Mikro's subject for the History Fair, in case anyone has not guessed, was Maurits Cornelius Escher. Our entire household loves his artwork, and Mikro has been glancing through Escher books with us for ages. In all that time, it never occurred to me that, rather than just appreciate Escher's ingenious patterns, it might be possible to learn to make some of our own. And I'm an artist! (But I generally don't think of myself as someone who is incredibly technical or precise, or overly mathematical, even though homeschooling my son has done more to repair my relationship with math than all the formal schooling I ever had, including an A in college calculus. Trying to teach it has required me to really understand it, on a level not before required for passing math tests. And that has been tremendously empowering for me, and really good for my kid, who loves math, but hates "boring arithmetic"... But I digress...) But the history fair and Mikro's burgeoning interest in patterns and tessellations caused me to surf around to see what was out there in the way of how to's.
Here are some how to tessellate resources to check out:
And here is a documentary about Escher's life and art:
And now here is my attempt at a photo tutorial (Please forgive the awful font.):
Now comes the really fun part. Stare at that shape you created and figure out what it reminds you of... Mikro saw cardinals. Then add detail to your individual tiles and color in as you like....
Mikro was very proud of his piece, and I just love how those cute little birds turned out!
You know I had to try one! My shape reminded me of sting rays.
I like Mikro's better!