Category Archives: Maths

Cellcutz – video paper designs

When I got my Silhouette Cameo electronic cutter in 2012 I bought quite a few svg files from other designers before starting to make my own.

geometric card small

Some of these were stunning geometric designs which I repurposed for use in video work :)

little hut geometrics small

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Filed under Art, craft, Maths, paper cut, Video

..destitute of geometry…

destitute of geometry, oxford math institute
We had a fantastic time in Oxford last week visiting the new maths institute for a garden party and talk by Marcus du Sautoy.
I’ve only been to Oxford once, many years ago so it was a real treat to be shown around by Cha-guy who studied maths there.
Our first night was spent at the delightful riverside pub the Trout Inn, a beautiful venue with peacocks roaming around the gardens, a fine restaurant and tranquil waterside location.
the trout, oxford

The following day we visited the Bodleian Library to see the ‘Magical Books’ exhibition.. a wonderful compendium of ancient and recent books which are all inspired by the notion of magic.

We then made our way over to the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter and the newly built maths institute.
The building was amazing with very clever geometric twists in its structure, the main entrance has a series of Penrose tiles and a sign saying ‘Let no one destitute of geometry enter this building’
I had visions of maths professors having to ‘throw shapes’ like a form of geometric break-dancing in order to gain entry to the lecture theatres.. :P

penrose tiles, oxford maths institute

Penrose tiled floor, Oxford maths institute

Yes those are my feet, do you like my red shoes? :)

The talk by Marcus du Sautoy was focused on the ‘Secret mathematicians’ artists such as Le Corbusier, Salvidor Dali and Olivier Messiaen who integrated maths into their creative works.
Here is an extract

It was followed by a ‘Garden Party’ in the common room (I think the garden was still being built) and tour of the building which had some clever maths integrated into the architecture including a glass crystal structure which mapped the sound of a drum,
oxford maths institute
south crystal sign oxford maths institute
as well as a roof which mimicked baroque perspectives.
oxford maths institute roof
Afterwards we had al fresco drinks in a pub near Christchurch college. I recognised the area immediately as I had discovered a rare clip of J.R.R Tolkien walking out of the college, the camera then pans to the Blackwells bookshop which was just in front of the pub where we were, here is a link to the clip
(sorry for the nerdy archive footage diversion there, but I just had to get that out of my system..)

On our last day we decided to walk from Oxford to Abingdon along the River Thames, it was lovely, peaceful and quite wild in places.
At one point we thought we could hear an ice-cream van but it turned out to be a Jamaican steel band floating down the river..

I totally fell in love with Oxford and can’t wait to go back!

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Filed under Exploring, History, local, Maths, Travel


Hello, it’s been a while since I’ve posted here as life is all a whirl at the moment. :)
I’ve had to stop creating my desktop wallpaper calendars due to lack of time, sorry if you have been waiting for them but hopefully I will resume after I’ve finished my current project..

Over the last few weeks I’ve been learning 3d modeling programs and graphic design software in order to create my own 3d paper cuts, things are going well and I’ll soon have a few designs to show which I’ll also make available for download on another site (which I am currently designing) they will be in SVG format initially so can be cut on a number of die-cut machines.

Here is a sneak preview of one of the designs, I hope you like them :)

dovecote houses paper cut paper craft

In other news the lovely CHA-guy presented a paper at the Linux Audio Conference where he explained his project on FM Oscillators and 4 dimensional space, the picture bellow shows the output of the program he made, which he kindly framed for me as a present. :)
I don’t understand any of the maths involved or the coding but its does look pretty… :)
Gotta dash now

Hope your week goes well..

Lyapunov Space of Coupled FM Oscillators

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Filed under Art, craft, experimental, Maths, paper cut

Afrique Geometrique..

adinkra symbols

Adinkra symbols

I have an interest in African geometry, especially in printed fabrics, wood carvings and metal work.
Whilst studying for my environmental biology degree (many years ago!!) I took up batik fabric printing and made cushions and wall hangings using African patterns.
More recently I’ve been visiting the British Museum in london to explore the African galleries, here is one of the videos I shot there, (it also contains imagery from the Horniman Museum in South London)

Last christmas I made zippered pouches as presents using South African Shweshwe fabric and batik


Shweshwe fabric was originally manufactured in the UK using an acid discharge printing technique developed by Gustav Deutsch
The patterns proved popular in Africa so when the Lancashire based manufacturer ceased production in the UK, the operation moved to Cape Town and it is now known by the popular brand name Three Cats

I also have an interest in Adinkra symbols and have used them in much of my artwork including this highly stylised painting of a rhubarb leaf and Adinkra symbols

Rhubarb Leaf and Adinkra symbol

Rhubarb Leaf and Adinkra symbol

Adinkras were used as a form of written communication in West Africa during the 1800’s, the geometric shapes express and symbolise various sayings and proverbs.

Another fascinating example of African geometry can be be found via this Ted Talk about African Fractals in buildings and braids by Ron Eglash the author of a book with the same name.

He studied aerial photographs of African settlements and found that some were built around complex fractal geometric shapes, many of which were considered sacred by the villagers.

The talk then goes on to explain how other symbolic traditions could have led to the development of the first form of binary used in computer engineering.

It really is a fascinating talk!!

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Filed under Art, craft, History, Maths, Science, sewing

Humble Umbels…

Cow Parsley seed head

I really love the form of the plants in the Umbelliferae family, I’m entranced by the upward sweeping negative curvature of the flowers (inflorescence), which resembles the inverted circles found in hyperbolic geometry.

Wild Carrot seed head

They are found in the British Isles as the native plants Wild Carrot (also known as Queen Anne’s Lace), Cow Parsley, Hogweed  and many others. Inhabiting the woodland edge, hedgerows and areas of rough grass in the inner city.

So next time you go for a walk, look out for the tell-tale upside down umbrella shapes of this very common plant.

hyperbolic crochet

hyperbolic crochet

I think I’m especially drawn to them due to their illustration of a type of geometry known as Hyperbolic, this natural form can be seen in anything from holly leaves, bracket fungi, corals, kale and sea slugs. It has even been modeled in crochet by Daina Taimiða.

You can also make a model of hyperbolic geometry by joining 7 sided heptagons to form a non-flat surface.

The fabric of space is thought to be hyperbolic expanding infinitely via the folded negative curvature of non-euclidean geometry.

(The Cow Parsley seed head image is available to download as a desktop calendar here)

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Filed under Art, craft, crochet, experimental, Maths, Nature, Photography, Science