Hand Drawn Letters on Colored Paper: Create a Holiday Sign | Debi Sementelli | Skillshare

Hand Drawn Letters on Colored Paper: Create a Holiday Sign

Debi Sementelli, Brush Lettering Artist and Font Designer

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13 Lessons (25m)
    • 1. Create a Holiday Sign Intro

    • 2. What you'll learn in this class

    • 3. Supplies

    • 4. Tips: Layering Color & Color Selection

    • 5. Tips: Where to put Shadows

    • 6. Technique: Cross Hatch Layering

    • 7. Give Thanks Sign Step 1: Trace Template onto Cardstock

    • 8. Give Thanks Sign Step 2: Trace Design in White

    • 9. Give Thanks Sign Step 3 :Coloring the Banner

    • 10. Give Thanks Sign Step 4: Coloring Banner Shadow

    • 11. Give Thanks Sign Step 5: Coloring Letters, Leaves and Darkest Shadow

    • 12. Give Thanks Sign Step 6: Final touches

    • 13. Other Options for Give Thanks


About This Class


In this beginner level class, I'm sharing some easy ways to work with colored pencil and colored card stock to make an illustration pop! You'll create a beautiful Thanksgiving Sign while you're learning.

Here's the specifics of what you'll be learning:

• How to transfer an image onto colored card stock

• How to outline an image with white paint pen or marker

• How to use a cross hatch technique with colored pencil

• How use layers of colored pencil to add depth to an illustration

• How to create shadow effects 

• Step by step instructions to create an 8"x10"or 5"x 7" sign for the class project

On the class page, there are downloadable templates to guide you, as well as a supply list to cover everything you'll need .

The "Give Thanks"sign will make a great holiday decoration or give it as a gift to say "Thanks" to a Thanksgiving dinner hostess!


1. Create a Holiday Sign Intro: Hi, I'm Debbie. Seven Telly. Welcome to my studio. I've been a lettering artist for over 30 years and a thought designer for the past eight years. But I also like to create hand drawn letter designs. So I created one in honor of Thanksgiving that says, Give things now. You don't have to know how to draw letters to do this project. I've actually created a template for you, and I'm going to show you how to take the template and trace it onto the colored paper. And then I'll share with you some colored pencil techniques to fill the design in just a note. Even though this is 2018 every year, I'm going to update the template so you'll be able to do it for many years to come. In addition to creating the colored version of the sign, you can also just print this off on white card stock or watercolor paper and fill it in with water colors or markers or crayons or anything you have on hand. In fact, it makes a nice craft for your Thanksgiving guests to do and take home with them, so that's what we're gonna be covering in this class, and I'm excited to get started 2. What you'll learn in this class: So let's talk about what you're going to be learning in this class By doing this illustration. You're going to be learning how to layer colors from dark to light and light to dark. You're going to be learning a crosshatch technique to build up those layers. You'll also learn not to color all the way to the lines so that we create more breathing room, and it creates an illusion of a shadow for the letters. Next, we'll be talking about the source of light and how the source of light determines where your shadow is placed. So those are all the things we're going to be covering in this class, and we're going to be able to do it by creating this lovely give thanks hand lettered illustration. So I hope you'll enjoy 3. Supplies: Now let's talk about the tools to create this. Give thanks Thanksgiving design. You'll need some card stock. This is from paper source, but you can get card. Stock it any craft store. This happens to be a dark red. You could also use a brown, a purple and dark orange. Whatever color combination you want, it creates totally up to you. And then you'll need the downloadable, um, template that's included on the class page. And to transfer that, you'll need either this white transfer paper again, something you can pick pick up at any craft store or a white colored pencil and then to draw on the white lines. Some type of white paint pen. This is a Sharpie water based paint pen. You can get this at any craft store. This is a unit ball signal, white pen. Some craft stores have this, and some do not, but you can get it online. Jet pens is a good place, and, um, this Sikora Decca Reese pen. So again, this is something you'd get online and lastly, some colored pencils and again, depending on what colors you want to use. I've got this combination of colors. It's a cream a yellow. This is a violet and purple and bright violet Indigo blue. Um, this is a short truce, a light violet and an Oakar. But that's just my choice. You can certainly choose a color palette of your own. All of these items will be listed on a supply list that will be on the class page available for download. 4. Tips: Layering Color & Color Selection: So before we get started coloring, I want to explain a few things about layering color. First of all, you'll see for this background space of the banners, I'm using three different colors from dark to light. So I'm starting with this yellow Oakar, moving on to the lemon yellow and then the cream, and we want a layer that so that it really adds some depth to the whole illustration. For the letters, I'll be doing something similar. I'll be starting with a darker color, which is a bright violet and ending with a light violet that's going to just highlight it a little bit more. And then for the shadow. We're going to do the opposite. We're going to start with a color that is closer to the color of the paper. This is actually called purple, but it looks like a dark red. So that's why I chose it. And then we're going to add an ultra mitt, Marine blue, so foreshadow we go from lighter to darker for the regular areas. We go from dark to light, and then, lastly, I've chosen another dark color. Very similar. It's a slightly darker than the ultra mom Marine called Indigo Blue, and I'm going to use this also for the shadow, this in particular for the shadow of the numbers and the word November. And then I will be adding a little bit more to some of the shadow areas as well. So this is slightly darker than the ultra Marine, and one of the reasons we do that is again. Just add some variation, which adds more interest to the overall look for the leaves. I'm simply using this shark true screen. One of the reasons I chose this is because of the difference in the value of the color, which means the dark or lightness of the color compared to the background. So I want to make sure that I have something that's light enough that it will really pop from that background. If I did a darker green, it would fade into the background more and possibly even compete with it. So by having a color green that is, ah, higher value in lightness from the background, it's really going to pop much better 5. Tips: Where to put Shadows: So let's talk about how you determine where to put a shadow. Basically, you decide where your light source is coming from. So in this case, I've decided the light source is coming from here. That means that I'm just going to put a shadow opposite of that direction. So that's why I've got the shadow underneath here and here and here and underneath the leaves. I don't put the shadow up here because that would mean the light source was coming from this direction. So wherever the light source is coming, you go to the opposite side, and that's where you apply your shadow. 6. Technique: Cross Hatch Layering : Now let me show you how to layer. So we're going to use a technique called crosshatch. So first I'm going to put down the first layer. And as you see, I'm just making a stroke in one direction. So there's our first layer. I can even add a little bit more, get more solid, and now I'm going to take the second color, which is a little bit lighter, and I'm going to go in an opposite direction. So because I made the stroke this way, now I can turn it this way and you'll see that creates a crosshatch effect. OK, lastly, when I come back with my lightest color, I'm going to again change the stroke position. So it's fine if I do the same as the first layer, but I just don't want to repeat the layer that was just underneath it. So I'll come over like this, and if I want to, I can even cross hatch over that. If I really want to make this stand out a lot, I can keep cross hatching, and what you'll see is in the actual, um, design. I've created some areas that are extremely highlighted, So why did this in this particular area is because I want to highlight this edge because when you would turn that banner, you're going to have that edge pick up more light. So that's why I'm emphasizing that and really making it a stronger, um, lighter value. But you'll see in here this is all crosshatched and layered. So that's how you do the crosshatch technique. 7. Give Thanks Sign Step 1: Trace Template onto Cardstock: So to get started on this project, you'll need a print of the give thanks Download that is on the class page. And if you cut that out pretty closely, you're going to be able to more easily center it on your paper. So my card stock is, um, a burgundy red, dark red color. But as I said before, you can use whatever color works for your color scheme, and I am going to put this in an eight by 10 frame. So I have cut it and measured and found the center for where my design needs to go. I've gone ahead and used tape to take that in place so that I can easily slip my transfer paper underneath. So let me first show you how to use the transfer paper. So this is the transfer paper that I'm using. You can see it's white, so that's what's gonna show up on the paper. This is the brand that I happen to find. It's a Lowell Cornell transfer paper, so I would just simply slip this paper underneath, take a regular pencil and just start to trace the image and you'll see that puts a white line on your paper. So now you're going to be able to follow that line when you trace over it with your white paint marker. Now, if for some reason you could not find anywhere the transfer paper, you can also take a white colored pencil and I'll just do this section here and you would rub it onto the paper just like that, onto the back of the paper. And then as you turn this back over using your pencil, you're just going to trace over. And there you go. You also have a white line left there for you to trace after that. So that's your first step. Go ahead and complete that, and then I'll show you the next step. If you're not already following me, I appreciate it. If you would. That way you will be notified when my next class comes up. Thanks 8. Give Thanks Sign Step 2: Trace Design in White : Okay, so I have finished tracing, and there you have it. So I'm now just going to remove the template, and I use a painter's tape that doesn't stick onto the card stock, But you could probably use masking tape. A swell. You just don't want it toe. Pull up the paper, so you have to just put it down lightly. So I have offered you several different choices. The Sikora deck, Aries or decorates Say I'm not sure how you say that or the unit ball signal for the Sharpie paint water based paint pen so all of these will work. What I'm using is the signal. It's easier to find in craft stores than the Secure A deck Aries, the Sharpie water based paint pin. You could also find that many places as well. You just need to go over the lines, and it's fine if you don't follow it. Exactly. If you get off a little bit, it's not really a big deal, but just try to go slower. And that way you'll generally could get good enough lines. So I'm going to go ahead and complete the whole thing, and you can do the same thing and then I'll show you the next part, which is coloring it. And with pencil 9. Give Thanks Sign Step 3 :Coloring the Banner: Okay, so we have our design all drawn out with our white pen, and now we're going to color it in with colored pencil. So we're going to start with this color, this gold. And the nice thing about working on this paper is that it really takes the color pencil very nicely. And, um, end if you need to, you can even go in and a race. So if you feel like something didn't work out like you wanted it to, you're okay to go back in and really and erase it. So I'm gonna be filling in all of the background of the banner with this color, and I'm using the Prisma color. This is yellow Oakar, but you can really use any colors that you want. So I'm just going to continue to do this just to this top banner so I can show you what you'll be doing to both banners. I'm not gonna do in here because that's going to be a different color. So I'm going to come in with a yellow to give it a little bit more depth. This is a lemon yellow, and now I'm gonna come in further still with a cream, and I'm going to highlight smaller areas so you can continue to do that down here 10. Give Thanks Sign Step 4: Coloring Banner Shadow: next, I'm going to color in the back part of the banner because it is actually in the shadow. I'm using a darker type of red. Said this this is actually it says purple. But when you put it on the red paper, it actually looks more like a darker red. And this will start to really add some depth. Now, you'll notice several things. I don't come all the way out to the white line. It just kind of creates a nice effect. And in the shadow areas, I'm going to go a little bit darker in certain areas that would normally be darker. Okay, so that's your background. Be sure to post on the class project page. Thanks. 11. Give Thanks Sign Step 5: Coloring Letters, Leaves and Darkest Shadow: Now, let's color in the letters. I've chosen a bright violet. I think it's gonna work very nicely with the yellow tones and pop out from the red. So there you can see I didn't color it 100%. I left some of the red showing through. I just like the look of that. Now we're going to color in the leaves. I chose a bright greens culture truce. Now I'm gonna take this ultra Marine, and I'm actually going to add more shadow underneath the banner, and I'm going to also put a little bit of that underneath the leaves as well. I'm acting as though the light source is coming in this direction, so I'm not putting it on top, Just putting it underneath. Now I'm gonna take into go blue, and I'm just going to a little bit of a shadow. Just make that pop a little bit more. And I think I'm going to add a little bit more of this blue in these really dark parts of the shadow. Just a little bit is to kind of set that off a little bit more. So there you have the design filled in with colored pencil. I'll do the rest of it and be back to show. You be sure to post on the class project page. Thanks. 12. Give Thanks Sign Step 6: Final touches: Okay, so the final touch you'll see I've already done it to the word give. I'm going in with this light violet and literally just making some very basic lines. I'm not really filling it in, but it just kind of adds a nice highlight to the letters, kind of almost just outlining around the letters and the great thing about colored pencil hiss. You really can't mess up because you can always erase it and you can always go over it with another color. So, um, it's fun. I hope you've had fun doing this, and then I will be putting this in a frame, a gold frame, and it will go on my Thanksgiving buffet, which I hope it will find a place in your home as well. Or you can also bring it. If you're going to someone's house for Thanksgiving, you can bring it as a gift. Very nice and thoughtful thing to do. So that is it. I added some shadow on 2 November, I put the shadow. This is with indigo blue on the banner on the leaves, and pretty much everything else is IHS some just like I did it before in the demo. I hope you had fun creating this project. Thanks so much for hanging out with me. And please follow me So you can hear about my upcoming project for Christmas. I think you're gonna like it. Thanks again. Bye bye. 13. Other Options for Give Thanks : so I just want to tell you about a few other options. Instead of doing the larger eight by 10 size, you could do this size, which is also included in the downloads, and that will fit nicely into five by seven frame so you could do that or another option if you don't want a color with colored pencils on ah colored background, you could also just print your template onto a piece of white card stock and then colored him with markers, water, color colored pencils, crayons, whatever you whatever you want, whatever you have on hand. In addition, if you had some things giving guests as I usually do, and they wanted to do a craft after dinner, while let's say people might be watching a football game that you and they did not want to watch, this would be a nice little craft toe have for them to do, and then it's something they can take home. So just another thought about how you could utilize this template