Thursday, March 25, 2010

Weekly meeting update

Coming up the last days before Festival so we continued doing C&I on Tuesday nights. We were all a bit tired this Tuesday but Mouse is well on the way to finishing another couple of AoA's. Maeve was spending time working on her calligraphy and I finished one of the last Caid AoA's that needed to be done.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Hi everyone just a reminder of what is happening for the College of Scribes at Festival.

Our meeting is on Friday at 3pm
We are officially kicking off with the AoA competition at Festival so if you have any AoA's to hand over to me they can be handed over at Festival or you can send them to me. If you need blanks please let me know before the 29th of March so if I need to get extras printed I can do so.

We will also have our Scribes Seal competition.
I would like to see designs for seals about 2.5-3cm in size. Weight will be given to appropriate period documentation/ research, and design. The winning entry will be used for the seal on our AoA Writ's and will also be used as a Warden's badge/ seal so it will be used for a long time. I look forward to seeing the entries.

If anyone has old scrolls that have not found a home over the last few years can you please give them to me at Festival or send them to me so that I can start looking further into tracking down lost scrolls/ recipients and matching pairs up where possible. I now have only 2 outstanding scrolls in my files for people who are hard to tack down. These are Adam Girard and Aulay Leod.

If there is anything you would like to see covered at Festival please let me know.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Just to let everyone know, since posting the unclaimed AoA's on the blog and on announce we have found the recipients for 9 more of the AoA's. We are now only looking for;

  • Aulay Leod
  • Cassandra Cattani
  • Adam Girard
The photos of all the AoA's we were looking for are on Flickr at no's 863, 865 and 866 are the ones we are still looking for. If anyone has contact details for these three people could you please contact me.

AoA Scrolls from Riverhaven

These AoA have just recently made it to me from Riverhaven. They were done by Katherine Alicia of Sarum and Hanbal has already received his although we have yet to track down Elyas.
This is the first time this particular Persian blank has been completed as there were some difficulties fitting in the Kings/ Princes name. As you can see Katherine has solved this problem by putting the name in white up in a square at the top of the scroll. She has done this by painting out some of the blank in this section. I think this was an excellent solution to this problem and Hanbal was certainly very excited to receive this particular blank as it worked so well with his persona.
Two more AoA's down for this year. It is wonderful to see the movement that the college has made over the last few months.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

March 7th Scribal workshop, Inniglard.

Our four regular scribes came to workshop this weekend. Devora and Bryonny were both painting. Devora is working on a AA and Bryonny is working on an original scroll...

Leofwynn is finalizing the layout for an original scroll.

The weather was somewhat behaving (though it rained) and I got onto doing the guilding of the capital for my current original scroll. THen I am onto another AA.
Pics posted with permission.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Greetings all!

I am a long-time scriber from Innilgard (Adelaide). We have 4 regular scribes and some occasional scribes. We usually meet fornightly, unless the summer temperatures soar in the high 30's/low 40's as the paint just dries on the brush!!!
Last year, we did a large number of instant AOA's. Currently I am finishing off a Laurel scroll.
I am hoping to do some gilding at the next scribes workshop. However the weather has been really hot, so not good for gilding.
I am hoping to post pics of our progess during the year.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Newsletter of the Royal College & Confraternity of Scribes & Illuminators of the Kingdom of Lochac
Volume 10 Issue 2 March 2010
(Some formating has been lost putting Ductus onto the blog, as usual a formatted copy will be sent out on the mailing list).

Greetings all and welcome to the newest issue of Ductus.
As you are all aware last year was a very active year for us especially towards the end. A lot of new projects have been started and there have been a lot of changes within the College.
In the last issue of Ductus I put up details of the new Wardens. I would now like to add some names to their lists. The newest Wardens are;
Innilgard Leofwynn Wulfinga
Ynys Fawr Madelane de Bourgogne
Ynys Fawr (deputy) Madoc ap Gryffith
Crescent Isles (South) katherine kerr of the Hermitage
I would like to welcome these people as our new Wardens to the College. I would also like to say how much I like the college needing extra Wardens as it shows the increase in scribal activity in these area's.

Thanks to Master Giles who has gone through the database to make sure it is up to date we now have confirmed details for the current backlog.

AA's- 83
County- 10
Duchy- 7
GA, including LCA and OWL- 34
KSCA- 22
OL- 39
OP- 53
Vis- 6
Total outstanding Scrolls on the backlog is 234.

Completed Scrolls
There are still some scrolls sitting in the database that we are unable to find recipients for. These scrolls belong to;

Antonia della Scalla
Judith Fletcher of Wellow
Wystan of Wallsende
Cassandra Cattani
Miriam bat Shimeon
Adam Girard
William Beckwith
Alyce Stirling
Aulay Leod
Helga rauĂ°tik Leosdottir
Claire Marie Alderton
Bathassar Vrass

If you know of any current details for any of these Good Gentles could you please let me know so that I can get their scrolls to them as soon as possible. Photographs of all of these scrolls have now been placed on the Lochac Scribes Flickr site at

New Scribes
We have a lot of new scribes to welcome to our ranks in this Ductus. Not all of these have started actively working on scrolls for the College and some still have to send me an exemplar but it is good to see such an influx of new blood. I would like to welcome;

Katrijn van Delden
Constanzia Moralez y de Zamora
Zofija from St Florian
Asa Beiskalda
katherine kerr of the Hermitage

Caristiona nic Beathain
Provost of Scribes

On Permanency and Paints
By: Madoc ap Gryffith

Permanence and Fugitives
One of the standards for all work done by the Lochac College of Scribes is permanency. All scribal work must be done using only the most permanent and lightfast materials available so that we can ensure the works of art we create will last well into the future and remain looking as sharp, bright, and colourful as when they were created. This implies that as scribes we have a responsibility to understand which materials are sufficiently permanent and which are not. However, determining which materials will truly withstand the test of time can sometimes be less than straightforward, especially when it comes to paints.

The paints that we use are composed of pigments suspended in a carrier based on a simple gum arabic solution. This provides a suitably permanent vehicle for the pigments, but the pigments themselves run the entire gamut from completely permanent to astonishingly temporary. Those pigments that are less than completely permanent experience some sort of alteration, reaction, or decay over time, most commonly as a result of exposure to light. Such non-permanent pigments are referred to as being “fugitive”, as they can seem to literally disappear and go missing from the work. Other fugitive pigments experience changes other than fading, including darkening and even shifting hue.

Standards and Ratings?
It would be nice if we could assume that simply buying modern paints from reputable manufacturers would ensure that we're using permanent materials, but unfortunately this is not the case. Even the best manufacturers still sell paints that are quite fugitive and do so for a variety of reasons. In some cases this is because not all artwork is designed to be permanent (for instance where a painting will be done and then scanned for use as a digital image). However, another reason is that consumers continue demanding and purchasing fugitive pigments.

In response to concerns about permanence, many manufacturers are now listing permanency and lightfastness ratings on the labels of their paints. It would be convenient if we could simply use these on-the-label ratings as a guide but, while they can help us avoid some of the most fugitive paints, these ratings are far from definitive. Manufacturers' rating scales are simply not specific enough for scribal purposes, and in some cases are arguably influenced more by market pressures than by the need for factual honesty. Sometimes the paint manufacturer doesn't even test the paint themselves, but just passes along the information provided by the pigment manufacturer, who might have used testing methods completely irrelevant to the form of paint and application methods we as scribes use.

The ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) lightfastness rating is reported by some manufacturers on their paint labels. While more reliable than those from the paint manufacturers, these ratings are also less than definitive for scribes. There are just too many variables that can effect a pigment's permanence, often including how fine the pigment is ground, what binder is mixed with the vehicle to form the paint, and the particulars of how it is applied, that having a single rating for all instances of a pigment is bound to have some degree of error. A pigment that is completely permanent when ground roughly, mixed with an acrylic binder, and applied in thick layers might prove to be unacceptably fugitive when ground more finely, mixed with gum arabic to form a watercolour or gouache, and applied in a thin film. While the ASTM considers both its “Class I” and “Class II” to be permanent, when using gouache paints for scribal purposes, only “Class I” paints should generally be accepted as reliably permanent.

In short, scribes should take the permanency and lightfastness ratings given by industry bodies and manufacturers as suggestive at best when selecting paints for work through the College of Scribes.

Relevant Recommendations
In the absence of a truly definitive rating system relevant to scribal work, how is a scribe to know which paints are truly permanent? To answer this question, the current line of Winsor & Newton Designer Gouache paints was researched. This brand was chosen since it is the line of paints most commonly recommended for scribal work and generally known for its quality and performance. However, like all paint lines, there are a number of colours in the W&N gouache line that are simply not permanent enough for scribal work. If these colours are identified and avoided, the other colours in this line can be used with confidence that we are using lightfast materials of acceptable permanence and quality.

The following paints contain pigments that are known to be (or reasonably suspected of being) less than permanent in water-based media based in independent testing in water/gum arabic media. These W&N gouache paints should NOT be used for College of Scribes works.
Alizarin Crimson
Although it's often recommended, this paint should never be used. It is very fugitive and the colour quickly fades quite dramatically. It's based on PR83, the synthetic version of a period pigment derived from Madder root, which was recognised as being fugitive even then. W&N class B.
Bengal Rose
Made of the very fugitive PR169, which even W&N rate in their permanence class “C - fugitive”.
Brilliant Green
Contains the arylamide pigment PY3 prone to darkening.
Brilliant Purple
Made of a mix of two known fugitive toner pigments, PV2 and PV3. W&N class B.
Brilliant Red Violet
Contains the known fugitive rhodamine toner pigment PV1. W&N class B.
Brilliant Violet
Also contains the known fugitive toner pigment PV1. W&N class B.
Brilliant Yellow
Contains the fugitive arylamide pigment PY74.
Flame Red
Contains the fugitive naphthol pigment PR170.
Flesh Tint
Also contains a fugitive naphthol pigment, PR9.
Gold Ochre
A permanent iron oxide colour that is unfortunately “enhanced” with the fugitive arylamide PY74 and thus prone to fading and colour-shift.
Jet Black
Made of the known fugitive PBk1.
Lemon Yellow
Made of the arylamide pigment PY3 prone to darkening.
Light Purple
Like Brilliant Purple above, made of a mix of two known fugitive toner pigments, PV2 and PV3. W&N class B.
Linden Green
Contains two fugitive arylamide pigments, PY3 and PY74.
Made of a combination of two fugitives, the lake pigment PR173 and the rhodamine toner pigment PV2.
Opera Pink
Made of a fluorescent dye/resin, even W&N put it in permanence class “C - fugitive”.
Opera Rose
Also made of a fluorescent dye/resin, even W&N put it in permanence class “C - fugitive”.
Orange Lake Deep
Contains the known fugitive arylamide red PR9.
Orange Lake Light
Also contains the known fugitive arylamide red PR9.
Permanent Aliz Crimson
Made of PR176. While it is certainly better than traditional Alizarin Crimson (PR83), it is (in spite of the name) not entirely permanent.
Permanent Green Deep
Contains the fugitive arylamide PY74.
Permanent Green Light
Contains the fugitive arylamide PY3. W&N class B.
Permanent Green Middle
Contains two fugitive arylamide pigments, PY3 and PY74.
Primary Red
Made of two known fugitives, the rhodamine lake PR173 and naphthol PR170. W&N class B.
Rose Tyrien
Made of the fugitive rhodamine lake PR173. W&N permanency class “C - fugitive”.
Sap Green
Contains the fugitive arylamide PY74.
Spectrum Red
Contains the known fugitive naphthol pigment PR170.
Spectrum Violet
Made of the known fugitive toner pigment PV3. W&N class B.
Spectrum Yellow
Made of the fugitive arylamide PY74.
Venetian Red
A permanent iron oxide colour unfortunately “enhanced” with two known fugitive pigments, the arylamide yellow PY1 and the naphthol red PR9.
*** Based on paint compositions following W&N's 2008 revision of their gouache paint range.

SUGGESTED: The following colours form the minimum palette:
Permanent white (series 1)
Ultramarine blue (series 1)
Primary yellow (series 1)
Cadmium red (series 4) -OR- Winsor red (series 3)
The following colours are good additions to the minimum palette:
Prussian blue (series 1)
Quinacridone magenta (series 3) [mix with Cadmium red to make Alizarin-like colour]
Viridian (series 3)
Lamp black (series 1)
Raw sienna (series 1)
Gold (series 3) [a simple way to add gold elements without the complexity of goldleaf]

Lost Recipients

over the last year I have been trying to track down the owners to a number of AoA scrolls that were in the CoS files when I received them. Most of these people have now been tracked down but I still have 12 scrolls in my files that I can not find the owners for.
To put all of these scrolls up on the Lochac Scribes blog will take to much space and seems to cause blogger to have problems I have set up a Lochac Scribes Flickr account to put them up on. Could everyone please have a look at this account and see if you can help me track down the owner of these scrolls.
If you know the owner or have contact details for them please contact me. Some of these people I know personally but I do not have contact details for them. If you can get them to contact me or if you can send me their details so I can contact them please do.
My e-mail address is
The Flickr address for the photos is

Lost Scrolls

Recently a number of scrolls that are a decade old or more have been returned to the CoS and have been sent out to the recipients.
Two of the scrolls are shown here. I hope to show another one when I get a copy of the scroll. I was so keen to get it to the recipient that I forgot to photograph it before I gave it to them.

As can be seen the AoA has been slightly damaged by its long time in storage. This was fixed up before it was given to the recipient.