Book and Article Reviews - An Introduction

The book and article reviews discussed here are primarily aimed at those that specifically concern themselves with the creation of Escher-like tessellations, or at least have a chapter or of a dedicated series of pages devoted to the subject, rather than that of tessellations as a subject per se. Additionally; I add my own critiques of the Escher–like tessellations produced where appropriate. Although these books and articles are purporting ‘how to do Escher-like tessellation art’, none of these can be said to have inspired me in any way. Indeed, most, but not all, that I have seen are lacking in quality, the representational tessellations shown of a decidedly inferior standard that are unworthy of showing, caused mainly by a lack of understanding of the inherent intricacies of the differing requirements of different motifs. Indeed, no published book or article really addresses the understanding of the issue (as outlined in my various essays), to the depth I would like, and so without this their attempts invariably fail, to lesser, or as is more usually, greater degrees. However, although such efforts could be summarily dismissed, these are examined so that one can learn from such shortcomings. As such, the book should be thought to be better medium in which to discuss Escher-like tessellation design, in that it allows the subject to be discussed in greater depth, over pages of essentially unlimited extent. In contrast, articles, of generally up to four pages, do not permit such luxuries, the material generally being condensed of necessity. Therefore, more leeway is given to articles in this regard below as regards critique. To quickly enable an overview and to avoid lengthy and repetitive descriptions in the critiques section, I describe the tessellations succinctly with one word descriptions, from six categories of assessment: Unacceptable, Poor, Reasonable, Good, Excellent, Superlative, which speak for themselves. Occasionally, some are borderline between two categories; these I signify with a hyphen, such as ‘Good-Excellent’. These are then generally followed by explanatory discussions and comments. The various books and articles are placed as according substance, either ‘major’ or ‘minor’. Unfortunately, time does not permit me to discuss some of these in detail as much as I would like, and so the comments below should be borne with this aspect in mind. I hope to add to these at a later date. Paradoxically, the examples given can for the greater part be best described as how not to do tessellation, and so in their own right are informative as examples of inferior ones to be avoided. Amongst books of undoubted worth, there are some absolute shockers here…


Books and Articles Reviewed:


1. Creating Escher Type Drawings, by E. R. Ranucci & J. L. Teeters (Article)

2. Introduction to Tessellations, by Dale Britton & Jill Seymour (Book)

3. Designing Tessellation – The Secrets of Interlocking Patterns, by Jinny Beyer (Book)

4. Designing and Drawing Tessellations, by Robert Fathauer (Book)

5. Parcelles d’infini, by Alain Nicolas (Book)


6. Modern Mathematics Made Simple, by Patrick Murphy (Book)

7. Regelmatige vlakverdeling, by M. C. Escher (Book)

8. Tessellations File, by Chris De Cordova (Book)

9. How to Draw Tessellations of the Escher Type, by Joseph L. Teeters (Article)

10. Rolling a Tetrahedron, by Kodi Husimi (Article)


Created: 25 September 2009. Revised 17 July 2012