By Kelley Smoot Garrett, Albuquerque, New Mexico
It’s the classic beginning to all fairy tales.
Using hand-lettering, much as monks would have done prior to Gutenberg’s revolutionary, moveable, typesets, Letitia similarly illustrated Princess April Morning-Glory. The principal technique she employed through-out her work, is that of illumination. It’s an ancient technique in manuscript transcription that Wikipedia describes as:
An illuminated manuscript is a manuscript in which the text is supplemented by the addition of decoration, such as decorated initials, borders (marginalia) and miniature illustrations. In the most strict definition of the term, an illuminated manuscript only refers to manuscripts decorated with gold or silver, but in both common usage and modern scholarship, the term is now used to refer to any decorated or illustrated manuscript from the Western traditions.
Letitia, who studied art at both the Marlborough School in LA, from which she graduated, as well as at Intitute de Mme de Collot in Paris, France, understood the distinction of “illuninated manuscript” as only containing gold and silver, and thus liberally and lovingly dosed her images through-out our story with the same. She loved ornamentation and embellishment, and all of her art — be it rendered in paint, typewritten, or needlepoint — showed this admiration.