Thursday, February 3, 2011

17th century terrestrial globe for William and Mary House

I'm thinking ahead to the time I work on the study / library / workspace in the WAHM.  I really wanted the scientific gentleman of the house to have a nice terrestrial globe (among his other instruments) and decided to refinish a store-bought one to look more 17th century. 


Here's the 3 inch (7.5 cm) globe and stand I bought -- it's by Euro Minis and it's dirt cheap :)  Typical faux-mahogany stand, and a pretty garish globe, but the basics are usable.


Here's my inspiration -- two 17th century globes and a Mercator projection circa 1665.  One thing I love about miniatures (particularly working with a specific historical period) is how much I learn as I go along.  At the time of this Mercator map they knew where western Australia was, something I didn't know.  So recreating the inspirational globes led me to this process:

1.  Take the globe apart (this was surprisingly easy, besides it's fun sort of wrecking stuff :)).

2.  Paint the wood of the base a combination of burnt and raw umber to mimic walnut.  Paint the legs black to mimic ebony.  Give it two coats of satin varnish.

3.  Paint the globe's support brass/bronze.

4.  Repaint the globe itself, which took a while :)  I painted the whole globe a dirty parchment colour, then roughed in the continents using the Mercator projection as a guide with a darker colour.  Then I did a more detailed outline of the continents with a black pen, and finally cleaned up the sea/land meeting points and sketched in some "lettering".

5.  Reassemble the globe, with axis straight up and down (as in reference images of globes).  Since I had to break the original wooden stick that held the globe in place in its support, I used a length of brass wire as a replacement and I added a little flat brass spacer and bead just for detail.

And here's the finished piece!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Marble fireplace in WAHM Bedroom, and Thing-a-day!

I enjoyed marbling the Blue and White Room's fireplace so much, that I had to do something to the very white and plain fireplace in the bedroom!  I used some cream and yellow ochre and white, and then drew in the veins with grey.

I'm participating in this year's Thing-A-Day Project, which challenges its participants to create one thing every day through the month of February.  So far I've just been doing jewellery projects, but I know some of the things I'll do will be minis, and I'll post them here.  If you want to follow along, you can see all my TAD projects at my artists' blog, Dangerous Mezzo, or you can see the work of hundreds of participants at the main Thing-A-Day website :)
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