Saturday, March 6, 2010
John, con't (2)
Now, I am putting up double pages at a time, so that you see what the book looks like when you are staring at it in real life. Most of the page layouts were over the entire thing rather than one at a time, so it only makes sense that way. This was somewhat confusing to keep track of, as because of the nature of signatures the pages that are side by side are in fact on different sheets of paper and only together once sewn together.
This is the inside cover page. The eagle is John's symbol (this is a plain version of the one on the cover), and the red line is a motif that will be very important coming up.
And here we begin. I' not sure where to start with the explanation on how everything was done, so forgive me if this is a whole bunch of random facts jumbled together.
I made these pages over a light table. The basic layout (lines, margins, columns) was underneath the page and therefore I didn't have to spend time putting down lines and erasing them etc etc and everything came out identical.
The font is one I developed myself. It imitates the Greek alphabet because that is what it was originally written in.
The yellow line is the first few verses of John in Greek. It's actually in gold gouache. The red line is the first three verses of Genesis is Hebrew. The opening of John is modeled after these lines, so I included them. Then the English went in between. I ignored the margins and columns and wrote where I had room, and right between the pages so you can't really tell where the centre is in this case.
Getting to the text proper now. John is divided into two sections, the "Book of Signs," centreing on Jesus' life and miracles; and the "Book of Glory," focusing on the crucifixion and resurrection. I realize I am going to oversimplify the theology and whatnot here, I'm going to explain just enough to make the pictures make sense. For the first half I decided to keep things simple and straight forward, just a few pictures as illustration, and a few symbols I would pick up in the second half, which is considerably more elaborate. The first half also keeps the pictures very separate from the text, whereas the second mixes them together.
Therefore, not too much to explain here. It's talking about light, so I've got some in the corner there, one important verse larger than the rest, with some Hebrew next to it. I can't for the life of me remember what verse it's from and my brain is not working very well this morning so I can only read a couple of the words. Sorry! Rest assured, it's something that verse is referring to and it's all very scholarly and clever. However, it was also five years ago and I just don't remember anymore! The English is "The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light" and the Hebrew is something about wandering people following a great light. Must be from Exodus. You probably only care about that is you're a scholar though, in which case you already know what verse it must be. There are a bunch of instances John refers to the Hebrew Bible and I put several of them in to show just how well I did my research, but a few years out of school and I'm not nearly so clever.