Last week, I decided that I wanted to try something new. Since I’ve been out of school on summer break for almost a month now, I haven’t had much academic stimulation – just my day-to-day sleep/work/eat schedule. I’ve been interested in lettering for many years (I want to make my own font some day, actually). I see cool photos on Instagram of people who are able to use a calligraphy pen and create a beautiful piece with minimal effort. Unfortunately, I’m not that artfully endowed, so I have to start slow. I’m proud of myself for even starting!
I used this video to prepare the guide lines on the paper and this video to begin drawing the letters. The creator, OvernightArtist, has several videos that help to create the entire lowercase alphabet, but I “freehanded” after the letter “E”. There was a lot more measuring involved than I thought, but I’m glad that I set up my paper. It helped me keep the letter sizing consistent and decide how tall the ascenders and descenders of letters should be (like the tail of the letter “y” or the top of the letter “d”).
The only supplies I needed to start lettering were a ruler, a pencil with a good eraser (I used a mechanical pencil to keep my lines sharp), a fine-tip pen (I used a Pilot Precise V5) and paper. The paper I used was from a parchment paper book. Using copy paper isn’t the best idea just because it is so smooth – the ink “grabs” the paper better when it’s a little bit more textured. When you’re trying to hit the tiny corners of a letter, the ink’s grip is pretty important!
Maybe next I’ll try calligraphy, but who knows. I’ll probably try making capital letters before that. I also want to create typographically pleasing quotes… where the letters truly become the art. My first venture into hand lettering has inspired me – I’m definitely going to try it again.
(the final product – not perfect, but a good start)