Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Ask Tandora. . .

How did you get interested in Tangrams?

Trees, tall redwood trees everywhere – high to block the sun as we stand in a dark part of the woods. At a garage sale, four sets of wooden tangrams. What drew me? Lori would say it was the colors; yes, bright primary colors - red, blue, green, and yellow. There was the tactile feel of the wooden pieces. Colors, the feel, and something else – crisp geometric shapes – triangles, squares, and parallelograms. Every piece fit perfectly side against side. Colors, the feel, and the sounds of wood making a clicking sound on a table. The feel, the sight, and the sounds —what perfection!

Seventy-five cents or was it twenty-five?. . .for four sets of tangrams, an ancient Chinese puzzle – the purchase price too small to remember in terms of the money exchanged but a transaction that would change my life.

With the wooden pieces was a small paper with an explanation. Use the seven pieces of one color and make the cat that was in silhouette – perhaps it was the boat – it may even have been the candle. Turn the page over for the solution for help or to see if your placement of the pieces matched the instructions.

The rest is history as they say. . .

Do you have a favorite design?

When first asked this question, I automatically said no because I liked so many; I couldn't pick a favorite. When leafing through some pictures, I stopped at the "Fish and Bubble" design. It was one of the few designs where I said "aha" when I created it. This design went into a stained glass mobile, a fabric art piece, and as a computer graphic piece. Perhaps it is my favorite. One of my favorites...

This design will also come up as it relates to the rules when playing with tangrams and we will explore this later.

Where does the name Tandora come from?

Tan is usually the name given to the man considered the mythic creator of tangrams. In order to feminize the name, Tandora became my pseudonym. It incorporated the name Tan and as it turns out, all the girls in my family have 3 syllable first names ending with the letter "a", so Tandora meets the family name criteria!

Do you have a question? Email me your tangram related question and I will answer on the website. . .

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