Thursday, 26 February 2015

Tangled Tubes and Unexpected Inspiration

Hi everyone,

You know that thing where you're on a crowded train and you pretend to be absolutely fascinated by an advert or a public information poster or your shoelaces or anything at all, rather than risk making eye contact with a stranger?? Well, maybe it's just me .... but that's what I was doing a couple of weeks ago when Inspiration Struck. I've spent a lot of time travelling on the London Underground just recently, studying the Tube Map ...


There is actually a really interesting story behind this map which is now so familiar to anyone who uses the public transport system in London. This is how a map of the London Underground used to look back in 1908 ...


In 1931, Harry Beck drew up the first version of the Tube Map we know and love today. It's really a schematic diagram rather than a geographical map and of course it is very much easier to follow ...



You can read all about Charles Henry Beck here. Apparently he did all the initial design work in his spare time and was never properly acknowledged during his lifetime.

Anyway, back to the inspiration part - it suddenly struck me, as I was sitting in a crowded carriage perusing the Tube Map again, that it would make a great starting point for a bit of Zentangle® - a kind of sampler to practice some of my tangles I find this structured method of making patterns one stroke at a time by repetition of small marks is very calming when my mind is in turmoil - it's like meditative doodling to me and I've been doing quite a bit of it recently ...

I started by transferring the outline of a Tube Map to a piece of plain white smooth card ...


... then elaborated on some of the lines and added some definition to the spaces ...


... and started to tangle (check out Tangle Patterns for lots of ideas) ...


... using my lovely new Micron pens on the smooth white card was a joy and I just couldn't stop ...


Once I've filled it all in with pattern, I will start colouring in with my Kaiser Fusion pens - do you think Londoners would still recognise it when I'm finished?! 

Whilst I was in tracing mode, I made an extra copy, because I had another idea - all those tubes and things made me think of a huge fantastical steampunk-style machine ....

Thanks for popping in today, see you again soon :o)

Annie xxx

1 comment:

Val Thorpe said...

OMG Annie what a good idea and it is bloody amazing. I would love to see if anyone could decipher the end result :D
I have never tried this... it boggles my mind but who knows I never thought I would get into art journalling either. :D
We are busy with our trip. We are going to be travelling all over Europe in August and will come to UK either in July or September and will likely be there for a week or more. I will let you know as soon as I know for sure as I would love to meet up for a cup of something <3