Author Topic: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin  (Read 12370 times)

Offline Ken Fraser

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1420
  • Karma: 146
  • Calligrapher
    • View Profile
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #60 on: November 10, 2015, 09:20:40 AM »
Might it be possible to see a picture of the original copy or a non-high contrast scan? You've said that you're confident that your Spencerian can stand up to what's out there including the old work, so I'd really be interested to see what it looks like as close to how it would if you saw it in person. I've seen work from the late 19th and early 20th century where there was no retouching and seen it in person even, so seeing some modern work which is said to be as high quality as that would be very interesting.

No, sorry.  I would never show any of my work to anyone, until and unless I was entirely happy with it. The original copy has been cut and pasted.

A lot of my work is on one-off projects such as scrolls, dedications in the frontispiece of books for presentation, and lettering on gold leaf tablets for art galleries.  Retouching in any of these cases is, of course, impossible.

It's not impossible if you scan it and then retouch the scan though!


I was talking about retouching the original artwork. If I've produced an inscription in a book, or a  scroll to my satisfaction, any copy I make doesn't require retouching, so the point doesn't arise.

To quote myself -
"I genuinely feel that my Spencerian Script looks OK and is, in fact, as good as most examples, old and new, out there."

You've said that you're confident that your Spencerian can stand up to what's out there including the old work

I'm aware of the quality and value of my own work and don't feel that I need confirmation from anyone.

...........and once again we're off-topic.  :-[

 
« Last Edit: November 11, 2015, 08:56:38 AM by Ken Fraser »

Offline Brush My Fennec

  • Junior Member
  • **
  • Posts: 90
  • Karma: 17
    • View Profile
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #61 on: November 10, 2015, 10:12:15 AM »
I know the quality and value of my own work and don't need confirmation from anyone.

Well, I just wanted to see what your work looked like originally because I was curious. I've travelled for hours to see calligraphy and calligraphy books because I'm just as curious as can be when it comes to calligraphy. I always want to see and know more about it. You think highly of your own work, have strong opinions abut other peoples and have dubbed yourself a Penmanship Master Scribe before, so I just wanted to see what your work is really like: how it was made, how much of it is editing, copy-pasting and retouching, what it looks like in person and all that. :(

« Last Edit: November 10, 2015, 10:18:58 AM by Brush My Fennec »

Offline Erica McPhee

  • Administrator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5420
  • Karma: 305
  • Be brave. Love life!
    • View Profile
    • Dasherie Magazine
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #62 on: November 10, 2015, 12:31:35 PM »
Please stay on topic or start a new thread. Thank you.
Truly, Erica
Lettering/Design Artist, Homeopath, Photographer, Mom, Wife
Dasherie Magazine | Paperwhite Studio | Instagram | Facebook

Offline AnasaziWrites

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1629
  • Karma: 118
  • Ad astra, per aspera
    • View Profile
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #63 on: November 10, 2015, 02:59:41 PM »
Speed is one factor of course, and it certainly was an important one back in the day... But I'm not convinced that it is an absolute necessity when it comes to showing the "dance of the pen", although it certainly helps to get the spontaneity. What is the minimum speed needed in your opinion ? I go faster than when I'm copperplating, but I'm still very slow (slower than Schin, and probably a tiny bit faster than Barbara Calzolari in her "Berlin Calling" video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=50NXT1ZJYfg )
I find this topic very interesting, and rather than pull this thread into yet another direction, have started a thread just for this very aspect. All comments welcome.
http://theflourishforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=3869.0

Offline Masgrimes

  • Freshman Member
  • *
  • Posts: 37
  • Karma: 10
  • Pursuing Mastery.
    • View Profile
    • Masgrimes Studio
Re: Contrast of thick and thin hairlines
« Reply #64 on: November 16, 2015, 07:38:07 PM »
If you take the finest nib, dip it in iron gall ink (possibly diluted) and on a piece of smooth, uncoated paper draw an upward line using only the weight of the nib, you will produce the finest, barely visible, hairline.

With a nib inserted into a staff, how does one write with "only the weight of the nib" exerting no technical skill into the matter? Are you calculating the weight of the holder, and then applying only enough lift to remove it's weight from the cumulative weight of the holder+nib? At that point, what angle are you approaching the writing surface in the environment above? Assuming most nibs+your holder of choice weight only a few ounces at best, don't you think that controlling how much of that weight you apply to the writing surface is at least a somewhat impressive skill?
David Grimes
Penman | Calligrapher
On Instagram | David Grimes | Learn Engrosser's Script Online

Offline Ken Fraser

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1420
  • Karma: 146
  • Calligrapher
    • View Profile
Re: Contrast of thick and thin hairlines
« Reply #65 on: November 17, 2015, 09:18:28 AM »
With a nib inserted into a staff, how does one write with "only the weight of the nib" exerting no technical skill into the matter? Are you calculating the weight of the holder, and then applying only enough lift to remove it's weight from the cumulative weight of the holder+nib? At that point, what angle are you approaching the writing surface in the environment above? Assuming most nibs+your holder of choice weight only a few ounces at best, don't you think that controlling how much of that weight you apply to the writing surface is at least a somewhat impressive skill?

To clarify, I only meant that the nib (fitted in the holder and held in the normal way) with absolutely no pressure applied, can create the lightest possible line. The hand's only function is to guide the direction of the line - nothing else. There is no calculation involved. The thickness of the line is dependent entirely on the weight of the pen and holder, the fineness of the nib, the suitability of the ink and the smoothness of the paper

I accept that the production of lines which vary direction and produce curves, require skill in keeping the nib in contact with the paper, but straight lines require no special skill IMHO.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2015, 12:52:36 PM by Ken Fraser »

Offline AndyT

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 2093
  • Karma: 149
    • View Profile
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #66 on: November 18, 2015, 06:56:41 AM »
Oh, so straight lines are easy now, are they?   >:(






 ;)

Offline Ken Fraser

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1420
  • Karma: 146
  • Calligrapher
    • View Profile
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #67 on: November 18, 2015, 06:43:07 PM »
Oh, so straight lines are easy now, are they?   >:(

I can't tell if you're being facetious or not!!   Please clarify.  ::)

Offline AndyT

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 2093
  • Karma: 149
    • View Profile
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #68 on: November 18, 2015, 07:36:52 PM »
I have a distinct feeling that I'm being outplayed at my own game here!  100% facetious, Ken. :)

Offline Masgrimes

  • Freshman Member
  • *
  • Posts: 37
  • Karma: 10
  • Pursuing Mastery.
    • View Profile
    • Masgrimes Studio
Re: Hairlines: Contrast of Thick and Thin
« Reply #69 on: November 19, 2015, 04:10:30 PM »
Fair enough! I would agree that I find creating light lines quite easy. But controlling/aiming and transitioning into and out of them is not (as you've stated earlier in the thread). All the other stuff about beauty and aesthetics is subjective! I quite like heavily contrasted scripts!

Best wishes, and much respect, Ken!
David Grimes
Penman | Calligrapher
On Instagram | David Grimes | Learn Engrosser's Script Online

Offline Ken Fraser

  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1420
  • Karma: 146
  • Calligrapher
    • View Profile
Re: Contrast of thick and thin hairlines
« Reply #70 on: December 17, 2015, 08:38:15 AM »
The Dover reproduction of the Universal Penman is not a truly accurate reproduction: it introduces distortions by thickening hairlines (and consequently where shades begin and end and their thickness), presumably necessitated by the fact that it reduces in size the plates and reproduces them only in B&W.

Here is a comparison between the Dover reproduction of the Universal Penman and an original engraved copy of it:




As you say, the later Dover editions were produced with reduced-size pages, for some reason. My earlier scanned page was from a recent edition. This Dover edition from 1968 has full-sized pages and this unretouched photo shows very fine hairlines.

« Last Edit: December 17, 2015, 08:48:19 AM by Ken Fraser »