ATC · Paint Party Friday · Tips · Watercolor · Zentangle:ZIA

Something New for the New Year

“Rest not! Life is sweeping by; go dare before you die.
Something mighty and sublime, leave behind to conquer time.”
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Happy New Year all.  I’ve been trying to write this post for 2 days, but life has been sweeping by. Sadly, I’ve not accomplished anything mighty or sublime, but I was able to rescue a failed watercolor study. This is the ‘before’ picture:


(When your own mother tells you that you should start over, you know it is time to give up on a piece.)

Instead, I thought that it might be fun to turn it into some Artist Trading Cards (ATCs). So, I cut it into a 16 rectangles and set to work on tangling each one separately. I know people who just tangle right over a watercolor wash as if it wasn’t there, but I prefer to let the colors and texture of the paint act as a string.

The result, well, they weren’t much better than the original.

ATCs made from cut up watercolor landscape

So then I wondered, what would it look like if I put them all back together? It was a good idea.  It would have been a better idea if I had numbered the back of the cards before I shuffled them. It took almost half an hour to piece together this puzzle.  And made a note about which way should be up. But I like the result.  Hope you do, too.

tangled watercolor
All put back together after tangling

In any case, it was a fun exercise and something I will definitely consider next time I have a painting that doesn’t excite me.

Wishing you lots of creative experiments this year.


11 thoughts on “Something New for the New Year

  1. Wow, Cris, this is amazing. I often take watercolors that I don’t want framed and cut them into greetings card “faces”. I never thought about tangling over them. What an idea!


    1. I like that idea. I think that even if you don’t like the outcome, the effort is worth the time if you learn from it. If nothing else, you can tear up a painting and use it to make homemade paper. I’ve done that before 🙂


  2. I think the tangles turned out beautifully both on their own and all together. Your following the water color lines made the tangles hang together 🙂
    Happy PPF


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