Art and Math

Color My Math

Here’s a true story. I was attracted to patterns of curved lines. Then I started to learned how to make them, using math.

That story took about sixty years to be true, from beginning to end.

The woman who lived next door had a spirograph. I would go knock on her back door. She would set up the spirograph for me. I would sit and make curves while she ironed clothes.

My mother bought wrought iron headboards for the twin beds in my room. I would sit and stare at the spirals, run my fingers around the curves.

It wasn’t until my own children were in high school that I learned that spirograph curves could be described by mathematical equations. I wanted to know how to do this. I mean, I really wanted to know how to make curves using math. I learned how. I’m still learning.

Every piece of jewelry a person wears has a story attached to it. I enjoy asking about these items. In the same way, the curves I make have stories. I’ve written some of these down.

A number of years ago an extraordinary woman from down the road started a free summer program for the children in this area. Kids were served lunch, they played, and listened to stories. When it was clear that more and more children needed a place to eat, learn, and play, current and retired educators stepped up to create an exceptional program. Parents drop off their children, the children are fed, offered swimming lessons at a nearby lake, and have engaging educational experiences at the community center. Local teenagers are hired as counselors. Local teachers and artists are engaged to design and teach compelling learning blocks. Kids are treated to visits from people in the community who come by and share their own interests and skills with groups. With help from many sources, this generous program, which charges exactly nothing, is continually growing.

This year I’ve decided to sell something to support our Lunch, Learn & Play program.

I’ve made cards of curves to color. On the back of the folded card is my story of each curve. I’m also including a web link to a graph to so the curious mind can see how math makes these curves.

Are you curious? Hop over to the link below. There is a blue dot on the bottom row left. Move that dot an see what happens to the picture. You will be dazzled.

There are eight different black & white cards to color, and eight envelopes too.

The paper that these cards are printed on Springhill Digital Vellum Bristol White Cover, 67 lb, the perfect paper for crayons and Crayola colored pencils since these marking items work the best on paper that has a bit of roughness to it. Markers work really well on this paper, too, which is thick enough that there is very little soak-through.

These cards for coloring are going on my Etsy site, where, through the month of June, all proceeds from these cards will be donated to the local children’s program.

If you know a someone who would appreciate finding out something about the beautiful curves of math, and you would like to support a truly wonderful children’s program, follow this link:

2 thoughts on “Color My Math

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