Over a long weekend in the middle of June, in a small village southwest of Cambridge, the superb American lettering artist, Carl Rohrs, held a truly memorable workshop that will be one of highlights of this year. I'm positive everyone who attended would agree. At times the array of tools and techniques Carl demonstrated could be quite bewildering - pointed brush, flat brush, folded pen, cut-paper lettering - but I'm sure it'll all sink in gradually with further practice using his unique and comprehensive workbook as a reference.
Here are some of my practice sheets using various tools : pointed brush, folded brass pen, flat brush. The difficulty lay not in using the brushes or pens as such, but in manipulating them to attain the desired effects!
We also designed and cut a 3D letter in paper, which had a fantastic effect once all the coloured layers were stacked in their proper order.
And finally...cut-out silhouette lettering with a decorative background. I was finishing this in the final stages of the workshop and, looking at it again, I think I could have chosen a better background. Somehow the Japanese Chiyogami paper suggests my home village is somewhere in the Far East of the world rather than the far east of Essex!
This is written a little after the event as Lay Members' Day this year was held at the end of April but is it ever too late to share some good calligraphy stuff? I don't think so.
Saffron Scribes regional group is named after the town of Saffron Walden in Essex where it was originally established. It's a friendly and enthusiastic group interested in learning about calligraphy, lettering and other related skills, such as bookmaking and gilding. I very much enjoy being a member and attending the workshops.
The group was very pleased to be asked to put together a display for this year's Lay Members' Day, held by the Society of Scribes & Illuminators at King's College in Waterloo, and immediately set about making plans for the stand.
We all decided to prepare a group project specifically for display on the day and once we'd agreed the theme of "Essex", set to work with our individual contributions. The theme was purposely broad with no limitations on subject or style as long as it related to the county. However, there were some restrictions : to write two panels of A4 size with black lettering on a white background only. All the panels were then overlaid with a pastel effect to echo the colours of the Essex landscape, which brought the whole display together as a single piece.
In the end we had 22 panels and here is the marvellous result of everyone's efforts!
And a closer look at all of the individual panels...
And here is the group's stand on the day, which shows the wonderfully varied gallery of individuals' calligraphy artwork displayed next to the Essex theme and on the table.
Bags and books too!
Every member also contributed one or more letters or words for printing onto bags - a purple shopper and a drawstring in black - and many also pitched in to create an attractive range of quality hand-made notebooks, all to raise funds to keep the group going.
This is a little corner where I like to share my love of calligraphy & letterforms and my fascination with the tools, materials & methods used to create and display them. I also love patterns and carved faces!
© by Julie Chaney. All rights reserved