11) Islamic Geometry and Watercolor

Explore the world of painting and application of colour to Islamic geometric patterns, experimenting with different approaches that can change appearance of a single pattern in myriad ways. Participants will learn colour theory, mixing and creating harmonious colour palettes in watercolor or gouache. Using their chosen medium, they will each learn to develop their personal styles and paint a geometric piece at the end of the course.

Class Outline

1\. Introduction to the medium, discussion of color theory and swatch making  
2\. Continuation of swatch making, making a color sketchbook  
3\. Color exploration and how to create color themes and palettes  
4\. Painting a bookmark (Project 1)  
5\. Drafting a geometric pattern onto watercolor paper (Project 2)  
6\. Exploration of color application and special effects  
7\. Continuation of color and painting the final pattern  
8\. Painting the final pattern

Please note: VCUQatar reserves the right to cancel classes for which not enough participants are registered. Already paid fees will be refunded.

Please do not purchase materials until VCUQatar has sent final course confirmation.

Items to buy for this class

(Once the course is confirmed, the instructor will email all students ahead of the first class to give further advice on brands and recommendations on products available in Doha. Any questions about materials can be directed to the instructor before the supplies are bought)

• Artist-grade watercolor paints
• Artist-grade watercolor paper
• A4 (or smaller) watercolor booklet/pad: for practice, swatching and recording
• Artists watercolor brushes: Synthetic round brushes, sizes 4 and 6
• Mixing and swatching synthetic brushes, any brand, various sizes
• A watercolor palette for color mixing: (preferably ceramic, but plastic is fine. A simple white ceramic plate will also work well)
• If available, few seashells (eg. mussel shells) to store paint
• 2B or 4B drawing pencil, clear plastic ruler
• 2 reusable glass jars as water containers
• Roll of masking tape
• Tracing paper
• Waterproof ink marker or fine liner pen
• Small towel or rag
• Tissue


On occasions, there may be some more materials to be bought and brought in if and when advised by the instructor.

Where to buy your materials

Most of the materials are available from any art supply shop, for example:

  • Cass Art (Fire station): Community Classes students get a 15% discount upon presenting the registration ticket
  • Jarir Bookstore: on Rayyan Road or Salwa Road
  • Color Note: on Al Nasser Street
  • Ibn Al Qayyim: at Markhiya Roundabout
  • Al Rawnaq

Sold Out

Sat, 19 Oct, 2019
Sat, 7 Dec, 2019
11:00AM - 1:30PM
VCU Arts Qatar
QAR 1300


Aziza Iqbal

Influenced by tradition and channeling the contemporary, Aziza Iqbal is a visual artist and pattern specialist based in Qatar. Her foundation lies in the geometry and spirit of Islamic art, crafts and architecture.

Previously a graphic designer, and having always been inclined towards mathematics with a penchant for details, she has done several courses in sacred geometry with the UK-based Art of Islamic Pattern tutors and workshops with the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts.

Aziza has travelled extensively to Andalucía, Turkey, India and Morocco to study Islamic architectural heritage, and this has been the main inspiration for her work. She is also greatly influenced by the geometric tribal carpet patterns from across the Middle East/North Africa region (MENA) and Central Asia.