Initials from Choir Books
Painting the flesh
In the two initials painted by Don Silvestro dei Gherarducci (see Artists), the flesh tones were painted with a technique which closely resembles contemporary panel painting: variable amounts of lead white and vermilion were mixed and layered on a base of green earth.
The use of green earth is less apparent in the other two initials, where flesh tones still contain vermilion and lead white as well as red and/or yellow earth pigments. The shadows in the face of Christ the Redeemer were painted with brown umber, as were his hair and beard.