Illustration Friday - Small (phase I)
I may not have time to finish this drawing (I've been working on it all day), so I thought I'd post what I have now and then update it later. I started with a pencil sketch and then put in the details with a .005 micron pen. I still have to add the background and then add color with colored pencils and markers. That should be at least several hours of work.
This illustration is in honor of the mandolin, a small short-necked eight-stringed instrument, a descendant of the lute that dates back to 18th century Italy. In the United States, the mandolin has enjoyed popularity since the 19th century in a variety of musical genres...from classical to blues, country, folk and rock music.
Although the mandolin as we know it is several hundred years old, lute-like instruments appeared as early as 2000 BC in Mesopotamia. By the 7th century AD, this instrument developed into a folk lute known as the oud, which is still used today in its original configuration in the Near East. The oud was introduced to Europe via the Moorish conquest of Spain (711- 1492), and to Venice and the rest of Europe through coastal trade and the returning Crusaders. It is from the oud that the lute emerged.
The first lute appeared in the 13th century, and as early as the 14th century, a miniature lute, or mandora, appeared. The mandora, in turn, developed into the madolino, and then came to be called the mandolin in early 18th century Naples. The Neopolitan mandolin had a deep pear shaped body, an oval sound hole, four pairs of strings, and was tuned like a violin.
The mandolin became popular in the United States during the 19th century with Italian immigration, and by the turn of the century, mandolin ensembles toured the vaudeville circuit and mandolin orchestras were popular in schools and colleges. The mandolin continued its evolution during the 1900's with various design changes which included a carved top and flat back.