Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Tuesday, April 09, 2013
I write to you as a signet clerk of Nordmark. When I stepped in the office
of signet, so the backlog had not been updated since 2007. There is a
large amount of scrolls which have not yet been made.
If there are any of you out there who feel you would like to help reduce
Nordmarks the backlog by calligraphy or illumination so you are welcome to
Please contact me
Lady Alfhild the Foxley
Signet Clerk of Nordmark
Monday, April 08, 2013
Saturday, April 06, 2013
A German supplier for calligraphy ( among other things) parchment from various animals. Their site is in English and German although the shop is so far as I gave discovered only German. You can request a catalogue.
Altenburg “Pergament & Trommelfell”
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
I've done three Macclesfield initials with 3mm letters. The first is this one:
However, you have unbiased eyes, and I'd like observations, please! Is it worth persevering?
Sunday, February 24, 2013
New PDFs added under "Class notes and how to's" If you have any class PDFs you'd like to see added please send me the link.
Cleaned up the Wiki and moved the link for now to class notes. We were hacked and had a redirect added ( now removed ) and had to clear through the nearly 300 fake users. If you were a legit user and had your account removed then please sign up again.
In the wiki I removed all the titles from the "meet the scribes" listing. As titles change over time it makes it a bit of work to change and do a redirect so better that we list the scribe names without titles ( you can add them to your individual page if you wish) Your pages should also now redirect to the untitled name link, please check to make sure everything is in order.
All official Drachenwald scribal communication is either through the yahoo email list of via email to and from the signet office. Facebook is NOT an official Drachenwald Scribe site and as not everyone is on facebook I would advise people to remember this. If you wish to convey official information to the Drachenwald Scribal community please do so through the email list.
This blog is open to any and all scribes of the kingdom of Drachenwald. It is unofficial and as blogger allows me to add only 100 contributors I weed out the inactive from time to time. Anyone can read or submit a comment so if you are not actually wanting to post anything then you do not need to be on the contributor list. If you wish to be an active contributor then email me ( address on the sidebar) and let me know what email address you wish to sign up with. Blogger sends you and invite with instructions.
Anyone wishing to become a scribe may contact the various signets for information. Their contact information can be found on the side bar.
There are two scriptoriums coming up:
Scriptorium & 30th Anniversary
16th March, West Dragonshire (England) Hosted by Lady Arianrhod, Signet of ID ( address on the side bar)
Scriptorium at Drachenwald XX Year Celebration & Coronation Hosted by Various.
19-23 June, Drachenwald (Germany)
There will be scribal relevant classes on going during this scriptorium,
anyone wishing to teach should contact Mistress Melisende Fitzwalter
any suggestions, questions or queries about this blog may be directed to me ( see side bar)
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Lots of Ames lettering guides. Now scribes of Drachenwald will never have to worry about finding them again.
Right. On with the 30-day challenge. We'll see if I can conquer a small version of Gothic....I doubt it.
Monday, February 18, 2013
Saturday, February 09, 2013
- fine dental plaster (unslaked) - loads of this, because the smallest quantity I could buy was 1kg - is the bulk of gesso
- armenian bole - I have lots, and you only ever need a tiny amount to tint gesso
- gum ammoniac in chunks, not liquid - adhesive for gold
- gum arabic, chunks not liquid - another adhesive and all-round useful additive
- pumice powder, to add to pounce
- gum sandarac, also goes into pounce
- refined ox gall liquid - plenty available, for thinning pigments to keep them running smoothly, used 1 drop at a time
If you are interested in any of these materials, I can bring them with me. I have some small containers, but if you have your own teeny jam jars or small sealable bags, that would be a great help.
You can put a donation towards my drinks fund, but I'd be interested in swapping any interesting tools or materials you've found that you have spare. Do you have favourite nibs, pen handles, scraping knives, and have a spare?
Items that you've already found useful are best - I'm not after your tools, so much as your experience of what works for you, for what results. Art shops are full of cool tools, but I want to know what works for other Society scribes, from them.
Please contact me, here or by e-mail, to let me know what you would like, and I'll make sure I'll bring it. I'm on public transport, so I'll bring items on request, but not on spec.
Here's to more nifty toys to try out!
Monday, February 04, 2013
Design notes: Richard and Lena favour early-ish personas, so I chose an exemplar from as early as I could find, in a hand I was confident in. I wanted something that featured both calligraphy, and (a limited amount of) gilding.
Cue the Byzantines! or rather, an Ottonian bible from Trier (Holy Roman Empire in Germany stealing Byzantine style and fire), from 10th/11th century. I was thrilled to find this work. It combines many of my favourite elements: white space, less-is-more emphasis on text, gold and red together.
For a text, I asked Lyonet and Arianrhod if one of them would be willing to consider writing a 'viking-like' text, one of those early alliterative things (poetry is not my strong point!) and Arianrhod replied with a text fully-formed the next day. Hurrah for a poet's productive insomnia.
Hwaet! Now virtuous Vitus unlocks the word-hoard;
white-limbed Isabel holds out her hand.
Sing, scop, of mighty times when high was built mead-hall,
Richard the Rampant dealt out rings,
riches at feasts. Lena Peaceweaver
loaned honour to the hall high and horn-gabled,
every day heard noise of revelry
loud in the hall; there was harmony of the harp,
the sweet song of the poet; learned lords and ladies
travelled the whale-road to win her wisdom.
Then was there peace and prosperity
in the Principality: Richard with mighty thews
held hard the boundaries from Iceland to Wight,
proved with his prowess his right to rule.
White-thighed Lena held hospitality.
Generosity of heart showed they both;
their war-bands were wise in ways of court as well.
Now come they before Vitus just successor
and Isabel sweet-voiced who pronounce these patents:
that those who serve enthroned in war and peace
should receive viscounty rank and rights of arms.
Rise, Viscount Richard. Viscountess Lena, rise.
Take right to rank and coronet from crowned Vitus
to use and bear without let at hard-won leisure.
Done in Deepdene shining shire
Anno societatis seven and forty on February’s second day.
The artwork did not follow the formatting perfectly: I made one artistic decision (starting a line with N, because I couldn't find an H that I liked)...and one mistake, resulting in a jogged line.
I also had to sacrifice matching the spacing exactly - my page wasn't quite big enough for the number of lines + the line height I wanted. My next effort from this work will be better spaced.
There are no red dots in the original - these are another artistic decision, to emphasise the form of the poetry and hint at how to read it.
Source image: from Rylands Medieval Collection Collection MS 98, University of Manchester. (requires decent connection, very image and navigation-heavy).
This makes day 22 of my 30 day challenge.
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
I am particularly pleased with the light reflections on the ribbons.
Friday, January 18, 2013
I'd like to also ask little help. I am planning to make few smaller blank scrolls and I need to figure out few really short versions of AoA/any other text. Something what would be only like 4-6 lines of text but still polite/ appropriate. I am really bad for doing it by myself, as I start to stress about the text and right phrasing
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
But I thought people might enjoy it.
Ari, in a previous post gave the text of the Dragon's Bowle scroll for Genevieve and Robert (as I said when we gave it, I want to be them when I grow up. Unfortunately, Joel has reminded me that I will never be as tall as Robert). This lovely poem was adapted from a skeleton that I had sent her, and for people's amusement, I thought I'd post the original.
This was written New Year's Eve, during which Joel and I were manfully (womanfully?) doing our best to reduce the number of open alcohol bottles that had to be moved to Germany, and a few days into dealing with a horrendously jet-lagged little baby. We were sitting in front of the fire, and every line or so I'd ask Joel for a rhyme or a synonym and he uniformly produced something snarky, sarcastic, or inappropriate.
Thank goodness for evil twins with much greater poetic ability!
Rede ye now the wyse and wonderful words of Paul and Aryanhwy, Drachenwaldish kings A praiseworthy life values virtue above swords, And a life pure and clene .... sings [I knew I needed a word here but didn't know what, hence the ellipses] To commit no vice, to have good grace, redie wit To be meet and seemly in garb and in speech To stand as witness to others of all that is fit And teaching and enriching all in their reach, To dance and to play, to serve and to lead. Before us stand the best and the brightest Who have set themselves above the rest by deed By word, by dress, by kenning of all things blest. Now from our hands the bowle of the Dragon take Genevieve la flechiere and Robert of Canterbury As witness of our esteem and for our own sake So done we this day, the fourth day of January The eve of 12th Night, anno societatis forty-three Signed by our hands in Lyndhurst, by Burley.
See, isn't the end product much nicer? :) I luckily realized once I hit college that I was no poet.
And here's the scroll, which was done on perhaps the awesomest blank that I have ever received, by Mærith aff Weselax:
Tuesday, January 08, 2013
Check the 30day tag.
ETA: I can add images from my laptop only in HTML mode, rather than the wysiwyg mode in Blogger. Go figure.
I would ask that all scribes who are planning to come to DW20 consider bringing equipment/ materials and books so you have "stuff to do".
When I get more details I will post them.
Monday, January 07, 2013
I had the privilege of doing several wordings and scrolls over the past couple of months, of in conjunction with other scribes.
One was for a joint Dragon's Bowle, for Dame Genevieve and Master Robert. Her then-majesty wrote a poem, which she asked me to improve upon, poetry being (mundanely) rather my thing. If she so wishes, Aryanhwy can post the original in a comment--I'm not going to post her work without permission. What it came out as, however, was this:
This, however, is a much better example of an early Gothic hand (as in a Gothic hand which is early in the range of dates, not as in a proto-Gothic hand):
In both of these scrolls, I used raised gold. There was a discussion on what to use as base for gilding. I find it easy to use Roberson's water gold size (as sold by Cornelissen) to do nicely raised effects. I do two coats: a flat one, then a thicker one to gain height. I have to be careful when adding that I add the same amount evenly to the space treated (generally by moving the brush in tiny circles), and not getting bubbles, but it's really quite easy to master. The water gold size is (judging from the smell) mostly garlic and gum arabic. There's no plaster, so it is a size and not a gesso.
Gold is transfer gold (again from Cornelissen). I prefer to use 23 carat extra-thick transfer leaf, rather than the 24-carat thinner stuff. It does make a difference--less reapplication--despite the fact that I'm sure the 23 carat stuff is only microscopically thicker.
In the Sigillum, I am most pleased with the whitework on the blue bar.
Saturday, January 05, 2013
The event is cheap and the stewards are very user friendly.
Wednesday, January 02, 2013
Greetings all you wonderful scribes! What a year this has been! So many amazing works of art produced and so many happy people. You guys are pretty amazing!
I wanted to thank each of you who have contributed to the glory of the kingdom personally. Without your extraordinary talents and hard work this kingdom would be a lesser place. For those of you who have given me a street mailing address I have tried to send out a small thank you card / gift. I am still working through my list so if you have not yet received a card / small gift from me can you let me know?
If you have not given me a snail mail address and have done work for the kingdom this year and would like to receive mail from the signet then please feel free to email me your snail mail address ( coupled with your SCA name) and I will do my best to make sure you know just how thankful I am, as Signet and fellow scribe, to be able call upon your talents. You all make my job so easy and for that I am truly grateful.
We have a busy last half of the SCA year coming up as our incoming King and Queen have a pretty full RP and we also have the 20 years celebration to look forward to. It's going to be the year of the scribe really so let's make it a good one. Encourage each other, share ideas, be brave and try new things!
There are two listed scriptoriums this year so far, one in Sweden and one in the UK ( pls see the kingdom-event-calendar for details) as well as endless opportunities to do work for the Kingdom, the two principalities and the baronies.
One of the things I would like, as Kingdom Signet, to see is a much greater pooling of resources among all of the scribes, so that we all get to know each other better and can serve all aspects of the kingdom. Greater communication and more active scribes serving ALL regions of the kingdom will mean less burn out and a wider variety of artwork as well as a larger knowledge base.
One of the goals this year is to enlarge the central data base of scribes via the dragon scribes wiki and help bring the Drachenwald scribal community even closer together. dragon scribes wiki
If you are a scribe who wishes to work make sure you have joined the kingdom mailing list groups.yahoo.com/group/dragon_scribes/ This is THE official kingdom mailing list for the scribes and it is here that most of the assignments will be first listed. If you want to work then please let the signets know.
If you are new to the world of scribes and want to join in do not hesitate to contact any of the signet clerks listed on the sidebar, find your local scribes and ask for advice, help and join in the fun.
In the last six months almost 100 scrolls were created and this is pretty amazing! You are all amazing and you should be incredibly proud of the work you do. I know that I am proud to work with you and for you all.
So here's to 2013 and the beautiful things we will create.
very best wishes,
Bridget, signet clerk
Saturday, December 29, 2012
After struggling to handle loose gold, and losing a certain amount to its tendency to ball up into nothing on a whim, I realised I was missing some technique. It's a pretty refined skill.
So I spent one day of my challenge on looking up examples of people handling loose gold. It appears that most (not all) manuscript gilders who post to YouTube prefer to use transfer gold; but those who gild wood, leather and motorcycle tankss (!) are happy to post films on their skills.
The link goes to my LiveJournal, where I've put together the best of what I found on YouTube. If you have favourite footage of people handling loose gold for gilding, please let me know where to find it. I'm tracking my challenge with the tag 30day.
Sunday, December 09, 2012
I chose a piece from a commentary on the Psalms, early 13th c, from Austria; the image is from HMML. I love the hand (early Gothic, can't go wrong for me) but was also pushed to try raised gold - the largest and most complex I've tried.
One drawback of this digital library is that the size of the page is not recorded - almost all the images are of the 'shiny bits' of illumination, with few whole-page images. So I matched the size of the illumination to the size of the text, to fit on a piece of A5 vellum.
This gold was laid using Miniatum, a size by Kolner, which I found thicker and heavier than Cornelissen's own 'improved gold body'. It's transfer gold, rather than loose gold, so it has some shine but not the mirror gloss.
I don't think I've yet done this illumination justice, but it serves as my starting point for the 30 day challenge.
Important point I learned *after* finishing this item - you can scrape and reshape the size, and the gold after being laid down, with a knife blade, to get crisp straight edges and smooth curves. I'd originally thought you had to lay the glue+gold down perfectly, then tidy the edges with paint outlines. My next pieces will benefit from figuring this tweak out.
Another note - it's easier to lay small areas, than try to do an entire figure like this one (with many small patches). Next time...
The Latin text is courtesy HRM Aryanhwy.
|Callig done, glue laid|
|Gold laid (photo poor, sorry)|
|Finished initial, with whitework and outlining|
I uploaded two scrolls that I did for Adamestor's Yule event this weekend to my FB C&I album, and as I was paging down the album to get to the end, one of my earlier photos caught my eye -- I recognized the initial. Sure enough, I looked a bit closer, and it was another scroll that I'd also done on a blank, and it was the same exemplar, and same artist who did the illumination.
So I thought it would be interesting to do a compare and contrast of some collaboration between Sayyida Amal and myself, separated by three years:
|Lindquistringes for Chiara degli Danielli||AoA for Lorcan Rochford|
I don't actually have the details, but I'm pretty sure I did the calligraphy for Chiara's while at Raglan, which is why it's not very good; I have trouble getting my line widths right when I'm working on the fly. Lorcan's was also rather last minute, but I was able to do it at home, with a bit more time to compose the text and make sure that I had the right line width and pen nib.
Enjoy! It shows how different the same thing can be.
Saturday, December 01, 2012
Friday, November 23, 2012
On facebook currently there is a Drachenwald 30 day challenge started by Kerttu going on and many of us have decided to take up a new hand or learn illumination.
the upside of this is people also share cool links and I have added three of these which have to do with handwriting ( thank you Lia) to the "places to study" side bar.
Also people are and will be posting pictures of their progress. So if you are on facebook and wish to join please go to the link. The group is open so even if you don't want to join you can still see what is being done and discussed ( of course you do need to be on facebook to see)
also if people find great links for teaching feel free to let me know and I will add them to the side bar, same goes for your blogs and galleries. If no one tells me I don't know about them.
PS: This is the original challenge post:
you up to a challenge? Pick something you want to improve and do that
for 30 days, preferably consecutively. When you start, write your
challenge here. If you can take a photo of your first day effort and
post it too. When you are finished with the 30 days, write a post
detailing how many days it actually took, how have you improved and post
a picture of the last day results if you can.
can be anything you want: calligraphy, brocade tablet weaving,
conditioning for that bear pit tourney, drawing a new but still too
stiff bow... Whatever you want. But just do it.
Sunday, November 18, 2012
recipes for sealing wax ( many are later than we play)
Sealing Wafers and Sealing Wax: Research Notes
This has been on my to try list for a really long time along with the large cookie in of oak galls whispering at me to make ink from them. One of these days....
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Here is the text for Lia's scroll:
To all true and noble people thies presentes lettres Reading, Hearing or Seeing: Paul, kyng of Drachenwald and master of the Ordre of the Laurel, and Aryanhwy, quene and patroness of the arts and sciences, sende dew recomendacyon and gretyng as it apperteyneth to all. For so moche as we understond ffor certeyn that every person of crafte and skill within the kyngdomes lands who stody, devyse and Inmagyne with theyre besy curys and undelayd devoyres and delegencys and suche personys namely as be lynyally descendyd ffrom noble blode compellyd therunto by verry course of nature the most convenyent and most honowrable weyes and meanys to them possyble ffor to exalte and prefferre theyr Craftes and Fraternyteys to honeur and noble and to as excellent laude and Recomendacyon as by theyr mendys canne be thought or contryvyd to thentent that eny persone entryng or comyng into their Craftes and Fraternytes beryng of theyr sadde and laudable vertuoux and comendable disposiscyons and opynyons shuld Rather enforce and aplye themselfe effectuelly with all possyble delyngce towardes the maytenance and supportacyon and longe contenewaunce of the same to the laude and prersyng of God, thenour of the sovereynge lord of this Realme aforsaid and of the sayd Crafte and fraternyte. Amonge whom, we, the sayd kyng and queen note and Apoynte at this tyme specyally the good, sadde, worshypfull and well dessposyd persone, that is to say the Honorable Lady Lia de Thornegge, Clothier, Scribe, Broiderer, and mistress of many divers arts for the tyme beyng and henceforth to eternity a member of the auncient and honourable Order of the Laurel. We, the sayd kyng and quene, for the tendre zele and inward affeccyon that we bere toward her ladyship, for the presservyng and encresse therof to her honour have yeven and granted unto her by letters patent the Armeys hereaffter Folowyng as in the mergene depykt more pleynly apperyth: that is to saye she bere per pall inverted sable, vert and sylvere, thre seeblätter inverted silvere, silvere, and sable: the Crest upon the helme bearing a wrethe of lauriel leaues: which armys by thactoryte and poure of the College of Arms annexed and attrybutyed, we, the sayd kyng and quein have ordeyned to and for the said Lady to her that now and herafter shalbe in synge and token of vertu, ffor evermore to have and to hold, occupy and Reioyce withoute any Inpedyment, Interupcion, lette or enpechement by vertue of our sayd patent for evermore. In wytnesse wherof we, the sayd kyng and quein to thies presentes synged with our hands have putte our selle of auctoryte yovyn at Unikankare the x day of November in the vthe monthe of oure reigne.
It is based on the Grant of Arms to the London Company of Weavers, at the bottom of http://verysleepy.itgo.com/grants.htm.
This is the Panache scroll that I made for Lady Ælefwynne of Eoforwic that was given by Their Majesties at Kingdom University 2012.
The illumination was made by me – the calligraphy was done by Baroness Margaret Walsingham.
It is based on a page from the Eberler Bible (Basle, 1464) and I found the inspiration in an awesome book ”The most beautiful Bibles” printed by Taschen (which also means the book was very decently priced).
This illumination was a bit funny to work with since it was so much darker in its colours than usual.
I ended up working more with shading than whitework!
Materials used: Gouache and gold leaf on pergamanata.
I took pictures of the published pages from this bible and sent to Baroness Margaret so that she could copy the calligraphy style and its little extra oddities so all the mix with red and little letters outside in the margin are all specific to this manuscript.
Saturday, November 03, 2012
Cambridge Digital Library: Life of St Edward the Confessor by Matthew Paris
A glorious illustrated account of the life of St Edward by the author, calligrapher and illuminator Matthew Paris.
Paris is of course writing in the early 13th century about events from before 1066 in England. So his illuminations show kings, queens, courtiers, warriors and bishops in the height of early 13th c fashion, with the classic full-body mail, surcoats, heater shields and closed-face helms.
Here's his impression of the battle of Stamford Bridge, 1066
The viewer can turn pages, zoom, jmp pages, and download pages individually. Glorious.
Second resource: Fitzwilliam Museum Collection, Collections explorer, searching for items under 'illuminated' and 'romanesque', I came up with this MS:
Model book, c 1150-1175, Italy, probably Florence
It's about 5 pages of a model book with Romanesque initials. Here's the blurb (emphasis mine):
These three folios are the earliest pattern sheets for ornamental initials known to survive from the medieval period. They are an important document for the rise of professional artists and their methods of work. The faint sketches in plummet are still visible beneath the ink drawing and the use of a ruler and compasses can be detected in most letters. The shape, style and colour of the initials, figures and scroll-work find close parallels in Florentine manuscripts from the middle through the third quarter of the twelfth century, such as a Bible and a Homiliary (Florence, Biblioteca Laurenziana, MS Mugel. 2 and London, British Library, MS Harley 7183; Berg 1968, no. 74, figs. 125-31, and no. 106, figs. 132-37; http://www.bl.uk/catalogues/illuminatedmanuscripts/record.asp?MSID=6386&CollID=8&NStart=7183).
Following the link, you get an example of the exemplars in use in Harley 7183 in the British Library:
This makes me feel soooo much better about copying existing work, though I feel I should still know how these pieces were drafted, so I can do it myself.
OTOH, the journeyman-level artists might not have done that drafting - they may have been copyartists, relying on the masters to provide that expert drafting, and they simply, well, copied.
Anyway: I was very excited and please by these finds. Hurrah for libraries continuing to stretch their digital holdings.
Sunday, October 28, 2012
Well, fellow newbies, I have a solution. I was very kindly gifted with enough gold and silver powder to last me a lifetime, so I have felt I am able to experiment with it. Here is the first experimentation: a basic side-by-side comparison on piece of scrap paper.... I used a modern gesso by pebeo, which is in effect a PVA glue. Leave to dry for 15 mins, then simply dip the very tip of your brush into the powder and lightly spread over the surface. You only need a TINY amount - I learnt that lesson quickly! (First time I used it, I treated it like glitter - tip a bit onto the gesso then tap excess back off into bottle. Needless to say, I only did that once!!)
Tip for money-saving - you don;t need an expensive burnisher. If you do want to bring up the shine of the powders a little bit more, you can use the back of a spoon.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Reads: Paul the First, by grace of god king of Drachenwald, bright son of Albion and likewise Aryanhwy I our queen to all unto whom these letters patent shall come, peace, love and greetings. As we celebrate the naming of our heirs,we do joyfully invest this man Barobrand Hissgant as a Baron of the Court on account of the great fame his valor renown and prowess hath brought and of the virtures he has long shown. In accordance with his rank he may style himself a coronet which is best suited to his person so that all might see the esteem in which we hold him. This document validates by this the date 6 October of the year 47 and by the character of the royal name signed below.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
There are dozens of 'introduction to calligraphy' books (just like 'learn to knit' and 'starting quilting'), and they won't steer you wrong. Almost every one starts with pen, ink, paper, and posture, then goes on to scribing X, O, 'thick' and 'thin' lines, using edges of the nib, etc.
These three are my favourites, because they refer to medieval examples to model on, and you can find them cheaply online (Abebooks comes through for me).
Medieval calligraphy, its history and technique, by Marc Drogin. Dover Publications, 1980.
This book is the 'workhorse' of calligraphers in the Society since it was published.
Pros: It stands the test of time because the author examined, and published, examples of original manuscripts alongside his suggested how-to models (the sequence in which you write a letter is called the 'ductus'). So you can see the originals, next to his suggested versions, and decide for yourself if that's the best way to create each letter.
Cons: you may not agree with all his interpretations.
The Art of Calligraphy, a practical guide to the skills and techniques, by David Harris. DK Publishing, Inc., New York, 1995.
Harris is also author of The Calligraphy Bible, a ringbound book with dozens of sample hands, and much of the same instructional content, but not in colour. The 'bible' is the one I refer to the most...partly because it's easy to prop open on the table next to me.
Pros: Art of Calligraphy is illustrated in colour, which is very appealing, and covers a lot of historic hands.
Cons: Fewer references to medieval examples than in Drogin, so you don't know what model the ductus is based on.
Historical Source Book for Scribes, Michelle P Brown and Patricia Lovett, BL, 1999.
This is a beautiful book from the British Library, drawing on their top manuscript expert and top practicing calligraphy and illumination artist.
Pros: Careful thorough reviews of exemplars, to describe each hand, drawn from the BL's collections, right down to analysis of angles of each stroke.
Cons: This meticulous approach could intimidate someone new to calligraphy, rather than inspiring them; the manuscript examples are the highest examples of the art.
Frankly, I'm more inspired by the 'average' book samples online than the pinnacles of perfection; it shows me that medieval scribes ranged from ordinary up to the extra-ordinary. YMMV.
These books are in English and most of the exemplars are English, French or Latin. I'd be very glad of some similar book titles about German, Swedish or other source-language calligraphy. Each region has its own distinct characteristics, and I'd love to learn more about them. Please add any favourite titles in the comments!
Monday, October 15, 2012
I just want to inform that I have posted few pics of my modern calligraphy/illumination diplomas to my blog http://bone-needle.blogspot.com They are medieval(ish), amde for modern event. That's why I won't 'pollute' this blog with modern stuff. But if you wish to see my non-SCA related calligraphy, check my blog
~Lady Amal binti Hamid Al-Chania
Sunday, October 14, 2012
We have a few new faces on the blog, welcome to you all. I try to keep the list of contributors to those who are currently living in this kingdom and who actually contribute to the blog. I will weed through the lists usually once a year or so and remove any member that doesn't actually post as blogger has a limit of how many contributors we can have and while we have not yet met that I like to keep things active.
As you can see I have made sure that ALL the current signet positions that I know about are listed on this side bar, in trying to encourage greater "togetherness" for all the kingdom's scribes and signets I think it's good to know how to reach the signet from not only the kingdom but the principalities and the baronies.
www.dragonscribes.net is being worked on.
There is a dragon scribes wiki please join up and use it. I know it seems a bit daunting at first to edit etc... but it's really not so hard and the more people who contribute the greater our information base will be.
I added a "search" box ( top right hand side bar) so when you want to look for specific topics you can use this. It actually works quite well. Clever Google.
Some new links were added to the "places to learn" list and I am happy to add more if anyone has a specific place they like to go to for information etc...
This goes for shops as well, online shops change so please let me know if you have a new favourite.
And for Scribe's galleries, however please remember that not everyone has a facebook acct so if your gallery is on facebook and you want me to link to it it will need to be set to public.
There are a few facebook groups for scribes on the go, a Drachenwald specific one and an SCA one both are fun and the page that is linked to this one which is more about promotion etc.... Feel free to join up and converse.
This space is designed for showing off your work and giving as well as receiving feedback so don't be afraid to ask and show and tell. It's also a really great place for teaching tools so if people have PDFs they wish to share I am happy to also post a link or upload and link to any you have to offer. The more we can share the better we will be as a community.
Lastly remember to have fun!!
1: Paint Your Own Illuminated Letters By Stefan Oliver
When I am asked to recommend beginner's level how to books these are the three I instantly think of because they helped me get started and I still use them to this day.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
It's shaping up to be a great scribal time.
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
You can read about what we've been up to here: http://polderslotilluminatie.blogspot.nl/
Tuesday, October 09, 2012
As expected, the intrepid researchers turned up some gems: a heart-shaped music text, a fleur-de-lis shaped text, some early-period constellation figures.
It was the dragon shaped figure though that inspired me. This is a 14th c Hebrew manuscript from the BL (Oriental 2733 f50v)