Brush Lettering: The Beginner's Guide | Peggy Dean | Skillshare

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Brush Lettering: The Beginner's Guide

teacher avatar Peggy Dean, Top Teacher | The Pigeon Letters

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Choosing a Brush Pen


    • 3.

      The Crucial Basic Strokes


    • 4.

      Lowercase Alphabet


    • 5.

      Bounce Lettering


    • 6.

      Ombré Blending Effect


    • 7.

      Your Class Project


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About This Class

This class breaks down the fundamentals of basic strokes necessary to correctly use brush pens of all sizes. Beginning with brush pens is a learning curve itself, aside from hand lettering. You must get familiar with how to properly use the brush tip, as its varying pressure and thickness will make or break your piece.

This class does not cover how to hand letter, so if you need to establish your letter formation (which I highly suggest before jumping into using brush pens), first take Hand Lettering: 4 Easy Steps to Modern Calligraphy

You will learn easy methods such as when to perform different motions with your fingers, wrists, and applying varying pressure, along with the highly desirable techniques such as adding bounce to your hand lettering, blending color throughout your letters while drawing them, an creating additional effect.

Meet Your Teacher

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Peggy Dean

Top Teacher | The Pigeon Letters

Top Teacher

Snag your free 50-page workbook right here!

Hey hey! I'm Peggy.

I'm native to the Pacific Northwest and I love all things creative. From a young age I was dipping everything I could into the arts. I've dabbled in quite an abundance of varieties, such as ballet, fire dancing, crafting, graphic design, traditional calligraphy, hand lettering, painting with acrylics and watercolors, illustrating, creative writing, jazz, you name it. If it's something involving being artistic, I've probably cycled through it a time or two (or 700). I'm thrilled to be sharing them with you!

Visit my Instagram for daily inspiration: @thepigeonletters, and head over to my blog for more goodies curated just for youuuu.

I'm the author of the best selling... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: Beginning with brush pens is a learning curve as many of you watching this may have already figured out, you have to get familiar with how to properly use the brush tip because it's varying pressure and thickness will make or break your pieces. This class breaks down the fundamentals of basic strokes that are necessary to correctly use brush pens of all sizes. You will learn easy methods such as when to perform different motions with your fingers and wrists and applying varying pressure. Along with the highly desirable techniques like adding bounce to your hand lettering, blending color through your letters while drawing them, and creating additional effects. I will say that this class is specific to learning brush pens after you already understand and have a grasp on creating a cohesive alphabet. If you still need to establish your letter formation, which I highly suggest before ever jumping into using brush pens. First take my modern calligraphy course, which I have linked below. But if you are ready, you can use the skills that you learn in this class to create one-of-a-kind illustrated pieces with a quote or phrase. The project will allow you to learn to broaden your vision and really map out how you want your words to complement each other on paper. Real quick. I'm Peggy Dean. I am an artist and author and educator. This is my favorite thing in the world, would bring you guys resources, speaking of which I have got a bundle for you to download, a ton of practice sheets and it's all for you. I just want you guys to have a jumpstart practice that will help your style evolve into your own. So let's turn that into something beautiful. I'll see you in the class. 2. Choosing a Brush Pen: All right, We're going into supplies now, which is one of my favorite things because who doesn't love hoarding art supplies, but don't worry, I'm not going to make that happen to you. I'm going to go over just my favorites because I've used them all. I've used them all. So I'm gonna go in order of my favorites to letter with specifically, the first is the Pentel Touch. And the reason why is because the tip on this one is a medium size, it's small, but it has the flexibility to be able to go more of a medium width with your letters or a small tip because it's got a nice fine tip. The other part about these is that they have more flow from the tips than a lot of other brush pens that I've used. I will say that the Tombow Fudenosuke, this one here. While I do like it, it is a little bit more. It's got a little bit of a harder tip. This is the SOC two, there's two tips are the same size pens. There's like a navy outside and then the black outside. The black one is a tip that's similar to the Pentel. Then it's got the Navy one has a harder tips. So basically means the flexibility isn't as strong, so you can get a little bit smaller with it, which is nice and I do like that, but I'll show you this side-by-side and why I like the Pentel more so now as I use them more frequently, and I'll go with a black so you can look at the black comparison. So this one is, this goes by a few different names. This is the Pentel Touch. It's also known as the Pentel Flexible Tip. It's got nice hair lines, but it also has that nice bold downstroke. And then this is the one that's comparable by Tombow. And this one is pretty dry, but I have another one. There we go. But I will say that's another thing that I noticed with these ones is that this one's new. And you can see already if you, if you speed up at all. And I'm wonderfully see like this, It's not as generous food and no food and no sure I spell this right. Okay. So that's the difference. And if you look closely at it, you'll see that the blacks are a little bit different. So I don't know if you can tell on camera, but basically, the black on the Pentel Touch is a little more of a blue undertone. And the Tombow Fudenosuke is a little more of a warm undertone. So I don't know if that matters to you, but that's something to also keep in mind. So that's the difference there. But these are like the smaller tip for smaller lettering. And then when we get into larger lettering, I love the Tombow dual brush pens. I love them. The other part that's a little interesting to me. I wrote supplies with this pen. These are dual tips, so they have this nice large brush pen, but then they have a bullet tip on the other side, which is helpful if you ever wanna do outlines are smaller, writing nearby or drawing. But the other thing I find interesting is that what I wrote with the Tombow and with the Pentel, this color matches a lot better than the Tombow dual brush pen with the Tombow Fudenosuke. It's like the ink is different. It doesn't have that matching black if you care about matching those undertones. So that's just an FYI, but this, I'll just write it right here so that you know, Tombow dual brush pen. Okay? And then the one that I really love and I'm gonna do, I grabbed the green is the Karen brush marker. So it's Karen with an I brush marker PRO. They call it liquid ink technology. But this is for larger lettering. But it is a dream to let her with. They are so generous with ink. It's just like so smooth. And the colors, they come in so many different colors. And they're just so pretty. They also have acrylic based brush pens, which is really fun if you want to do any lettering on a surface that isn't just regular paper. So that's the Karen brush pens. And then we have, let's see. So this is a Tombow. Pen tabs is an order, Tombow Fudenosuke Karin markers. So that is what we're using for pens. Now when it comes to paper, I recommend using LaserJet printer. Paper is great. So this is HP 30, I think it is. I've linked it for you guys in the download that you have, but This is great. It's totally passes because it's nice and smooth. Otherwise, anything that's marketed toward actual marker paper because you're felt tips need to have something smooth to let her on. Otherwise, you're going to think that your pens suck because they stop having ink flow or they stop producing as well, or they start to fray. And that's usually because of the micro fibers that are inside of paper that's shreds the tips of the pen. So you want to make sure you're using the right paper or your pens are going to suffer for it and then you're gonna be really, really upset. So this is the cheapest, most economical, and, um, it's great paper to use for practice. I'll use some mixed media paper. When we do some blending. That's just any paper that's £90 paper or higher, just basically anything that can handle water media. And then we'll also be using a paintbrush for when we do some blending. So this is the pigeon letters round brush, number six, and I'll also use a number to these brushes were formatted specifically for brush lettering and for painting, but they have that longer tip. So they have those nice fine hairline strokes and they have a very quick snapback so that you can get that fine point right away. The mat, you just need your downloads which have the guides on them. I recommend printing them on LaserJet paper, not inkjet paper is very different and you will find out the hard way without further ado. Let's jump right on in. 3. The Crucial Basic Strokes: Alright, after all of this, I'm sure that you are more than ready to get into brush pens. This is where we take all of those rules and we merge them into an effortless tool, which doesn't start out effortless, but it will over time with practice, right? So there's a method to why I teach the way that I do. If you're trying to learn the foundations of modern calligraphy and a brush pen at the same time, it can be very overwhelming. That being said, we're going to get into basic strokes. And now is when you can pull out your brush pen. Now, I've made these practice sheets a medium-size. So if you want to use a large brush pen, you can, if you want to use a small tip pen, you can. It doesn't have to match these examples perfectly. It's just going to give you the idea of getting started. So the first thing, downstroke, we've learned about this in our faux calligraphy pack practice. The main thing to keep in mind with brush pens is the angle you hold your pen. You are going to see me hold mine. Very strange. And I, some of you, very, very small percentage will have the same thing as me where we're like over riders even though maybe your left hand or or you're just a weird right hand or over holder pen. I don't know. But ideally you're going to be at a 45 or 35 degree angle and you're going to be higher up on your pen. And this is the ideal position for your hand. You're not going to see me do this. I don't know what the deal is. I probably could have learned that way and it would have made it easier on me moving forward. But if you're starting, let's go, let's go with this nice angle thing to think about. We're not writing like we were really intentional with a regular pens as far as getting in there forming. But with brush pens, we're letting the tip work to our benefit. So we really want to be able to hit it on its side and be able to make these nice clean strokes. You don't want to damage the tips. You don't want to go directly on top of it. You just want it to glide with pressure. And the pressure is the only thing you really need to change. So that said, on your downstroke, you're at this angle, you're going to place your pen on the paper with full pressure. Bring it down. Full pressure, bring it down. And you're just going to do this the whole way across this page. And, you know, there's room. So if you want to put some in-between and continue on, by all means, your upstroke, you're going to pull away from yourself. So this is where people have a harder time because when you pull away from yourself with light pressure but you're still trying to have control. Shaking happens. I'm going to put that out there right now. And it's because it might take a really long time before you don't shake anymore. That's okay. I don't want that to hold you up. In fact, I still have shakiness on my lot of my turns that where I have to transition into lighter pressure, where I'm pulling away. It just it is what it is. And you know what the best thing about lettering is. You can go over it again to clean it up. So don't like you will develop muscle memory and tricks that will help you to avoid that as much as possible. But just know that upstrokes can be our nemesis sometimes. Our overturn. You heard me say this before and this is where we're getting into the actual terms. Your overturn is exactly what it sounds like. It's over turn. So it's like an archer rainbow arc, arch. Both work. I don't know. So we're going light pressure because it's an upstroke. And then as we get into our downstroke, we slowly transition into putting more pressure on our pen. We're going up light, light, light and then transition into full pressure. Light, light, light, light, light transition, transition into full pressure. I just want you to do that the whole way through and remember to go slow. If you don't go slow, it's easier to have less less flow between the upstroke and downstroke and it will get lost. So now let's do the underturn, and this is the opposite of the overturn. You're going to start going with a downstroke, which means that you apply pressure and then slowly transition into your upstroke. This is what this is. This one causes me problems. This is the one I get shaky on. And that's normal. If you go slow, slow, slow, slow, slow, you're not going to shake as much. I tend to at this point rather than so you'll see my hand gripping. But then as I get here. You'll see I kinda stop the grip and push. It's like my arm or my wrist. Starts pushing the pen for me instead of my hand doing it because I will shake. So using your wrist or using your arm and pivoting from different areas is going to help you have more or less control in certain aspects. So, experiment with that. If you experience, if you have any issues, uncertain curves. This is our compound curves. So it begins with an overturn, but then it seamlessly transitions into an underturn. So up, down and up, we go up, hairline stroke, pressure down, up again with light hairline stroke. Hairline stroke, transition into pressure, transition into a nice light hairline. Up, push down and lift. See I got shaky there and I can just fix it. No problem. Do one more of those up, full pressure and up again. Next compound curve beginning with the underturn. This one's probably going to be easier for most of us where we come full pressure down, switch to light pressure and full of pressure down again, full pressure, lift and push. Push, transition into lifting and push down again. Push transition and delight pressure, push down again. You can see I kind of, I didn't get as light as I could've write their normal also, that's why these exercises are really going to help you. Because the more you practice, the more you're gonna get that down. Okay, so those are some of the basic strokes. I actually left out the oval, which I wanna do with you guys too. So we'll do it down here. But then the ascending stem loop and descending stem-loop, those are also basic strokes which we went over in our faux calligraphy. But essentially you're going to be going light, light, light, light into your full pressure stroke down, light into full pressure stroke down light, light, light, full pressure. And then when you come the other way with the descending stem-loop, you're gonna go full pressure and then switch up to light pressure. Full pressure switch into light. That one was much better. Switch and delight. So there we go. Now when it's time for the oval, that's something I really I can't believe I left it out of this. That's something I really, really, really want you to get familiar with with your brush pen because it's like the core of our letters. So it's basically you're oh, but see how you're starting off. Full pressure. You go into light pressure. There's some shakiness here. It doesn't really meet well. So what I like to do, I actually start about two o'clock. So that way I can guide it lightly and then go to full pressure and then the light that I pull back up, we'll meet and it's a lot more seamless. That's my trick for this. So I think it will help you too. So I start here and then meet up here instead of starting at the top because see how the top, it's just like there's this disconnect here, whereas this is nice and seamless. So practice your O's and see how starting at different places really makes a difference. I'm doing this way too fast, sorry. All right. Some of you will try to do that to remember to go slow. It's something I have to constantly tell myself to see how that was really shaky. Even though I started at two o'clock, I can just go back in here and just lightly fix it. And that is there's no rule against that. Obviously it's ideal for us to be able to do this effortlessly, but that's just not always the case. So practice your basic strokes. I I'd love to see a full page of each of these. It's just going to really push you to understand how to use the brush pen before we get into letters. So ideally, you'll do that. And then I'll see you in the next video where we apply it to our letters. 4. Lowercase Alphabet: Welcome that. Let's go over applying our basic strokes with our brush pen to actual letters. This is where things get very fun because we're merging these skills together and finally seeing it come to life with a brush pen. So you're going to have these basic lowercase strokes, practice sheets to download. You can grab those. You can also follow along on any blank practice sheet. Remember, guides our friends. In this case. I have everything drawn out for you. Do you have to match the style exactly? Know, but it will help you, for the most part, have a base to understand and bonus. I made these bounds for you guys so that you have that interests as you get into forming these. Now if you don't want to add the balance, you don't have to, you have your guidelines here, so it should be easy to continue on with, without any balance. So you will see that I have these separated into different strokes. That is to remind you to lift your pen. You can trace these or you can do them separately over here. Remember, we're coming back to all of our skills that we've learned. But what we've done here is imagining these four corners here. I started top-right, go to top-left, go to bottom-left, come back up. I've also kept in mind that my weight line is on my downstrokes. So I do this light pressure, downstroke, light stroke back up, lift my pen, and then I'll come back in and I'm going to bounce this exit stroke like this. And that is my a. So what I want you guys to do is really practice these letter forms on this page, complete it. I'm just gonna go over once with you, but I want you to really spend time working on these. Okay? So I'm gonna do my B now, come down. And then I'm going to bounce this. You can see that it just starts here, drops and comes around. You don't have to do your b like this. You can have it be connecting and then do an exit stroke. You can have it comes through around the side and threw it doesn't matter. So remember as you're going through this, this is just to show you form is to show you wait line. So if you need reference, you'll see these are hairline strokes, these are heavyweight lines. My C, I dance that a little bit. My D, I have that base shape. Keeping in mind where my light hairline strokes are, where my weight lines are, my eat upstroke, downstroke, upstroke, my f upstroke, downstroke, upstroke. And then I have lift my pen with an exit stroke. G. It's kinda like an upstroke and do a downstroke. Upstroke, lift my pen down in through with my descending stem-loop. My age, upstroke, downstroke, lift my pen. Upstroke, downstroke, my eye. Downstroke, upstroke. Add a little dot. Yep. So we're just applying everything that we've already learned to these letters. So downstroke around, upstroke at r dot k. This ones are fun one, so we have around the ascending stem loop and down. So light pressure, heavy pressure. And then starting separating here. We have our weight line. So upstroke, downstroke, upstroke, and then downstroke, upstroke and I bounce that a little bit for funds ease. You can see I have shakiness too, and that's not something I would even fix. So don't hate on your own lettering. If you have that happen to, you, just continue on with the same rules. Here's where I bounce that higher down, higher or excuse me, lower down and through and bounce that. You're oh, see I add a little loop de, you don't have to, but that's basically I keep the same shape in mind, but then I just push it over to the left and through. Just to add a little spice to it, my P, it comes straight down, lift my pen, come back up, surround and surround down and around and through. Q. Downstroke, upstroke, lift my pen down stroke around in an upstroke, lift my pen exit stroke. My are up around with a pressure. I lift my pen down and through. I want to point out, you're going to see me doing my exit strokes like an arch. That's just what I ended up doing. You don't have to you can absolutely have your exit strokes come through like this. They can also be. I'm up like this. It doesn't matter. As long as they're consistent. It doesn't matter. I just this is just something that developed with me over time as I practiced. And you're going to have little little things like that that happened with you too. Okay? Now I'm going to with my S come up, lift my pen around with full pressure up in through. I had some shakiness here. I can smooth that out. I'm going to apply real light pressure just to create, it's gonna be a little bit of a thicker line, but it's not the end of the world. Then my T come down, up and then have this nice crossbar. You'll also see that I crossed this really close to the top of the T stylistic choice. You've got a lot of creative choices going on when you letter. So think about different ways that you can practice doing that. This v I have as a sharp V. You'll also see if you've ever watched people lettering on this follow-through here. You might have seen me just flick that. That's muscle memory. So I did that to prevent me from shaking because I do I shake. I have a lot of caffeine all the time. We got a lot of energy. I also don't have amazing control. So there's a million reasons why try to avoid doing any flicks until you really know where you want your weight lines to be. So because I know I'm gonna do a weight line and then lift up. But if you do that, it might not be accurate or it might look like this and we don't want this. We want it to be seamless. So if you can practice and get that form and slowly, your muscle memory will build up and you'll have, you'll be able to apply tricks like this as well. I just want to mention that because I don't want you to skip the part of cohesiveness. Okay, So w that down and around and then exit stroke my x here it is an action. And then nice hairline. Oops, I went the other way. That's okay. You can do Xs however you want to, but this one, it looks like there we go. Nice hairline stroke and then my Y downstroke, upstroke. And through. And then my z. Lift my pen and follow through. I want you to really practice these letters. Not only should you fill out these three sheets, but also continue them on additional paper. And I would love to see how this worked out for you as well, just for fun. I don't know if you guys ever did the whole, Let's circle our favorite one or best letter that we made in school when we were learning penmanship. But I think that's so fun to do and lettering. So please feel free to take a marker and circle your favorite one of each letter. Because gosh, then we can refer back to it and think, Okay, this is what I liked about how I did that. In our next lesson, we're going to really put some personality into these letters and words as we go into bounce lettering, this is even more exciting. I'll see you soon. 5. Bounce Lettering: We learned the rules to break the rules. I know this is all about breaking the rules, but with rules, there are rules to how we're breaking the rules. And sorry, not sorry, you're going to thank me later. And this is about approaching bounce lettering. I'm going to use a bigger tip just because this is my larger guideline. But I want to show you if this is my baseline here, I'm just going to put it in color so that you can really see my baseline. The main rule that I think is most important when it comes to bounce lettering is to remember to always return to your baseline. Always return to your baseline, always return to your baseline. The second rule that I want to share is to keep your x-height the same in all of your letters. Those two rules will go to the next in a minute. These are the two rules to focus on right now. So we're going to start with the word remember, I think it's a good example on bouncing. And what this is going to look like is this my x-height, this may be assigned. So I'm going to create my R now, right now, I'm just going to letter this without bounce. Okay, So this is what it's gonna look like. It's going to be nice and structured. Okay? That's what it looks like. Now let's make this bounce. I'm actually going to switch the roles of this guideline and make this my baseline. Just so to make this easier. Because all I'm really looking at is my baseline anyway as a change, just ignore this line, okay? So I'm going to do the same thing. Only this time. On the second stroke of my letters that repeat that have two strokes. So my m on the second one, I'm just going to dip below and come back up to my baseline. Same thing. I'm going to dip it below, come back up to my baseline here, then continue on and then is finished. So that's a really easy example. I'm going to show you another example with the word remember to bounce it even more. Alright, so now I'm going to use this baseline again. Same thing, but this time I'm going to, what I ended up doing was bouncing these two spots, but now I'm going to balance. Those are done. Now I'm also going to bounce the top of them and make them higher. So what that will look like as our E and then my top, I have my first-line, but then it comes up a little higher and then down and then continue. So first stroke up a little higher and then down. And then might be just follows. I'm shrinking this down because I ran out of room, but you get the idea. So I bounced the top and I bounced the bottom. Here. These spots. That is, I would put this up here too. That's an example of how you can bounce very easily. So let's look at another words. If we use the word bouncy as an example, I can start. So here's my baseline. If I did this normally, it would look like this, which is not bouncing at all. Okay. If I made it bouncy, I would do my regular be on the baseline. My regular o on the baseline, you on the baseline. Here. Even though it's not a double overturn, if I want to bounce that I can by just dropping it slightly below that line. And then I returned to the baseline. But then this one can drop slightly under, return to the baseline on the next stroke. And then my y. Simple bouncy. But you can see how already it just changes it up and makes it a lot more playful. Now let's do the word calligraphy. And the reason I want to do this one is to show you how I like to bounce letters that are repeating. So LL in calligraphy. So I can have my C, It's on my baseline, a, on my baseline, I lift my pen, continue. Okay. And then my l. So I can put this on the baseline. Within the second one. I'm just going to drop. It's going to be approximately the same length. I'm just dropping it below and then returning to my baseline. That's the biggest rule. And then I go into my G and then into my R. And then my a. And I can drop this just below if I want. P returned to the baseline h, and I'll drop this. Stroke below the second stroke and then returned to my baseline and done. So. What I find a lot of times when people do bounce lettering at first is they end up having bounce all over the place and there's not structure, then it just doesn't look right. So in order to make that structure the biggest real I can tell you is to continue to, anytime you bounce returned to baseline. Anytime you bounce returned to baseline, bounce returned to baseline on the next stroke. That's gonna be your easiest way to actually make this effective. So let's do this again with a few more words. I'm going to do lettering. So I have my L. This is gonna be normal normal way. Notice I changed guidelines. That's what I mean by they are interchangeable. Okay. So this is what lettering looks like. Normal. But then I can bounce it. And remember that soft t that we talked about. This is where the bounce lettering and those soft T's and things like that really bring it to life. So I'm going to immediately bounce my L by bringing it below. If I treat this as my baseline, drop the L and then the next letter is going to sit on the baseline. Then I have my t. I'm going to have that sit on the baseline and then have my next he dropped below it. Have my E meet at the baseline again. Otherwise it's going to start looking sloppy. Then I'll have my R drop. My I meet at the baseline again, my first stroke and my n baseline and then dropped below. And then my G finish off and then my soft crossbar over my T's and see how nice and playful that looks. But I stayed on that baseline throughout all the whole word. But I was able to bounce still. Just makes it so much more playful. And you could do this with the double letters opposite to. You could drop the first T and then bring the next one up. Not a rule to that. It's just, it ends up being something that you just kinda start doing, not realizing that you have a method to yours. Now you have new practice with bounce calligraphy. And what I want you to do is letter five drinks, five different textures, and five different gemstones. I know that that's very random, but that's, that's one of the things that I love about lettering is that you can choose the weirdest, weirdest words to practice, things that you wouldn't even think about. So once again, five drinks, five textures, five gemstones. Can't wait to see all of your bounce lettering. 6. Ombré Blending Effect: Welcome back. Now, we're gonna get into all those special effects that are just eye candy. The first thing that I want to share with you is how to blend colors. And this is a little bit tricky for a lot of folks because of a number of reasons. The first is, you can't really use typical paper that you would use for lettering, otherwise won't really hold up. And the reason why is because most brush pens are water-based. And when you go over the same area over and over and over again, it's adding more moisture to that area. And then the paper will start to peel up and it won't give you the effect that you want. So that's where we move over to mixed media paper. And this is just a heavier weight paper, not quite watercolor paper, but it's going to be able to withstand that blending effect that we're going for. So I'm going to show you the way that I like to do this. And then I'll show you a couple of other ways that are just as effective. The first way is taking my lighter color that I'm using like so and laying it down. Taking the darker and more saturated color and just coloring over that more like a third of the way or even a fourth of the way. And then I actually liked to use water and a paintbrush. And so I'll come in and get this wet. And then I will pull that color down and I don't want it to be too too wet. So if you see it start to pool, make sure to rinse or swipe your brush on the side so that it doesn't get too out of control. And that is my blend. So it's very, very simple and easy to do, and it essentially works like watercolor. So you could create a full piece with the same effect and then blend them together like that. This way right here is pulling the color down, putting that new color on top and actually using a blender pen, which is just clear ink. And then you'll pull that color down. The reason why this one is not it used to be my favorite. The reason why it's not so much anymore is because the felt tip is, no matter how moist the pen is, it still can create a little bit of pilling because you're just pushing and pulling that paper fiber. Whereas with the brush, it's a much softer effect, more water on it and whatnot. Now the third way is by putting your color down, your next color and then going back in with that same color and pulling that down. The problem with this is that you don't have a super seamless blend unless you go over it again, which darkens that initial color, which is fine, but that's the third way. So those are the three ways to blend. So for this exercise, what I want you to do is we're going to letter or a word, and I will just choose the word blend. I'm gonna do this with a paintbrush so I can show you how seamless and easy it can be. Note if you do it a different way, I recommend not finishing all of your strokes before you start blending because if it dries too much, your brush tips will not like to try to reactivate that. Whereas with the paintbrush and the water, it'll be a lot easier. So do the word blend. It will actually allow me do the whole word and go back in and set this all where I want it. So basically I'm just choosing the tops of where my downstrokes go. You can do it wherever you want to. Then I can take my paintbrush, make sure that most of the waters off but it's just wet enough. Start to activate that color and then pull it down. Like so. Come over to this side. I'm using a large paint brush for this. I mean, it's doable for sure, but I should have grabbed a two. This is a six. Yeah. That then I would have had sharper edges. I'll actually grab that now. Okay, and then I'll continue picking up some of this color, just blending it in. And then if there's any harsh areas like right here, I'll just grab water and soften it. You don't want to too much water because you're gonna, it's gonna make hotspots. So that's one of the reasons why I didn't do this method for awhile when I was learning. But it also made me Sharad a lot of paper because I was really going crazy with the The felt tips of the blender pen. So I go with either and figure out what works best for you. They both blends. That's the idea of what we're doing. And then if you see that the color is pulling down too much, just rinse your brush again. And then you'll be able to just blend that down instead of pulling color and pulling color and pulling color. And you'll notice that I also start to push up into it rather than pull it down. That's because as I push into it, I'm picking up some of that blue, but not like a ton of it. Whereas see if I pull down, it's really grabbing a lot of that blue. So that's just a little trick so that you don't, you can say basically so you can maintain the blend. Then if you see too much is getting on there, same thing, just syringe and then pull down to Blend. And I like to sometimes pull it into the hairline stroke just if it looks like there's a disconnect because I do want that to be, you know, like a seamless blend. And I'm looking back and finding any hotspots and before they're all the way dry, just smoothing those out. It's bound to happen. I mean, you could be brand new at this or seasoned data and you're going to see him start to happen and that is just fine. Don't sweat. You can just smooth them out with more water. But the whole point is there's two. The reason why they're happening is because there was too much water on our brush. So the other thing to keep in mind too, is to try to really stay inside of the lines that you of your letters. Because otherwise it's going to start looking really shaky and choppy. But you can always clean up later after you blend it, but it's gonna be harder. Okay? So that is a really lovely blend, right? That's how to blend in that way. Let's look at two additional ways to do this blend effect. The first is to take a non porous surface like this blending palette. And this is essentially just a laminated piece of paper. So you can do this with a Tupperware lid, even whatever you have lying around. And what I will do is just color with to put the ink down. And then I'll take this brush, which is the lighter one. And I'll pick that color up and you're like, Okay, you're mixing color. What's the deal? These are self-cleaning. So when I have that blue ink on the tip, but as I go, It's going to gradually disappear. And so what this does is it's a method to make it so that you have the shakiness, so that you have that blend that starts from the beginning and then goes something you'll probably notice is that your lettering longer words are bigger or anything like that, then you'll start to lose it sooner. So you might want to depend for the first two and then let it disappear. But that's another option. Some people also will. You'll see letters that will pick up a little bit. Letter there, first letter, and then go back in to start that blend again. This is just another way of effortlessly doing what we did. It just presents a little bit differently. Those are different styles of blends and three different ways to blend. So I can't wait to see you, which is your favorite. 7. Your Class Project: While we may have come to the end of our curriculum, it doesn't mean that your modern calligraphy journey is over ne, know, you now have the fundamental knowledge and structure and skills in place to be able to expand, to really develop your style and tweak as needed as long as you always come back to basics. Remember your brushstrokes, remember your cohesive alphabet. Remember to utilize these skills that you've been practicing over the last month. And everything else is your playground. And that's the most exciting part. Your final project for the class is to create a piece of wall art that you can either gift or proudly Hang on your own walls. Or how about an or create a greeting card that you can either create analog or you can digitize and print to your heart's content, it will make a wonderful gift for your loved ones. This practice never gets boring. I wanna give you a hot tip. Think about ways that you can take your modern calligraphy and push the boundaries rather than typical quotes. So we might see what can you say through your lettering? What can you say through your calligraphy that is going to reach the people who you want to reach. So think about those types of phrases and that is really going to set you apart. And I can't wait to continue to watch you as you go along this journey and be sure to check out my other classes because there's always something fun to dive into creatively. So I'll see you soon on the Internet. Until then.