|As a Fine Arts student in Rome, Italy I grew up admiring the magnificence of the Illuminated Manuscripts and Books made in the Middle Age and Renaissance, before the invention of the Gutenberg press. I still have with me many of the art books I used as a student, some of them large format publications with hundreds of photographic reproductions of pages from those books decorated with beautiful graphic elements. I used to study from those books. After graduating as a teacher of Art and art history, being an academic, I had access to many of those pieces of art in restricted areas of libraries and I was able to examine and appreciate them even more. The making of such books took months and years. Certainly they were not for everybody; very few could afford them. Today in the age of the electronic arts not too much has changed. Many people do not have the opportunity to appreciate this form of art.
Clip art is an interesting product of the last twenty years; with a simple insertion technique, clip art permits non-artists to enhance their documents with graphics made by others. Clipart is also a tool for graphic designers to complete their work faster, thereby reducing their cost.
There are countless pre-made graphic objects available in varying degrees of quality and for every subject matter. To our knowledge, this is the first offering of high quality European Middle Age and Renaissance Art made available in electronic format. Naturally,
anyone can scan a picture from a book or grab it from the internet, but such scans are inferior to EPS vector file format graphics particularly when painstakenly redrawn by hand.
Those are among the reasons that motivated me to create the Illuminated Manuscripts Project.
Our work consists in redrawing, with as much accuracy as possible, the graphic elements in resolution-independant vector format to create our collection of European Medieval and Renaissance clip-art. Resolution-independent graphics can be printed at any size and always look accurate and sharp.