As many of my patrons, friends and collectors know I have a true love affair with all things medieval. Part of my professional training was the art and techniques used by medieval illuminators to produce those wonderful images used in the illuminated manuscripts that have survived from those times.
Recently I have re visited producing illuminated style paintings. Small and highly detailed I wanted to create an almost enamelled jewel like quality about them. In doing so I not only went back to the familiar medieval styles but I looked at Persian, Indian and even some Japanese influences. Persian and Indian manuscripts are in many cases much finer than their western counterparts. The miniatures are more delicately realised and intricate. That is not to say European medieval manuscripts were not without their quality, one has only to look at the work of the Limbourg Brothers or Jean Fouquet or the wonderful Gorleston Psalter to see that very fine work was produced in higher end manuscripts.
I looked at tapestries. I have designed several for commercial tapestry producers over my career and also studied the medieval revivalist work produced in the late 19th Century for inspiration. My mind has over the years become an image bank of all kinds of art and styles and in this painting, The Lady and the Swan I combined all the elements and diversity I could to impart a rich sense of the magical and fairy tale quality. A world of Arthurian style myth if you like. I have always likened my career and art as being a ‘Strange Landscape’ and if I can create that otherworldly feel to these paintings then I will have succeeded in my goal. This is only the third I have done in this style and each time I have ironed out a few wrinkles and approached things differently.
As an artist I am always trying to improve and build on each work and am never completely satisfied with the results there is always room for improvement and in that I am not unique, all artists struggle to improve or take their art to a higher place. As a Christian I believe that I would be doing God a great disservice not to take the talent he has given me and apply myself to the best of my ability every time I pick up a brush.
Non Nobis Domine Non Nobis Sed Nomini Tuo Da Glorium.
Andrew Stewart Jamieson