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My Nonagon
by: myself

When I was first presented with this project, I was convicted that I would do a line art design. The others don’t appeal to me. Line art is illusionary in that it uses straight lines to create curves, much like optical art creates false depth. If I was going to do anything other than line art, it’d be optical art. Daisies and mandalas just don’t give me room for creativity.

I can never just go with the norm. My line art is inside a shape instead of outside of one. I chose a nonagon for several reasons. The polygon had to be more than three sides so that there would be several sets of non-adjacent sides, and the more the better. Even numbers were out because of the way lines stick to one set of sides and never go to the adjacent set. Finally, I chose nine because five was too small and seven didn’t divide into 360 degrees equally.

This line art is named for the number of lines it’s composed of. It’s actually three separate layers. On each side, there are 5 points spaced equally from the middle. Lines go from one point to the same point on a different line, like in the example art. However, since there are multiple non-adjacent sides, one layer has lines going to every other side, one with every third side, and one layer using every fourth side. This created a pattern with three concentric “circles”.

The hardest part about this project was figuring out the colors. Originally, there were only going to be two layers, (every other line and every fourth line,) but I wanted the colors to be as equal as possible, and I wanted to use 6 colors. That just doesn’t divide up well with the setup, so I colored it by layers and added an extra layer in the middle. In the end, I replaced red lines in the last layer with black lines because they look cooler. Other problems persisted, too. I had to bear down extra hard on my yellow pencil to make it visible. Red and orange look really similar, as do blue and violet. And there are bits of colored pencil all over the line art itself that chipped off when I was drawing the lines.

I did sketches on notebook and computer paper, but the final copy was drawn on small scale poster board with pencils and colored pencils. The lines were drawn straight with a ruler, and the angles in the actual nonagon were measured with a protractor. I’m using a computer right now to type with, and later I will use a printer to print it up.

I actually did enjoy myself with this. I spent a few hours just drawing shapes and seeing how different patterns of lines would work. I had an animated image of one of my drafts on my Myspace page, but now it’s just in my pictures section. I think my display name is still “Nine Sided Maniac”. There are also drafts using a pentagon in my English folder. I’m not sure why, because I didn’t work on them in there. I mostly worked on them during Physical Science.

My project relates to Geometry because in Geometry we learn about lines. My project is made of lines on paper. 144 of them. And it uses their unique straightness to make complex patterns, which are also a part of Mathematics, if not directly a part of Geometry.

*picture coming soon*

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