Hand lettering can be used on a variety of different projects, from large posters to personal letters. Just as handwriting is unique to an individual, so is hand lettering, but you can follow some pro tips to improve your eye for detail and your steady hand. Check out these seven ideas.
Tip #1: Use All Kinds of Inspiration
Once you start looking for it, inspiration for hand lettering is everywhere: in magazines, on billboards, on fliers and business cards you’re handed every day. Stop to look at the size, shape, texture, and ornamentation of text that catches your eye and try using some of the things you find in your own lettering.
Tip #2: Try New Styles
It’s easy to get comfortable with a certain style that you’ve practiced and used a lot. But, to get better at hand lettering (and to expand your repertoire), practice drawing styles that you wouldn’t normally be drawn to. If you normally favor vintage typography, have a go at some graffiti-inspired styles, or vice versa.
Tip #3: Keep Curves Smooth
This one takes a bit of practice, as it’s natural for the hand to go a bit wobbly when drawing the curves of an S or a C. But it’s a really important element of hand lettering to master if you want to create professional-looking calligraphy.
Tip #4: Mix it Up
There’s nothing in the rule book saying that words or designs need to be composed of letters of all the same style. Just as some people like to combine items of clothing with clashing patterns for a dramatic and attractive look, try the same with your lettering.
Tip #5: Incorporate Ornamentation
While individual letters themselves can be more or less decorative, you can create different looks in your lettering art by adding ornamentation around the letters. Think florals, geometric patterns, stars, wavy lines…
Tip #6: Keep Drawing
It’s easy to be frustrated by those kinky S’s or letters of different sizes, but the more you draw, the better your work will become. Take any opportunity to have a doodle and exercise your hand lettering muscle memory.
Tip #7: Remember: Practice Makes Better
You’ve heard the phrase “practice makes perfect.” But with art and crafts, perfection is not necessarily the ultimate goal. Whether you’re hand lettering just for fun or for a specific project, your creations will get better and better the more you practice.
Everything You Need to Start Hand Lettering
Hand Lettering for Beginners.