Alphabetication

Lettering practice is meditative for me, and it helps immensely to take time each day to let my mind focus on just the letters, the lines, the ink. I worked through the alphabet using the initial letter of each word and just pulled words out of my head so they are pretty random! For tutorials about hand-lettering, see the Draw Your Words Series. 

Nib: G-Nib  Ink: J. Herbin Vert Pre
Notes: I love the combination of this nib and this ink. I would describe the ink as a "peppy lime-olive" which is velvety smooth. I was working very, very fast here - on purpose - and hence the drips. I wanted to write without thinking. With a G-nib you need to vary the pressure to get variety in the lettering. More pressure equals a thicker, darker line. 

Nib: Speedball A5 Ink: J. Herbin Rose Cyclamen
Notes: The A5 is a pointy drawing nib that writes smooth, consistent, playful letters. The ink is an intense magenta, one of my favorites. This is a good nib for those wanting to try hand-lettering with a dip pen. You don't need to vary the pressure on particular strokes yet the lettering is expressive and fun. This is also a good nib for doodling because of the nice even lines even for shapes like circles.

Nib: Hunt drawing nib; the page says #86 but apparently there is no such thing. It's most likely a #56, but it's back in the cigar box! Dr. Ph Martin's Bombay Magenta India Ink. This is a beautiful ink just a touch more red than the J. Herbin ink in the photo just above this one. 

Nib: Hunt drawing nib #107 {I know it says 102, but it's 107, I double checked but man that is tiny}. Ink: J. Herbin Lie de Thé
Notes: I would describe this as a chocolate-leather-brown ink. Look at that tiny nib! It's one of the nibs that goes in the "inside" of the two indentations in the drawing nib. It's also very sharp. In fact, I broke the nib at the very bottom of the page, on one of the Z-words. I didn't like this Hunt nib when I started using it, but now I really do! It took about two pages to "get it" with this nib. Suddenly it was expressive and the letters were blooming.

All of the sudden, out of nowhere, I wanted to see what it would feel like to do calligraphy! It turns out that it's elegant, light, airy and refreshing! So I watched a bunch of  YouTube videos for  "modern calligraphy." The last time I tried calligraphy was in high school and I found it utterly boring, frustrating & regimented. I didn't see a point to it. Yet now.... wow! Fun! Here's one of the videos that I really liked, with variations of the letter "K". Calligraphy artist Erin Nielson has tutorials for letters A-M and when I asked whether Erin had more en route, the answer was yes! 

Now I want to learn more, to make my letters more expressive. More experiments and exploration, maybe a summer project? OK, after index-card-a-day. And vacation. 

Nib: Hunt drawing nib #107. Ink: J. Herbin Bleu Pervenche. 
Notes: More info about this particular nib above. I found it impossible to capture the true color of this ink - tried to get this shot three times to no avail. It is a medium turquoise but not to the green, more to a cerulean blue. 

Artist Hej Heidi writes in a modern calligraphy style using a Brause EF66 nib. Link to YouTube.

See how creative tangents work? I started messing around with a dip pen & ink because I wanted to write a playful way, and now more exploration of dip pen nibs... where will it wind up? If you'd like to learn more about hand-lettering, check out the Draw Your Words Series.