Saturday, January 8, 2011

Illuminated Manuscript lettering project

Hey everyone, here s some more work from my children Book Illustration class, from this semester that just finished. The project was to create a unique font and to Illustrate 8 letters and 2 numbers in said font, depicting related imagery around the Letters. so for mine I took my Inspiration from Celtic Illuminated Manuscripts, and designed my letters to be a combination of Old Medieval fonts with some Runes thrown in. The first and main image, is using the letter S and so features the story of St. George and the Dragon. I actually wrote out a poem and Illustrated it in the letters but it had been a while since I used pen nibs so I was really fighting with them and the paper the whole time, It also helped me realize that I totally put emphasis on the wrong staff in the individual letters. The poem is as follows

"St George sat upon his horse beside the lakes shore,
In the far land of Silene he gazed the serpent of lore.
There he met the fair princess Sabra, a sheep's sacrifice to replace,
for the mighty dragon had gained a greater taste.
With sign of cross and spear in hand he set upon the beast,
it's point making a rush of blood that would not seem to cease.
Drawing forth the sword Ascalon he leaped off his steed,
under a sky of seven stars he finished his holy deed."

For the actual image I referenced a lot of byzantine art, and classic illustrations of the actual legend. I used watercolours to paint the image, finishing the line work in Inks as well as using actual gold Ink for the interior of the letter. I tried both Windsor and Newton gold Ink as well as Liquitex acrylic inkin Iridescent bright gold, but neither had the feel I was looking for so I ended up mixing them and laying down a thin Ink wash over thick flat yellow coat in watercolour, for a nice warm golden feel.

For the other 7 letters and number, I illustrated all of them on a large sheet in blue line, and was going to paint over them to but I quickly realized that they would take forever to paint. One of the people in my class used Copic markers to colour her project and even tho I don't have much marker experience I decide to do likewise to save time. I didn't want to accidentally ruin the original since I'd never used colour markers before so I printed them out on separate sheets to colour and ink. I was quite surprised and very much enjoyed the results, I recommend Copics to any one who wants to get into using markers. In each letter I included one type of stone, one creature and one flower. For anyone interested In what the images contain here s a list of the letters and corresponding imagery.

A: Arochs, Amber, Azalea
D: Dragonfly, Diamond, Daphne
E: Elk, Emerald, Edelweiss
G: Grey Wolf, Geode, Gladiolus
B: Bear, Bloodstone, Bluebell
P: Plesiosaurus, Pearl, Peony
3: 3 point Celtic knot, 3 interlocking horseshoes, Trillium
5: Pentagram, 5 chord celtic rope work, Rosaceae (Strawberry)
R: Raven, Ruby, Rose

Well I think that's about it, until next time!

1 comment:

Portable City said...

I really like your letterforms here! Have you done type design before? It's a smidge esoteric but I really enjoy the thick-thin contrasts. Great work!