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design puzzles, part 2

November 9, 2009

I’m still trying to figure out how to use the Fibonacci series in design mosaics/matrices.

A few weeks ago, I ran across Meg Nagakawa’s blog posts about the weeklong workshop she took with Randall Darwall in 2006. Mr. Darwall recommends they use the Fibonacci series to create “dynamic proportions” of each hue in warp and weft.  I wish I could see some of the weavings in person, because I’m confused about how that would look.

Jennifer Moore, the weaver I saw last month, uses the Fibonacci series to determine the number of shapes woven into her designs.

Neither of those processes really resonate with me, so I continue to search for my own method. Since I’m not currently set up to weave anything anyway, I decided to try paper as a quick-and-dirty way to see various techniques.  So, I’m working with patterned-paper tiles, or colored or watercolor pencils on grid paper.

With the patterned-paper tile mosaics, for #1 – #4, each colorway/pattern was scattered as randomly as I could manage. I tried to avoid adjacent colorways as much as possible, but sometimes they have to be next to each other. I wanted to see if not having blocks of colorways would still provide a “dynamic proportion” effect. In the end, though, it was too random-ish. So for #5, I placed the tiles of the largest colorway into a spiral pattern first, then placed the smaller numbers of different colorways so that the spiral was not obscured. And that worked, but perhaps only because the largest colorway (“castles”) was the only one with any significant patterning; the others were mostly solid-colors. Which is not as complex as I want to go.

Yesterday I decided to try combining SpectrumPatterns [designs based on a rainbow spectrum of hues in various configurations] with Fibonacci series proportions. Each set is 88 tiles (8×11) and 9 hues. Using rainbow hues is appealing because there’s an inherent sequence/flow, but also because I’ve discovered various sets of hues that work together, no matter who is juxtaposed with whom.

I have 3 sets so far, and in each, the “design” is the result of the way I created some sort of spiral. None of them are entirely satisfactory, so I will try other combinations. I will also try something more rectangular (maybe 4×22) so I can try a sine-wave variation.

I’ll post photos to Flickr, probably tomorrow.

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