Illuminated Monograms
When I read the Monogram blog last Monday, I immediately emailed
Kim and asked, “have you seen how beautiful these look illuminated?”  She asked if I would share more about
it with her readers to which I happily agreed.  I recently launched a calligraphy business, Halo
Calligraphy, after taking courses for about a year.  The most recent class I completed was the Art of
Illumination.  I found it to be
both fascinating and beautiful with such a long, interesting history.
Halo Calligraphy
Illuminated monograms are a unique way to add a beautiful
touch to special document and gifts. 
Illumination dates back to medieval times when calligraphers began to
“lighten” pages of text using precious metals to reflect the surrounding
light.  It was typically devoted to
religious works produced in monasteries, as with this example.
Victoria & Albert Museum
Modern illumination is still inspired by ancient lettering
and the hand-painted decorative letters usually include saturated colors with gold
or silver leaf.  Modern treatments
include stand alone monograms, versals to begin a page of a poem or quotation, cards,
letterheads, or the inside cover of a wedding or baby book.
I love the simple and elegant illuminated first letter of
these wedding vows done in silver.
A special poem or verse like this would be sweet framed in a
little girl’s room.  The
calligrapher carried the border down the full side of the page to make it more
of a work of art. You can several examples of coordinating borders in the
monogram books as well.
As a calligrapher, it’s fun to look through monogram books,
choose a favorite letter, then illuminate and paint as a gift.  The ancient looking monograms can be
replicated and updated with a more modern look.  Here is one I did in gold leaf and pink for my newborn
niece’s nursery.
To check out Jen O’Neal’s beautiful calligraphy, visit Halo Calligraphy

1 Comment

  1. Anonymous on October 8, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    Jen's work is gorgeous!

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