Hot on the heels of #Maydala comes another maths art challenge: the #doodlebug #Junebugchallenge! During the month of June, doodle, draw, paint, photograph, or even sculpt some artwork based on insects, and post to Twitter using the hashtags.
(Both doodle bugs and June bugs are actual real-life insects and will be VERY chuffed to hear about this challenge named after them.)
Why bugs? Well, insects are actually very mathematical creatures. For starters, they exhibit almost perfect reflective symmetry, as you can see from the images below.
And there's more! The beautiful patterns on dragonfy wings are very similar to a kind of mathematical pattern called a Voronoi diagram.
And spider webs are very geometric structures. Many mathematics research papers have been written about how spiders make their webs!
And when you zoom in on the compound eye of a fly, you can see that it is made up of thousands of hexagon-shaped receptors called ommatidia.
And we all know how much bees like hexagons!
So there's lots and lots of maths in insects. But how to make use of it in your artwork?
Well, all that symmetry, combined with their beautiful, intricate, geometric patterns, means that insects are the perfect subjects for a doodle, like these lovely pen drawings below.
You can also take inspiration from the many artists who use insects in their work. There are several mentioned in this blog post by @ArtyTeacher. Another inspiring insect artist is Alex Konahin who is featured in my Insect Symmetry lesson. His insects are incredibly ornate and intricate!
You can decorate your bugs however you like; you can even incorporate them into mandalas if you wish! Here are some stunning examples from talented Instagrammers.
If you are worried that you might not be able to draw your bug outlines accurately, you can always trace an outline from a photo of an insect first, before filling it in with your decorative doodles. It's best to use copyright free images for this - use the 'labelled for reuse' filter on your search engine, or use free stock photo websites like Pexels or Pixabay.
If you haven't got any tracing paper, simply use printer paper and trace the image up against a window, so that it acts like a lightbox.
And if you haven't got access to a printer you can trace directly from your smartphone or tablet screen - you just need to disable the touchscreen first! Put your screen brightness up to max, so that you get the full lightbox effect. Then, if you have an ipad or iphone you can follow the instructions in this video. Remember to make a note of that passcode!
You can disable the touch screen on Android smartphones and tablets too. Simply search Youtube for the instructions for your device.
Or better still, use these fantastic free insect colouring pages from @ArtforKidsHub
You don't have to post a picture every day (although you can if you wish). You can also work on extended projects, and either post 'work in progress' shots daily, or simply wait and post your finished artwork when complete. This is a work in progress that I'd like to get finished during the #Junebugchallenge. I decorated mine with an Islamic geometric pattern, and painted it with tea!
So, all that's left is to get creating! Remember to tag your pictures with #doodlebug (if you've done a doodlebug) and with #Junebugchallenge. Happy doodling :)