What is a spirograph? Do you remember Spirograph? With a small preparation, you can form attractive geometric patterns and artwork – and there are more sets to choose from than ever! The Spirograph has made a name for itself over generations and is still as popular as ever. We love these toys – and in this article, we’ll take you through all the official Spirograph sets currently in production. There are many other brands, so this article only lists the original.
What is a spirograph?
A spirograph exists a geometric illustration plaything that has its origins in the Victorian era. Bruno Abdank-Abakanowicz first invented the Spirograph between 1881 and 1900 to draw spirals. But the Spirograph we know and love today was created by engineer Denys Fisher in the mid-1960s and advertised as a way to remove “a million beautiful patterns.” Which, given the number of possible combinations, isn’t far from the truth!
How does a spirograph work?
A spirograph uses gears (or wheels) arranged in a ring to create geometric artwork. The teeth of the gears mesh with those on the inner edge of the ring. By inserting a drawing tool into the holes in the kits, you can manipulate the equipment to rotate around the inner circumference of the circle. This creates mathematical curves known as hypotrochoids and (most satisfactorily) epitrochoids. Each cog has different holes, each creating different patterns – but the fun begins when you layer prints and colors! Add to that the kits and rings come in multiple shapes and sizes, so there’s no limitation to the type of ways you can make. It just brings a little pattern.
- If you’ve ever employed a Spirograph pack, you know that a flick of the wrist can ruin a masterpiece. But as with any craft, training creates excellent, and after a few tries (or maybe many tries), you’ll be creating stunning geometric artwork that’s Instagram-worthy. Here is a piece of rare information to support you in perfecting your unique hobby for pencil drawing.
- When you begin a new design, take it easy. Keep the twists as steady as possible to develop muscle memory in your hand. Then gradually increase the speed as you feel more confident in this configuration.
- Don’t worry if your pen comes off the paper! Only put the hook around in the same spot and continue. The pattern will eventually match where the cell came from the article – and you’ll start tracing lines you’ve already drawn. Then you know the design is finished!
- Try utilizing various kinds of pens and pencils.
- Ballpoint pens work well with Spirograph, as felt-tip pens, crayons, and gel pens. Be sure to use something with a tip small enough to fit through the holes. And remember: pencils dull over time, so you may have to stop halfway to sharpen them (otherwise, there will be different line widths where they meet).
- Keep your pen as vertical as possible as you draw, as this will help the gears move about the ring as smoothly as achievable.
- Try to focus on moving your pen with the gear wheel in the direction the device is rolling, not how the design is developing. This will allow you to get used to the movement required to create this design.
- Try to hold the tension as precisely as possible, as this will help you maintain a consistent speed. This is important to keep the pen from slipping.
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