Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - Erica McPhee

Pages: 1 ... 382 383 [384] 385 386 ... 393
Tools & Supplies / Re: Frames?
« on: December 02, 2013, 05:53:15 PM »
Yardsales! You can find great frames for change!

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Making practicing fun?
« on: December 02, 2013, 05:52:13 PM »
Here's another suggestion - start a letter exchange and write letters to each other. I know that is scary because then you are sharing your practice ... but ... it does help make the practice worthwhile and you will really slow down and do your best practice!  ;D

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: bleeding envelopes
« on: December 02, 2013, 05:48:53 PM »
Great suggestions! Also, if you can't get the sandarac, you could try spraying the envelopes lightly with a hairspray like Aquanet. I used it once in a pinch. It made a slight texture to the paper but it worked. you can also make your own sizing from gelatin and water.

I had some envelopes once that wouldn't take any ink (they weren't sized at all). So I made the gelatin sizing and had to paint it on all the envelopes, let them dry, and then could letter on them. Pain but it worked.

The sandarac works great but I am allergic to it. After I pounced over a couple of envelopes and started lettering, my hand started itching like crazy.

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: acrylic or poster paint as ink
« on: December 02, 2013, 05:40:51 PM »

Sorry I didn't see this sooner. Do you have to use poster paint? If that is all you have, you could try adding a bit of Gum Arabic. HAHA - that is if you have some! It can help with the viscosity (fluidity). It can give you better control over the ink because it prevents it from glopping off the nib. (Glopping is a technical term.  ;))

If you don't have Gum Arabic, you could try a tiny bit of egg white and honey. But of course test it on a scrap paper first. Definitely don't use it for anything archival but if you need to use the poster paints in a pinch, it *might* work. Your goal is to change the texture of the poster paint to ink. So just play around with the ingredients until you can get it to an ink consistency.

The paint is the color, the water is the carrier, and the Gum Arabic (or egg whites and honey) are the mediums to help it flow fluidly from nib to the paper.

Hope that is useful! Let us know if you try it and if it works!

Introductions / Re: Hello from New York City
« on: December 02, 2013, 05:23:05 PM »
Hi Elsa,
Welcome! Your web design looks great! Hand lettering and design go hand in hand. Happy to have you here on the forum!  :D

Tools & Supplies / Re: How do you protect your work?
« on: December 01, 2013, 09:06:07 PM »
Finished pieces for framing, I just leave it. However, probably should use some sort of fixative.

I never used to spray my envelopes! Oopsie! Although once I had these horrible envelopes that wouldn't take ink and I was desperate so I sprayed them with aquanet hair spray! It worked! Then there was another time I had to make something out of gelatin. (I remember reading it in a calligraphy tips book once.) And it worked.

Looking forward to see what others do!

Digital Design / Re: Preparing Calligraphy for Printing
« on: December 01, 2013, 08:57:00 PM »
Yes, Elsa is right.  :)  (Hi Elsa, by the way - love your web design!)

I started with Photoshop Elements (it used to come free with scanners!). But since I was a professional photographer, I bumped up to the full Photoshop. However, you probably could do everything you need to with Elements initially. I could even do actions in Elements. I believe everything I have done in the tutorials can be done in Elements (someone please correct me if I'm wrong - it's been a long time). But I agree with Elsa in trying out the free trial first.

If you are a student or homeschool your children, you can purchase Photoshop at a very good price at

Flourish Forum News / Re: Is it Really Free?
« on: December 01, 2013, 04:07:51 PM »
You are very welcome! And thank you, Sharon! Your message brought tears to my eyes. Now it is my turn to be humbled.  :) It's true - people come into and out of our lives at various times. I'm really happy to be able to be a part of facilitating new friendships as we all share and enjoy what we love! I look forward to getting to know you as well!  :D

Show & Tell / Re: Cell phone cover
« on: December 01, 2013, 03:56:52 PM »
Thanks Emily!

I ordered it on because I had a coupon! I usually order from I haven't ordered a case before so I'm curious how it will come out. I'll post when it arrives! I can see myself going crazy and making a ton of these!  :D

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Christmas Gifts
« on: December 01, 2013, 03:50:39 PM »
GREAT topic!  :D I hope other members chime in!

I will take some pictures to share but I am actually on my way to our guild's holiday party right now!

In the past, I have made:

  • notecards with people's names on them
  • library book plates (People love these! Great for kids, too.)
  • card sets with Happy Birthday, Thank You, etc. on the front and blank inside
  • just made paperweights today (I love these!)
  • totebags with lettering using iron-on t-shirt transfers

Introductions / Re: Hello from California
« on: December 01, 2013, 03:40:18 PM »
<sigh> The flying thing! I wanted to go when the conference was in Boston but both years it was, I was having babies! The timing!

Sounds like you are being brave to pursue what you love and that is awesome! I found you on Instagram. Your photos are so lovely! I could "heart" every single one! Just beautiful!

Yes, breaking out of the rules is very difficult for me, too. It helps if I loosen up my arm and swirl it around (although I'm sure I look like a crazy person). I also listen to some crazy music.

Looking forward to seeing more of your work!

Tools & Supplies / Re: Paper
« on: December 01, 2013, 03:31:36 PM »
I have a few! is one of my favorites.

If I need just plain white blanks sometimes I'll pick up a pack of 50 with a 50% off coupon at Michaels. If they bleed, I either spray with a little fixative or use a decorative paper as a background and then layer the calligraphy on top. But sometimes I'll scan and then print my calligraphy so usually they go through the printer fine (great, quick gifts with the person's name on it!). is another good one if I am looking for something specific.

I used to order from here quite a bit:

I hope other people chime in as there must be some other good resources I don't know about!

Introductions / Re: Hello!
« on: December 01, 2013, 03:26:36 PM »
Hi Emily!

Welcome to the forum! So happy you have joined us. It sounds like you are taking some great classes and learning all you can. The more, the better!  :D We learn so much from each different class and every teacher. I don't think we ever stop learning!

Hopefully there will be a guild near your new home. It's such a great way to connect with other lettering artists, share ideas, and take workshops.

I found you on Instagram and started following.  ;)  Looking forward to seeing you on the forum!

Introductions / Re: Hello from California
« on: December 01, 2013, 09:58:35 AM »
Welcome Sharon!

We share much in common! (Another calligrapher with C's in penmanship!  :D). I understand what you mean about the stress of taking on a paid job. It is one of the reasons I stopped doing weddings. I just felt too much responsibility and the deadlines were crushing (especially with three young ones).

Exciting you were able to attend IAMPETH! It's on my bucket list but I don't travel well.

In terms of modern calligraphy, we will get there for tutorials but I am going through the fundamentals of Copperplate first. However, just a little bit about it. The key is, as you said, to be more free and playful. So your letters will dance along the baseline - or in some instances go WAY up or down between letters. However, the best examples, even though appear inconsistent, are actually consistent in the variation.

Check out the Thanksgiving video I posted in the Contemporary Calligraphy board and print off the attachment. I find tracing over some variations will give you a feel for how to loosen up.

Hope that helps! Again, welcome to the forum!

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Kids and calligraphy?
« on: November 30, 2013, 11:54:37 PM »
He sounds like a kid after my own heart!  :)

Pages: 1 ... 382 383 [384] 385 386 ... 393