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Elmsley Rose

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Elmsley Rose

30 May 2007

Script Analysis - The Ductus : A and B

This table shows everything I know about the letters A and B.

A revisit to all the information and to the source script hasn't hurt - I've made a couple of little corrections (like my Bs were too wide before).

I've tried the "everything heavy" method from Drogin, and it's looking good.

I tried using coloured watercolour ink to draw the letters and it's very time consuming, waiting for one colour to dry. I didn't feel that it added enough information to be worth it. I can make notes on any particular strokes that I need to.

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29 May 2007

Script Analysis - Letters S to Z graphed, and pointiness

The y and the z were tricky buggers.

Looking at the original script (the page of script that I particularily like, from Codices Illustres), the ascenders are STILL more pointy at their bases than the ones I'm doing - even with them tilted up from the left to the right, and angled at about 60 degrees.

Drogin shows how to add on an extra bit of point on page 140. I'll have a go at doing this and see how they turn out.

What a lot of malarky to form a single letter! No wonder gothic scripts eventually died out from use!

Next is to graph the letters again, using watercolour ink so that the separate strokes can be seen, and adding in stroke numbering and directions to form a ductus.

I'm going to do it in a layout similiar to the one Harris uses in his book. It'll be a lot easier this time around, because I have the basic letter shapes down (I hope).

I'm also going to add in all of the hairlines and little flourishy bits.

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25 May 2007

Script Analysis - Letters M to R graphed

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22 May 2007

Script Analysis - Variations of Ascenders and Descenders

I had a look back at the original pages of the Bedford Psalter this morning (always a good idea) and noticed that a particular variation of the ascender was by far the most common - and it wasn't the one I've been using the last couple of days.

I've listed them out in order of frequency, and included descender variations as well.

I've got back to my graphing of the letters, and re-done the ascenders (that I had re-done yesterday with the less frequent ascender variation)

They are actually looking like the originals now!

I've mapped up to R, but need to write up the details.

I will re-do this mapping, using watercolour so the details of the strokes can be seen, (like in Harris) and including stroke order to make a proper ductus, once I've been through the letters once. There are a few ticks and flicks that need to be added in, but I don't want to worry about them yet. I want to get the basic construction of the letters correct first.

I'm also going to need to write up this script analysis as one huge document when I've finished all this, so all of the information is together, and coherent.

I'm aware that my letter width is a bit bodgy - my Speedball, which I need to use to do the letters this large, isn't quite big enough.

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20 May 2007

Script Analysis - The different types of ascenders

Here are the 4 different types of ascenders. They are built by adding an extra line following the right hand side fishtail to the waistline, then placing the pen on top of that line and performing a pen twist. (and maybe a little bit extra to touch up)

I've measured the thickness of the ascender at the top as compared to it's width below the waistline. It's in proportion of 4: 3.

I've gone back to the graphing of the letters A-L, and re-done the ones with descenders. I'm using what seems to be my favourite version. :-

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18 May 2007

Script Analysis - Building the Ascenders

This is my collection of difference ascenders and descenders from the Bedford Psalter :

They differ a bit in exactly how the serif is finished, and there's a fourth version of the ascender shown in the large picture of the b below. (The l is just a repeat of one of the versions shown on a b)

I'm working on the ascender and it's serif of the leftmost b, of which the p's descender is similar. I'll look at the different versions of the serifs more later, but they are all more or less (literally) of this form.

Following up on the post
I think I've got the curve at the top of the ascender correct, to form the right hand side of the fishtail serif that's needed.

Referring back to the post above, I've realized that I've been forgetting to tilt the diamonds up to the left slightly. I shall go scream, then do a couple of lines to correct the problem.

(later). OK. done. easy - just had to remember to do it.

These are my notes on how to draw an ascender so far :

To build the ascender into a Bedford Psalter ascender, which looks like :

I need to build a fishtail with a flattening in the middle (not a typical fishtail, which has a 'v' top as shown in the figure from Lovett's book below)

Here's an extract from Patricia Lovett's "Calligraphy and Illumination" (page 72), describing how to make the left hand stroke of the fishtail.

Even more relevant, "The Historical Source Book for Scribes" (Brown and Lovett), page 91, describes how the ascenders and descenders were made for the Bedford Psalter - the same method as described in Lovett's "Calligraphy and Illumination", but with mention of the extra line that flattens the inside of the fishtail :

The Historical Source Book doesn't talk about the thickened ascenders - but they are there. I swear it. I've measured the width of the ascenders many times. They are thicker, gradually thinning until they hit the x-height line.

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13 May 2007

Ladder Hinge Book - finished

It's finished and I'm very pleased.
I found my notes, and the other book I've done was a concertina book with similiar sort of stitching, but only one signature (coz it was a concertina). This one added book covers and that back hinge.
I'll get Sal to take some photos of it - it's a bit hard to stick it in the scanner now.


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12 May 2007

Ladder Hinge Book - signatures sewn in

I was a bit scared of this sewing part. I just knew that I'd muck up punching the holes. And I did - I did them upsidedown (which meant they were placed wrongly). But I was able to burnish over the holes to hide them because of the thickness of the pink paper, and re-punch them easily.
The actual sewing part was actually pretty easy.

I was very pleased to make first use of my awl, book sewing needle and waxed linen thread.

I was very confused why the hinge was facing backwards, until I worked out that when the hinge was all folded up, the pattern on the paper would face outwards, as the spine of the book. Aha!

The scans aren't very good, coz the book is now a bit too big for my scanner. And it's going to get worse, because the book is about to go 3D, and I don't have a camera. I'll have to get Sal to take some shots.

So this hinge folds up, and voila! A book! My bone folder has been of immense use during this project.

There is an extra "panel" at each end of the hinge. This extra panels are about to get glued onto the book covers.

This scan is even worse, but it does show the extra panel at the top, (er, right hand side of the book), and you can see the front page of each of the 3 signatures (sets of pages), sewn at intervals along the hinge.

I also used foil for the first time to write "Sally's Photos". It's lovely and purple and bright. Heavy use of metallic crayons as well. I like metallic crayons.

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9 May 2007

Ladder Hinge Book - Signatures finished

The signatures are finished! :-)
Next is making the zigzag thingy to sew them onto.

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6 May 2007

Ladder Hinge Book - Hinge and Signatures

I've got the hinges happening.

I went through a couple of iterations. I wasn't happy with the first set I cut. I cut a second set and glued them to the book boards. Because they were plastic (the back of a plastic folder) they unglued themselves when I tried to bend them. After a re-try, I gave up on the plastic idea and reinforced some lovely mould made purple paper with black cardboard, and made the hinges from that.

Here they are :-
They aren't actually connected yet. They will be connected when I poke the chopstick through them, which comes at the end.
I'm pleased.

The next stage of instructions is :-

ie make the signatures; and then a folded stiff paper thingy into a zigzag thingy that adheres to the book boards at each end, and has the signatures sewn onto it.

I should say that these instructions are from "Book Arts - Beautiful Bindings for Handmade Books" by Mary Kaye Seckler; Suzanne McNeill Design Originals.

I've been busy making and decorating signatures while I've been waiting for the glue on the hinges to dry.
Because it's meant to be a photo album for Sally, I wanted to put in photo corners, and decorate a lot of the pages.

I have something against scrapbooking as a concept, because it seems to me to be a huge new commercial industy where people (women) buy stuff to glue onto pages. Using personal and naturally found objects is different.
However, I'm betraying my principles, and 'scrapbooking' away to decorate the pages. Ribbons and paper, and odds and ends I got in the supplies I bought from Karen Ter Haar.

I've done 2 out of the 3 signatures so far. Each signature holds 6 photos (one per double spread). I didn't want the weight of the book to get too great, given it's a fairly simple construction.

I haven't scanned all of the ones done so far - I want to leave a few suprises for when Sally actually receives the finished book.

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1 May 2007

Ladder Hinge Book

I'm working on making a book for Sally. I'm way behind in the presents that I owe peoples.
This is a Ladder Hinge book.

There's another page or two of instructions, but this is as far as I've gotten.

This is one of the book boards, covered. I didn't have any actual book 'board' but I had some thick core foam, and used that.

The paper is a bit of a bugger - the black is embossed velvet, and it smudges and comes up if it gets a little damp from glue. You can see the smudging on the "inside" (back) of the cover here - but that will get covered over with more paper - I'll use a plain bright pink.

I'm going to re-cover the other of the book boards. (It smudged badly on the front of it.)

The book boards are hinged with a vinyl piece, swinging on a piece of dowel.

I used the back of a plastic folder for the hinge, not having any vinyl or similiar.

And found a chopstick that matches the paper that I got for the book cover, which I think is pretty neat!

I cut the hinge to finish 2 cm short of the top and bottom, so the daisies on the chopstick can be seen at the top. (and I reckoned it'd look weird if it was short at the top, and right down to the bottom)

I might get another folder and re-cut the hinge with a new scalpel blade. There's a little rip on one side of one hinge. It doesn't really matter, because it'll be glued down, but did anyone say "perfectionist" ?

Then it's to making the signatures and decorating them (I'm going to use black paper as the signatures and add in photo corners, and generally decorate the pages with odds and ends. I have some metallic crayons that I'm aching to use).
Then sewing them in to a zigzag internal hinge I need to create.

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