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I'm a wife to my "Mr. Right". A momma of five. A maker of slow food and simple living. A collector of memories, a keeper of books, and a champion for books that make memories. An addict who likes my half-and-half with a splash of coffee. A fractured pot transformed by the One Who makes broken things beautiful. I heart homeschooling, brake for libraries, and am glad you're here with me on the journey! Be sure to subscribe to my daily digest via email or RSS feed. Or, follow along with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, Youtube, or Pinterest.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Medieval Unit: Illuminations

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

Every stage of creating the lavishly designed books of the middle ages required hours of labor and meticulous craftsmanship. Many manuscripts took years to complete and were cherished works of art. Some were made even more precious with the addition of illuminated illustrations highlighted by thin strips of gold or silver leaf. 

A study of the middle ages would not be complete without a look at the time-consuming and costly process of creating the beautiful pages of medieval books. 
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Illumination Resources

Before creating your own illumination, be sure to read a few living books and watch this exceptional video which details the step-by-tedious-step process of making a medieval manuscript from start to finish.



Illuminations by Jonathan Hunt


Marguerite Makes a Book by Bruce Robertson




Illumination DIY

You will need:

piece of paper
pencil
black permanent marker
brightly-colored paints
paint brush
gold paint pen (a gold Sharpie will work fine)

Directions:

With a pencil, write one large letter in the center of a vertical piece of paper. 


Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

Now, carefully outline the letter adding serifs and/or flourish at each end or point.

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

Erase the original "lined" letter. This should create a "blocked" letter that has dimension. 

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

Add a border and simple designs around the letter. At this point, you can darken each of the penciled lines with a back permanent marker. Or, you can skip this step.

Paint the entire illumination with bright colors. 

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

Using a gold paint pen, add highlights to certain sections of the letter and its border. 

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

Finally, trace over every line with a black permanent marker. 

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

And your illumination is complete.

Now imagine putting in all of that same effort hundreds of more times in order to create a completed manuscript!

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

It's no wonder that books and literacy were a rare commodity during the middle ages.

Medieval Unit: Illuminations {a video of how a book was made in the middle ages, book links, and a DIY

More medieval unit ideas


5 comments:

  1. This is SO cool - we are also in this time period and will definitely use these resources. THANK YOU for sharing :)

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  2. Hi Jamie,

    I always enjoy your posts. I have a question for you. How do you come up with the resources to use for your unit studies? If you've already written about it, can you refer me to that post? We recently completed a lesson on illuminations and I did not know about these resources. I'm a little disappointed because they would have been great. I've watched your video on how you do general planning for unit studies but I'm wondering if you have a post that goes into more detail on how you chose resources and plan a unit from beginning to end. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't currently have a post about that, but would consider writing one. I plan all my books at the beginning of the year. The projects and videos are usually just off the cuff.

      Delete
  3. Thank you for posting this. I have wanted to do this with my kids, but the lesson plans I had found online were so much more complicated. Your process is clear and simple.

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