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Messages - chisato

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Digital Design / Re: smoothing lettering
« on: December 22, 2019, 10:40:23 PM »
Here is one option: select the area inside of the letters using Magic Wand tool, then use "Select and Mask" to adjust your selection area. Once you go into "Select and Mask," you can smooth, feather, and otherwise adjust the selection area. You will see a preview of your selection. Once you are happy with the outline of the selected area (ie, your lettering), click OK to go back. Create a new layer, and fill in your selection area (Paintbucket). Now you have a new layer that should be a smoothed and cleaned up version of your original lettering. I like to do this on a separate layer so that the original stays intact, in case you are not happy with the results.

Before doing all of this, it's helpful to adjust the Levels of the image so that it's nice and crisp, and the background color is consistent. It's much easier to clean up lettering in Photoshop if your scanned image is crisp and high contrast.

I hope this helps!

Tools & Supplies / Re: Help with finding a nib
« on: November 06, 2018, 10:51:12 AM »
I can't make out the image either, but John Neal carries Scroll Nibs that create two parallel lines -- is that what you mean by railroading?

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Whatcha been up to?
« on: August 23, 2018, 10:34:27 PM »
@Bianca M I like the 601EFs a lot! They are sturdy yet pretty flexible, sharp but smooth. I definitely would recommend for Spencerian or Copperplate/ES. With their large size, I feel like they're kind of like better G nibs  ;)

My last orchid somehow rotted between flowerings... I thought I was still taking care of it properly when it was just leaves, but they eventually turned black and died. Maybe I overwatered it? I might try again in the future!

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Whatcha been up to?
« on: August 22, 2018, 03:55:33 PM »
@Bianca M Wow! That keiki looks so good! I have also become obsessed with houseplants in the last few years, and have been propagating some of them, but have never been able to keep any orchids alive for long... Oh, and is that a pink variegated rubber tree in the background?? It's beautiful! I've been on the hunt for that plant for a while now :)

@neriah Enjoy the course! I took David's ES workshop in person in NYC last month, and it was really wonderful. I know he goes much more in depth in the online course, so hope to do it some day too!

@Inked botanicals Congrats on your store!! How exciting!!

I managed to cut one quill so far, and it went better than expected (didn't cut myself, at least!). Picture below (plus some play with the new vintage nibs)! Most tutorials say to remove all of the barbs, but I couldn't resist leaving some for aesthetic reasons, especially as it's more of a "toy" than a tool I'll use much.  :)

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Whatcha been up to?
« on: August 15, 2018, 11:58:40 PM »
@Erica McPhee Thanks for the heads up on the quill tools! I'll try to be careful  ;) 

@Diane Bennett Your granddaughter is adorable, and how wonderful that she has a love of letters already!

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Whatcha been up to?
« on: August 15, 2018, 10:27:57 AM »
Erica, you never cease to amaze me! I saw the pencils on IG, and was blown away by how lovely they look and what a sweet gesture it is. But this unicorn cake looks straight out of a Pinterest dream!!! And cute backpacks for sleepovers? Amazing. I don't remember ever going to a sleepover with goodie bags as a kid -- but I get the sense that children's social events have leveled up since I was a child... ;)  I'm barely managing to keep up with my dogs and houseplants (and work) this week  :P

I just got back from a short break in the country and am SO excited to have found a box of vintage nibs (Gillott 601EF) in an antique shop! I always look but never find anything calligraphy related (short of the occasional junky inkwell). I can't wait until work slows down so I can really play with them! Also, a lady at farm stand gave me a bunch of goose feathers, so I may try to cut my first ever quills? If anyone has experience doing this, I'd love any advice! I'm just watching some YouTube videos while waiting for them to harden some more.

Exchange Tracking - Showers Bring Flowers 2018 / Re: List 4 sent
« on: May 30, 2018, 02:38:15 PM »
Oh no! @sheila247 So sorry to hear that! I'll be excited to receive your beautiful work whenever it arrives. Hope you can include your original envelope work somehow!

@Sally Ellington @AnasaziWrites @Inked botanicals @passionforwriting Thank you all for your gorgeous work! They've all brightened my day :)

Exchange Tracking - Showers Bring Flowers 2018 / Re: List 4 sent
« on: May 16, 2018, 12:21:37 PM »
Yay, can't wait! I've sent off mine today as well - hope they make way their way to you all soon. Thank you to @Sally Ellington -- your beautiful work already arrived!

Tools & Supplies / Re: Blanzy-Poure Sergent-Major Superieure No. 2500
« on: April 26, 2018, 03:20:35 PM »
I just now won a bid on a box of unopened  "Sergent Major Superior" On  E-Bay.  It was for £13.40 Plus postages. When I was going after Baignol and Farjon French nibs, Just two nibs attracted me.
This S-Major pen and Henry Superior pen nib. I have got one H-Superior nib to try and see what it gives before I get hold of more of that nibs. :D

Are the old Blanzy Poure Sergent Major Supérieure n° 2500 nibs good for any particular style of lettering?   The 2552 seem to be in great demand and highly sought after, but I never hear anyone talk about the 2500s.   Do any of you use these nibs, and if so, for what kind of lettering in particular? 



Judging from the availability and marketing, those 2500 were enormously popular back in the day. The company brands itself as the maker of the Sergent Major on boxes for other nibs, and the 2500 boxes have different images of battles on them (like a 'Collect them all!' marketing campaign).  I played with one once, and it was certainly flexible enough to do copperplate with, but I haven't had a chance to really give it a proper work through. Maybe next time I'm on an Ebay nib-spree I'll grab a box of those.

As a small bonus, supposedly the Sergeant Major nibs were Proust's favorite :)

Coffee & Nib-bles / Re: Paper geekiness - natural grain of paper
« on: April 03, 2018, 01:04:54 PM »
So interesting, thank you for sharing! I do a lot of model building with paper in my professional life, so I've definitely noticed this grain difference -- though I don't think I've ever been aware of it when doing calligraphy! Though the calligraphy paper he mentions (washi for Japanese traditional calligraphy) is very soft and delicate, so I'm sure one would notice the anisotropic quality if you used a loaded brush. I haven't done Japanese calligraphy since I was a child, but I remember accidentally tearing through the paper with my brush and these traumatizing tears would happen in all directions equally  ;)

Hi Eunice,

I'm sure the more experienced members here may have better advice, but do you move your paper as you work? Keeping my "working area" always centered in front helps me keep consistency.

Thank you for sharing @Inked botanicals ! What a wonderful story! I am SO happy to hear that it all worked out (and that you had a bit of an adventure too)!

Thank you also for visiting my home country and for taking the time and effort to explore off the beaten path - sounds like it was that much more rewarding. Also good to know that there is another Shourinji in Kyoto, in case I direct anyone else to go!


Tools & Supplies / Re: Storage solution for lots o' nibs
« on: September 23, 2017, 11:38:47 PM »
Wow @AAAndrew! Your collection of nib boxes is also impressive! I am obsessed with old packaging, and nib boxes had such great designs.

These would be beautiful floated inside of shadow box frames!

Yay! Very excited though (also a little nervous) for my first exchange ever :)

Hi @Inked botanicals. It looks like the Budokan in Tokyo hosts a giant national Kakizome competition every year on January 5th. I can't find any information on next year's event yet though; it's probably too early. Here's an English page on the Budokan:

I can't quite tell if the general public can go watch or not. Maybe when it's closer to the date, there will be more info? Right now, it's just information about this year (2017) and the results of the competition.

You mentioned you will also visit Kyoto. I don't know if this will interest you, but some Buddhist temples in Kyoto offer a session where you copy sutras, using traditional Japanese calligraphy tools, as a meditative activity. This may be too challenging for people who don't read/write kanji characters, but I know of at least one temple that lets you do the same activity but you trace an image of a Buddha. It's called Sha-butsu. I've taken my German husband, and we enjoyed this very peaceful activity in a beautiful traditional setting:

This temple also offers the sutra copying if you're interested, and looks like you can reserve by email.

Sorry I don't have better info on Kakizome, but hope some of this helps! I'm sure there are also one-day trial experiences at Japanese calligraphy studios if you were really interested.

Best of luck!

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