Keeping at it | Skillshare Projects

Annie Mathews

instagram: anniem00



Keeping at it

5th July 2014

I was trying to get this phrase done in one take, but no luck, so I decided to get the scissors out and pick the words that I managed not to totally wreck (although I quite liked the blotchy outcome of the word "death".  Lyrics by The The.

Update 25 Feb 2014

Am still keeping up with the practice.

I'm finding that I prefer cartridge paper more than layout paper, because it holds up better to the moisture, and the paper doesn't buckle.

That said, it's still good to be free and easy on the cheaper layout paper - there is always a bit of fear of messing up the more expensive paper. First world problems, eh?!

Update 26 Jan 2014

I'm happy to say I'm still bitten by the calligraphy bug. I find I'm enjoying writing out phrases from songs I like.

The phrase "Somersault in sand with me" is by Zero 7, and sung by Sia Furler.

I also had another go with the Brause nib - I found it a bit difficult at first to control (more springy compared to the Nikko G). I used sepia acrylic ink for this attempt.

For the blue writing I thinned down some gouache.

I discovered splashes on the page the morning after the night before - my cat knocked the dish of gouache, throwing splashes up the wall and on the floor (including blue paw prints on the floor).

Update 19 Dec 2013

Treated myself to writing on watercolour paper - what a joy!

The ink holds up much better and the hairlines seem less bleedy compared to the layout paper. This lettering is a snippet from the song Supposed sung by James Arthur.

All I want for Xmas is a ream of watercolour paper :D

Update 13 Dec 2013

I'm enjoying practising the letters, and notice that for some reason I'm more heavy handed. I think in part that's because I like the fatter downstrokes.

However, I'm finding more ink splodges, when that happens, I just carry on and try and modify the pressure on the next letters.

The pic below is another lyric from James Arthur's album (track is Get Down). I reversed the image to create the white lettering in photoshop.

Update 5th Dec 2013

Can't stop practising, well actually I have to when my hand gets into a claw-like shape and it aches to unfurl my fingers! 

So I had some music on and found myself writing down some lyrics. This one is sung by James Arthur (UK Xfactor winner last year) "You're nobody 'til someone loves you".

There's lots not right with it, but heck, at least I know it's a bit sucky, but I'm quite pleased with my progress in a short time.

I used Daler Rowney acrylic ink in Purple Lake with the Nikko G nib.


Excited to start this class, I jumped straight in, had a go at writing out the alphabet...and as you would expect from a newbie, it wasn't a thing of beauty.

However I know I have to get to know my equipment; the springyness of the nib, the pooling and drying up of the ink, the texture of the paper, the angle I hold the pen, the crack I discovered in my wooden pen holder that soaked up the ink and spread all over my fingers. Such a voyage of discovery!

So, taking inspiration from the Karate Kid; hours of wax-on, wax-off, I have been practising individual letters. My theory is that I need to work on the movement of each letter, so that it's ingrained, before I charge ahead (as much as my impatient self wants to!).

Here's my first efforts after a few hours of practice.

I have to say, the act of repeating a letterform over and over is very relaxing. Trying not to grizzle too much when the letters don't lay down as I expect, but will embrace the wonkyness - it will improve with time...won't it?!

Here's a link to me practising my abc (video lasts 1 minute).


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