I'm currently designing a 10th Anniversary booklet for my rugby team, Caledonian Thebans. I was very keen to come up with an some interesting graphics and theme to incorporate into the book's layout.
As we've branded ourselves as the Celtic version of the fabled 'band of brothers' I thought, 'What symbolic band holds our brotherhood together'?. Well, other than a love of rugby, there is plenty, including the group's Celtic roots. And, what better to illustrate that than through the symbolic 'Celtic knot'.
So, I set to studying good ol' fashioned illuminated manuscripts and the techniques of drawing Celtic knots. Besides being beautiful, they find a an almost mathematical precision to organic forms. They appeal very much to both my analytical and artistic sides.
The first thing I learned about knots is that they are plotted in a series of right hand crosses. There are various 'rules' for how to connect and cross at points as well as creating breaks and backwards loops that create the mind-blowingly intricate patterns.
So, I've set about creating a 'rugby' knots that are made up of 15 right crosses for the 15 players on a rugby team. I'm starting with very basic knots and then learning to embellish from there.
The first 'rugby' knot I've done I call 'the brotherhood' knot:
It's a square 'shield' knot and are said to offer protection. Perfect for a rugby team! I like that it incorporates 'rugby ball like' finishes at the corners, 'infinity' in the middle but also, there's the heart shape which implies our passion for the game.
The second rugby knot is a Theban cross:
I think it may be a bit to 'religious' looking as I wanted it to look like a 'T'. So I'm currently working to embellish it in different ways so that it might someday look good on a Theban's t-shirt (hint hint).
I'm currently attempting to make a rugby ball out of a knot, but this may be beyond my ken at this stage.
I'm staying away from the Triskelion patterns in my illumination at the moment because, geezo! they are crazy!