It’s finally done! With the encouragement of some lovelies here-thank you!
The text under the main image is straight. It’s just the paper has distorted a little from the water in the paint. It’ll flatten out.
The photo below shows the size. The squares on that cutting mat are inches.
the main body of the letters is 4mm about 0.16" and the final line on the second page is written with ink I made from a medieval recipe. It’s about two years in the bottle and I didn’t think it was black enough to use for the whole thing.
The background, I’m currently doing a part time art degree, year one. We have an essay to do for history of art, we had to choose the artwork and the question. I chose to explore materials and techniques as. I’m interested in the production of ultramarine blue, from lapis lazuli.
Firstly I made the pigment, from a piece of lapis. I had to crush the stone and then grind it into a powder in a pestle and mortar. There were filtration and flotation steps and then a lot more grinding. The aim is to remove the greyish stone from the blue stone. I (sorta) followed a medieval method. And I produced a pretty acceptable blue.
My original intention was to copy an image from a medieval illuminated manuscript using the pigment made into tempera paint (adding egg yolk and water) but then a fit of whimsy hit me and I decided, what if I did my whole essay as an illuminated manuscript.
I was going to do something out of the book of kells, because the unical script is fairly easy (at this stage I knew I was going to have to learn the calligraphy) but turns out the book of kells didn’t use blue from lapis, they used woad instead. How inconsiderate!
I found a gorgeous book of hours from the 14century. The book of hours of Philip the Bold. Different script. So I had to learn the script, write the essay, draw and paint the borders and use the lapis pigment in a copy of an illustration from the manuscript.
The blue in the virgins cloak and in the borders is from my lapis lazuli
A cinch really-not! ( feckin’ insanity)
My original intention was to write the whole thing, but fortunately @calluna reminded me that I am not a cloistered monk. Then I realised that it would be about 15 of these pages of dense text to write the whole essay. So I figured that a synopsis was enough. ie a first page with the picture and then a page of text with some illuminated capitals. I followed very closely the decoration, script, scribbles etc from the original. I couldn’t find any evidence of marginalia in the original, but I couldn’t resist putting it in. This is a copy from a different manuscript.
The whole process was not playing to my strengths, I take on projects and get bored. Between the research and everything, this has taken about two months. On and off, but there were still many many hours. I’m so happy to get it done! I really need to get better at gold leaf. I’m starting to wonder if the size I’m using is a bit dodgy.