Sunday, May 15, 2022

How To Draw A Celtic Knot Border

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Creating A Celtic Knot

How to Draw a Celtic Knot Border Step by Step

Alexander Suricoma Babich, manager of design studio MacoshDesign, became enchanted with Celtic design after watching The Secret of Kells, an animated film in which the main character creates intricate Celtic designs and patterns. This inspired him to begin studying Celtic design and create his own drawings.

For me, designing Celtic knots is similar to solving a crossword, says Alexander. The more complicated it is the better! It is incredibly interesting to interlace the strips put one on top and then on the bottom, twist the knot with itself, and finally connect two ends to get one infinite line. Its like magic.

We asked Alexander to share his process for creating a basic Celtic knot:

Hi everyone!

Today, Ill show how I draw Celtic patterns. This method allows you to create a hand-drawn pattern that will be perfectly seamless, resulting in unique artwork with all the charm of a handcrafted product and all the advantages of computer graphics including the ability to scale, experiment with colours, easily modify shapes, and of course prepare to print.

In this downloadable library, youll find a final file to accompany each step so you can compare your results with mine.

1. Create the backdrop grid for your drawing in Adobe Illustrator

First, create a standard vertical A4 RGB document.

Choose the Rectangular Grid Tool, which is located under the Line Segment Tool instrument.

Open the Rectangular Grid Tool Options menu by clicking on the artboard.

Simple Plait With Four Strands

Draw the top left diamond. Draw the top left and bottom right sides only. Keep inside the dots. This is the first strand.
Draw a curved line at the top. This represents the strand bending round to go downwards.
Draw the lower diamond the same, still keeping inside the dots. This will make the long line look wonky. This is the second strand.
Draw the middle diamond. This time you draw the bottom left and top right sides. Keep within the dots! This is the third strand.
Draw the top diamond and the top curve, as before. This continues the second strand.
Draw a bottom curve and bottom diamond, to start the fourth curve.
The middle diamond continues the first strand.
The top diamond and the top curve diamond continues the fourth strand.
Continue to complete the knot. I have changed the red dots to black so you can see the finished effect. There is a suggestion of a black background as well, to heighten the effect.

Three Ways To Create Celtic Knots In Illustrator

In this tutorial, we’ll explain how to create magical Celtic knots. Ornaments accompanied Celts in life and in death. Ornaments decorated clothes, books, furniture, ware, weapons, and gravestones. I’ll show you three ways to create Celtic knots in vector – from simple to the difficult. The last techniques allows one to create knots of any complexity. Intrigued? Read more!

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How Did You Go

I hope you were able to successfully draw the border. If it didnt work out the first time, keep practising. Use a sketchbook to draw part of the border until you get the hang of it.

Share your results! If you are not already a member of my Facebook group, join us here. This group is a place where you can safely interact with like minded people. Its a place where we can all learn from each other. I look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Another Valuable Calligraphy Skill

How to Draw A Celtic Knot Border Pattern

If youd like to know more about how to draw Celtic knots for use in decorative borders, illuminated letters etc, these pages show you:

how to draw the basic unit which makes up all Celtic knots how to join cords to knot the ends how to repeat units to create twists, plaits and weaving how to create all kinds of patterns in your knots

Heres the knot Ill be using as an example. As you work through, youll learn a lot more than just this one knot! You’ll practise the skills youll need so as to know how to draw Celtic knots of your own. You should then be able to design your own page borders, knot decorations, illuminated letters etc.

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Celtic Knotwork Designs: Bibliographical Note For Those Interested

There are several, only somewhat differing methods which can be used to construct Celtic knot designs and related patterns. All of them are based on a grid layout and ways of placing diagonal lines. I dont go into all the methods here: its a big subject with its own specializations and theories and I dont claim to be an expert. Like anything else on this site, Ive presented what seem to me to be the most immediately workable methods for the needs of an amateur calligrapher.

However, everyones eyes and minds work differently and if you dont find that the methods outlined on these pages are sympathetic to your own way of working, you might like to study from some of the excellent books available on the subject.

I also found that MacKinders methods build usefully onto Meehans. They go into more depth without going over my head, and give me a better understanding of how the knots are constructed. Like Meehan, MacKinder has presented his whole book as a calligraphic work, written in a narrow but handsome quasi-Carolingian roundhand.

Other works are available, and it is also very useful to possess at least a few facsimile pages of the original masterpieces from Kells, Lindisfarne and Durrow so that you have an idea of the tradition in which youre working. Apart from anything else, they will encourage you to use a palette of softly variegated colours to balance the absolute geometry which characterises Celtic knotwork designs.;

What Is So Special About Celtic Knot Designs

The mystery of Celtic knot designs, and interlace in general, lies in the seamless perfection of the finished item, which both baffles and delights the eye and mind with its precisely interwoven forms and exuberant colour. How on earth, one wonders, peering at the elaborate detail, did they manage to do all that with;just one line?

This is one of the most intriguing features of many Celtic knots; starting at any point, you can follow the thread all the way over and under, up and down, back and forth, right round the design to come back to where you started. It is a lovely metaphor for variety in unity.

It’s also an incredibly useful design feature for frames and letter fills.

There is quite a lot of theory out there as to how first the Celts, and then the gospel-decorating monks, actually laid out the grids and lines to build up the complex, symmetrical patterns of their carpet pages and huge, flowing letterforms. Did they draw hundreds of little boxes first? Did they work round dots? Did they use just a few small lines, and were capable of visualising the final result so clearly that they painted the final design almost freehand? Or did they laboriously draw all the details in the faintest of greys and then very studiously colour it all in?

I’ve developed a method that’s particularly useful for creating decorative borders, and that can also be adapted to create infill for large, decorative initials. These are the two main uses to which I put Celtic knot designs.

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How To Draw A Celtic Knot On Squared Paper

wikiHow is a wiki, similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. To create this article, volunteer authors worked to edit and improve it over time. This article has been viewed 30,520 times.

This article will show you an easy way to draw a Celtic knot on squared paper. You can pick whether you want to draw a simple knot and expand to a more advanced with “holes”.

Learn How To Combine Shapes And Patterns To Design Your Very Own Celtic Knot In Adobe Illustrator

How To Draw A Celtic Border Knot Using The Two Handed Method

posted on 03-07-2018

For centuries, artists have been inspired by the Celtic knot and its many iterations. These graphical representations of knots are not tied, but an infinite, continuous round of stylized rope in spirals, step patterns, and key patterns. In Celtic mythology, knots symbolize the sacred geometry of the universe and the interconnectedness of all life. They vary from the simple to the complex, take any number of forms, and youve likely seen them adorning ancient manuscripts, tattooed bikers, and your local Irish pub. Weve interviewed some of todays top Celtic knot designers to learn the history and meaning of this design, and how to create a simple knot in Adobe Illustrator.

The triquetra, or Trinity knot, is one of the most popular and meaningful of the traditional Celtic knots. Image source: Katheryna Didenko.

Celtic love knots are intertwined knots that are believed to have been exchanged in fabric, paper, and jewelry the way we exchange wedding rings today. A Love Knot, shown here in a wedding invitation, signifies eternal love. Image source: Jessica Davidson.

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More Celtic Design Inspirations

To inspire you further, I am showing you this breathtaking design that I found. Its not for free however!

Madival Celtic design via

There you go, five amazing free Celtic borders that you can use in your DTP project plus one design inspiration! Have fun using them, my dear fair knight and maiden friends!


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Twists With Four Strands

This design starts the same as the last one.
Continue the top curved line twice as far as last time. It’s better to rub out the surplus dot altogether.
Continue with the next two diamonds, the same as last time.
Make a second shorter curve, below the top one.
Make a long curve at the bottom, remembering to remove the surplus dot.
Make a short curve above the bottom curve.
Draw the second middle diamond.
Draw the second middle diamond.
Draw the two outer curves…
… then the middle two diamonds.
Here is the final result.

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How To Draw Celtic Knots

Knot theory developed hugely at the end of the 1980s; the Kaufmann and Jones polynomials were discussed widely in the media and initiated a productive period in mathematics. We have the honor to count amongst the faculty at Strasbourg University one of the leaders in knot theory, Vladimir Turaev, and I had the pleasure of attending a course given by him jointly with Christian Kassel in 1993.

What I want to discuss in this Tutorial, although based on the theory of knots and interlacing, goes back much earlier than this theory, to the Celtic world that was putting knots onto their menhirs in the 4th century BC. By the 6th century, the monks of Ireland who were making many copies of the Bible, Christianized these motifs and incorporated them into the texts of their illuminated manuscripts. The tortured and clever motifs of Saxon helmets and Celtic brooches gave way to big borders, severe and dense. The best examples of these works are found in works such as the Book of Kells , the Book of Durrow or the Lindisfarne Gospels. It was in the magnificent library of Trinity College Dublin that I had the pleasure of contemplating the first two of these.

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How To Draw C

Welcome to another week of creative fun and perhaps a wee refuge from the craziness out there.

As you may know, to ease us into the week so-to-speak I usually begin the week with a very easy tangle.

So as you look at C-Knots, youre probably asking yourself, This is easy? Yup! Trust me Anything is possible, one stroke at a time

Normally the Zentangle HQ point of view is that Celtic Knots arent usually tangles because of the complexity and often pencil planning that goes into them. That, as we know, is not the intuitive Zentangle Method of simple repetitive strokes that are easy to teach and offer a high degree of success to tanglers of all ages. However, every now and again our creative Zentangle community comes up with a simple, easy to tangle, pattern that meets the qualifications, and C-Knots is one of them.

C-Knots is from Valli Ganti, a tangler from India and its her first on the site.

Valli introduces herself and her tangle:

I am an artist and art instructor from India and a tangler in Zentangle for the past 5 years. My sister introduced this art style to me. I then searched for a CZT in my area and never looked back!

C-Knots is a knot tangle created using C and inverted C strokes. The inspiration came from the washroom tiles of my home.

Valli shares two lovely ZIAs on Zendala tiles featuring her tangle. This one was created with colored pencils on a watercolor background and C-Knots is accompanied by and Bunzo .

How To Draw Celtic Knots : Crossed Cords

The basic, underlying unit is two crossed cords in a square. Here is what it looks like:

Notice which cord is drawn on top. Its the one starting top left and coming down to bottom right. That makes this unit a right-handed cross. Its called right-handed because it looks like your two forefingers crossed with the right hand on top:

If the other cord were on top, it would be a left-handed cross. Both are necessary. All Celtic knotwork consists of lines of right-handed crosses alternating with lines of left-handed. Together, these construct the over-and-under of a woven design.

Were going to start by using right-handed crossed cords, and add the left-handeds later.

Heres some good news. If you can draw these two crossed cords in a square well, you can learn how to draw Celtic knots:

Drawing these crossed cords well means:

Get used to stopping your lines well short of the box edges. This will be important later on. When you draw the two lines which form each cord, keep them parallel and the same length. Make both cords middling fat and the same thickness as each other. A good guide is to imagine each line originating from a point one-quarter of the way along each edge of the square, like this:

So, youve got the idea of the crossed cords? Its the first principle you need to know well: these uniform Xs in boxes are a fundamental building block from which you can create all the knotwork you like.

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How To Draw A Celtic Knot

Click HERE to save the tutorial to Pinterest!

Celtic knots are decorative designs or geometric patterns that arose from Medieval Europe, especially in the island regions of Ireland and Britain. In Irish, they are called snaidhm Cheilteach, and cwlwm Celtaidd in Welsh.

Most Celtic knots are representations of endless knots or basket weave knots. As early as the third century, such patterns were used in Roman decor. Later, the designs were used in illuminated books and on carved stone monuments.

You can still see these ancient designs in The Great Pavement mosaic in Gloucestershire, England; a cross atop the church of St. Susanna in Galicia; high crosses in Wales and Ireland; and in Cahir Abbey in Ireland.

Scroll down for a downloadable PDF of this tutorial.

Designs such as these can be found around the world, but they were especially popular in Celtic regions. Who were the Celts? The Celtic peoples could be found all across Europe, including Britain, Spain, Italy France, and other countries.

Artifacts from these people date back more than 2,000 years. Today, their art and religious beliefs still influence modern culture. Beginning in the 1970s, the Celtic knot became a popular tattoo design in the United States.

Would you like to draw an intricate Celtic knot? This easy, step-by-step drawing guide is here to show you how. All you will need is a pencil, an eraser, and a sheet of paper. You might also wish to color your finished knot.

Other Traditions Of Knotwork On The Calligraphic Page

AON – DRAW A CELTIC BORDER: Draw Your Own Celtic Knot Border & Frame Designs

In fact, knot patterns and interlace of one kind or another are not restricted to the Gaelic Celts or the early medieval period. Such designs decorate many other artefacts and illuminated pages both on the Continent and in later ages. Often, they accompany beautiful calligraphy. Perhaps their latest flowering before modern times in Europe was the white-vine decoration beloved by Italian Renaissance bookmakers as a border for the periods exquisitely clear humanistic script.;

Islamic art, especially, has a long and parallel tradition of geometrical knotted patterns as part of architecture, metal decoration, carpet pattern pages in books, and other ornament. In the Islamic tradition, as in the Celtic, knotwork designs find a kind of culmination in illuminated manuscripts of sacred texts.

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