Re-Creating M.C. Escher’s Lizard #Tessellation

M.C. Escher’s Lizards are by far the most popular of Escher’s tessellations. It can be seen gracing many multitudes of surfaces, legally or illegally. From tattoos, puzzles, belt buckles, car wraps, flooring or landscaping stones… My initial introduction to tessellations was through redrawing this lizard in its nested shape during a class on crystallography at Carleton U. That was a few decades ago, in 1988. But, as I keep on repeating (no pun), to draw a tessellation or to truly understand the structure behind it are two different things.

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Manta Rays #Tessellation, carved

Combining my two loves: Tessellations & Carving

Sketched this Manta Rays tessellation five years ago. Love its simplicity. One single line connecting the center of an equilateral triangle, repeated in 60 degree increments to the three corners of the shape. This tessellations falls into symmetry system P3. I have many more articles about wood carving on my other blog, It is a fascinating field to explore.

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Pentagonal tiling #tessellations, Part 3


Most of us learn the easy/best way. Look at the masters, follow their path and learn all that we can from them. Replicate their artwork. It is a long process, especially without any direction or assistance from a teacher. This is where I’m at right now — copying / learning from the pentagon symmetry system seekers: Reinhardt, Kershner, James, Rice, Stein, Mann, McLoud, and Von Derau. As I did for a while, copying M.C. Escher’s tessellations, decades ago, although I no longer need MCE inspiration to create a tessellation. Continue reading

All Seventeen Symmetry Groups Explained

Create a Nested Shape #Tessellation in any Symmetry Group

Create your own tessellation

This list is to help you get started in creating your own nested shape tessellations. I’m not showing you how to create wallpaper patterns with lots of free space in between, but the true, à la M.C. Escher designs. A tessellation of a flat surface is the tiling of a plane using one or more fluid shapes, called tiles, with no overlaps and no gaps. Continue reading