Author Topic: Flourishing help  (Read 12766 times)

Offline Estefa

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1505
  • Karma: 122
    • View Profile
    • Federflug
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2014, 09:11:13 AM »
Hey Joy, beautiful, beautiful comparison, I love this!! I don't have time for more now, but – thanks! (And they are not my drills, haha! I borrowed them from different books and from Barbaras workshop ;)) – I will write more about this, but no, I don't have a really always fitting routine. That would really help, and I am working on it, because sometimes I have the impression I spend at least as much time with warm-ups as with actual writing!!
Stefanie :: Website :: Blog :: Instagram

Offline FrenchBlue Joy

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 267
  • Karma: 21
  • yogini, calligraphiste*
    • View Profile
    • Studio French Blue
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #16 on: February 08, 2014, 02:12:52 AM »
Hey Joy, beautiful, beautiful comparison, I love this!! I don't have time for more now, but – thanks! (And they are not my drills, haha! I borrowed them from different books and from Barbaras workshop ;)) – I will write more about this, but no, I don't have a really always fitting routine. That would really help, and I am working on it, because sometimes I have the impression I spend at least as much time with warm-ups as with actual writing!!

I'm looking forward to it! 

Offline Estefa

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1505
  • Karma: 122
    • View Profile
    • Federflug
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2014, 04:37:44 PM »
Cool drills, Estefa!  I want to devise a warm-up system that works everything sufficiently before beginning.  I always do warm-ups, but I'd like to ritualize it so that I don't even have to think about it.  When I do my morning yoga, I start with about 20 minutes of sun salutations-- and I keep wanting to have a calligraphic equivalent!   ;D  What combination of these drills do you do every day, and it what order?  I respect your method.   :)

Oh Joy, I have been thinking much about what you posted here! Even made me start some mornings with sun salutations … what a good way to start a day, and mostly I am too lazy or think I have to much to do!

I really don't have a regular routine apart from what I showed you before. It works quite ok with Coppperplate, maybe because I feel a bit more comfortable with that now after about 9 months practice. I just do the basic strokes for some lines, with an x-height I am planning to work on later (or that I need for a design I started the day before). So that's it, basic strokes, some pangrams, some oval exercise which I vary, than some problem or challenge I know I'll have later – a capital that I have problems with, or a certain kind of flourish. (A letter in German always starts with a capital L ("Liebe/r = Dear …" and I think Ls so difficult!)

One thing is, I don't have a routine with Spencerian. There are so many exercices I know about that I don't really have found out until now which works best to get me in a good flow!

The second is, I think it still takes too long … but that is maybe – probably – just inexperience. Barabara Calzolari said, a warm-up should be no longer than 10 minutes – it is definitely longer for me.
Stefanie :: Website :: Blog :: Instagram

Offline Perfectsettings

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 330
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • Perfect Settings
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2014, 04:49:36 PM »
The beautiful thing about a forum is that someone asks about a problem that you've been thinking about.  I love everything about the suggestions.  Thanks everyone!
Daisy
Lover of all things beautiful.

Offline Estefa

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1505
  • Karma: 122
    • View Profile
    • Federflug
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2014, 04:52:15 PM »
Ps-- about flourishes...  (for me, thinking about it this way is helpful, but maybe not for others):

I think beautiful flourishes are the calligraphic equivalent of the tour fouetté in ballet

...meaning they'll be done beautifully when all the basic, component parts of *one* turn are mastered.  In the case of calligraphy, that's the oval...

Flourishes are "advanced"-- they're something it's hard to imagine doing when we just begin a discipline, but which grow out of a lot of practice, and a trained body and eye.  Any calligraphers struggling with flourishes (myself included!) should take heart-- I think we're in good company!   

My yoga teacher always said about advanced postures and students' questions about them:  "Do your practice and all is coming".  ;)

But in the meantime, I struggle too!  Sometimes I have to throw out an entire envelope that is otherwise completely acceptable, because I got confident (or cocky?) and make some kind of ill-considered flourish that I couldn't properly execute, and didn't add anything to the design.  Very easy way to make competent lettering look amateurish.  I think restraint is pretty important in flourishing... the negative space around the flourish has to be considered as much as the form itself. 

Anyway, happy practice, all!  I'm off to do Estefa's drills.  ;)

As I said before, I really adore that comparison (I did ballet as a teenager, not very good, but I know enough about it and have seen enough ballet performances to be aware of that it has this deceivingly "simple" or easy look, when someone dances well, and that is only possible because of a lot of hard work and drill! And I guess that is equally true for (traditional) calligraphy.

About your yoga teacher's quote … Barbara Calzolari said something similar when I asked her how this "underline after the end of a word flourish" is done (when you come out of a small e for example, make a small loop and underline with a shaded stroke what you just wrote). She said something like, if I wanted to know the trick. I said, yes, do you have to turn the paper or something to make this work, and she laughed and said, there is no trick, you just practice, and practice, and then some day you just make this ;)

And I just made a lot of these ill-considered flourishes, haha, they were "just" private mail so I will send them anyway. But it is very tempting sometimes to add something and then it is worse than before!
Stefanie :: Website :: Blog :: Instagram

Offline Erica McPhee

  • Administrator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6479
  • Karma: 326
  • Be brave. Love life!
    • View Profile
    • Dasherie Magazine
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #20 on: February 13, 2014, 09:47:10 PM »
I posted two warm up drills on this pinterest board: Warm Up Exercise pins

I think the "trick" (other than the obvious practice) is to find one or two of those "underline" flourishes you like and memorize them. Then when you go to add them, you can do so confidently. Once you have memorized a couple and use them repeatedly, you start doing it more organically.  :)
Truly, Erica
Lettering/Design Artist, Homeopath, Photographer, Mom, Wife
Dasherie Magazine | Paperwhite Studio | Instagram | Facebook

Offline Lori M

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 518
  • Karma: 20
  • Calligraphy will prevail!
    • View Profile
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2014, 03:30:18 AM »
I just now followed the link to the IAMPETH site and looked at some of their lessons. Do you all hold the pen the way they show here  when flourishing? It seems like it would be hard to connect to the letters that way.

Offline Perfectsettings

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 330
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • Perfect Settings
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #22 on: February 16, 2014, 03:19:01 PM »
I hope not!  Because us lefties would be in for a lot of trouble.
Daisy
Lover of all things beautiful.

Offline Estefa

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1505
  • Karma: 122
    • View Profile
    • Federflug
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #23 on: February 16, 2014, 03:19:51 PM »
Hi Lori, as far as I know, this is "only" the traditional position for off-hand flourishing – birds, feathers and the like – and, also as far as I know, many calligraphers today use instead of this pen hold simply a regular oblique holder and a regular pen hold! (I tried this, it's quite uncomfortable, for me. Maybe easier with a straight holder?)

More about this in this thread, where I asked Erik how he did his beautiful flourishes – he does his off-hand flourishing like in the picture:

http://theflourishforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=324.0

I would be also interested how this is teached today. I am so envious about those who can go to the next Iampeth conference ;)!
Stefanie :: Website :: Blog :: Instagram

Offline Lori M

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 518
  • Karma: 20
  • Calligraphy will prevail!
    • View Profile
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2014, 06:22:44 PM »
Thanks, Stefani! I knew I had seen a thread that mentioned flourishing books, but I couldn't find it when I searched. I think adding flourishing to words is one of the things that makes calligraphy so much more unique than a font, so I'm trying to get up to speed on it.

Offline Erica McPhee

  • Administrator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6479
  • Karma: 326
  • Be brave. Love life!
    • View Profile
    • Dasherie Magazine
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #25 on: February 16, 2014, 11:36:00 PM »
I definitely don't! Stefani is right - it's mostly for off-hand flourishing which I am just learning. But I also have never seen anyone hold the pen that way for flourishing.  ;)
Truly, Erica
Lettering/Design Artist, Homeopath, Photographer, Mom, Wife
Dasherie Magazine | Paperwhite Studio | Instagram | Facebook

Offline Estefa

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1505
  • Karma: 122
    • View Profile
    • Federflug
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2014, 03:54:57 AM »
There is also this book by E. Winters which I find quite helpful, not only regarding letter flourishing – maybe you know it already. She devotes one whole chapter on variations in form and one on each minuscule and capital flourishing. There are many examples how to practice flourishing and also hints on when and where to flourish, also some "bad" examples which I find very nice to develop a sense and feel for this. The book is also parallel about Italic and Copperplate!! I guess there is material to practice on for at least one year if one would do this seriously … I haven't even started on the Italic.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Italic-Copperplate-Calligraphy-Eleanor-Winters/dp/0486477495/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1392626727&sr=8-4&keywords=Eleanor+Winters
Stefanie :: Website :: Blog :: Instagram

Offline Lori M

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 518
  • Karma: 20
  • Calligraphy will prevail!
    • View Profile
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2014, 01:19:24 PM »
Thanks, Stefanie! That book would be perfect. I'm re-building my calligraphy library -- most of my books right now are broad pen from the '80s.  :o

Offline Estefa

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1505
  • Karma: 122
    • View Profile
    • Federflug
Re: Flourishing help
« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2014, 05:16:18 PM »
You're welcome – I hope you like it!
Stefanie :: Website :: Blog :: Instagram