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Your daily dose of artardation…

miniatureRainy day at last! See, this is the English climate I signed on for. I’ve got a fire and a booze and I’m kicked back browsing Her Maj’s art collection.

It’s pretty cool, actually. The royals have a thing for portrait miniatures, and the website has a cool dingus that lets you view the whole collection, zoom in and pan around each individual painting.

I have a thing about portrait miniatures, too. I painted a few back in the day and I’m thinking of taking it up again. It’s always been on Ye Bigge List of Things I Might Like To Do For Money When I Grow Up. It is a long and silly list.

The classic miniature portrait for hundreds of years was a watercolor, painstakingly built up of tiny flecks of paint on a piece of thin vellum glued to the back of a playing card (cards are about the right weight, is all). Later examples are occasionally watercolor on ivory or vitreous enamel or oil on copper.

Her Maj’s collection is mostly fine portraits of royalty (natch), but it was a much more ubiquitous art form, especially toward the end when all manner of spinsters, widows and maiden aunts got in on the act. Accessible to the commoner, in various levels of quality and portrait goofiness.

Photography finally killed off the art form in the 19th C, though it never died away completely. In fact, the Royal Society of Miniature Painters, Sculptors and Gravers wasn’t founded until 1896.

And tomorrow? Sunny and fine. AGAIN. Weasel will have to go out and play 🙁


Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 27, 2009, 7:20 pm

Man, they had some seriously fucked up hairdos.

Comment from Cant hark my cry
Time: May 27, 2009, 8:10 pm

What is especially fascinating is that Wilhelmina Ernestina and Frederica Amalia seem to have very nearly the same fucked up hairdo. What do you suppose happened if they both turned up at the same party?

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 27, 2009, 8:14 pm

At first I thought it was an accidental repeat. Those two pictures are almost next to each other (there is one other between).

What the hell was that, Asymmetry Day in High School?

Comment from Phineas
Time: May 27, 2009, 8:18 pm

nah…it’s the English rain! Their hairdos were all bouffants until it got wet

Comment from Cant hark my cry
Time: May 27, 2009, 8:27 pm

Ah hah! They were sisters! (Is that something everybody in the universe except me already knew?)


except, sorry, I don’t know how to make it a clickable link. Bother. Anyway, look at the list of his children. So, maybe that’s how their hair just grew?

Comment from Cant hark my cry
Time: May 27, 2009, 8:29 pm

Oooooh! Cool beans–it made it clickable automatically,! Wow!

Comment from iamfelix
Time: May 27, 2009, 9:03 pm

Ernest Augustus could be Robert Plant in his heyday. Or any of those guys in Whitesnake (whose names I don’t know, as I’m too old, but I remember my stepkids watching them on MTV).

I luff the artardations.

Comment from dfbaskwill
Time: May 28, 2009, 7:30 am

Sign me up for an order when you return to the arts! Maybe a miniature Ronald Reagan I could keep close to my heart to remember the good times. (I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t look good even in miniature.)

Comment from Gibby Haynes
Time: May 28, 2009, 9:12 am

Is that a moustache on Ernest’s face or has he just had a chocolate milkshake?

Comment from Sockless Joe
Time: May 28, 2009, 12:17 pm

The rocker whose name you’re reaching for is probably David Coverdale, who, like Robert Plant, also worked w/ Jimmy Page.

Comment from Dawn
Time: May 28, 2009, 12:51 pm

The nobles were some fatties – most of them have double chins – and what the heck is wrong with the Danes?


There must be some serious inbreeding there…They all look like they could be the love child of Mr. Bean and Natalie Cassidy.

Comment from Hey you
Time: May 28, 2009, 3:03 pm

Why is this blog in shades of grey? Are you too poor to have it in colour?

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 28, 2009, 4:33 pm

Hey, Mister You. May I call you Hey?

When I first started this blog, I knew I wanted to use LOTS of pictures, both in the sidebars and the main posts. Lots of pictures means slow, cloggy page load times. Not good. So I had to squeeze the images down as much as possible. One way to do that is to strip all the color information out.

That gave me the idea of mimicking an old newspaper layout. Hence the title in the masthead. I went so far as to post as Stoaty Weasel, hardbitten newspapermustelid for a while, but I quickly got sick of that gimmick. Lucky you.

Comment from Eirik
Time: May 28, 2009, 5:20 pm

That reminds me, I was wondering if you had an archive somewhere of your sidebar images. I know I’ve seen a couple others (like Islamic Rage Boy with a pancake on his head). I suspect you had some around before I found your site. Are they viewable anywhere?

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 28, 2009, 7:12 pm

They are. You’re welcome to browse my graphic directory at: http://sweasel.com/wp-content/themes/weasel/graphics/ which includes some never-published images, as well.

Steal anything you like — I’ll make more!

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