Armory Submissions from Virtual Heralds Point

During the month of February, the College of Arms organized a online Virtual Heralds Point during which people could sign up for consultation with heralds who would guide them through the submission process for names and armory.

Below is a collage of armory I worked on as part of this event. (The rowan berries in the bottom left are a badge I did for myself during VHP but submitted directly.) Continue reading “Armory Submissions from Virtual Heralds Point”

Traceable Art for February

It’s been a busy couple of months, with well over two hundred items added to the Traceable Heraldic Art collection since December, bringing the total to more than four thousand items grouped into more than a thousand headings.

A big driver of the recent activity has been the College’s Virtual Heralds Point, which for the first time used online tools to coordination heraldic consultations, art assignments, form preparation, and electronic payment. In addition to processing submissions for hundreds of people, this event also facilitated connections between heralds and artists from all across the known world who might not have ever met in person. Continue reading “Traceable Art for February”

An Introduction to the Tinctures

One of the first questions commonly asked by newcomers to the world of armory is “what colors can I use?”

This seemingly-simple question has multiple answers, depending on how deeply you want to dig in, and it does involve learning some basic heraldic jargon, but the it’s worth mastering these foundations. Continue reading “An Introduction to the Tinctures”

A Roadmap to the World of Morsulus

Because the tasks performed by the Morsulus Herald mostly take place behind the scenes, even experienced members of the College can be a little vague about what’s involved, so I put together a high-level conceptual diagram that outlines how some of the main elements are related. Continue reading “A Roadmap to the World of Morsulus”

A Badge for Heraldic Artists

Most people who’ve had any contact with the Society’s College of Arms would recognize the badge of the Heralds — “vert, two straight trumpets in saltire Or” — which may generally be displayed by anyone working for or associated with the College.

But there wasn’t a distinctive badge reserved specifically for the artists who assisted the College by illustrating armory, a role that in period was referred to as a “herald painter.” (For more on the history of herald painters, see this essay by Robert Parsons, who held that role for the British College of Arms.) Continue reading “A Badge for Heraldic Artists”

Updating the O-and-A Category Files

On December 14, 2020, Master Herveus d’Ormonde led a few interested heralds through an online session in which we were able to observe a portion of his workflow as Morsulus Herald, watching as he added several new cross-references to the armorial category files and published the changes to the public O&A web site.

I am attaching my notes from this session below in hopes that they might be of interest to other members of the community, although this is admittedly a fairly-obscure topic with a limited audience. Continue reading “Updating the O-and-A Category Files”

A Pair of Hearts Pierced

February is here again, and the #HeraldicLove campaign is once again encouraging reenactors to display their arms (or a badge of allegiance) on a heart-shaped field.

I participated in this campaign last year, drawing three dozen heart-shaped badges and devices for branches and individuals. Along the way I also created digital templates for a heart-shaped field and a set of corresponding heart-shaped field divisions and ordinaries.

As we begin another round of heart-shaped heraldic display, I thought it would be fun to display a pair of hearts conjoined by an arrow, as I’ve done below with the arms of myself and my wife. Continue reading “A Pair of Hearts Pierced”

A Technique For Internal Detailing On Sable Clip-Art Charges

A recurring challenge when illustrating armory that contains complex sable charges is how to handle the internal detailing that is often provided by fine black lines within a charge of any other color, but which disappears when the charge itself is black.

For example, consider the clip art pomegranate shown below. If we color it entirely black, as shown in image 2, the internal detailing disappears and it’s difficult to identify — is this a roundel wearing a crown? One viable approach is to use a dark gray color for the fill, as in image 3, which allows us to still see some details, but sometimes that’s not enough contrast, and there are contexts in which using shades of gray like this isn’t a viable approach. Continue reading “A Technique For Internal Detailing On Sable Clip-Art Charges”

Conflict Checking Multiply-Divided Field-Only Armory

A couple of years ago, I posted about a technique I picked up from Marie de Blois that allows conflict-checking two- and four-part field-only armory with the O&A complex search form.

It entails running a search for the line type, plus each of the tinctures, and for the tinctures together in reverse order, and the codes for field-only and peripheral-only. Continue reading “Conflict Checking Multiply-Divided Field-Only Armory”