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Square Kufic Calligraphy: Changing the Rules, pt. II

We’re going to continue from where we left off in the previous post and make more changes in the rules. This time, we’re going to change the fill of the design, so that it’s composed of lines rather than solid blocks.


Start off by drawing lines on the grid. The number of lines is up to you, as long as the width of the lines is the same as their total height. I went with six lines:



Notice that the lines take up five units of the grid horizontally and five vertically, making a square.


Highlight all the lines together and reduce their size so that they’re 2x2 (which is the size of one unit in our original design):



You can use the “combine” function in your vector graphics editor to combine the lines into one group and make them move together.


Open the design that you made in the previous lesson and create a new layer, then add the horizontal lines to the design, extending them as necessary. Don’t fill in the corners just yet.



Rotate the lines 90 degrees and do the same with the vertical lines:



You may notice that the lines don’t intersect at the corners:



If that’s the case for you, you can change the stroke settings so that the line cap extends slightly beyond the end of the line.


The stroke settings in Adobe Illustrator look like this:



If the lines in your design don’t intersect at the corner, the section labeled “Cap” will have the option on the left selected. Choose the option on the right. This will close off the gap:



We’re now going to work on the rounded corners of the design.


Create an arc whose radius is two units of the grid (the same height as one unit of our 2x2 design):



Copy and paste the lines on top of the arc:



Highlight the lines and arc and use the “outline” function in your vector graphics editor to slice the lines along the shape of the arc, then delete the parts of the lines that fall outside the arc:



Make sure that the line at the top intersects with the arc at the corner:



Now use this block to fill in the corners, flipping it as necessary:



Hide the grid and change the colour of the strokes to a colour of your liking!



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