December 2017

December - Capricorn

Capricorne appeareth as a Sea-Gote. She is Melancholly and ruleth ye Cnees. Matters of Familie and Responsibilitie are Her primarie concern. When the Mone is on the Hunt for the Gote, She is supportiue of those She loues, but if not careful She could decide to liue of the Efforts of those closest to Her. If Mercurie decideth to visit ye Gote, then if Fortunes are good He will se to ye Public Behalf, but if Fortunes are ill then he will do whateuer is required to protect His own without regard for ye Law. If Venus taketh a peke at ye Gote, then She is a myghty Auisor, encoraging ye best in others, vnless She feleth schy, iwhich case She might end ye dai alone.

Illumination by Lady Lisabetta Medaglia
Calligraphy by Duchess Thyra Eiriksdottir

Persona: 14th c. Italian

Artist’s astrological sign: Capricorn

What is the inspiration for your piece and why does it appeal to you? I wanted to do Capricorn, since it’s my own Astrological sign.  I love doing beasties and animals, too, so this was right up my alley; I love doing bestiary pages.  I’ve always loved it when Capricorn is displayed as the sea-goat, as I find it makes it much more interesting.  The colouring and patterns for Capricorn’s fish tail is inspired by The Hunterian Psalter, otherwise, the rest of the piece is my own.

Materials used: Hotpress watercolour paper, ink, and gouache.

What drew you to participate in this project? The whole Zodiac theme, actually! It’s always a fun theme.

What is your favorite medium to work in? I’ve only really used gouache for my painting, but I would like to try period paints sometime.

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite? I love doing raised gold, and gold embossing, and I would also like to experiment with raised patterns of gold on top of gold sometime.  Whitework has always been the most challenging for me, because I sometimes have a nervous hand, or sometimes my white paint seems more transparent than opaque.  I’d love to learn how to make my lines look shakey, and more confident-looking.

November 2017

November - Saggitarius

Sagittarius is the Archer, represented as a Centaur prieing back a Bowe. He is Cholericke and ruleth ye Thighs and Buttoks. The Archer is quik to iugge and maketh for a fiers competitor. He seketh out places for War during ye dai, and near ye Fire at night. When Mercurie passeth ye Archer, then He is tempted to engage in Debate, likelie to disparage others wt His Words. When Venus must come near the Centaur, then Ielousie of Loue is like to rise, causing Her to vse her Wils to gayne Affecciouns like Trophies. Sholde Saturnus ascend ithe Presence of this Bowe-Man, then He is Enuious of ye Success of others, oft turning to Insult to express His Displesure.

Calligraphy & Illumination by THL Katrusha Skomorokha Negodieva ‘doch

Persona: 16th century Novgorod Russia

Artist’s astrological sign: Leo

What is the inspiration for your piece and why did it appeal to you? It is the work of Albumasar (or Balkhi) and is a treatise on astrology. The Latin title is “Introductorium in Astronomiam”, a translation of the Arabic Kitab al-mudkhal al-kabir ila ‘ilm ahkam an-nujjum, writen in Baghdad in the year 848 A.D.

Materials used: Walnut ink, sumi ink, gauche paint

Other notes of interest about your piece: I have always wanted to work on a middle eastern piece, and this gave me the opportunity I was looking for.

What drew you to participate in this project? I was completely tickled when asked to participate. It gave me a chance to take a single inspiration (Sagittarius) and bring it to any time period and place I desired, which was a huge draw.

What is your favorite medium to work in? Honestly, it is all about the paper for me. Especially now that I have learned the craft of paper cutting. My favorite thing to create on is vellum, if I can get my hands on it. Beautiful material!

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite? Although I love math and I love the colors and I love the challenge of it, I would be okay not having to do Celtic knot work all the time. Thankfully, I get a plethora of inspiration that doesn’t always have to do with Celtic knot work.

October 2017

October - Scorpio

Scorpio appeareth as a large Scorpion. She is Fleumatik, ruleth ye Priue Parts of Men and Women, and indicateth Subtelte and Deceite. When the Mone is on the hunt for the Scorpion, She will seke Nouelte when She needeth to be more dependable, and She might ende vp dronk or in a destitute state. If Venus cannot auoid ye Scorpion, then Ielousie is likelie to rere vp, perhap resulting in Adulteries and breaking of one’s Word. If Iupiter wandreth bi ye Scorpion, then one mai loke to Ipocrisie, possiblie Bitraiel.

Calligraphy & Illumination by Master Nataliia Anastasiia Evgenova

Persona:  Russian 16th century

Artist’s astrological sign: Scorpio (this is probably no surprise to anyone)

What is the inspiration for your piece and why did it appeal to you? The Hunterian Psalter, England, C. 1170, Zodiac, Sign of Scorpio, Folio 5v.  The research that I did indicated that the representations could be both scorpion or dragon.  I like the idea of a dragon, especially a two headed dragon.

Materials used: Windsor Newton colors, Roman black from Rublev Natural Pigments, mosaic gold.   Rotring art pen for calligraphy.  Paintbrushes of variety manufactures in 20/0, 10/0 0/0 and 1.  Heavy weight natural colored pergamenata.

What drew you to participate in this project? I enjoyed the calendar project last year and it gives me, as an artist, time to sink into the medieval research while producing a modern piece for a good cause, the Kingdom Travel Fund.

What is your favorite medium to work in? I love painting, especially with period pigments.  I find that there are so many layers to being able to paint.  Sometimes it is a portrait, sometimes it is beautiful leaves, sometimes it is white, beautiful pelicans on a black background.  It always gives me something interesting to work with.

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite?  Calligraphy has always been a challenge for me, but I accept challenges and have been seeing improvement in my hands.

September 2017

September - Libra

Libra is sene as a faint set of Scales. It is Sanguin and ruleth ye Reynes and ye Bowels. The Scales bring a sense of Mesure to al procedings. When ye Mone happeth to come near ye Scales, then Her Maneres are composed, and She is pleasant in her Tendreness. When Iupiter hath need of the Scales, then He will deel fairlie wt the World and releue the Poor, though if He is rekles He might los His labour though he entended well.

Illumination by Meisterin Agatha Wanderer
Calligraphy by Lord Gwillim Kynith

Persona:  15th Century German Tailor

Artist’s astrological sign: Libra

What is the inspiration for your piece and why does it appeal to you?

libra-inspiration

Libra, Book of hours. Italy, probably Milan ca. 1473

I loved the simplicity of the centralized figure, and the use of bold colors.

Materials used:  Bristol paper and gouache.

What drew you to participate in this project?  I have enjoyed the calendar and was excited to have the opportunity to contribute.  My personal astrological sign is Libra, so I was naturally drawn to it.

What is your favorite medium to work in? I use gouache for all my illuminations, but I am interested in exploring non-traditional media for scrolls, like embroidery.

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite?  Gold leaf is absolutely beautiful, but it is the most nerve-wracking technique to apply!

August 2017

Virgo - August

Virgo is ye wittie and discret Maide of Innocence and Purete. She is Malencolie and ruleth the Bowels and the Bealy. She frequenteth quiet places to studie, and where she is, there hydden vertus are stored. If the Mone visiteth, these two Virgins shalbe polit, but this maybe from fere and timiditie rather than corteisie. Shuld Venus stride within ye Maide’s vicinitie, then thei shal keep good companie and neeten vp their appareille, though thei might do soo wt no passion, merelie out of rote and not from desire for clene liuing.

Calligraphy & Illumination by Mistress Rhonwen glyn Conwy

Persona: early period (c 1025) Welsh

Artist’s astrological sign: Scorpio

What is the inspiration for your piece and why did it appeal to you? Calendar page for August from a late 11th-century psalter from Southern England currently residing in the British Library (http://www.bl.uk/catalogues/illuminatedmanuscripts/ILLUMIN.ASP?Size=mid&IllID=2640). Virgo’s simplicity and grace were very appealing, as was the chance to use a hand I’m good at.

Materials used: “Calli” black India ink; Mitchell nibs; Windsor & Newton gouache

Other notes of interest about your piece:  I love doing pieces that have glosses!  In this case, the glosses are all part of the regular text of the piece.

What drew you to participate in this project?  I love the calendar project!!  It expands my research parameters and brings joy to so many people.  This is my third year.

What is your favorite medium to work in?  Ink & paint.

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite?  I don’t love blackletter calligraphy, and I’m always trying to improve my whitework.

July 2017

July - Leo

Leo is the Nemean Lyon from the Tales of Hercules. He is Colerik and ruleth ye Ribbs and Back. He actiflie and wt valour gouerneth al wilde places, where daunger is iminent. When the Mone hunteth the Lyon, Corage turneth to Cowardise. If Mercurie sniketh bi ye Lyon, then Peril becometh Opportunite. If Mars shuld seke to chalenge the Lyon, then al manere of violent action likelie mai hap, from heroism to quarel.

Illumination by Mistress Elizabeth Elenore Lovell
Calligraphy by Mistress Eva Woodrose

Persona: I started out with a persona based in late 1400’s England. Over the last few years I have been developing a new one based in Flavian Rome.

Artist’s astrological sign: Aries

What is the inspiration for your piece and why does it appeal to you? The inspiration for the piece was one done by Conrad Geyser in 1551 for the book Historia Animalium. This particular lion caught my eye because he has a very human face. I was actually terrified to do this piece and left the face and eyes until the very end. The texture of his fur and the landscape ended up being a lot of fun to play with.

Materials used: Crow Quill pen, Higgins calligraphy ink, and pergamenata.

Other notes of interest about your piece: This particular lion has very cute kitty toe beans!

What drew you to participate in this project? The East Kingdom calendar project is a terrific fundraiser and showcases some truly beautiful work. I am honored to have been asked to participate.

What is your favorite medium to work in? Pen and Ink

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite? Paints. I can use them and get decent results but I feel more comfortable and have better creative flow with pen and ink.

June 2017

June - Cancer

Cancer is a dimm constellacioun, representing a Crabbe. She is Fleumatik, ruleth ye Brest and Stomak, and indicateth deceptiue stilnesse, for while ye Crabbe mai seme to be calm and coi, itrewthe she hideth deep passions. When the Mone wandreth bi the Crabbe, thei are at home wt each other, and help each other to delite in secret at the Wais of the World, or to escape yt which is lothful. If Mercurie trauerseth near ye Crabbe, then He will begin plotting softlie, either for good or ylle. If Mars shuld stride bi the Crabbe’s hiding place, then He is likelie to reflect vpon His past and glorifie His dedes.

Calligraphy & Illumination by Lady Christiana Crane

Persona: 14th century English daughter of a successful merchant.

Artist’s astrological sign: Leo

What is the inspiration for your piece and why does it appeal to you? The Book of Felicity is an Ottoman work from 1582. Commissioned by Sultan Murad III, who ruled the empire from 1574 to 1595, its text was translated from Arabic and all its miniatures were apparently directed by the famous master Ustad ‘Osman, who undoubtedly painted the opening series of images related to the signs of the zodiac1. ‘Osman, the head of the painters at the Seraglio workshop from 1570 onwards, created a style renowned for its lifelike portraits that influenced other artists in Murad’s court.  The illustrations and calligraphy are gorgeous.

Materials used: Iron Gall ink, gouache on Bristol.

Other notes of interest about your piece: Europeans depict the crab more like a lobster or crayfish.  Or sometimes it looks more like a tick.  A few particular scribes have clearly been eating the rye bread and their crabs look more like something that fell off Cthulhu.

What drew you to participate in this project? It is a great honor to be able to aid the kingdom in any way I can. 

What is your favorite medium to work in? I like graphite best, but that’s more of a modern technique.  For period materials, I love iron gall.

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite? Flourishes and cadels are gorgeous and maddening and they are my Everest.

May 2017

May - Gemini

Gemini consisteth of two Twin brothers, Castor and Pollux. Thei are Sanguin, and ruleth ye Arms, Sholders and Hands. Thei are especial Iuges, both of Caractere and of Situations, for thei haue excellent Vnderstanding. If the Mone seeketh out the Twins, then She shall learn Ingeniositie and be enspired wt Curiosite, and would be a famous Legat. If Mars hopeth to procure ye Twins, then no good shall come of it, for He shall vse their Intellecte for Harm and Wekedness.

Calligraphy & Illumination by Boyar Aleksei Dmitriev

Persona: 14th C. Russian

Artist’s astrological sign: Gemini

Inspiration for your piece and why does it appeal to you? The Book of Fixed Stars, an Arabic text of astronomy originally written in 964 by Abd al-Rhaman al-Sufi. It has been copied and translated several times over the centuries. The specific image I used for inspiration came from a 14th c. edition. I wanted to do something that was different than the usual European art sources.

Materials used: pergamenata, gouache, silver and gold watercolor (Schmincke), iron gall ink

What drew you to participate in this project? I really liked the astrology theme.

What is your favorite medium to work in? Ink; for mundane art, I mostly do color pencil and pastels.

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite? Blending and shading with paints, also people.

April 2017

April - Taurus

Taurus taketh the form of the hed of a Bull. He is Malencolie, and ruleth ye Throte and Voice. He overseeth Bisynesse and Industrie. If the Mone wandreth bi the Bull, Labour mai halt, save for yt in porte towns. When Mercurie seketh his fortune here, then Merchaunts prosper. If Mars demandeth an audience with ye Bull, then War maibe iminent, but Forges shalbe actif, if aught else.

Calligraphy & Illumination by Lord Vettorio Antonello

Persona: 17thc Carmelite Friar from Florence, Italy

Artist’s astrological sign: Aquarius

What is the inspiration for your piece and why does it appeal to you?: My daughter’s sign is Taurus and she inspires me to create.

Materials used: Iron Gall ink, Winsor & Newton calligraphy ink, Holbein gouache paint

Other notes of interest about your piece: It was interesting to adapt the exemplar, which was portrait layout into landscape as well as adapting period styles to modern printing needs.

What drew you to participate in this project? I was honored to be asked. This is my second time doing it and I like knowing I’m helping the kingdom travel fund.

What is your favorite medium to work in? Gouache paints, inks, and gilding. 

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite? Knotwork has always been something I struggle with, but I keep practicing and working on.

March 2017

March - Aries

Aries is a mighty Ramm. He is Colerik, and ruleth ye hed and face. He ussereth Spring, and so waccheth ouer places where animals giue byrth and meadows yt prepare for sowing, as well as sites of new endeuers. When Mercurie crepeth bi ye Ramm, bewar of Thieues, though works of Intellecte are also possible. When Venus cometh bi to admire the Ramm, then new loue driueth out old. If Mars swaggereth bi, then ye Realme shalbe in turmoille, and efforts onli begun vnder duresse.

Calligraphy & Illumination by Excellence Maitre Ursion de Gui

Persona: French 1240

Artist’s astrological sign: Aquarius

What is the inspiration for your piece and why did it appeal to you? I got my inspiration from the reliefs of Amiens Cathedrals and the big tyinpan of narthex, and other Cathedrals doors dedicated to zodiac signs.  Since I had to work on Aries, half of the illumination is depicting the preparation of the vines.  I created the image of Aries with a fishtail, in accordance with the text.

Materials used: Tempera (watercolor)

What drew you to participate in this project? New challenge.

What is your favorite medium to work in? Tempera and gold.

What is a C&I technique that is challenging to you, or not your favorite? Shrinking a document format.