M IS FOR....
I have spent many hours this past week learning the METHOD of how to make Celtic knots and in particular the one that is in a basket weave style. The interesting thing about Celtic Knots is that they appear to have no beginning and no end. The one I did yesterday for Twinchies on Monday was a simple knot, yet quite attractive I think. The one above is a basket weave style.
These designs were very popular in illuminated manuscripts and other decorative work in the middle ages as well as in earlier years in other cultures. The name Celtic became attached to the style because it was used so profusely in by the Celts. Yet there are many many examples of these all over the world in early art work. Amazingly, for many years learned authorities had no idea what METHOD the scribes used to draw them. Some thought they were done with a compass and ruler others thought it was just a gift that these men could sit down and draw one. There were other theories involving mathematics and geometry.
Then one day in the 1970's scholars were going through a number of old manuscripts
and found one that had a series of dots on it and after much conjecture they discovered that this was the beginning of the METHOD used for drawing Celtic knots.
I learned all the above information from the web so I am not 100% certain it is accurate. However what I did learn from all my searching the web was the METHOD I could use to draw my own Celtic knots. I used several different places for instructions and put together my own METHOD with their help.
If you are not interested in learning to draw Celtic knots like the one above, feel free to go visit another ABC Wednesday now. But if you would like to learn more, also feel free to copy my instructions which follow. You don't have to be an artist to do this, because it only uses straight lines with small hooks on the ends. So take the plunge and try something new. You may be surprised to find a hidden artist in you!
I do hope someone is interested enough to follow my METHOD as I have put in hours and hours of work putting this together, refining and simplifying it. So here goes:
MY METHOD FOR DRAWING A BASKET WEAVE STYLE OF CELTIC KNOT
You will need:
An ordinary black felt tip Sharpie pen
Another black pen Sharpie or otherwise but a thickness of only 4 or 5 mm
A pencil and eraser and lots of concentration!
Take your squared piece of paper and pencil and make 4 horizontal rows of six dots, two squares apart. Make the dots fairly large.
If you look carefully at the dots you have made in step one, you will see that your dots make three rows of squares bounded by four dots like on a dice. There are three rows across and five rows down.
Now put a dot in the middle of each square making them like five dots on a dice.
You now have a rectangle of dots. Outline the rectangle with the thicker black felt pen.
Now draw another rectangle, one square in, inside the first one USING A PENCIL (this will be erased at the end).
This step uses lines with hooks on each end which are drawn diagonally from square to square using the fine tipped black pen -- and that is the most artistic you have to be! Note these examples:
Within the smaller rectangle note that there are four rows of the printed paper squares going from left to right.
Starting on the bottom row and with the fine tipped black pen, draw a hooked line diagonally across each square (from left to right) with the hooks going UNDER the dots.
On the next row up do the same only this time make the hooks go OVER the dots.
On the third row up do the same only the hooks go UNDER the dots and on the fourth line of squares the hooks go OVER the dots.
You are now going to draw your hooked lines in each row just as you did above only the lines will go diagonally in the opposite direction, that is from right to left. The first (bottom row) goes OVER the dots . The second row up goes UNDER the dots and so on.
That completes the inside rectangle.
Your rectangles should now look like this:
We will now work in the empty border of the larger rectangle.
Starting at the bottom, skip the first printed square, then draw four hooked lines OVER the dots diagonally from left to right.
To do the top row, turn your rectangles upside down and do as you did above (skip the first printed square then draw four hooked lines OVER the dots).
Turn your paper back up to the right way again and fill in the two side rows. For the left hand side, starting at the bottom, skip the first TWO printed squares then draw a hooked line OVER the dots diagonally from left to right. (You should only have two hooked lines to draw in each of the the side rows). Turn the paper upside down and do the other side of the larger rectangle. That is: skip the first TWO printed squares and draw the hooked lines UNDER the dots.
In the drawing above I have drawn the hooked lines in the border in pencil rather than ink to help distinguish them from other lines we have already drawn.
Erase the pencil rectangle.
Define the outside lines of the larger rectangle by making the line from dot to dot slightly curved. Make the dots on the outside lines slightly triangular. Make all the dots inside both rectangles darker and form them into a more square shape so that they don't look like dots any more.
AND THAT'S IT!
YOU HAVE MADE A BASKET WEAVE CELTIC KNOT.
YOU CAN COLOR IT AS I HAVE DONE IN THE ONE AT THE VERY TOP OF THIS PAGE IF YOU WISH.
If you're really feeling ambitious try doing all this on plain un-squared paper and using a ruler to place your dots.
This is my very long and perhaps complicated, but hopefully worthwhile, entry for Mrs Nesbitt's ABC Wednesday project for the letter M. Click here to see what all we participants have been working on this week.