Wednesday, March 31, 2010

March Challenge: English Miniatures

Kylee, 2.5" diameter, acrylic

At the beginning of this month, I began reading one of my art history books from school, Five Centuries of British Painting by Andrew Wilton. It's a shame I never had time to read it when I was actually taking the class. :P Anyway, the book starts with Holbein and the Tudors. I decided to focus on miniature portrait painting.

Miniatures derived from illuminated manuscripts, and in England they took off during the early Tudor period. The miniature was a unique art form because it was intimate. The viewer had to pick it up and hold it close to see it. It was either round or oval in shape, sometimes inscribed with text. Miniatures were displayed in cabinets, or worn around the neck or waist as an item of jewelry. This is where lockets come from. They could also be pinned near the heart. They were portable, and popular as gifts for lovers. They were also usually covered, a way to keep it a personal secret. Miniatures were especially used as a part of courtly love. They were given to show favor.

While, traditionally, miniatures were meant to be held close and worn as jewelry, I've decided to take a different approach to this art form. I will still be working small and applying colored backgrounds (like Holbein), and will try to keep to the standard poses. However, I will be displaying them as you see here, matted. This is only the first one I've done so far, my test piece, I guess. I plan on doing a series of these, and eventually will display them in grid formation next to each other. My purpose for this miniature style is not secretive, and so I will not be treating that way. Instead, I am sort of incorporating that pop cultural design element, bright colors in formation.

I did not get as far on this challenge as I'd hoped, but I'm glad I know what direction I'm going in currently.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Decided to color that old wolf doodle I did a few months back. (don't forget to full view)

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Trying to get consistent with new drawing style. Character for my imaginary graphic novel... a steampunk tiger. Still working on this... will probably color it fully when done.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

For anyone still out there...

Just a reminder to those doing the March Challenge. Two weeks from today (Wednesday, the 17th) is the end of March (Wednesday, the 31st), so if you are planning on posting something, try to get it done for then.

I hope at least some of you are doing it because I am so curious to see what you come up with! And if anyone wants to post what they have so far to get feedback, please do.

Also, if anyone does not want to be a member on this blog anymore for any reason, email and let me know.

Monday, March 8, 2010


Adam and I started walking the old railroad tracks that run behind our apartment building. This is a sketch from one of the pictures we took today. The tracks are no longer used so it's neat to walk on them and imagine what it was like when they were used.

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Drawing I did this morning, trying new styles.