for sale rather than asking for people to pay your way for nothing. I have faith that things will improve and you will get to your seminar–in fact, I’m counting on meeting you here in Providence! This is just a suggestion that might sound crazy, but maybe you should pick out the first seminar that’s available and register for it–if you do that, it just may set things in motion and emit positive “energy” to work for you! Unless you have to pay the entire fee when you register? In that case, forget this idea 🙁

    • Laurel Regan
      July 8, 2014

      I don’t understand it either. I’m beginning to think that in order to succeed at getting attention on the internet you have to do something bizarre! Oh well – all in good time. I’m pretty sure all the scheduled seminars are booked up, but I’ll keep an eye out for when they announce the new ones for the spring. Fingers crossed!
      Laurel Regan recently posted… My 1970s childhood memoriesMy Profile

  • Alana
    July 8, 2014

    Sometimes, just talking things out with a friend helps me see something I haven’t seen, when trying to solve a problem. I think you’ve done just that in sharing with your blogging friends and acquaintances. It isn’t whining at all – I think you have the solution at hand already. Good luck in finding it.
    Alana recently posted… The Mad Plant GrowerMy Profile

  • Kimberley Wiggins
    July 8, 2014

    Your work is gorgeous and you are totally beautiful. Do not be dismayed. Just having the ability and talent that you have to do what you do is an amazing thing for me to watch. My name starts with a K and that is letter I am waiting for. I am keeping my eye on you.
    Kimberley Wiggins recently posted… Gathering The LocustMy Profile

  • Sophie Bowns
    July 8, 2014

    Oh no, don’t be discouraged!
    Keep going, your work looks really awesome!

  • Tammy Fuller
    July 8, 2014

    I love your work. I’m going to pin some of your stuff and subscribe so I can come back later and browse some more!
    Tammy Fuller recently posted… Quick Fix for Weight Loss?My Profile

  • Kathy Combs July 8, 2014

    I love the letter G you have created! I think my favorite of all is the section that has small tulips in it. I have a soft spot for all flowery tangles. My husband was home for 5 days and I simply don’t get a creative thing done at all when he is here. He is finally back on the road and I am just starting to get back to it. 😛
    Kathy Combs recently posted… Party HaikuMy Profile

  • Lily Leung July 8, 2014

    Your work is beautiful! I don’t understand tangling, except that it’s graphic art, right?

    Lily Leung recently posted… COME TO THE GARDENMy Profile

  • Arla DeField July 8, 2014

    Good for you for sharing where you really are! It shows everyone that moments of discouragement happen! Which they do!

    It also shows that you can get support from others who are not feeling discouraged in the moment. Which you did!
    Arla DeField recently posted… Dear College Self, You’re an IdiotMy Profile

  • Rajlakshmi July 8, 2014

    thank you for provising all the links. They are so helpful to a newbie like me.
    Rajlakshmi recently posted… Of Winter Mornings and NailsMy Profile

  • Life Breath Present July 8, 2014

    My friend, Laurel, I enjoy seeing your work and hearing of the process each week. You are creative and thigh feeling a bit discouraged at the moment, I’m quote confident you’ll get there when it’s your tone to get there.

    In fact, I’m reminded tonight in reading your post that good things take time and come when they’re supposed to instead of when our how I think they should :). Hugs to you!
    Life Breath Present recently posted… How We Leave It All Behind – Vacation StyleMy Profile

  • usha menon July 8, 2014

    Hi, Laurel, Your work is superb! I love your creativity.
    usha menon recently posted… When will women get justice? UBC Day 9My Profile

  • Shilpa Garg
    July 8, 2014

    Oh! We all go through some days when the world looks weary and depressing! Cheer up, Laurel. You are fabulous and so talented. You are doing great and am sure you will surpass your goals real soon too. Love the delicateness and the frilly Letter G. ♥
    Shilpa Garg recently posted… Strangers on a TrainMy Profile

  • Cathy Graham
    July 9, 2014

    I can totally relate to those feelings of self doubt and discouragement. I get them about writing all the time and wonder why I’m bothering sometimes. The main thing is to get through those feelings and keep going with our creative passions. Don’t let Mr. IC (Inner Critic) get the upper hand. He likes to whisper lies to us about us not being good enough and not to bother as no one cares anyhow. My Mr. IC is one big Pain in the you know what and I have to keep him under control and not let him out of his cage. He escapes now and then and tries to wreak havoc.

    All I know is that you are a very talented and lovely lady who has lots to offer and I feel lucky to know you. You’re always encouraging to other creative types which we all appreciate. And you’re so inspiring with your beautiful zentangles, your gorgeous photos and your great writing. Keep going! It may seem like no one cares but they do. Go, Laurel! Ra! Ra! Ra! *Cat shakes pompoms*
    Cathy Graham recently posted… UBC Day 8 – Pebbles in Your ShoeMy Profile

  • Susan - ofeverymoment
    July 9, 2014

    Maybe focusing on what you have accomplished will help. Your tangling art is amazing – and something not many of us could do!
    I am still sort of stuck back on your reference to teaching yourself HTML and then getting a web design certificate. Before I began blogging, I was only interested in basic use – but now I am hungry for that technical knowledge!
    You are inspiring Laurel,
    not boring!
    Susan – ofeverymoment recently posted… World Cup Soccer Players Kept Me Awake Last NightMy Profile

  • Sammy D July 10, 2014

    Laurel – I am sorry for your tangle fatigue and your frustration at not being able to attend the CZT seminar. It is quite an expense, for sure. I have learned so much from you, and I view supporting you the same way I view bloggers who self-publish a novel. I want to support those I follow and those who inspire me. I will make a donation today. You don’t need to send me any of your gorgeous art; that way you can use what you would have sent me as part if a promo elsewhere to boost your business. Continue looking forward; you will reach your goals.
    Sammy D recently posted… Sum-Sum-Summer TimeMy Profile

  • lindalh July 13, 2014

    You are an inspiration to more of us than you even know. Any endeavor worth its weight is not easy but a roller coaster. Otherwise, everybody would do it. Although going to RI to become certified is the ultimate, it is not the end all. There are many already certified teachers that you could pay far less money to have some classes with. I found one, hired her, brought her to our town and had friends join me in her class. It was wonderful and motivating, and cheaper for now. Someday, too, I would like to be certified, but in the meantime I keep searching for those new inspiring patterns everywhere I go and practice the ones others do. The teach that came here hinted that things were growing so fast that Maria may have to venture out and have seminars in new places. I vote yes on that!!!! In the meantime, have yourself a zen party with a few other local tanglers, and if there aren’t any, teach some. I showed my grandson and daughter during this past holiday weekend and they took off with it. My grandson plans on putting his in the state fair.


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