HAND LETTERING TIPS + RESOURCES

Happy Thursday!  Another week that has flown by, for you too?  I wanted to introduce you to some of my favorite lettering artists but then I found (and received) some really great hand lettering resources and tips for you so I decided to save those artists for another post.  In regards to the brush lettering of last week Christine H. (a wealth of knowledge) had sent me this great bit of advice:

Here's the tip:  for "brush" calligraphy...before ANYTHING...mix some sugar and warm water (like 1T sugar/2T of water), dissolve, cool and dip brush in until bristles are completely saturated (don't just leave sitting in the container with bristles resting, curved and keep the hilt as dry as possible). Squeegee bristles between thumb and forefinger to get rid of the water, but do so while "shaping" a perfectly flat, square/rectangle (depends on brush shape) "nib". Hang or put on pen rest and let dry completely. Repeat several times till the bristles "remember" the form when dipped in ink and excess ink is removed on inside edge of ink bottle. By training your brush in this manner, you will have greater manual control over the animal bristles. Oh, and use a brush with soft-ish natural fibers not synthetic. Store after cleaning, repeating the sugar water and shaping, allow to dry completely. Keep in a suspended holder type of box so the resting bristles don't get smooshed one way or another. Make sense?

"I'm actually not the best at it. I do a lot of referencing myself using fonts and I correct a lot of the shapes digitally! There isn't really any type of brush I use. But I do like to use  translucent grey prisma markers on paper to get that slanted tip effect and paint it in!"

I found this wonderful post from Sean McCabe (an amazing lettering artist) it's an introduction to hand lettering and it answers a lot of questions. If you are just interested in improving your handwriting Lettergirl offers a downloadable workshop to help here.
In my experience this week I accidentally found that a 'soft' nib could mimic a brush type stroke and I could get a nice wide stroke that could mimic a brush stroke.  It's very hard to work with when you have only been working with pointed pens for a couple of weeks (like myself), but if you are open to experimenting, what the heck? I am working on creating a page on the blog that will be an easy reference for everyone for lettering artists, resources and classes, but if you can't wait you can always visit my Hand Lettering Love Pin board for inspiration.

P.S. Here's the chalkboard texture I used above for you to download and use in any way you would like, it's nice and hi-res for you;)

Danielle (August 30, 2012 at 11:03 AM)  

Thanks for that fantastic chalkboard texture. I forsee using that quite a bit in my Project Life album. I took a calligraphy class my senior yr of high school as an easy credit but ended up loving it (and got pretty good at it if I do say so myself) but haven't picked up a brush or ink since then. :( would like to pick it back up sometime...

Miss B. (August 30, 2012 at 1:58 PM)  

Danielle I am happy that you can use it:) Oh gosh, if you have an aptitude for it than bust out the tools + ink! It would be great in your projects!

Lisa (September 2, 2012 at 11:36 AM)  

This is awesome Tristan, and thank you for the download!

Sean McCabe (September 6, 2012 at 2:12 PM)  

Thanks for sharing the learn lettering link! So glad you found it useful. =)

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xx,

Miss B.