tibetan book of proportions

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Fortyeightvows
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tibetan book of proportions

Post by Fortyeightvows » Fri Apr 17, 2015 7:33 pm

"The Tibetan Book of Proportions is an eighteenth century manual that gives precise iconometric guidelines for depicting the Buddha and Bodhisattva figures. A standardized grid with numerical notations is used for both marking the measurements of the figures and for arranging the posture of the figures within a composition. Written in Newari script with Tibetan numerals, the book is likely to have been produced in Nepal for use in Tibet. It is presently held by the Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles."
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more here: http://www.getty.edu/research/tools/dig ... _book.html

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ClearblueSky
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by ClearblueSky » Tue Apr 21, 2015 7:33 am

Really neat, thanks for the post. Kind of makes me wonder how some of that became the "standard" way of doing the depictions (since at least none of the actual Sadhanas or Tantras I've seen go into that level of detail). Regardless, shows the amazing work that goes into it.

Fortyeightvows
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by Fortyeightvows » Wed Apr 22, 2015 6:22 am

I'm glad you liked the posting. I don't know a lot about it other then it's a far cry from the aniconism of very early buddhist art. your question made me google the topic. 

'The concept of the ‘ideal image’ of the Buddha emerged during the Golden Age of Gupta rule, from the 4th to 6th century. As well as the proportions, other aspects of the depiction – such as number of teeth, colour of eyes, direction of hairs – became very important'

I found that wikipedia has a pretty great article about buddhist art.

Fortyeightvows
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by Fortyeightvows » Mon Apr 27, 2015 4:52 am

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Fortyeightvows
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by Fortyeightvows » Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:00 pm

So for those who are artists themselves or just happened to enjoy this post: I recently looked at a copy of Brill's Handbook of Tibetan Iconography. Quite a volume and full of similar images of various deities showing the proper proportions of their iconography. It also has calligraphy from several different scripts and a survey of relevant literature.
Here is a few images from the book that I though to share just so that people could have an idea of what a great book it is and how useful it could be to artists and scholars.
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javier.espinoza.t
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by javier.espinoza.t » Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:41 pm

This is amazing! it's difficult to paint a good quality tangka? how many years take to leanr formaly?

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jkarlins
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by jkarlins » Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:45 pm

I've wondered about this too. I would love to learn how. Maybe not thangka painting, but using traditional proportions to draw or paint.

purple rose
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by purple rose » Sat Sep 09, 2017 10:11 pm

The information below may be of interest. It is from the website of the Norbulingka Institute.


Aspiring thangka artists must spend years studying the iconongraphic grids and proportions of different deities and then master the technique of mixing and applying mineral pigments. At Norbulingka, we offer a three-year training program for Tibetan students. After completing their three year course, most artists then join our workshops, where they must complete an additional 3 years as apprentices before they are considered fully qualified artists.

To make a thangka, first a piece of canvas is stitched onto a wooden frame. It is prepared with a mixture of chalk, gesso, and base pigment, and rubbed smooth with a glass until the texture of the cloth is no longer apparent. The outline of the deity is sketched in pencil onto the canvas using iconograpic grids, and then outlined in black ink. Powders composed of crushed mineral and vegetable pigments are mixed with water and adhesive to create paint. Some of the elements used are quite precious, such as lapis lazuli for dark blue. Landscape elements are blocked in and shading is applied using both wet and dry brush techniques. Finally, a pure gold paint is added, and the thangka is framed in a precious brocade boarder. A standard thangka in our collection, which is about 18 x 12 in takes an artist about six weeks to complete.

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Lobsang Chojor
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Re: tibetan book of proportions

Post by Lobsang Chojor » Sat Sep 09, 2017 11:54 pm

javier.espinoza.t wrote:This is amazing! it's difficult to paint a good quality tangka? how many years take to leanr formaly?
I was speaking to the resident artist at Land of Joy, the FPMT retreat centre in the UK, and he told me how he has studied with Andy Weber for 20 years, although he said it was a slow progress, for example Andy would teach him one image and he would practice until they seen each other next (maybe a year later). On the other hand, Andy Weber studied for 7 years.
ༀ་ཨ་ར་པ་ཙ་ན་དྷཱི༔ Oṃ A Ra Pa Ca Na Dhīḥ

"Morality does not become pure unless darkness is dispelled by the light of wisdom"
  • Aryasura, Paramitasamasa 6.5

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