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Messages - Andrew H

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Beautiful script as always, Ken! But I would argue that what you've written in your Engrosser's Script example is actually a hybrid style somewhere between English Roundhand and Engrosser's, and much closer to the former.

Probably the most fundamental difference between Engrosser's and E.R. is that each stroke is executed in isolation, with the pen being lifted at both the headline and the baseline (some penmen would, on occasion, forego lifting at the headline, but I'm talking here about Engrosser's in its purest form). This tends to result in a much more regimented, repetitive structure to the script than the more free-flowing movements of E.R. From analysis of hundreds of exemplars, pen lifts are the defining characteristic of Engrosser's Script, without which it loses its distinct and unique character.

I'd be interested to hear your thoughts! :)

Spencerian Script / Re: No drills club
« on: September 24, 2016, 08:48:45 AM »
Haha, this is amazing! If there were a drill I'd be willing to do, it'd be that. Thanks for sharing James! @himasf

@Andrew H Look at this. ;D

@handmadeletters Wow, I haven't been on here in so long!!  :'( We can mention people now!? Thanks for getting my attention! Haha.

Yeah, I've come across that page before, it's hilarious! ;D There are also some pages with examples of faces made out of letters, but I'm not sure if I could find them easily anymore.

I'm going to tactfully avoid wading into the overall discussion…  ;)

Good for you, Stefanie! That's going to be a lucky group of students!  :D

Tools & Supplies / UK W&N Gouache Sale
« on: March 25, 2016, 08:12:57 AM »
No idea if this is a great offer or not, since I've only ever bought Gouache once, but this place I recently bought some paper from is offering 35% off watercolours and gouache when you buy 6:

Hopefully it's useful to someone  :)

Calligraphy Book Reviews / Re: Creative Lettering and Beyond
« on: March 14, 2016, 06:41:21 AM »
I just went "Okay, I'll trust past Moya, she sometimes knows what's up" and hit 'purchase'.


Tools & Supplies / Re: Italian Wood Obliques
« on: February 23, 2016, 05:52:29 AM »
Beautiful work Katerina! Thanks for sharing the story with us  :)

Thanks for all the answers. For me I think I produce better work with an oblique. However I just wanted to use a straight holder just because that is the way he teaches. But I see that everyone is different and what I go for is Zanerian Engrossing script anyway and I know The Zanerian manual says to use an oblique.

If you're studying Engrosser's script, the oblique holder is the most appropriate tool to use. Zaner, Baird, Howe, Norder, Lupfer, Martin, Madarasz etc all used obliques in their work and in the evolution of Engrosser's from classical Round Hand script. It's difficult to produce the quality of shade required for a high standard of Engrosser's with a straight holder, unless either the paper is rotated to almost 90º from the body or the hand is contorted into an unnatural, uncomfortable position.

I haven't yet seen an example of copperplate script from a straight holder that doesn't have a feathered right edge to the shades.

To add to Andy's historical interlude, here's an 1887 advert from the Penman's Art Gazette for an oblique holder:

Spencerian Script / Re: Whole Arm Movement
« on: February 14, 2016, 02:21:14 PM »
There seems to have been a lot of confusion around this subject over the last few weeks, much of it caused by seemingly conflicting Periscope broadcasts. Broadcasters often forget to point out (or assume viewers know) which script style the lesson they're giving applies to. As everyone else has said, the answer is "it depends which script you're studying". In general:

  • Copperplate (and Engrosser's script in particular) - Finger/wrist movement
  • Spencerian - Muscular/arm movement
  • Ornamental Penmanship majuscules - Whole arm/Shoulder movement
  • Flourishing - Whole arm movement
  • Business Penmanship - Muscular movement

Even if you're learning Engrosser's, the muscular and whole arm drills are useful for warming up and encouraging a light hand and freer movement. However, when writing the script your wrist should be planted and finger/wrist movement used, to give the necessary control.

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: I got Palmer's signature!
« on: February 04, 2016, 06:45:57 AM »
Okay, that is COOL! How does one go about becoming best buddies with an antique dealer!?  :P ;D

Coffee & Nib-bles / Re: Dearest Erica, Happy Birthday!
« on: February 02, 2016, 06:25:16 AM »
Late to the party (as usual!!  ::) )

Hope you had a fantastic birthday, Erica! The work you've done in creating this forum and helping too many people to list is so appreciated  ;D

Hey Linda  :)

Without wishing to be controversial, it's been my observation that modern calligraphers who have also learned Copperplate (preferably first) are, by orders of magnitude, better at modern script than most of those who have not. Knowing the rules and being able to execute a script which abides by them gives you an extremely solid foundation from which to start breaking them. You'll know when, where, and in what way you're changing things and, most importantly, your technical abilities will surpass what's required.

At the end of the day though, it depends on your own personal goals.

Kind Critique / Re: Where I stand after about 1 month
« on: January 27, 2016, 11:33:21 AM »
Regarding drills, I've been practicing under turns, over turns, full pressure slanted strokes, ovals, compound curves, and loops. Not to sound naive - are those pretty much the basic drills to keep practicing govern and over again? Any other drills that would be helpful?

Those are the main strokes to begin with, but it depends what you mean by practicing. To really improve you have to be comparing your drill strokes with an exemplar and critiquing your own work by finding the places where it falls short of the exemplar and working on improving those.

Many people think practice means simply repeating a stroke, but without an external reference or a standard to aspire to this will just reinforce your mistakes.

Kind Critique / Re: Where I stand after about 1 month
« on: January 27, 2016, 07:52:43 AM »
Hey Taylor, thanks for sharing your progress!

Just writing out phrases, if that's the only practice you do, will give only minimal, gradual improvements if your goal is to write accurate script. Find an exemplar(s) that you want to follow and spend the first half of your practice session drilling the basic forms, finding the weaknesses in your script and working to improve these. Good Copperplate script comes from uniformity of slant, spacing and shade, and these can only be achieved through careful practice and self-critique.

Hope that helps, if you keep up the daily practice routine you'll be amazed how quickly you progress!  :)

Show & Tell / Re: Copperplate newbie
« on: January 27, 2016, 07:21:46 AM »
Hey Adelyn, good to see you, thanks for sharing your work  :)

1. Yes, your exit strokes should curve out to be parallel to your slant angle to maintain even spacing and a graceful curve from one letter to the next.
2. Your spacing varies a lot. Some of them are too wide yes, but not all of them. All of the basic curved strokes in Copperplate are based on the oval form, so if your underturn (for example) could contain a circle then your spacing is too wide. There is no rule for exact spacing though, some people prefer a narrower oval and some like a wider one.

It looks like you're writing on a Rhodia dot pad? The 5mm line spacing on those is too small for an x-height to begin with. It's difficult to really see the problems in your script and to understand the forms properly. The lined pads have a 7mm spacing which is much better, or you can use two lines of the dot pad (you'll probably find this a bit too big though, especially when working on ascenders).

Compare your work regularly with your exemplar. It's good practice to stop after every letter/form and see where you varied and what you'd like to improve in the next one. Doing an entire line without looking at the exemplar or critiquing what you've done will offer almost no benefit.

Hope that helps, you're off to a great start, keep it up!  :)

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Your Periscopes!
« on: January 27, 2016, 06:30:44 AM »
You should do one, Moya!  :D

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