This is the second part of the two-part series of “Please T. M. I need this assignment!” I was really thrilled to find out Alexander Clarke was getting his Silver Wheel at GNEW 2018, an award for service to the East Kingdom. And oh, has he done service for the Kingdom (put those jokes away!) He is the dreamer and organizer of the 14th century Deed at the Great Northeastern War which has been an annual event that many people look forward to (including myself) and some make their very long trips for the sole purpose to attend. He assists both fighters and ladies of the gallery in developing a well-researched kit so they can play. On top of that, he has also helped many others with research in other areas of interest. And that only touches lightly on what Alexander does.
So, he’s done a lot for the game and I was really excited to see him recognized. I spent a long time trying to find the perfect scroll. Sometimes my scroll research can take hours and hours and hours before I find the perfect inspiration. This was extra hard because I wanted it to fit his persona because the research and accuracy of his persona is what he is known for. The manuscript I finally settled on was the La Quête du Saint Graal et la Mort d’Arthus which admittedly is not the perfect manuscript. His persona is very early 15th century and this manuscript is 14th century. I decided this was okay because of the aesthetic of the illuminations and his work on the 14th century deed.
The not-so-good: There are two things that I wish I had done differently on this assignment. The first is the filigree in between the two columns of text. The color should be a darker blue and I wish I had practiced the design before I started it. I think I would have liked it to be a bit more streamlined. The other thing is I wish I had shaded the building with hatches instead of smoothly. The manuscript had buildings smooth but it looks out of place on the scroll.
The good: I love my shading on the horse and the miniature of Alexander. I also like how his armor came out in general. I think it looks like Alexander’s kit and may be my favorite person I’ve put on a scroll yet. I also chose to put the silver wheel in the building to make it a part of the scroll. I stand by that decision even though it doesn’t pop out like some other award heraldry I’ve done. I wanted this piece to look more like a page from a book than an award scroll.
Finally, I missed it going out in court but Alexander came up to me after to tell me how much he liked the scroll. There is no better feeling than that. ❤
Materials: gouache, iron gall ink by Ian the Green on bristol
Words by Nicol mac Donnchaidh