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Graphic Patterns

Lesson Plan & Artwork: Annette Johnson
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Lesson Plan
Grades 6-12
Art, Math, History


Patterns are a fundamental concept in both art and Mathematics. Math plays a key roll in determining proportion, symmetry and shape of the pattern. Students will create graphic patterns using a pencil, ruler and cross - section paper. The final design will be traced on a light box, using a Staedtler Black Pigment Liner. Staedtler Ergo Soft Colored and Watercolor pencils will be used to enhance the final pattern.


  • Study geometric quilt patterns, geometric floor tiles, textiles, Persian rugs, Islamic patterns, Morroccan tiles, Moorish tiles. These will be used to develop an original graphic pattern.
  • Study the tiles of the Alhambra DeGranada at www.AlhambraDegranada.Org
  • Study artists who use pattern in their work: Escher, Mondrian, Klimt, Klee, and Calder. Use these artist as inspiration to create your own pattern.


Staedtler® ErgoSoft Colored Pencils, Set of 24
Staedtler® ErgoSoft Watercolor Colored Pencils, Set of 24
Strathmore® Mixed Media Pad 184 lb, 9 x 12 in, 15 Sheets
School Smart® 1/4 in Grid White Drawing Paper, 9 x 12 in, Ream


Step 1

Draw squares measuring: 1”, 1-1/2”, 2”, 3” and 4”on several pieces of the cross-section paper.

Step 2

Draw inside the outlined squares, connecting the grids within the squares to create new patterns.

Step 3

Connect the 1/4” squares horizontally, vertically, diagonally and in combination to create a variety of patterns.

Step 4

Use the larger size squares to create more patterning within the squares. Draw squares, triangles, horizontal and vertical lines to interconnect these shapes inside to form new patterns.

Step 5

Continue subdividing squares until enough has been created to choose your favorite block.

Step 6

Draw 3 additional images of the pattern chosen. Cut these squares out and place them in a new shape. Change the direction of the squares until you have the pattern you like the best. Tape together.

Step 7

After connecting the final image with the 4 identical squares, adjust how the four squares intersect by adding another shape.

Step 8

Use a light box or a bright window to tape the final pattern down, place the Multi-Media paper on top. Trace the pattern using a ruler and the Staedtler Permanent Pigment Marker.

Step 9

Use Staedtler Ergo Soft Colored Pencils and Staedtler Ergo Soft Watercolor Pencils to finish the piece.

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