Recap-Progressive Drawing of Arabic Inspired Henna Motif

A while back we did a progressive drawing tutorial on an Arabic inspired motif.  The reason this motif is Arabic inspired is because of the shading, as well as the shapes.  Paisley shapes are often seen in arabic designs.  Remember, while a henna motif it self does not have any meaning to it, there is symbolism attached to certain shapes.  The paisley shape, also known as the "carrey" (mango), is popular in Arabic designs.  It is considered to represent abundance.  {you can read more about the meanings of shapes in the free ebook Ancient Art-An Introduction to Henna}
Another reason why this design is Arabic inspired is because of the various areas of shading.  One of our theories behind why Arabic designs have a lot of shading is because of the quality of the henna that grows in that region.  The henna that grows in the Middle East is a bit more thicker than the henna that grows in the Rajasthan region of India. This might be due to the variation in temperatures and rainfall. The Rajasthani henna is very stringy and silky on its own. It requires a little more work to mix this henna and even more patience and practice to use this henna for application. 

"Arabic" region henna is more coarse. This allows for easier mixing, and a variation on application techniques. This henna, we find a bit more "thirsty" as well, meaning it requires a little bit more mixing liquid compared to the Indian henna.  

A skilled artist is able to do shading techniques, varying pressure techniques, as well as draping and fine line applications. 

Here is a quick photo of the Arabic inspired motif done by one of our artists.