#DormLife and Random Surprises

After our conversation in class about Frieze patterns and finding them in wallpaper, I was determined to find something I could use for this post. To my disappointment, I found that wallpaper is not a thing that exists in the dorm that I am staying in. You would think that art students would have something decorative in the means of wall paintings or pictures in my dorm, but sadly there is none of that. Anyway, when I asked a friend for her opinion, she told me to look at the pillows in the lounge area. When I did, I found that each one had its own distinct pattern, similar to the ones we have been talking about in class. Here are two of the pillows I was most drawn to and what patterns I found in them:

Pillow 1 is an example of a F2. There is no vertical reflections and no horizontal reflections, but there is glide. If you look closely at certain lines, the thin brown one or the green, then you can see it. It depends on which line you decide to focus in on.


Pillow 2 is a an example of a F3. There is vertical symmetry towards the left side of the pillow in that design along the center. There is no horizontal symmetry since the flower looking design would not match if it were reflected over the horizontal axis. There is half turn symmetry within the design as well, making the pillow design a complete F3.

I found it weird to stare at pillows for so long, but like I said I was determined to find a pattern that worked. I stare at these pillows everyday and honestly didn’t think their patterns would work, but was happy to see that they did.

Emma’s post about her pants also made me think about a pair of pants that I have that have similar Frieze patterns to hers. I always thought they just had the same pattern repeating over and over, but thanks to our conversations in class I was able to see that it has frieze patterns of F1, F2 and F4.  Its fun to find patterns in things as random as pillows and pants and see how there is more to everyday things than meets the eye.

The Work of Masterminds

Two weeks ago, I left my small state of Rhode Island to come up here. I was aware that I would be dorming with art students from another school for 9 months out the year, but I had no idea what this would actually come to mean. Within the two weeks that I have been here and have been a part of Dr. Plante’s class, I can say that I’m am starting to understand. There is certainly more to art than meets the eye. From the detail behind every stroke, to the patience in every line and circle, art has the ability to capture just about anyone’s eye. Living in the dorm that I live in, I am forced to see art on a daily basis, and thanks to Dr. Plante’s class, am able to make connections to the world of math when I see various pieces. I pay attention to how the pieces are formed, what techniques are used and the underlying messages the artist wishes to convey.  I am most captivated by the ability of so many here to turn simple objects from 2D images to 3D by just adding a bit of shading or some color. I compare their pieces to what we are creating in class and am fortunate enough to see the work of masterminds come to life in front of me.

Of course I am not saying that I only see art when I am in my dorm. I see it all around me. From the shadow that bounces of the Brady-Sullivan tower on a nice day to the street signs that light up the night around 11pm. There is math everywhere. I feel that by taking this course and really allowing myself to grasp the meaning behind everything we learn, that I will eventually be able to create my own art and explain how I came to create it and the math behind it.



First Blogging Test Assignment

Hi my name is Alida. I have never been a huge fan of the subject of math but that perception changed for me last year. I took a course my senior year called “Discrete Math”. This was a combination of various math classes combined to teach one how to use math in the real world. There were chapters on voting methods and the concept of trees to explain how circuits work in a computer of WiFi system. Taking this class opened my eyes to see that math is involved in everything around us and that is why I am excited to be taking “Excursions in Mathematics” this semester.