Tag Archives: calligraphy

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Reasons Why I Blog – Guest Post

Reasons Why I Blog

By Sue Gordon aka Mistress Jehanne Bening

Thank you, Holly (Aidan Cocrinn) for asking me to guest post on your relaunched blog. I hope to bring the same quest and curiosity to my post that you have shown on your blog and as a scribe in the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA).

Lilies War

A Gathering at the War of the Lilies. Photo by Mistress Jehanne Bening. © Sue Gordon

While Holly kindly refers to me here as Sue Gordon, artist and scribe, we know each other by SCA “nicknames.” Mine is Jehanne Bening. And yes, at times, I seem to have a split personality.

I’m excited to have Holly as a scribal blogging cohort. There aren’t that many in the blogosphere. Holly’s focus will broaden the field for interested artists and SCA scribes.

 

Gouache

Gouache Paint- Our Medium of Choice Most of the Time. Photo by Mistress Jehanne Gordon. © Sue Gordon

Teaching calligraphy and illumination is a craving I found a year ago because Holly presented a workshop to my local group. The attendance and interest she inspired led to Rolf Hobart and me to hold regular recurring scribal classes. I enjoyed sharing scribal information and blogging is a way to reach out to more people. Somewhere along the way, I focused my blog more on scribal subjects.

 

Aidan Teaching

Aidan Teaching Intro to Scribe Stuff at the Barony of Lonely Tower. Photo by Mistress Jehanne Bening.© Sue Gordon

I learned by refining my blog.  Blogging is now a passion.

I love blogging. Writing for my blog connects me to you and others.  It helps me learn, improves my scribal and writing skills, and organizes my thoughts. It’s a self-development tool. It also gives me a purpose to fulfill.

Blogging is a way for me to help others. A way for me to give back to the hobby and people I love, especially those in the SCA, a group that has given so much to me.

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Beautiful Award Scroll done by Mistress Jehanne. Gouache and ink on Paper.
photo by Mistress Jehanne Bening © Sue Gordon

There are many how-to calligraphy bloggers, but few blogs include illumination or the artist creation process. I hope Holly and I rectify that.

I blog because I have something to share. I’ve been in the SCA since 1991 and learned calligraphy and illumination through it. Being an SCA scribe is unique. It takes a love of learning, research, art history,  and skill development in detailed techniques. I hope to help others with similar passions to be able to grow.

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St. John’s Bible Exhibit – Rockhurst College

The St. John’s Bible was commissioned by Saint John’s Abbey and University. It was created by Donald Jackson, Senior Scribe to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth’s Crown Office, along with a collaborative team of artists and scribes.

St. John's Bible

The Aaronic Blessing

This is the first illuminated, handwritten Bible of monumental size to be commissioned by a Benedictine monastery in over 500 years. All 73 books of the Old and New Testaments, using the New Revised Standard Version, are presented in seven volumes totaling approximately 1150 pages.

The work of the St. John’s Bible was done in a scriptorium in Wales. Now completed, the Bible’s home is Saint John’s University in Collegeville, MN.

St. John's Bible

Genesis – Creation

The St. John’s Bible was made using traditional materials such as vellum, ancient inks, gold and silver leaf, and platinum. It was written with quill pens fashioned from goose, turkey and swan feathers.

The Heritage Edition of the St. John’s Bible is the only full-size, limited, signed and numbered fine art edition that will ever be produced. 299 fine art editions were created and placed around the world in religious, arts, academic, healing and literary institutions.

St. John's Bible

Ancient Eve in the Garden of Eden

Bound in Italian leather and printed on 100 percent cotton paper using printing technologies invented for this project, the Heritage edition features the exquisite calligraphy, vibrant imagery and stunning gold and silver illumination inspired by the original.

My puny attempts at photography do not do this exhibition justice. All seven books are on display at Rockhurst College’s Greenlease Library, 51st and Troost, KCMO, through the end of September. Two books will remain at the library through the end of 2013.

St. John's Bible

Illumination

My guide during this trip was the super-knowledgeable Ellen Spake. She took training at the St. John’s Abbey in Minnesota as part of the contract to bring the books to Rockhurst. Visitors are allowed to browse the books at their leisure, and Ms. Spake and her team of docents provide a wealth of information about the books. Any question about methods, materials, iconography, symbology and the makers is answered in great detail.

Thanks to my Mom for finding out about this exhibit and patiently accompanying me as I drooled all over the books and spent a couple of hours being amazed. I may have to return and drool some more, and listen to Ms. Spake tell the story of this amazing achievement.

I hope you enjoy the gallery of my photos, and I really hope you are able to see this exhibit at one of the 299 places around the world.



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