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Messages - bluestockingpen

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Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Your Instagrams
« on: September 08, 2015, 05:08:10 PM »
I finally separated my calligraphy IG from my personal account, so I'm now at

Have really enjoyed everyone else's lovely feeds!

Introductions / Re: Hello from Japan
« on: August 29, 2014, 11:36:27 AM »
Yokoso, Minami-san! Happy to have you on board!

Tools & Supplies / Re: Ink cracking?
« on: August 29, 2014, 10:37:31 AM »
So interesting! I have never seen that before. Good to know...

Tools & Supplies / Re: Buying supplies?
« on: August 22, 2014, 08:46:24 AM »
Jet Pens ( is also a great source for high-quality pens. They sell some nibs and calligraphy pens (like the Pilot Parallel), but they tend to specialize in more standard writing implements. Paper & Ink Arts is my go-to source!

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: Before and Afters
« on: August 22, 2014, 08:44:52 AM »
This is so inspiring! I still feel like I don't have any "afters" that are worthy of sharing, but this thread is giving me a lot of hope, that progress IS possible and achievable. Thanks, everyone, for sharing.

Moya, I SO empathize with your feeling... ("I'm always utterly disappointed in what comes out of the pen.") It's so hard not to compare yourself with others. I have a hard time believing in myself and in my abilities to improve, particularly when progress seems so slow. But you're right: trusting the process is critical. Thanks for that good reminder and for your faithfulness to the discipline and practice! Your work is beautiful and you should be proud of it!

This is a great question, and I'm looking forward to hearing from others.

I'd classify myself as a mid-level amateur, even though I've been making money with my calligraphy for about four years. I wish I was MORE of a perfectionist. My tendency is to get easily frustrated with myself and then just do whatever is passable -- instead of pushing myself to practice, to form better letters, to learn more advanced techniques, etc.

Being part of this forum has encouraged me to practice more, however, and I have been trying to do drills at least once a week.

I find encouragement from saving my practice sheets, dating them, and then looking at them months later. There's always tiny improvements that are made, which can often be difficult to discern in your regular practice.

I'm also trying not to keep comparing myself with more seasoned and skilled calligraphers. It's hard not to do, though...

Introductions / Re: Hello from a Newb Spencerian Wanna-Be
« on: August 19, 2014, 01:42:34 PM »
Welcome! What a fascinating background you have. I'd love to learn Spencerian myself; good luck with your endeavors, and enjoy the forum!

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: What is a Zanerian Holder?
« on: August 19, 2014, 09:11:22 AM »
Thanks for the photos and full description, Heebs! I've never known the distinction either.

Tools & Supplies / Re: Cuppa Tea anyone?
« on: August 19, 2014, 08:43:01 AM »
So interesting! Thanks for sharing your results. I'm an avid tea drinker myself, so this would be a fun project to try!

Introductions / Re: New from Palm Harbor, Florida
« on: August 18, 2014, 04:21:57 PM »
Welcome, Cheryl!

Introductions / Re: Hey! from Brooklyn, NY
« on: August 18, 2014, 04:21:26 PM »
Welcome! I completely empathize with the "I wanted to run before I could walk" sentiment. I still feel that way! You will find lots of inspiration and advice here, though.

Open Flourish | General Discussion / Re: What's your workstation like?
« on: August 14, 2014, 02:32:44 PM »
We moved to a new house in December, and there is a tiny bedroom on the top floor that I've taken over as my studio. I am so happy to have a room of my own (as V. Woolf suggested was important!), and I feel that it has really enhanced my burgeoning practice.

Coffee & Nib-bles / Re: Calligraphy confessions
« on: August 14, 2014, 01:04:48 PM »
It makes me feel better hearing these confessions from all of you seriously talented calligraphers! I have so many things to confess. Among them:

- I overuse nibs... until they barely produce good lines anymore (and then I end up frustrated). It's a stupid, cheapskate habit, and I know I need to stop. Nibs aren't THAT expensive!

- I often don't adequately dry my nibs after cleaning them, leading to some very unfortunate rust stains on a few neglected nibs.

- I don't practice nearly enough. Like, ever, except in brief warm-ups before an envelope addressing job. But all of you are inspiring me to change that!

- I write way too fast. This means that my letters are often irregular and asymmetrical. I am working on slooooowwwwing it down.

- I can get stuck in a nib rut and just keep using the same nib for a variety of different jobs, even if it doesn't suit the project. I need to do a better job testing out papers and inks and nibs to find the best fit.

- I go on shopping sprees at Paper & Ink Arts and then barely use the new haul, because I'm scared to try new things...

Coffee & Nib-bles / Re: Your handwriting
« on: August 14, 2014, 10:24:17 AM »
This is my typical handwriting, if I'm not rushing to take notes... testing out various pens I have lying around the office.

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