"This is the High finger pattern. The Middle. The Low. And the Open."
Most violin and viola music falls into four basic finger patterns: Low, Middle, High and Open. Learning these four finger patterns will help you to play with fluency.
Low has a half-step between 1st and 2nd fingers
Mid (Middle) has a half-step between 2nd & 3rd fingers
High has a half-step between 3rd & 4th fingers
Open has no half-step, that is all neighbouring fingers are a whole-step apart. When playing the Open pattern reach back with the 1st finger rather than stretching up with the 4th finger.
Low, Mid and High all make the interval of a Perfect 4th between the 1st and 4th fingers. Open makes the interval of an Augmented 4th (tritone) between 1st and 4th fingers.
Resources - Bibliography
- for The Art of Practising the Violin by Gerle, 'Just Say 2-HI, 2-MID, 2-LO' by William Abler
- and for Fingerboard Geography by Barbara Barber
Scores - Finger Patterns Demonstration - violin & viola
Diagrams - Finger Patterns