Medieval illuminated manuscripts abound in beautiful versions of letter B that can be copied and recreated. But wouldn’t it be much more fun to draw your own version of an illuminated letter B?
Taking inspiration from a 12th century medieval alphabet, I went to work sketching the letter shape until I came up with a version that I liked. Using the creative method described in the letter A blog post, I found a flower, saved images from Google search for reference and let my hand loose.
I have provided a free PDF with the line illustration and letter B practice sheet for you, so whether you want to create from skratch or use my illustration, you can create your own illuminated letter.
I first started drawing the flower, and then when the flower was partially drawn, I embarked on the letter shape. If you follow this order of drawing, it is quite easy to integrate the flower and letter shape into a seamless image.
If you first draw the full letter and then try to combine with a flower, you will most probably end up rather frustrated, and find yourself stuck in a puzzling dilemma. Instead of an intuitive, creative flow. I know, because I tried it many times before it dawned on me how to do this.
When I recorded the drawing process, the camera was too close to my hand, so in this video you will only see the application of watercolor, gold paint and colored pencils. I had trouble with the recording of letter A too. The reason is that when I do the first pencil drawing, the line work is very light but my camera is not set up for that. A light hand Feels more free, and allows me to use the eraser frequently. I use the eraser as a design tool!
For letter C I finally worked out the right camera settings. Next up, before letter C, learn about making your own watercolor gold paint. Super easy.
You can download a free practice sheet for letter B and then have a go at creating an illuminated letter yourself. In case you want to focus on painting or coloring only, the PDF also includes the line drawing of my letter B that you can trace or print out.