The Calligrapher's Life

Just another weblog

Isn’t this class about Copperplate writing?

With no formal instruction, this week’s class felt more like a three-hour practice session, but that’s okay because there’s nothing wrong with more practice time.

On our “free” day, Ms. Close challenged our writing skills with an exercise I’ve never tried before. We practiced creating one phrase like, “Happy Thanksgiving” in four different styles.

First, we designed the phrase with flourishes. Next, we created the letters without loops or flourishes, which proved more difficult than I expected. After that, we created the phrase with small ascenders and descenders, and then ended with Roman or Italic capital lettering. After we finished each line, only the first one resembled Copperplate. I was a little frustrated and couldn’t see where Ms. Close was going with this exercise.

Surprisingly, I thought writing the letters with flourishes would be the most difficult part of our practice session and it actually turned out to be the easiest.

Unfortunately, I’ve never tried designing Italic letters with the pointed pen, so I struggled with the process for awhile. After warming up a bit, I noticed the writing shaped up nicely.

The class exercise proved to be beneficial because I realize the importance of warming up before officially creating a piece. It helps jog my memory when I haven’t practiced lettering for some time. Now I know I shouldn’t worry so much about my lettering capabilities.

Although this week’s class appeared longer than usual, I still managed to enjoy the practice time. The next class is cancelled for the week, so the time off will give me plenty of time to work on my menu assignment.

I just hope it comes out great.



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