The exact meaning of the Celtic knot in history is as elusive as the end of the knot. The knots surely had meanings to the Celts, but according to the web site, "What's Your Sign," what the knots actually symbolised remains unclear. However, there is some conjecture that the endless loops of the knot symbolise the intricacies of life. If you are interested in embracing this part of Celtic history, there are plenty of knots to draw, allowing your pencil to trace a bit of Celtic history in the process.
Find reference pictures of Celtic knots. Find these in books and magazines about the Celts as well as on the Internet. Choose a knot that's clearly drawn. One that features intricate twists will create an more interesting drawing.
Make a photocopy of the Celtic knot.
Draw a grid on the copy. Make it fairly proportionate to the size of the picture. For example, if your picture measures 6 inches by 8 inches, draw the squares about 3/4-inch by 3/4-inch apart.
Mark your drawing paper with a grid measuring the same size as the grid on your Celtic knot.
Locate one of the points on the knot by counting grid squares. For example, the point of the knot may be two grid squares from the top of the page and two squares in from the left-hand side.
Find the corresponding grid square on your drawing paper.
Draw what you see in your picture's grid square on the corresponding grid square on your paper. Notice how the lines forming the first point of the Celtic knot curve within the grid square. Pay attention to how they interact with the lines that form the grid square. Draw the lines at the exact angle they appear in the grid square on your picture.
Draw the contents of the next grid square, following the same procedure that you did to draw the first point in the Celtic knot.
Continue filling in each grid square until you have drawn the knot.
Erase the grid squares on your paper, taking care not to erase the lines forming the Celtic knot.
Colour in the knot using markers or coloured pencils.
It's possible to draw the Celtic knot freehand, but using a grid will help you maintain the uniformity of the knot so that it looks symmetrical.
If you don't get a curve or an angle quite right as you're drawing the lines within each grid square, erase them and draw them again. Part of what makes a Celtic knot so beautiful is its almost mathematical symmetry. Getting lines right in each of the grid squares ensures the overall symmetry of the drawing.
Tips and warnings
- It's possible to draw the Celtic knot freehand, but using a grid will help you maintain the uniformity of the knot so that it looks symmetrical.
- If you don't get a curve or an angle quite right as you're drawing the lines within each grid square, erase them and draw them again. Part of what makes a Celtic knot so beautiful is its almost mathematical symmetry. Getting lines right in each of the grid squares ensures the overall symmetry of the drawing.
Things you need
- Celtic knot pictures
- Drawing paper
- Coloured pencils or markers
- "How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way"; Stan Lee and John Buscema; 1978
- "Sketchbook for the Artist"; Sarah Simblet; 2005
- "Keys to Drawing"; Bert Dodson; 1985
- "The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain"; Betty Edwards; 1999
- "Learning to See and Draw"; Art Instruction Schools; 2006
- What's Your Sign: Celtic Knots