Saturday, 30 August 2014

Learning the art of hand lettering

A new obsession of mine is hand lettering. I have been inspired since joining the online Filofax community and seeing posts of beautifully decorated planner pages with gorgeous styles of writing. Particular inspirations of mine on Instagram are kikkiknetter and craftyniftydoer. They post photos of their planner pages and the writing on them looks amazing. I can only dream of being half as good as them one day. 

Instagram @craftyniftydoer

For other hopefull beginners out there I thought I'd share the first part of my journey with you. I started off with the best free teaching resource - Youtube. It seems like the starting point for me needed to be learning how to write cursively. At school I was taught how to write "joined-up", but over the years my hand-writing has evolved into a semi-joined-up scrawl. I watched a few videos showing how to do the alphabet cursively, and although each had a slightly different slant on doing things, they all had similarities. By watching a variety of these videos, notepad and pen in hand and practising along with them, I started to get the feel of cursive handwriting. My absolute favourite channel for practising is Loops and Tails which has a minute long video on each letter (upper and lower case). On their website, they also have free printable worksheets and exercise drills you can work through.

Tip: I can't remember where I saw this, but someone said if you want to make your writing look more like you've used a calligraphy pen, thicken up the downward strokes. I have been working on this technique and I quite like it. 

I also stumbled across a video on accenting, which talks you through different ways to frame, boarder and accent your hand-writing. I copied all of these out into my notepad too. I find it really handy to have a record of everything I see in my notepad so I can look back on it and use it. Saves trying to hunt down the specific videos. 

This is pretty much where I am up to right now. I keep practising my crusive lettering, the more I do it, I hope the more smooth it will look. At the moment I am having to think about it and therefore write it slowly which means it can look quite shaky. Once I have mastered this, I will start looking at other fonts and different styles of writing to learn.

I'm writing out people's names, phrases, random words that come into my head, anyting to practise really. A little untidy, but something I worked on today...

Part of my problem above with the untidyness is probably the black pen I used. It is a Uniball signo gelstick 0.7 that I had laying around at home. It's quite nice to write with, but not so good for thickening the letters as the nib is not precise enough.

One day, maybe my planner will look like a work of art. I can dream.

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