The Allure of Miniature Fine Art
When one hears the word miniature, they instantly think of small. Thus the modern connotation attached to fine art miniatures is they are miniscule in size. Although many of the works produced are in fact tiny jewels of the art world. In reality the word miniature in fine art refers more to the style of the paintings rather than the ultimate size. By the same token, many small paintings are not true miniatures in that they employ a looser approach to the subject matter.
For instance, many people, including myself collect small works of art called Art Cards or ACEOs. Although the techniques often employed are looser than one might find on a miniature where the artist has painstakingly worked for many hours and/or days making the finest of brushstrokes, the works are often extraordinary works of art that employ conventional painting techniques. Conversely, one can also find works of art that can be categorized as Miniature works of art in the 2.5 inch X 3.5 inch size associated with Art Cards and ACEOs.
Although the history of Miniatures is long and storied, the English style of Miniature started with the illuminations of the 15th and 16th Centuries. These extraordinary works were used much as photography is used today. As a result, with the advent of photography, the art of Miniature Painting suffered a decline, but as time went on and more and more people learned of this astonishing artwork, the interest in finding, owning and producing miniatures for collectors brought about resurgence in the art.
Today, many Miniature Art Societies sponsor shows that include the works of some of the greatest living artists practicing the Miniature style of painting. These organizations set standards for size and quality of the work they accept for exhibition. Most of the organizations on state, nation and international levels have websites that explain the various techniques that are accepted as well as display specifications.
If you are an artist interested in working in the Miniature style, there are a number of websites with excellent instruction in the art. Two books that give more history of miniatures, as well as provide information on methods, tools and materials are: “The Techniques of Painting Miniatures” by Sue Burton and “Miniature Painting” by Joan Cornish Willies. Both books were available on Amazon.com and both are must haves for the serious beginning Miniaturist.
You can find examples of my Miniatures in My Miniature Gallery. Below are a few examples of the original Miniatures Available that can be purchased directly.