Sunday, May 19, 2019

Book Review - Henry Wilson's Floral Patterns Of India

This past January when we were starved for color here in western Massachusetts, I discovered the book Floral Patterns Of India via the Quintessence blog. I am not sure how I missed this one as it was published in 2016. It was written and photographed by the very talented Henry Wilson. The book is beautifully presented and was published by Thames and Hudson. It has a silky fabric bright blue colored spine. The paper is very thick and has a somewhat matte but not too matte finish. It is 272 pages long - full of incredible photographs, patterns and color. There is so much inspiration in here that it was hard to pick just a few pages to photograph. 

Floral Patterns of India is jam packed with colorful photos from India. There are photos of places, people, buildings, interiors, and fabrics. Besides the beautiful photos, there are many words to read - a plus for someone who likes to read - besides look at photos. Read books? Do people do that anymore? Sure people read on their screens but do they crack open a book or do they just scroll, scroll, scroll. I do - although not as much as I should. Floral Patterns of India is split into 6 Chapters: Introduction, Repeat Patterns, Borders and Bands, Floral Panels, Ornamental Scenes, and The Drawing Process. 

Look at these crazy goats! 

Throughout the book, there are photos of interiors and exteriors. Here are a few of my favorites. 

Henry Wilson was definitely inspired by the colors, shapes, and patterns of India. So much so that he took the motifs from many of the interiors and then made one color illustrations which are shown opposite the interior it was featured in. For artists, needleworkers, knitters, surface designers, these illustrations are great jumping off points for their own work. At the very back of the book, Henry explains his process and reason for the drawings that accompany many of the photos. They were all done completely by hand without the use of a computer. He cites a tracing paper, ruler, pens, protractor, compass and erasers as his tools. This really blows my mind because they all look to be so accurate as to have been done with the use of a computer. Amazing. Henry cites a book called Jeypore Portfolio of Architectural Details from 1890 as his inspiration - besides all the handmade beauty that he photographed in India. 

Here is the author Henry Wilson. I found this photo on the Thames and Hudson website. Behind him is his wallpaper line called Sariskar that he designed for Osborne and Little. I love these wallpapers.  

Henry Wilson was an incredibly talented photographer who fell in love with India. He wrote seven books on India including Floral Patterns of India which I am sharing here. Unfortunately Henry died in May of 2017 when hit by a car while he was riding his bicycle  in London where he lived. You can see photos of Henry's incredible house here. Check out all there is to learn on his website here. Such an incredible legacy he left but it is so sad he was taken from the world so early. 


marcia Love said...

Thanks for showing this -- lovely to look at . . .

Colleen Sharpe said...

I am positively swooning over the patterns in this book, and will be investigating all the links you posted!!

Jo said...

It is indeed lovely to look at. The colors are inspirational!

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