I think that armatures are important. They shed light on the objectives and characters of the old masters who used them. They show, for example, that van Eyck was genuinely devout and highly intelligent, and that Ingres was willing to portray a narcissistic mass murderer as a deity. They also expose the design conventions that sacred art was thought to require at certain times and places. Finally, some altarpieces have been trimmed down or dismantled, as you know, and people have been trying to piece them back together.
It's stunning to me that armatures have gone unnoticed for so long.9
I started doing these armatures because I was curious and because I enjoyed working them out. They're like spatial crossword puzzles. What I uncovered is, in my opinion, so amazing that I feel it has to be shared. But before I can do that, more research is needed. There are many paintings that I haven't investigated. Some of the paintings I have looked at don't seem to have formal armatures. Or maybe I just haven't found the key — the golden rectangle is the only root rectangle I've considered. I also need to be able to present my findings in an art historical context. My ultimate goal is to write and publish a book. That's one of the reasons I want an MFA — without a terminal degree, art historians will not take me seriously.
Any help or guidance you can give me would be very much appreciated. There may be literature on the geometry of sacred art that I haven't been able to find. (Linear perspective and how it developed has been written about extensively, but the geometry of old master paintings seems to have interested no art historians.10) Your knowledge of art history alone would be extremely helpful — it would help me avoid overlooking or misrepresenting something important. Also, you probably know a lot more about writing and publishing a book than I do. I wouldn't mind at all if you were willing to put your name on it.
If I have to, I'll publish the book myself, either as an actual book or online.
9 Some artists know about armatures.
10 The only information I have on armatures was provided by artists. Charles Bouleau, a French artist, wrote a book called, originally published in 1963. It's considered a classic — the most recent edition came out in 2014. In it Bouleau analyzes many famous paintings in terms of rabatment, root rectangles, and "musical proportions." A living artist, Michael Britton, gives online workshops on " ," which seems to be the same thing. He has also put out a dvd, which I have. "Symphonic composition" is not what I've done here. These armatures are entirely my own. They were dictated by the paintings, not by some formula for creating proportional divisions in a format.