Symmetry Group Pgg

This symmetry group is one of my favourites, as it uses glides as well as rotations in its construction. No mirrors here, so the tessellated figures do not need to be bilaterally symmetric constructs. Glides are one more trick to tickle your visual perception.

Accomplishing the division of the surface using this symmetry method consists in linking one of the two-fold rotation points (R1) to one of the corners (red line 1) From that same corner, draw a line to the other adjacent corner (green line 2).  Only one two-fold rotation point is left (R2). Connect R2 to anywhere, using any curve. Now stare at it till your eyes cross (just kidding) and you might see a figure emerge. Imagination. Try it. Delete it. Try again till you can edit the line to form a figure.

Symmetry Group Pgg explained

Symmetry Group Pgg explained

Dad was an Usher for a summer job, when he was a youngster. A Posh Usher, uniform and all. Cool job, because you get to see all the movies. Over and over… well maybe not. The green dots and red dots indicate the two different 180 degree rotation points, same as R1 and R2 in the above. The dashed line indicates the glide-reflection line, which can be viewed as moving the figure in translation with at the same time a mirror applied to it.

Symmetry Group Pgg — The Posh Usher — © 2013 Champagne Design

Symmetry Group Pgg — The Posh Usher — © 2013 Champagne Design

The sketch below uses the same symmetry group; Involuntary Suicide… where the guy has the barrel of his weapon in the other guy’s mouth, which happens to be himself! Can you locate the two rotation points?

Symmetry Group Pgg — Involuntary Suicide — © 2013 Champagne Design

Symmetry Group Pgg — Involuntary Suicide — © 2013 Champagne Design

One rotation point at the tip of his t shirt at the belly, the other rotation point at his calf, right or left depending which clone you’re looking at.

Lots of software out there to help you accomplish this type of design.

An iPad app is available, which is what I have used here to create these images: KaleidoPaint by Jeff Weeks.

There is also a java-based program “Escher Web Sketch”  at the Ecole Polytechnique de Lausanne. Make sure Java is enabled and not blocked by your security software.

Also, another screen-based software by Anselm Levskaya Escher Sketch v2. (I used to have a basic Mac-based software, way back in prehistory, 1995, by the same name. It worked on the cutesy first Mac)

Or a pair of scissors and a piece of cardboard works quite well. That’s how I learned.

Comments are always welcome!


If you’re a “Learn by Seeing” “Learn by Doing” kind of person, I’ve started creating videos on “how-to” create tessellations. I’ll be covering each of the 17 symmetry groups, one class at a time. And like all artists, we need to make a living. So. I’ve uploaded these to the Skillshare platform. I’ll get paid by minutes watched.

You can take the classes for free. Skillshare offers anywhere from 2 weeks to a month for free if you sign up, even temporarily.

You can register for just a month and cancel anytime. It’s less than the cost of a Netflix subscription!
There are over 40,000 classes on topics for creative persons just like you. Join my mailing list, either here on my blog (in the sidebar), or a at this link for a specific list I use to announce new classes.

I’d love for you to join me on this wonderful learning adventure.

If you prefer, you can follow my progress on social media, I always announce my new class:
Facebook: Franc Champagne, and Vancouver Island Tessellation Artist
Instagram: champagne.francine
Twitter: FChampagne1
Linkedin: Graphic Design, PowerPoint and tessellations
Youtube: Video animations and class intros


One thought on “Symmetry Group Pgg

  1. Pingback: Mouse tessellation ~ Symétruc de souris | Tessellations, images in regular division of the plane

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