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Elmsley Rose

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Elmsley Rose

8 April 2007

A modern example of Blackletter

although I don't know what *sort* of Blackletter it is

Thank you to Margaret for the link to his site

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6 April 2007

Script Analysis - Draft Ductus : A to L

I've swopped to using graph paper with a 3 mm (double the Bedford Psalter pen width) square size and it's SO much better and clearer.
I'm using a speedball that is a little bit smaller than 3mm, but close enough.

Apart from some comments on the first version of the A, I'm not putting in stroke directions yet. I need to get more familiar with the more unusual letters and teach myself to build them in Drogin's way, not the easiest way for me (which is putting the vertical lines down first). I'll get there.

The ascenders/descenders shown aren't correct. I'm still practising doing the dip at the top/bottom (well, I'm still practising doing the curve at the top then changing the pen angle to do the diamond at the bottom, never mind the next step - the complete dip at the top). Also, the ascenders are thickened in the B.P. - a bit thicker near the top/bottom (it's be part of constructing the dip, following the left hand line down or up a bit). So letters like the L are not very accurate at the moment.

I also need to make the letters more Bedford Psalter in character. It's got to do with the angularity, and the curvature of the diamonds. At the moment, they are a bit too 'straight'.

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4 April 2007

Script Analysis - Draft Ductus for the A

Ok - back to the script analysis of the Bedford Psalter.

The last entry on it was Script Analysis - The Ductus on Graph Paper III
where I'd drawn (key word - drawn) each of the letters (in ballpoint) on graph paper.

The next step is to write each of the letters in a broad pen.

This is me attempting the "a". Struggling to get the proportions right.

I'm very glad that I got acquainted with each of the letters in the earlier exercise. This is hard!
I eventually got it - but had a problem with the ink bleeding.

I made notes on the construction of the a on the graph paper. When I've done them all, I'll put the complete ductus together, complete with arrows. I'm using the ductus from Drogin's book as a starting point.

I've printed out some more graph paper on paper that hopefully won't bleed (it's worse because I'm moving slowly with the pen) and will do some more on this version of the 'a'.

I may move to using bigger squares than those of the actual p.w. of 1.5 mm. It's hard seeing the detail working this small.

OK ... just pulled up the graph paper above in Blogger. It's unreadable. I'll be re-doing the notes anyway - but writing them on the graph paper is a bad idea. I'll have to blank them out with white out or something before writing the notes.

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Illuminated N - Finished


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1 April 2007

Illuminated N - N Shaded

OK, that's the shading of the N done. :-)
I need to add more at the right hand bottom side - it's not quite dark enough.

Also, the erasure of that shape on the diagonal leg is showing through the paint as ruffled/damaged paper. I did burnish well with a rubber. Maybe I should have used a burnisher. Still - it was waterproof liner pen that I used, and it was pretty sunk into the paper.

What I'll do is put the shape back (over the ruffed up paper with some paint on top - ouch. I'll pounce well beforehand!) in black with a brush.

Then I'll shadow in the edges, so it looks like a depressed (pushed in) shape.

I doubt putting in horizontal lines (as in the original design) would be a good thing. It'd be too much detail, given all the colour I've used.

I also have to

* put in some more shadow behind a couple of the curlicues that cross the N

* fix up the black background. It's got bits of gold, and bits of white/blue in various places

* fix up a little of the black shading on gold where it crosses the N, and got damaged when I was shading the N.

Then I'll be sad, coz I'll be finished. And back to script analysis, which is very worthy, but just not as much fun.

I'm already thinking of doing another piece in the same style, but using brown ochre, and putting in the black background last (to make sure it's good and velvety - I'll have to lay it in fairly heavily now to get the velvity-ness back).
Using more of the flower type shades, and fewer of those peaked leaf shapes, which are pretty boring.
Having a firmer hand on the outside "flourishy" lines and flowers.
It has occured to me that a watercolour wash on those flowers would be pretty, but I think it'd be too much for the design. It'd be good to try a very light blue/gold wash and see how it worked.
I'd also have to think whether I'd lay down all the gold, then shade in brown ochre. (as I did with the black in this piece)
Or lay in gold only where I want my middle and dark colours, adding the brown over for the dark colour. Leaving the white pristine for the highlight colour. I like using the paper as a highlight colour. The example that I was looking at with the brown ochre doesn't have a highlighting colour (which is also something to consider)

This is the example of brown oche shading on gold that I'm talking about - from Treasures from Italy's Great Libraries. (mss 1496, Venice). I included the gold shading on (erm, pink) example because I like it too (maybe not in that colour). I'll keep an eye out for other examples of the gold/ochre combination - especially for any use of a highlighting colour.

I am quite pleased (well, very pleased) with the piece. It's LOTS more 3D that it looks on the scan. Yes, I've just talked about all the things I'd do differently, but I don't think this is too bad as my first 'solid gold gouache' piece. I originally said that I'd only put up scans of parts of the piece on blogger, so Nick didn't get to see the whole piece until he saw it 'in the flesh' but I reckon that it looks sufficiently different that I can put the whole piece up here, and he'll still get a surprise.

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