The Art of the Miniature

Miniature art has been considered an art form through the ages since its formation in 1896. A work of art in miniature means that every single detail is miniaturized; the scale of the subject matter, and the brush strokes; so that only with high magnification can one see all the detail of the artist’s technique. The term miniature relates first to technique and secondly to the size of a painting. The viewer should view the work at close range to obtain a full appreciation of both the image and technique; producing a perfect balance of color and detail in a series of thinly applied layers of colors intended to reflect light, showing a standard of design, and mastery of the chosen media. The term miniature relates first of all to technique and secondly to the size of a painting. A strict definition of a true miniature is that an image should not exceed a sixth of the actual size in square inches, or that the size of the frame does not exceed 6 inches x 4.5 inches. The image pays close attention to extremely fine detail and as a general rule, a miniature should also contain all the elements of a larger picture – good composition, colour, balance – as well as fine brushwork.

Apart from the ‘Royal Society of Miniature Painters’ there are still artists today, who specialize with various Miniature Art Societies, including the World Federation of Art Miniaturists and the Hilliard Society of Miniaturists in the UK.