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Messages - JanisTX

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Tools & Supplies / Re: Desert Island Ink
« on: January 27, 2022, 12:26:09 PM »
This' dumber than dirt, I know, but my go-to ink for practice, etc., is Noodler's black.  I love the stuff!  I know that it is fountain pen ink and that it's not as thick as calligraphy ink, but I find it to be very well behaved, easy to use & the throat of the jar has such a wide opening, you can easily dip an oblique pen in without any problem.  No decanting of ink = a much happier Janis, as I am a mess when it comes to pouring ink out of one container into another.  (If it CAN go wrong, it WILL go wrong, in my experience!)  I also am pretty wild about Pearl Ex used as ink, but I love sparkly things (I'm basically a small child at heart, it seems!).  I have used Walnut ink and hate the stuff.  It's brown.  It's thin.  It's too opaque.  Did I mention that it's brown??  I like McCaffrey's inks, but I couldn't agree more about the Gloss Black.  It's a pretty ink, but it WILL NOT DRY!!  I've tried propping the envelope in front of a fan overnight (no effect), freezing the envelope (this made sense at the time) (no effect) & letting the envelope sit for five days (no effect).  I buy lots and lots of ink, but I find that I am drawn back to the Noodler's most often.  (It also comes in many other colors & I have NEVER had a problem with any of them!  Just dip and go!)

@K-2 Your work is beautiful!


Workshops & Conference News / Madarasz Script by Schin Loong
« on: January 27, 2022, 12:12:49 PM »
Hi!  John Neal Books has a link to a course being taught by a member of the Flourish Forum, Schin Loong.  It will be virtual & recorded, so that you can replay the course later to be reminded of the course contents.     

Schin Loong - Madarasz Script - Mar 25, 26; Apr 1, 2 - AM and PM Classes

Schin Loong - Madarasz Script - Mar 25, 26; Apr 1, 2 - AM and PM Classes

John Neal Books does not host this class.
Madarasz Script
with Schin Loong

Live online group workshop via Zoom, with live lessons recorded and available for replay.  There are morning and evening options.  (Replays at your convenience.)

March 25 and 26, April 1 and 2, 2022
9:00am OR 5PM Pacific Time
Registration opens March 6

I dug around to determine cost. - $195 USD for 5 hours of instruction.  If you are not familiar with Schin's work, she is a brilliant calligrapher and artist!  She has very fine Spencerian and also draws fantastic animals, etc., as flourishes.  I cannot recommend taking any class that Schin teaches highly enough!!  You will learn a lot from taking her class!!

@Ken Fraser I do that ALL the time & it just drives me bonkers!!  You'd think that I'd learn better!


@Ken Fraser
Gorgeous!  Do you mind telling me what inks you used?

I hope that you are doing well!


Tools & Supplies / Re: The History behind Leonardt EF Principle.
« on: January 23, 2022, 03:43:09 PM »
Thank you for this very fine article!!


Love those Js!! (For obvious reasons!)

Love this, @Erica McPhee !  Brilliant work, as usual!  Keep 'em coming! :-)


@JanisTX - as @jeanwilson & @AnasaziWrites noted, lines can be "etched" onto paper/card stock using a blunt stylus and a straightedge.  Instead of marking a line with a pencil and then erasing, you make an impression in the paper using pressure.  AnasaziWrites makes a good point about a bone folder being too blunt and a compass being too sharp.  I use an un-inked, closed ruling pen or the back of a butter knife or a ball point pen that is completely out of ink.

You'll be able to see the line in raking light, but it's rather inconspicuous.  It will, however, always be there - you can't erase it.  As @InkyFingers says, the other downside is that sometimes pointed flex nibs catch on the divot and cause splatters.  And as AnasaziWrites notes - some inks can bleed into the divot too.

Historically, medieval scribes used a blunt stylus (and quite a bit of force) to inscribe these lines in parchment so as to rule both sides at once.  Ingenious!  But note - the broad edge script floats between the lines, not touching them.

I'll add that if you're going to photo/scan a piece, you can use a light blue (non-copy) pencil, like manga/comics artists use to do underdrawings, because they won't show up in digital reproductions.  InkyFingers - you can try waiting overnight before you erase, but smudging is sort of a problem with certain inks (McCafferey's gloss black, I'm looking at you).

Best wishes on those place cards, Janis!

--yours, K

Thanks, Mike, for the excellent explanation & wonderful examples!  I am going to experiment this afternoon, to see what kind of results I can get on the place cards that the client has me using!  I tend to use more fountain pen ink than pointed pen/calligraphy ink.  I don't know why, but that is what I've always preferred.  (Unless I'm using gouache, Pearl-Ex, or the like for a specialized project!)  Also, thank you @K-2 for your explanation & advice.  I am going to see what can be accomplished with the back of a butter knife, a boning knife, and a bobby pin with a rubberized end for women's hair. (I don't mean to be sexist; I suppose men could use bobby pins, too. - I've just never seen it!)  I'll post back with my results!

Thank you all for your assistance & input!


@jeanwilson and @AnasaziWrites I'm trying to figure out what an "etched" line is, exactly!  I need to prepare some Christmas place cards & would love an alternative to a light pencil line!  Thanks in advance for more information!


Tools & Supplies / Re: BlueDew Flex Fountain Pen Review
« on: October 03, 2021, 08:14:31 PM »
@Erica McPhee Thank you for the detailed review!  Iím going to order one!  It will be great for airplane rides!


Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Alternative to dip pen
« on: September 10, 2021, 05:01:11 PM »
@Erica McPhee Will you please report back how you like it & how well it works?  Iím very interested!


Open Flourish | General Discussion / When did Flourish Forum start??
« on: September 03, 2021, 10:08:19 AM »
@Erica McPhee When did you start the Flourish Forum??  It just occurred to me that I have no idea when the Forum was started.  I found it in the spring of 2014 & I *think* that I was an early adopter, but maybe I'm wrong about that.


Tools & Supplies / Re: Going to Omaha?
« on: September 03, 2021, 07:55:41 AM »
@Erica McPhee I forgot to mention that there is always a cocktail party on Monday night.  The first time that I went, I took a little black dress & fit right in.  This year, everyone just wore what they had on in class. - T-shirts & jeans & shorts, etc.  If I had worn a cocktail dress, I would've stuck out like a sore thumb.  Not sure if that is some cultural shift or just because of Covid-19.

I also forgot to mention that are classes on Sunday for newbies.  You sign up separately for that.  I was pretty far along with Copperplate when I went to my first convention, so I didn't bother with the newbie classes and can't tell you how those classes go. 

Everyone of the "friends" that you make in class will ask you what class you're taking tomorrow & you then agree to save them a set and if you get there first, and they'll agree to save a seat for you if they get there first.

Two years ago, they had hall monitors who stood at the door of the classroom and checked your notebook that has your schedule on it, to very that you are registered for that class.  There were people right & left who tried to sneak in to Susanne Cunningham's flourish class and when they got turned away they burst into tears.  They generally only do that to classes that are in high demand & that registration closed before they registered for the conference.

Finally, I forgot to mention that there is a big banquet on Saturday night.  I've never been to it because I am tired and want to go home and maybe get 1 day of rest before going back to work on Monday!


Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: The Calligraphy Podcast
« on: September 02, 2021, 09:45:42 AM »
@darrin1200 I'm going to do that!  Thank you!


Tools & Supplies / Re: Going to Omaha?
« on: September 02, 2021, 09:44:04 AM »
@Aries M:  The conference was Monday - Saturday noon.  There was one class a day Monday - Friday (you could pick which class you wanted from 3 or 4 choices) & a class for 1/2 a day on Saturday.  Some of the classes during the week were what I call "drawing" classes, where you learned how to illuminate documents that you have calligraphed with flowers, vines & etc.  I don't have an artistic bone in my body & I will leave all of those classes to @schin & @Erica McPhee !  I have very basic Italic and Uncial, and I am not very interested in broad-edged calligraphy.  So, I tend to gravitate to the pointed pen classes.  The half-day class on Saturday was very well instructed, but should have been a full day, if not 2 days.  It was on a low-cost graphic design software, the name of which presently escapes me.  But, I will check my iPad & post the name tomorrow.  It is a one-time fee program which is a much cheaper alternative than Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.  The problem that I had with the class was that the instructor threw a semester's worth of instruction at us in 3 hours.  It was very well organized and clearly stated, but we flew through it so fast that no one could actually keep up or learn anything.  I plan on revisiting it soon, so that maybe I can actually learn the program.  Overall, it was a very, very good conference & I am glad that I went, even though I came away humbled.  If you can get yourself to a conference, you need to do it! 

One of my very best classes was on flourishing.  I am a newbie at flourishing & this was my second class with Suzanne Cunningham, who is a master at flourishing.  I came away from the class much more confident in my flourishing skills. 

With regards to meeting people, everyone was trying to social distance, so you generally only met the people who were sitting around you.  You could invite those sitting around you to go to lunch or dinner & generally your invitation was accepted, so that you didn't have to sit/eat alone.  The "experts" (master penmen) are generally very friendly & caring & will help you with a specific problem.  But, even they were in short supply at this conference, due to the pandemic.  Normally, you see them around all week, but this year they generally came to teach for their one day & then left.  I can't say that I blame them.  We are in the midst of a pandemic, as we all know.

There is an annual business meeting held on one of the nights & it is world-class boring.  There is a night where people can sell things that they have made (pens, nibs, t-shirts, paper, aprons, hand-thrown pottery, & etc.) & that is very interesting.  All-in-all it is always a good experience and I do recommend attending, if you can!


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