Viking Carvings, Symbols & Thematic Design

The Vikings were skilled craftsman and the carving of symbolic images and patterns was a large part of Viking culture, Carrie Love & Lorrie Mack make this point in their book Viking, “The Vikings didn’t paint or draw, but they were great carvers and modellers”( Love & Mack, 2007: p4)

Viking carvings have been found on stones, bone work and wood work, an example of Viking carvings on wood can be seen on the Osberg Ship, see video below:

Vikings decorated gravestones and other stones, see below:

Vikings also carved figureheads for their boats, this is described by Love & Mack (2007: p7) “The Vikings often carved figureheads of beasts and dragons on their ship prows to scare off their enemies”.

You can see this in a piece from the Bayeux Tapestry, see below:

These carvings and the symbols they depict are something that I wanted to incorporate within the thematic design of my application, so I created a mood board of Viking carvings and symbols, see below:

I then created my own versions, see below:

It was my intention to base my thematic design on a Viking wooden carving but I soon realised this was not really going to be appropriate, mainly because it was too dark and not aesthetically friendly enough for a children’s application, see below:

I then remembered the tapestry, so I tried to recreate a similar feel to that of the tapestry and I am very pleased with the result, see below:

I then created an alternate version for the other orientation and a border for the content, see below:

The tapestry theme also fits with Viking culture, as wealthy Viking households had tapestries adorning their walls, according to Fiona Macdonald “Viking women and girls all knew how to spin thread, weave and sew.”Macdonald (2010: p28), she also says “Viking women were skilled at embroidery and at weaving patterned braid – made by passing coloured thread through holes in bone tablets” Macdonald (2010: p29)

I have added my tapestry based designs to my application, to see the result see below:

I am extremely happy with the feel of the application, so now I can move forward and start adding content.

Love, C. & Mack, L. (2007) Viking, United Kingdom: DK Publishing

Macdonald, F. (2010) Viking Town, United Kingdom: The Salariya Book Company Ltd

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