The Calligrapher's Life

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Gouache Over Ink? Maybe.

Class was cancelled for the week but I’ve been having fun practicing at home. Over the weekend, I decided to use paint to see how I would manage it. Normally, gouache is the best paint suitable for lettering and I must say the results were amazing. It was a pleasant surprise to see how the letters appeared in another color.

I must have designed for over an hour and I did not want to stop. It’s funny because I purchased the set last year, and I was too nervous to use it. The set included a book, refillable ink pens and 6 gouache paint tubes and the only thing I used was the book.

On occasion, Rosie showed the work she created with this medium, but as she described how to use the paint, I imagined its use was only for advanced artists. Of course, I shied away from trying it and continued using calligraphy markers and refillable pens. But, now that I’ve discovered gouache – I’m hooked.

The best part about gouache is the ease and versatility compared to writing with ink.

Ink tends to be very sensitive and unforgiving; but gouache allows more freedom to adjust the paint thickness, which limits the chance for mistakes.

So, I’ve been playing with this paint all weekend and started Christmas card lettering which turned out better than I expected.

In three simple words, I can describe my feeling for this paint – I LOVE GOUACHE!


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2 thoughts on “Gouache Over Ink? Maybe.

  1. Ashantai yungai on said:


    I am like you. I have gouache set that I have had for ~6 months. I never used it because a) I simply did not know how to mix the paint for calligraphy b) I had grown comfortable with my shaeffer pens. After a couple of paid jobs (using Sumi ink and SHaeffer pens). I recognized the limitations. Sumi ink is great but only comes in two color (black and vermillion) and corodes nibs (I use Brause) quickly! For making greeting cards or writing personal letters Shaeffer pens are great! But it lacks the sharpness and crispness that Brause Nibs offer. So I decided to expand and learn how to use gouache paint. I have had that it opens a new world. I can’t to travel to this new world!

    • 1positivelife on said:

      Ashantai, you’re completely correct about the limitations of Sumi ink and the refillable Shaffer pens. They’re fabulous for practice, but not much else.

      Once you finally get comfortable with gouache, it will be hard to work with anything else! Thanks for responding and keep reading!

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