In short, this site is for people who want to learn how to make medieval items in a medieval manner. We will compare the medieval and modern tools and methods so that we understand when to use each, as some effects can only be achieved the medieval way. You can learn as we learn.
This site is also for people who want to buy items that look like museum pieces from the medieval period. It is most definitely not a place to buy or view "cheesy medievaloid dreck". There is enough of that on the web without us adding to the pile.
We have a passion for medieval arts and crafts. We enjoy learning techniques and making beautiful or useful items. We enjoy the company of those who have a similar joy and of helping others along their path as an artist and scholar.
We want to be a professional-quality artists in a variety of medieval crafts, with the ability to work in other crafts as needed to support our work. We want to be skilled in the traditional medieval crafts processes in addition to modern methods and tools that are affordably accessible to the hobbyist. In addition, We want to be skilled at teaching those skills in an informative, effective and enjoyable manner.
Now for a reality check!
We both have day jobs that have nothing to do with things medieval or art - and a family to support. Learning and making art is expensive! The tools are expensive, the materials are expensive, and the training courses are expensive, too.
It’s possible to attend weekend or weeklong workshops covering various techniques, but at $200 to $1,000 a pop, it gets pretty expensive, particularly when one considers that does not include materials or tools to perform the technique with afterwards.
There is simply so much to learn and so little free time! In addition, without a formal program of study to follow, it would be easy to follow a haphazard learning path, particularly since so many different arts interest us.
This website and its content are an integral part of our plan. We’ll be able to document what we’ve learned and share that with others. As we build a community of interest, others will help us with our research and techniques so we don’t have to figure it all out by ourselves.
In order to avoid pursuing this knowledge in a haphazard manner, we're defining a Medieval Artisan Program of Study (MAPS) to follow for metal and clay, our primary interests. That way, we can proceed in an orderly manner and map our progress for all to see.
As we formulated this plan, it occurred to us that others might want to do the same thing. Why not make our website work for them, too! Each of our fellow students of the art can map their own progress, too. If someone wants to define a Medieval Artist Program of Study for Wood, Bone, Horn, Fabric, Leather, Stone or Glass, there’s no reason why the same database can’t be used for that purpose, too.
We know we’ll enjoy our journey to become competent and skilled artisans. We hope you will enjoy it with us.
Where to start?
If you are interested in learning more about the crazy folks who are doing this, check out Artisans. If you are interested in learning more about a particular craft and it's associated Medieval Artisan Program of Study (MAPS), check out Crafts. If you want to find some books or vendors that provide value to practitioners of a craft, check out Resources. If you like looking at medieval art items (or buying them), check out Artwork.