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Hidden Words Workshop

Talk about teaching old dogs new tricks! What a learning curve I have been on during the last few weeks!

Instagram is counterintuitive for me. I get messages in about six different places and I can't tell which I've answered and which I haven't. I have a storyboard thing that other people can post to and I don't know how to post to it myself...what's that all about? I have mastered posting a photo now, although a lot of my square-shaped photos don't fit the format properly and get cut off. I'm tagged, hashtagged, '@'d' and liked, followed and unfollowed. I know I have been spending far too much time on it because it even tells me that!

I do online classes three times a week through Instagram for reasons I can't remember. At first, I didn't even know I had to save these when the one hour time limit ran out, so the classes just went 'poof' into the ether. As it is, people have told me how to resolve that and have also said I can download the class and keep it. That's beyond my poor phone as I just get an error message. So these classes disappear after 24 hours. Judging from the messages I receive, this upsets quite a few people. I'm so sorry. I've tried and better tried but that's just how it seems to be. I can now add to my own story though. This also disappears after 24 hours. Seems Instagram is meant to be very transient. A lot of my words are completely hidden - they disappear completely!

Zoom on the other hand will record everything and share it to the cloud unless you plead with it not to. It is a great platform for family or business meetings, especially useful in the current situation. The Zoom blurb says it has a 'Touch up my appearance' option and I rather liked that idea but as could have been predicted, mine doesn't have that option. (So sorry!)

Many people who do online classes use Zoom and I had my first experience teaching a basic Spanish language class during Week 1 of lockdown and I didn't like it. I was very uncomfortable teaching Spanish in a virtual way - I usually only teach English and I'm very happy doing that. I felt the technology exposed all my mistakes in Spanish and I couldn't interact effectively with the students. Anyway, I'm not doing it anymore because I simply don't have time. If I was somewhat addicted to Zentangle before the coronavirus circled the world, now, I am totally obsessed. So much so that I have overcome my dislike of Zoom. With the help of friends and family and several hours trying to connect my phone to the Zoom party, I have now managed to have a semi-reasonable set up that worked with only minimal problems for the first class I delivered online on Saturday. The sticky tape that held my camera in place did give way at one point and about halfway through the class, the internet started to wheeze and complain and I lost visual contact with more than half the class but they all battled bravely on! I am so grateful to them all.

The workshop was on Hidden Words, which is a Zentangle version of something I used to do at school and about which I wrote a couple of days ago. in Hidden Words, Hidden Stories. My class had gone really well and after a couple of requests for more of the same, I plucked up the courage to set up a workshop via Zoom. And 12 lovely people from Spain and the States joined in. I don't have all the photos here to share with you but you will see that even with the difficulties of a stumbling internet, they were able to stick with me and produce some spectacular results. I just want to thank them all again and especially for the wonderful feedback they gave me. I would teach Zentangle to the wall sometimes, if I am absolutely honest - or the cat, she quite likes sitting alongside me when I am drawing - so to have people following me and feeling the Zen, well, it is just the best feeling.

Let me share their hidden words. And watch out for more because I have two more workshops coming up!

This says ¨Thanks Annie'. A lovely touch!

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