Sunday, July 26, 2009

Panache for Elenore of Lyonesse

ElenorePML MS374

The design is based on fol. 135 of Pierpont Morgan Library MS 374, a missal dating to before 1431, reproduced on p. 233 of Smeyers, Flemish Miniatures.

I'd been wanting to draw one of those complicated floral borders for awhile, but most of them are very dense and detailed. When I found this image, which is bright and colorful but relatively sparse, I was excited about trying it. I drew out the lay-out on Jul. 24, inked and painted the border, did the calligraphy, and added the gold on Jul. 25, and then did the whitework on Jul. 26.

The text reads:

Due commendations and greetings to the princes, barons, and lords of Drachenwald from Prothall and Cecilia your king and queen. By these presents let all known that for her noteworthy skill and knowledge of sundry and diverse arts and sciences we create Elenore of Lyonesse a companion of our Order of the Panache with all rights and responsibilities attendant thereto including the right to bear the badge of the order, issuant to chief from a torteau charged with a bezant pierced sable three feathers gules, or, and sable.

Done the 6th day of March, a.s. 33, and in witness whereof we have set our hands.

© 2009, Sara L. Uckelman.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

AoA for Nadiana Stjarnulf


This was just the calligraphy for an an AoA that was gorgeously illuminated by Racaire.

© 2009, Sara L. Uckelman.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

AoAs for Walter von Are and Elysant Walters

When I got the assignment to do the AoAs for my friends Walter and Elisande, I was so excited that I sat down and started working immediately. From start to finish, this took me about 8 or 9 hours. Walter's is on the left, Elisande's on the right. I left the two together, rather than separating them into two individual pieces, because I figured it might be helpful to have them as one for framing purposes, and if not, then they can cut them.

Walter & Elisande

Since they're a couple, I wanted to do two that looked like an obvious pair. They are modelled on fols. 74v and 75 of a Book of Hours from Thérouanne, ca. 1300, reproduced on p. 133 of Smeyers, Flemish Miniatures:

p. 133

The original is 9x13cm; I tried to keep similar measurements. I had to omit some of the neater bits (like the jousting monkeys and the man with the sword) in order to have space for the signatures and seals, and since I still haven't found exactly the right nib for doing gothic hands at this scale, I had to substitute a different hand. But I really like the way the birds turned out! My first time doing animate creatures in the borders.

© 2009, Sara L. Uckelman.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Panache for Beatrice de Tisbury

Panache for Beatrice de Tisbury


The initial is one of the four that I made for Elisande's book project, based on Codex Admonstensis 139.

The text reads:

By these words let all know that it is the will of Gerhart and Aurelia, king and queen of Drachenwald, that our subject Beatrice of Tisbury be commended for her skills and knowledge in the arts and sciences, and so we create the said Beatrice a member of our Order of the Panache with all rights and responsibilities attendant thereto, including the right to bear the badge of the order as depicted below. Done this vi day of April, a.s. xxvi, which is ddii in the common reckoning, and in witness whereof we have set our hands.

© 2009, Sara L. Uckelman.

Panache + AoA for Fleinn Ragnarsson


This was completed in three stages. It was drawn out and painted on Mar. 29, and then half of the calligraphy on Apr. 9; I had problems with the vermillion and the sepia bleeding in to each other and so I quit in frustration and it took me a good while to have the desire to try to finish it. I completed the calligraphy, fixing up some of the bleeding a little, and did the whitework on Jul. 5.

The image is based on fol 92v of Oxford Bodleian Library MS. Canon. Liturg. 251, end of the 14th C, which is reproduced on p. 201 of Maurits Smeyers, Flemish Miniatures.

© 2009, Sara L. Uckelman.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

PCSs for Tonis vom Ahrgebirge and Isabeau de Brionne

This is a pair of PCS scrolls for a couple who are leaving Drachenwald for the second time. I wanted to make a set that looked like they were part of a pair, but still made sense individually.

for Tönis vom Ahrgebirgefor Isabeau de Brionne

This was my first attempt at any sort of realistic artwork (e.g., landscapes, people). The couple is moving to Meridies, so I have them each in their own boat sailing from Drachenwald on the right to Meridies on the left. Each boat has two flags, the badge of the Popular Company of Sojourners, and the individual's personal arms. On the right is the Drachenwald ensign and on the left is Meridies's flag. The people ended up being too small to do any details other than eyes on their faces. I hope they don't look too weird.

The design/composition is a mish-mash of various elements. The hand is based on a 15th C copy of Margery Kempe's autobiography, plate 7 of Kelliher & Brown, English Literary Manuscripts (the autobiography itself dates from the 14th C, and I didn't realize until after I'd done the wording that the specific copy I was looking at wasn't. Otherwise, at least all the elements would've been from the same century). The ships are based on ships found on f7r of the Le roman de Joseph d'Arimathie ou le Roman de l'Estoire du Graal, early 14th C, plate 52 of Western European Illuminated Manuscripts. The border is based on ff68v of the Taymouth Hours (c.1325-40), plate 47 of Harthan, Books of Hours.

There's always a point in working on a scroll where I look at it and think "there is no way this is going to turn out". For these, it was after I'd done the wording, the water, grass, ships, and the red and blue in the borders and the capitals. Luckily, even when I look at something half-way finished in horror, I have enough perspective to realize that once the gold, whitework, and black border lines are added, it will suddenly look much, much better. Knowing that, I took a break after reaching that stage, leaving the finishing details for another day, and then, while cleaning everything up, promptly dropped a bottle of ink whose cap was not screwed on tight and spilled about half of it. Amazingly, the mess didn't damage anything, but even so, I took it as a sign that I'd reached a good stopping point and shouldn't attempt to push my luck until another day! The scroll was done Jun. 27, 28, and Jul. 4.

© 2009, Sara L. Uckelman.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Queen's Tea invitations

The Queen of Drachenwald is hosting a Queen's Tea at Pennsic 2009, for which she needed invitations to all the queens in the Known World that would be in attendance. I did 10, and Lady Genevieve did 7. When I met up with Trinite en route from the International Medieval Congress in Leeds to Störtebeker's Sons in Two Seas, she introduced me to pen work and we added flourishes to the invitations I'd done.

Queen of the Outlands
Queen of Calontir
Queen of Gleann Abhann
Queen of the Middle
Queen of the West
Queen of Northshield
Queen of the East
Queen of Lochac
Queen of Trimaris
Queen of Meridies

Since the text was the same, once I did one copy and got settled into the hand, the rest went really quickly -- by the time I reached the end, it took more time to tick and rule the guidelines than it did to do the lettering itself!

© 2009, Sara L. Uckelman.