Happy New Year!

Happy New Year Flourish Friends!

Just a quick note to say hope you all have a fantastic new year filled with fun, family, and flourishing! In honor of new years (and staying up late to wait for my teenager to come home safely), I created a mini-tutorial of Tips for Calligraphy & Design. I also added a new board called, Design & Layout where members can share their design tips, secrets, and examples.

Design Tips for Calligraphers

For all you new members, this is just one of many tutorials at Flourish. If you are a new member, please be sure to check out the Copperplate Tutorial video series in the Pointed Pen Nirvana section.

So grateful to all of the wonderful members at Flourish for answering questions, sharing information, and spreading the love of lettering! 2014 has been a great year!

Happy 2015!

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New 2015 Sharing & Caring Exchanges Announced!

As the year draws to a close, I am relishing in all the new friends made, new knowledge gained, and pure joy Flourish forum members have spread throughout the globe.

It’s been equally as fun preparing for the new year ahead. I’ve updated the homepage with some new colors and a new look. And I’ve published our new Sharing & Caring Exchanges for 2015!

This year’s exchanges were a smashing success and members shared beautiful calligraphy all over the world. In total, we sent over 2,000 calligraphed envelopes and cards! Next year promises to be even bigger with lots of fun themes and opportunities to share our creativity and love for calligraphy.

You must be a member to participate so if you haven’t registered yet, sign up now. Our first exchange, the ever popular Valentine’s Exchange has just opened up for sign ups and our first ever Advanced Exchange, “Mimic a Master” has just opened up as well.

Wishing everyone a very happy New Year with much health, happiness, and success in 2015!

Flourish Forum Calligraphy Exchanges

 

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Fantastic Year at Flourish!

Hi Flourish Friends!

It’s hard to believe Flourish is now one year old! And what an amazing year it has been. We now have over 2,600 members and are growing daily. Our members are amazing. I am continually impressed with the gracious way in which everyone shares and cares here at Flourish, from welcoming new members, to helping with questions, to just being a friend. Calligraphers are the nicest people!

We’ve had a fabulous year with awesome tutorials and even better calligraphy exchanges. Every exchange is such a delight. We know getting beautiful mail is the best way to brighten someone’s day! Our holiday exchange was the largest to date with almost 100 participants! Next year’s exchanges look to be even better with some creative topics and fun ideas!

Now that the year is coming to a close, I hope to freshen up the place a bit in the very near future, so look for updates and additions soon. As always, I welcome any input for changes, improvements, etc. Just drop me an email or PM.

Lastly, if you haven’t ordered yet or you’d like to send a gift to a letter lover in your life, Dasherie Magazine is still shipping right up until the holidays!

Dasherie Magazine | Issue 2

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and I wish you all the best success, happiness, and good health in 2015!

Truly,
Erica

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UPPERCASE Magazine #23 – “The Calligraphy Issue”

This is one of those “pinch me” moments.

I am a HUGE fan of UPPERCASE Magazine which is published, edited, and designed by Janine Vangool. Janine is seriously a creative genius. Issue after issue is so incredibly inspiring and so full of creative content. It is really quite remarkable how one person can do all that she does and do it so well.

So you can imagine how excited I was to see Issue 23 was scheduled to be “The Calligraphy Issue.” But you can’t imagine how over the moon I was to be asked for a feature. I am incredibly humbled to be included among some of the calligraphers I most admire.

I highly recommend you purchase not just this issue, but a full subscription. And as a sweet deal to all you letter lovers out there, Janine has offered this fabulous discount. Use the discount code, “letterlove” for $15 off subscriptions until October 31st. You can purchase here.

Erica McPhee feature in UPPERCASE #23

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2,000 members and growing!

Hello Flourishing Friends!

It’s been a bit since I’ve posted. We were busy moving our home and my studio the past couple of weeks. It took over a week to get internet and I still don’t have a phone line for some strange reason. But we are making do. My studio is yet to be set up or unpacked but hopefully that will happen this week. Thus I feel very discombobulated and out of sorts.

In any event, things are moving along at Flourish. I have posted a poll for the upcoming Sharing & Caring Exchanges for 2015. Please vote if you would like to participate in exchanges next year. We already have 54 members signed up for our upcoming Holiday Exchange! This is our biggest exchange yet and promises to be lots of fun!

We now have well over 2,000 members and we are approaching 21,000 posts! How is that for a great first year?!

I am hard at work on the next issue of Dasherie which will be ready to ship in late November. It is bursting with awesome tutorials and so much gorgeous calligraphy! I pinch myself that I get to see all this beautiful lettering in one place. Once on its way, I will be refocusing on Flourish and hoping to implement some new changes and tutorials for 2015. As always, I welcome any input and/or suggestions on how to make Flourish even better.

Happy October!

 

 

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Dasherie Magazine and Flourish Forum on Martha Stewart American Made!

Hi Flourish Friends!

So Dasherie Magazine has thrown its hat into the ring for the Martha Stewart American Made award! Please click on the badge link below to visit our page and share on Facebook and Twitter. Like the video on YouTube and help Dasherie become a finalist for the grand prize! The more shares and likes, the better our chances! Share with all of your friends and family and ask them to share and like, too, if you’d like!

Like us on Facebook!

Follow us on Instagram!

Follow us on Twitter!

Don’t miss the video and read about Flourish Forum in the Martha Stewart profile! :-)

I just want to take a moment and say thank you for all of the amazing feedback and support for Dasherie and the Flourish Forum. This is a dream come true for me and it would not have happened without the amazing people in the calligraphy community and all of my friends and family. From the bottom of my heart — thank you for your support!

Martha Stewart - American Made 2014 - Nominee Badge

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Dasherie Magazine now available for preorder!

Hello My Flourish Friends,

We now have almost 1,500 members in our calligraphy community! Flourish is a wonderful place to talk about calligraphy and get support from calligraphy friends. Those friendships are reaching far beyond calligraphy to become what I am sure will be life long bonds for many. I am both humbled and thrilled to have created this place for us to gather. But it is the wonderful people who have really made Flourish flourish! :-)

With that, I would like to apologize for not being more present on the forum the past couple of weeks. As most of you know, I have been working literally night and day to prepare for the release of my new calligraphy magazine, Dasherie. Many people have asked what Dasherie is all about so I would like to share more with you.

Dasherie Magazine is a new print magazine and is the only magazine dedicated solely to the art of calligraphy and hand lettering. Our debut issue features over 25 artists and over 100 images of beautiful calligraphy. Dasherie provides inspiration for artists and a fabulous reference for brides and other event planners looking for fine hand lettering ideas and products to make all the details extra special. So it is both a showcase and a way to connect those looking for calligraphy with those who do calligraphy!

Dasherie is unlike any other calligraphy journal or magazine. It is a “style” magazine along the lines of other bridal or niche magazines like sewing, scrapbooking, or the arts. It is a 100 page, 4-color, printed magazine filled with high quality images of the finest calligraphy offered around the globe. We also feature full length articles with Artist features, DIY how-to’s, and more. I’m sharing a sneak peak below of one of our spreads in the first issue featuring the beautiful calligraphy of Joy Fairclough, of Studio French Blue.

So share the news with all your letter loving friends! I hope you will pre-order yours today and enjoy it with me!

Truly,

Erica

Dasherie Magazine | For Hearts that Love Letters

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How far we’ve come!

Now that the video tutorials for pointed pen have wound down, I have been concentrating on bringing Dasherie Magazine to the calligraphy community. The first issue is overflowing with gorgeous calligraphy. If you love letters, this is a can’t miss issue. I will be posting more details about how to purchase the premiere issue very soon.

In the meantime, the wonderful thing about procrastinating now is that I can still be doing my job by procrastinating on the Flourish Forum! The forum has now welcomed over 1,300 members! And I would like to take the time to say thank you to all the wonderful letter lovers who have joined our community. This is an amazing group of generous and kind people and I am truly blessed to call you all friend.

Flourish has had 9,300 posts! We are welcoming almost 10 new members every day! Hooray! This surely demonstrates calligraphy is alive and well! With so many members and all the wonderful posts it is no longer possible for me to keep up and respond to every post. This is a good thing as this community is about all of you – not me! But I would like to let you know if you have posted and I haven’t responded it is solely because I haven’t had time to yet. I do hope to be able to continue reading every post even if I can’t respond.

I’ve been working on my Pangrams that Make Sense series. This is number 4 in the series. Having a 16 year old in the house, I came up with this ditty which still makes me giggle! The style is a pointed pen variation created by Mike Kecseg. Mike’s copperplate variations are really one of the forerunners to the contemporary/modern calligraphy movement. If you ever have an opportunity to take one of his classes I HIGHLY recommend it!

Pangrams that Make Sense, #4

Last but not least, thank you to all the fabulous members who continue to greet our newcomers by posting hello in the introduction board. Even if you just say a quick ‘hi and welcome’ it means a great deal to newcomers to feel recognized and welcomed by the group. And a very big thank you to all our “regulars” who are so kind and respond to questions and posts with enthusiasm.

Things are flourishing at Flourish!

Truly,

Erica

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Practicing with Precision

Hello Flourishing Friends!

For those of you interested in modern calligraphy, if you’ve been following along with our copperplate tutorials, you now have a general background with which to branch out into your own style. I hope this tutorial series has helped you understand how to use a pointed pen and the basics of learning copperplate.

For those looking to learn a more formal copperplate, I highly recommend Dr. Joseph Vitolo’s Script in the Copperplate Style ibook as well as IAMPETH for learning Copperplate a/k/a Engrosser’s Script.

For both groups looking to hone their skills, I have added a quick tutorial to our Pointed Pen Nirvana board about practicing with precision. This video outlines the next steps for studying a more formal copperplate, specifically how to square off the tops and bottoms of your letters. It also includes tips for paper, pen, and hand angles. It includes a detailed, slow motion, close up of how the nib creates the squared off tops and bottoms.

I hope you find it helpful. As always, you know where to find me!

Truly,
Erica

 

How to Practice Copperplate with Precision

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Final Copperplate Capitals Tutorial is done!

I can’t believe it but I have finally finished Capitals Q through Z. If you knew what I had to go through to finish this! First, my firewire cord stopped working. So I ordered a new one. Then that one wouldn’t work, then I tried uninstalling movie maker, then switched the cords around. Then I dropped my computer and voila – the firewire started working again! But then my scanner wouldn’t work!

Unfortunately, the version of movie maker I re-installed didn’t have narration capabilities (weird that Windows would remove that function in an upgrade!). So I uninstalled and reinstalled various versions of Windows Live Essentials FIVE times! When I loaded the final version, the “add narration” button was there but once it finished loading, it disappeared! What?!

So I gave up and just gave in to the fact my life is always full of these petty things trying to trip me up! GRRR! I used a separate sound recorder and finished! Hooray!

This completes our Copperplate lessons. I am so pleased to have accomplished this and to provide an introduction to learning. Remember the lessons are only available in the Pointed Pen Nirvana board which can only be seen if you are logged in. I hope you all have enjoyed the tutorials as much as I have enjoyed making them!

I’m off to work on Dasherie Magazine!

Truly,

Erica

Free Copperplate lessons at theflourishforum.com

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