Altair Designs

The animation shows the development of an Altair Design from a close packing arrangement of circles bounded by a square symmetry followed by connecting circle centers and adding internal polygons to create an Altair design (lattice) followed by images “seen” in the lattice. The animation shows how images can be reflected, rotated, and translated within the lattice as well as how images can be composed into complete scenes or repeating patterns. Everyone who colors the designs sees different images within the lattices. Altair can provide a creative, perceptual, and logical experience:


Altair Design patterns have a unique property in that they stimulate the visual imagination. Images appear and disappear within the designs depending upon an individual’s imagination and visual logic. The best way to look at the designs is to relax and not get overly fixated on the first image that appears. The original Altair Designs, now shown in Altair Design Pattern Pad #1, were derived from a design that appeared in Calvert’s, “Moorish Remains in Spain,” Dr. Ensor Holiday discovered a design in the Calvert book that attracted his imagination; a design that was unusual in the fact that it was based on close packing circles and that the circles generated “almost” regular polygons of 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8, sides. To see more about the design and its discovery please visit the publisher’s website; Wooden Books (UK) . I met Ensor sometime after he had started developing design variations based on the Calvert design and our common interest in design systems resulted in our working together to further develop Altair. Other’s working on developing Altair designs at that time were Jamie McCulloch (design variations), Harriet Dell, nee Crossley, (fabric and wallpaper designs), the Kettlewells (silkscreen prints),  Mario DeGrossi (variations), and Robert Colville (programming). Note that Pattern Pad # 1 will reprint in June, so is difficult to find at the moment. Price should be about US$9.00.

Press the image below to link to an interactive Altair Design Page:

Published By Wooden Books (UK)

Publised By Wooden Books (UK)

Pattern Pad No 1: ISBN-10: 9781907155007 ISBN-13: 1907155000

Pattern Pad No 2 ISBN-13: 9781907155017 ISBN: 1907155015

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