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renlyslittlerose:

soilrockslove:

lichgem:

It seems really weird to me, which parts of medieval history people choose to emphasize when they do movies and books set in medieval times.

Like… they usually emphasize the violence, and the misogyny, and the uncleanliness. To the point where we assume a lot of things that actually aren’t true.

Like, there are actually a ton of hygiene practices in medieval times most people don’t know about because we just assume that people never bathed ever.

Lots of people bathed, a lot. Bath houses were really freaking popular, to the point where the church got mad about it and told people to quit spending all day in the bath. And there were several different ways to keep your teeth clean- various mouth rinses, and tooth scrubs (typically the ashes of burned herbs that were rubbed on the teeth), wiping them with linen, etc.

Also, the violence makes it seem like that was all there was to life… and I don’t want anyone to downplay it, but, the PRESENT is full of violence too, but we still have movies that show our lives as not being characterized by that alone.

And people also assume that because of misogyny, there were NO women who did anything, ever. That all women were thoroughly suppressed to the point where they didn’t contribute ANYTHING to history. Which is in itself a misogynist viewpoint. There were women in every point of history who did things.

(Licorice roots were often chewed up and then used as toothbrushes!)

Yes, seriously, things get very distorted.  And also made more uniform, when the middle ages was actually a long time period with changes and also spread out over a large region. 

The hygiene thing is a good example.  People in most places had some sort of bathing routine and many even washed their face and hands before every meal.  Herbs helped people smell good too!  Grooming tools, especially combs are *very* common artifacts, and in some places both men and women carried a comb with them at all times for little “touch up” combings.  It wasn’t until the later middle ages (due to the catholic church putting a lot of pressure on people - they saw taking care of the physical body as a vanity and a distraction) that washing became uncommon…   well… more uncommon than it was before.

There was also a large knowledge of medical herbs (we’ve found both written records and the herbs themselves)  and monks and nuns in some more “worldly” religious communities were experimenting with combinations of herbs to decrease pain for surgery.

Similarly, some women were very oppressed and un-free.  Treated as objects and tools for making marriage alliances.  But there were also women who ordered extra crossbows so they could defend their households from bandits (We have the grocery list for that one!)  And many worked in some household trade - and those trades were valued!  Especially spinning and weaving - they were neccesary for everyday life!  And if you weren’t nobly born, marriage was usually a thing decided on by both partners after they were fully grown and ready to make their own house in the community.

Oh, and speaking of bandits… the bandits were usually the knights. >.< When you mold your whole life around wielding weapons and then don’t have a war… Chivalry was created in part to *curb* that kind of thing.   How you treated women was just a small part of it.  The TL:DR version is “don’t mis-use your power against the weak”. Many knights just gave it lip service, though.

And I’m not even getting into the peasant revolts, and strikes (including cross-dressing strikes) and petitions.

There’s so much that gets left out.

And a lot of this is because much of our popular information about the medieval era was filtered through the Victorian Era.  Victorians writing about the middle ages had own biases and were very selective about *which* stories they told.  And so for instance, they lovingly retold every medieval story about a lady being rescued by a knight, but didn’t bother translating the ballads that involved women rescuing, carrying off, or craftily eloping with men.

 It’s also important to note that a lot of our perceptions come from the writings and customs of the elite. They were the ones who were educated so we know more about them because they wrote shit down. The life the commoner isn’t as well known nor discussed all that often; they often had very different lives from the elite. Not everyone wore led paint on their face.

(via thief-in-the-dark)

Filed under medieval history

6,046 notes

HOW NOT TO DRAW ARCHERY: AN ART TUTORIAL.

eschergirls:

badarcherart:

katieispainting:

DISCLAIMER: I was going to make this “how to draw archery”, but that would probably have taken the rest of my life. This is all stuff I’ve learned from practicing archery in the past, and the tips I’ve given should translate to many, if not all styles of archery. If you take issue with any of the information given here please contact me, as I’m aware I’m not an expert!

Okay, I’ve seen too many bad drawings of archery online. Most of the time I can overlook it, but I’ve made this guide to address drawings where a) the character would hurt/maim themselves if they shot like that, or b) if you tried to shoot like that, the arrow would just make a sad trajectory to the ground, the aerodynamic equivalent of a “WAH-WAH” on a trumpet.

With this in mind:

POINT ONE: WHY IS YOUR ARM LIKE THAT

If successful archery is about one thing, it is about consistency - being able to make your body take exactly the same stance over and over and over again. Your body is a key part of the weapon, and just as you wouldn’t want a gun that had components that wobbled and shifted, you don’t want your body to.

With this in mind, characters shooting, particularly at full draw (this is when the arm pulling the string is stretched all the way back), should have the arm that is holding the bow straight. Not locked - I’ll get into that - but straight. A straight arm is easy to replicate - a bent arm could be at a different angle each time. Simple as that.

image

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POINT TWO: DON’T SHOOT YOUR TIT OFF

See this diagram

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the dotted line is the path the string will take. The string is extremely tight - it has to be for the bow to work. It will therefore move extremely fast. Do you want any part of your body to be in the way of that.

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if you have any part of your body (elbows and breasts/pectoral muscles tend to be the worst offenders) in the line of the string, they will get hit. And this will hurt. A LOT. Google “archery bruise” to see how. Yikes. Furthermore, if your arm or chest gets in the way, it’ll knock the arrow off course, and in addition to having sliced your nipple off you’ll have missed your shot too. So KEEP STUFF OUT OF THE PATH OF THE STRING.

side note: this is where the myth of amazons chopping their boobs off came from. Also, why archers sometimes wear chest-guards - this looks like a one-cupped unisex bra. Stylish. Also why archers often wear protective gear called a bracer. This goes on the tender inside of the arm and wrist that might get clipped by the string, not the outside that is nowhere near it.

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POINT THREE: WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR FINGERS STOP THAT

Okay I keep seeing this

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Having the fingers clasping the arrow like this makes it highly likely that the pressure from them will send the arrow off-course.

Many modern bows have an arrow rest so you needn’t rest the arrow on your hand at all. If that isn’t the case, it works better to rest the arrow on the first knuckle of the index finger (where it meets the hand). If it’s just being used as a platform, the finger shouldn’t be able to exert enough pressure to make the shot go all over the place. Also you won’t end up shredding your fingers with the fletchings.

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Talking of that…

POINT FOUR: DON’T SLICE YOUR FINGERS OFF

remember what I said earlier about how incredibly taut bowstrings are

imagine pulling that back with your soft fleshy fingers

it is basically like cheesewire through…soft fleshy fingers.

Use protection. Illustrated below are the tab and archery glove, or just go to google or something, stop the madness.

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POINT FIVE: PHYSICS DOESN’T WORK LIKE THAT

A strung bow is taut. The body of the bow is pulled by the (very tight) string, making a D shape. An unstrung bow will be straighter.

The tension in the string means a string should always be a straight line. If the bow is drawn, it’s two straight lines. 

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If there is any curve in the string, the arrow will probably fall limply to the floor.

ALSO. When the string is drawn back, it exerts more pressure on the bow, creating that really exaggerated curve. This is where the power comes from. (I think. I am not physics). Basically, if you’re drawing a character at full draw, the string should be straight and the bow should be curved. If the opposite is true something very wrong has happened and you should be sad.

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OKAY! I hope this has been helpful, if you have any questions or concerns let me know. And if in doubt, doctor google will help you - look at olympic or professional archers, and see how they’re standing and how their bows behave.

GOOD LUCK DRAWING!

Very important!

As a note, number one can sometimes be correct if you don’t have an armguard, but you only bend it just enough that the string won’t his your arm and give you rope-burn. And you really shouldn’t be shooting without safety gear, anyway.

Since archery shows up an inordinate amount on this blog, I thought this tutorial was relevant and people might find it useful. :)

Filed under archery weapons

6,586 notes

public service announcement for cosplayers who use bodypaint

looktothenightxai:

zeekayart:

please seal your paint

if you don’t seal your paint, this is what happens. you sit down.

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lalalala sitting down

imagethen you get up and realize oh shit, damaged property.

no one wants damaged property!! and please don’t think “oh i’m just doing my hands and face, i won’t need to seal”. because from being in the artist alley i can’t tell you how many times unsealed paint has touched my art and gotten smudged and gross.

alternatively, bring a towel to sit on so that you’re never directly in contact with the hotel’s furniture! and be careful!

be kind to the hotel staff, be kind to everyone.

please seal your bodypaint.

Ahhhhhhhhhhh ermahgerd that’s a 0 to 60 way of getting a con to consider banning body paint due to a pissed off hotel.

Only thing this post did NOT cover, were some sealants for body painting.

SEALER BRANDS:

Ben Nye Final Seal & Ben Nye LiquiSet
-I’ve used Final Seal (its blue), its strong, kinda sticky and super minty due to the menthol… its not really best for around the eyes but I’ve done it in a pinch (just keep em closed and have someone fan you realllly good so the sealer sets).

Kryolan Fixer Spray

Mehron Fixer Spray

You can also try other make-up brands of Fixer Spray, I know UD, NYX and MAC all have some sort of fixer, but YMMV with these instead of the above ones which I -know- are good for heavy duty work.

ALTERNATIVES:

If you can spare the expense - you can look into getting an airbrush and using alcohol based body paints. They’re relatively waterproof, light on the skin and easy to remove as long as you remember soap first, water last.

Baby powder/cornstarch/hairspray

NOT ALL TOGETHER mind you that’d be a disaster. But in a pinch, using a light dusting of powders are effective temporary sealants. Good for a photoshoot or two but probably not for running around the con.

Hairspray will be similar to the other alcohol/aerosol based sealants, but I hate the feeling it leaves behind. Much sticker than with a normal sealer IMHO. Go for the lightest sweeping possible.

WHERE TO FIND:

SillyFarm [sillyfarm.com] is good for those who are in the US/North America as most of these sealers are considered hazardous and MUST BE SHIPPED VIA GROUND.

International cosplayers would need to find their own sources, but it seems Da Grime [dagrime.nl] and The Face Painting Shop [thefacepaintingshop.com] are possible finds for those in the UK/EU.

Everyone can google/bing for their local costume shops (the year round ones, not the Spencers-ish pop up shops) as they generally sell a limited selection of face paints and make up, and if you’re lucky they’ll ORDER product for you as well (mine does!).

BEST SEALING METHOD:

Most directions will tell you to either spritz/swipe on before or after application, but if you’re like me and going to be in that make up for a long ass day and possibly in heat (Hello San Diego in late July)and such.. go for this method:

Apply a solid base layer of sealant on clean skin that’s either dry or been moisturized but the product has been long absorbed by the skin. Let dry completely (have a friend fan you or use a hair dryer on COOL).

Apply your make up. If you have time, do spritzes of sealant between coats.

Let everything dry (sealant AND make up) completely.

Do a final seal.

Annnnd voila! There should be NO bleeding on the furniture!

(FYI: Yes I know about the PAX method. I personally do not like the PAX method. Acrylic paint is for canvas and your mama’s terra cotta pots. Not my skin. I would also prefer a nice relaxing shower rather than a hellfire scrub down.)

(via hemmingslyluke)

Filed under cosplay

333 notes

kitfoxhawaii:

Just figured out how to transfer images onto wood with wax paper! YOU TOO WILL NOW DRINK FROM THE GOBLET OF THIS GLORIOUS KNOWLEDGE!

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1. Get a relatively smooth piece of wood.  FINISHED SURFACES SHALL LEAD THEE TO GLORY. Raw, ragged wood shall BEHEATHENIZE YOUR DESIGN!

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2. Sheet of wax paper. YOUR LIFE, YOUR BRAND.

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3. LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES, WONTON KNAVES. I inserted the wax paper directly into my printer BUT I WAS A FOOLISH FOOL. Tape it to computer paper and you shall win the day!

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4. Print out your image (FLIP IT IF THERE IS TEXT or you shall rue I SAY RUE!) and separate the wax paper from the computer paper.  Lay it on top of the wood, inked side down, and deep tissue massage the design into the wood using a credit card or whatnot.

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5. PEEL BACK THAT PAPER OF WAXEN SUBSTANCE AND MARVEL AT THY GLORIOUS CREATION!

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MAY OUR HOUSES NOW BE THE MOST SWAG!   AAAHHHAHAHAHAAAA!

Filed under diy crafts

424 notes

fashionsfromhistory:

Wedding Ensemble
c.1900
Turkey

This is a detail from the front opening of a gown said to have been worn by a bride at her wedding, but it is not designed for movement or necessarily for close inspection. It is made from a length of green silk been embroidered with couched metal thread and lines of glittering sequins, in a floral pattern that had been printed or drawn on the fabric. The silk was cut into the pieces required for the robe. Cutting and seaming through embroidery seems like sacrilege in an age and culture where hand-decoration is expensive, but it is not an uncommon practice where labour is relatively cheap. The edges have been decorated with an elaborate trimming of metal thread that has been twisted and stitched into a complex floral motif. As the silk has no backing the trimming is floppy and reveals the unsightly tacking stitches that hold the individual metal threads in place. However, this is a presentation gown in which the wearer was expected to stand perfectly still. This style of garment is designed to trail on the floor, with each panel elegantly arranged over and around the woman’s feet. With the bride immobilized in this way, each part of the trimming could be carefully adjusted to create a breathtaking vision of green and gold.

V&amp;A

fashionsfromhistory:

Wedding Ensemble

c.1900

Turkey

This is a detail from the front opening of a gown said to have been worn by a bride at her wedding, but it is not designed for movement or necessarily for close inspection. It is made from a length of green silk been embroidered with couched metal thread and lines of glittering sequins, in a floral pattern that had been printed or drawn on the fabric. The silk was cut into the pieces required for the robe. Cutting and seaming through embroidery seems like sacrilege in an age and culture where hand-decoration is expensive, but it is not an uncommon practice where labour is relatively cheap. The edges have been decorated with an elaborate trimming of metal thread that has been twisted and stitched into a complex floral motif. As the silk has no backing the trimming is floppy and reveals the unsightly tacking stitches that hold the individual metal threads in place. However, this is a presentation gown in which the wearer was expected to stand perfectly still. This style of garment is designed to trail on the floor, with each panel elegantly arranged over and around the woman’s feet. With the bride immobilized in this way, each part of the trimming could be carefully adjusted to create a breathtaking vision of green and gold.

V&A

(via fashionsfromhistory)

Filed under to ruin kings

6,345 notes

Writing Research - The Middle Ages

ghostflowerdreams:

Middle Ages (or Medieval period), lasted from the 5th to the 15th century. It began with the collapse of the Western Roman Empire and merged into the Renaissance and the Age of Discovery. The Middle Ages is the middle period of the three traditional divisions of Western history: Antiquity, Medieval period, and Modern period. The Medieval period is itself subdivided into the Early, the High, and the Late Middle Ages. [1] [2]

Names

Society & Life

Commerce

Entertainment & Food

Hygiene, Health & Medicine

Fashion

Dialogue

Justice & Crime

(via thewritershelpers)

Filed under medieval middle ages history

158,230 notes

amandaonwriting:

Cheat Sheets for Writing Body Language

We are always told to use body language in our writing. Sometimes, it’s easier said than written. I decided to create these cheat sheets to help you show a character’s state of mind. Obviously, a character may exhibit a number of these behaviours. For example, he may be shocked and angry, or shocked and happy. Use these combinations as needed.

by Amanda Patterson

(via unburnt-the-mother-of-dragons)

Filed under body language

3,623 notes

medievalpoc:

laissezferre:

corseque:

Ahhh! This is so cool!

An author was writing historical fiction, and decided (in hopes of escaping anachronistic language) to only use the vocabulary that Jane Austen used. They made a custom dictionary of all the words Jane Austen used in all of her books, and used that to spell check, so it flagged modern words and phrases that she would have totally overlooked otherwise.

I’m thinking it would be incredibly easy to do the same thing for fanfiction, especially book-based - compile a dictionary of, say, all the words GRRM used in ASOIAF, and use that as a spell check dictionary so it would flag any words GRRM did not use…

Or a particular TV show character’s dialogue, though that would involve much more manual effort…

edit: apparently, some historical fiction authors use old dictionaries (circa: 1700-1800s) as their custom dictionaries, even when writing about much earlier time periods. This helps them escape writing with modern-sounding anachronisms that throw modern readers out of the story, but also allows them to use language that a modern reader can understand when writing about time periods where characters should be speaking, say, Old English.

friendly reminder that such a thing has been developed for the les mis fandom 

These are some great resources for authors of historical fiction (and/or fan fiction)!

(via thief-in-the-dark)

Filed under woooooow writing amazing language linguistics