November 12, 2007

Purple Fret, All Souls 2007

Scroll for All Souls, 11-3-07

This is an award scroll for Vanished Wood's All Souls event held on 11/3/07.

Bristol, gouache, patent gold leaf on gum ammoniac size, home-made oak gall ink for outlines.

From the 1467 German Fechtbuch "Fight Book" by Hans Talhoffer.
Sorry the picture is sideways, I have the computer skills of a 7 year old.

February 20, 2007

The Great Oak Gall Experiment 2007

This weekend Ian and his lady Hroswitha came over to bottle up the 5 quarts of leftover ink from we made at the event in December. I procured more bottles and some equipment form American Science & Surplus and we got to work. Because the ink sat for 2 months we decided to not re-filter what we had, just decant it.

Let me just say, that unfiltered oak ink resting on its oaky sludge for 2 months totally rocks! Nice and dark and we didnt have to add more copperas to that batch of ink. The pre-filtered ink needed more oomph with a dash of copperas. What we added to both batches however was ground eggshells to lower the PH of the ink. Hroswitha with her molecular-biology-grad-student-lab experience determined we were able to lower it from a 3 to a respectable 5 just from stirring the powdered eggshell into the decanted mixture before we re-decanted it into the small bottles-it worked that fast!

Well now we have 50 bottles of oak gall and 25 bottles of walnut ink ready to sell at Gulf Wars. We will see how it sells before I follow Ian into the world of SCA be continued. ; )

January 7, 2007

A&S and other stuff, 2006

Saturday, January 6, 2007

A Retrospective

Tonight after a bad couple of days at work, I am feeling rather glum. I began to try to think of the good things I have done this year OUTSIDE of work and I think I didn't do so bad. Perhaps if I didn't spend the last 6 months in a depressed and anxious funk worrying about my job I could have done more with my life.

So....some cool things I did this year.

JANUARY- Designed really cool site tokens for the 12th night event held in my home Province of Tree Girt Sea. They looked a like a Mongolian Royal Seal, and it actually said something! Helped run childrens art activities, made yurts from popsicle sticks, felt and paper plates. Really!
FEBRUARY & MARCH-Illness laid me low, (probably stress related, see below), but I managed to work on my Exultet roll.
APRIL 16- Entered Exultet Roll at Midlands A&S. Had no clue it could be cross entered into Calligraphy and Illumination. (Hey it was my first entry in 10 years) Got a First Place level standing.
MAY- First time I ever made it to Spring Crown. Wasnt going to miss A & S this year. First time ever traveling to an event in Ohio, met many awsome folks I had only known by name. Exultet roll got another First Place level standing.
SUMMER-Did a few award scrolls. Sewed myself a heraldic banner finally. Made garb for hubby for Pennsic.
AUGUST- Pennsic: Taught 2 sessions of my Alternative Adhesives for Gold Leaf class, and taught a new class on the Exultet Roll, a general overview class that was a summary of all my research. That class rocked! It was so fun to teach and I did a fantastic job, even though I wrote my lesson plan only night before in the fading light during a downpour. I hardly used the notes anyway, I knew this stuff in my head!
Later that week I was honored to become the Protege of Maestra Gwenyvar Nocturnal.
SEPTEMBER-Entered the "Gaston Phoebus in any Medium" contest at the Foxvale event. I did a cross stitched version of an illuminated picture just because the diapering just lent itself to cross stich. Tied for first place to a fellow who drew a scene from the manuscript on a ....diaper. Hilarious!
OCTOBER-Showed my "body of work" at Crown tourney in Swordcliff. Gots lots of positive feedback.
NOVEMBER-Back in September Ian volunteered us to run an ink making session at a scribal event in December. We had great success with our first test batches of iron gall ink and walnut inks. Did two calligigraphed and illuminated invitations to invite their majesties of Northshield to our event.
DECEMBER- Was supposed to teach a new class on the Beneventan Minuscule, at the fall RUM in St Fintan's Mor, but the city of Decatur was struck by a massive ice storm the day before and the event was canceled at the last minute. I dont regularly check my e-mail, but I did that day, and 2 hours before i was set to brave the roads, I saw the cancellation announcement. Phew.
Two weeks later, the ice had melted in central Illinois and the Inkin in Lincoln event was held. Yes we cooked ink, outside, on a hill, overlooking a lake, in gale force winds, but it was only 45F. It really wasnt that bad. As medievel people dressed, layers and headgear work!
With what volunteers braved the elements to go outside, we cook a huge potful of walnut ink, and another of iron-gall. The pots simmered all day, and later that day, we had the brilliant idea to move the picnic table to other side of the lodge out of the wind. About 8 volunteers helped filter the two inks through a multitide of coffee filters. By the time darkness fell, we had enough to fill 100 bottles, and proceeded to practically sell all of our bottles of ink. We charged $1 a bottle, half price for helpers, to cover the cost of the small glass bottles I bought. Ian and I also gifted His Majesty Bardolf with 8 bottles.
So, just off the top of my head, 2006 was not such a bad year, when I think about the FUN and SATISFYING things I did.