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Topics - neriah

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Broad Edge Pen Calligraphy / New to italic - looking for feedback
« on: December 27, 2019, 04:56:36 AM »
Hi everyone!

Italic has been on my todo list forever. Now I finally have bit more time to dedicate for italic practice. - unfortunately I couldn’t attach picture from ipad (jpeg is not allowed, only jpg) so I uploaded it to imgur.

My goal with this quote was to move away from single letters and minimums and to try and figure out how different letters interact with each other. I know that spacing should be parallel lines which works great for some letters but not so much for ‘o’, ‘s’ and similar. As expected spacing is all over the place, and ‘s’ is a mystery to me. Things I do see when it comes to spacing: “substitute” fell apart after ‘i’, ‘o’ in “for” is too close to ‘f’, ‘d’ in “hard” should be moved slightly to the right and ‘k’ in “work” looks wrong but I don’t think it could go closer to ‘r’ (and is off slant).

When it comes to letterforms, ‘s’ is awful, I still struggle with slant in ascenders, and I still have issues with ‘o’ but it’s not as bad as it used to be.

This was done on canson montval paper with sumi ink and leonardt round 2 nib (no reservoir, loaded with brush).

Looking forward to feedback :)

Kind Critique / Need help with Engrosser's Majuscules
« on: February 07, 2018, 09:28:51 AM »

I recently started practising Majuscules from Zanerian Manual due to skill gap between my Minuscules and Majuscules becoming more obvious. I focused on P, B and R first because that loop on the left was by far the worst part of my script.

I know I need to work more on my compound curve, it should be more balanced, especially on the top. However, I feel like something else is missing but I can't really figure it out. I know that right loop of P should be parallel with beginning of the loop on the left which isn't in my case because I have trouble figuring out how to get there. I find that transition from the loop on the left, over the compound curve to the loop on the right the hardest part to figure out. These letters were written by trial and error, not by me understanding how should I move my nib to get there so I am not sure if I am on the right track.

Thanks for the help!

3 - when in need for practice quotes :)

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Rusty gross of vintage 404
« on: February 10, 2017, 12:32:12 PM »
So I bought gross of vintage 404 on ebay for 90$. For last couple of months I am using only vintage nibs (european) because they are much cheaper than new ones. And everything I ordered so far was great.

I am okay with few rusty nibs because they are old and not meant to last forever. But this box has only 30 rust free nibs and 55 on which rust is in upper part of the nib so it doesn't affect ink flow and flex. The rest of them are for garbage, on some rust destroyed tips of the tines so much that tip doesn't exist.

Is there any way to get at least part of the money back? Unfortunately there are no rust marks on the outer side of the box nor any discolorations so it was not possible to tell from the pictures. But the moment I opened package I knew there will be rust - it smells like it was in a flood or something.

I really like those 404s, I find them to be like smooth version of Nikko G and I don't mind putting some effort in cleaning rust and practicing with non shiny nibs when they make my practice easier. But finding only 30 good nibs out of 144 is very disappointing :(

Any advices?


Open Flourish | General Discussion / Practicing when tired
« on: January 26, 2017, 04:21:02 AM »

So, I have a problem with finding practice time. For some time I was practicing every day for at least 20 minutes (doing drills based on SMK's tutorial). But as of last week, I don't do that any more. My band+choir got unique opportunity to record a CD so instead of one rehearsal weekly, now I have three + recording in the studio. And that with full time job takes a lot of time.

I still can find those 20 minutes of time but I have a problem with being tired. After 8 hours at work + 2-3 hours rehearsal when I'm finally home I can't focus. And my calligraphy looks bad. When I am really really tired my hands get a bit shaky which makes it impossible to practice. But even if I am not that tired, I still find it hard to do calligraphy. Even when not tired I had good and bad days, but this is far worse than usual bad day.

How do you deal with these situations? Should I just give up on daily practice and rather find an hour two times a week when I'll arrange everything so I am not tired and can practice? Or is there something else I can practice that requires less focus?


Tools & Supplies / Practice paper review
« on: December 28, 2016, 01:54:32 PM »
This is mostly for us who can't get Rhodia or HP Premium paper easily. There is no supplier in Croatia for these paper and shipping costs are ridiculous. I hope you find this helpful.

So, even though shipping cost for 2 Rhodia pads was more than the pads itself I still got two. Decided it is probably cheaper to buy them and then compare other paper to it rather than buying whatever I see around. For every paper I tried I will write paper weight, price and number of sheets, inks and nibs I tired on it.

No name color paper from local paper store
- Description: The first thing I bought was some no name color copy paper from local paper store. It is just terrible. Even though it is smooth, every single nib I tried on it catches paper. So I gave up on that one
- Price: around 10$ for 250 sheets
- Weight: 160 gsm
- Inks: Sumi, watercolors, scribblers calligraphy ink
- Nibs: Nikko G, Brause EF66, Lenoardt Principal

Faber Castell Malblock
- Description: Cold pressed paper, very nice. Not smooth but I didn't mind that much even though upstrokes can be a bit problematic. I like it a lot because nibs don't catch paper, nothing bleeds on it, you can see guidelines without using lightbox and it is cheap. This one is definitely my favorite.
- Price: 100 sheets for 2$.
- Weight: 80 gsm
- Inks: Sumi, scribblers calligraphy ink, iron gall, walnut ink, higgins eternal, finetec watercolor
- Nibs: Nikko G, Brause EF66, Leonardt Principal, Velleda cementee

Navigator ultra smooth
- Description: I believe this is the closest to HP Premium paper I can find locally. It is almost as smooth as Rhodia and it is nice to write on it. You can't see guidelines without lightbox and I notice that nibs catch fiber if you put too much ink or just press really hard on those downstrokes. Although I like writing on it because of its smoothness, fiber catching destroys that good feeling. Especially when I don't notice only when my letter gets "destroyed". But despite that, I'd say it is good enough.
- Price: 5$ for 250 sheets
- Weight: 120 gsm
- Inks: Iron gall, walnut ink, finetec watercolor
- Nibs: Nikko G, Leonardt Principal, Velleda cementee

Apart from these, I also tried some random paper blocks. One was 1$ for 50 sheets, just a school block with blank pages, similar to faber castell mentioned earlier and nice to write on.
Here we have art blocks kids use in school on their art class. I tried those and it is mostly watercolor paper, not smooth and bit too much for pointed pen. But I can't wait to start writing broad edge calligraphy on it because it is great for that. And the last one was a bit pricey sketchbook from local art supply store, really smooth, 300 gsm and great for finished work. I don't dare to practice on that :)

What I noticed in all my trials and errors is that you can tell much with just feeling the paper under your fingers but even though it is smooth it doesn't guarantee it will be good for pointed pen. Also, cheap paper doesn't means bed, two cheapest blocks I bought turned out to be better than the most expensive paper I bought. I'm happy I was able to find decent paper locally and now I can spend all extra money on other calligraphy supplies :)

Introductions / Hi from Croatia
« on: November 15, 2016, 04:23:11 AM »
Hi :)

I'm Katja from Croatia and I started practicing calligraphy about 6 months ago. My first script was italic because that was in a book that came with the starter kit I bought. About 3 months ago I started learning Engrosser's because I find pointed pen calligraphy more interesting. But I hope that in the future I'll be able to do both broad edge and pointed pen.

Looking forward to learning and writing with you!

Best regards,


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