Neil Tasker

Calligraphy and Lettering

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Lettering Project Example

Hey guys

I wanted to upload an example of a recent project I had worked on and walk you all through the process, hopefully giving you a more indepth look at how things work. I know that some students may look at the word illustrative as soley meaning that the lettering actually is made of something else, such as the lettering being made out of flowers. That is a way to look at illustrative lettering, but also we need to consider the feeling that lettering has without any effects. I am talking how we look at script vs big blocky lettering. Each style of lettering has a certain feeling and emotion attatched to it, and that is what I am trying to get students to look at.

Firstly, projects begin with a client brief. The idea here is to get as much information on what your client is looking for in what you are going to create for them. Always ask questions! The art director in this case was looking for something very elegant, high class, esquire looking. Going back to how we had talked about lettering and emotion we can start to put together some ideas in our mind of what is elegant in lettering. Is elegant lettering blocky and rough, or is smooth, flowing and flourished? something to think about!

The process begins the same with a sketch, and upon approval I scanned that into illustrator and began tracing with the pen tool. I have shown the outline in picture 2 to point out that all of the letter froms are traced with lines going through the center of each letterform. note* (I also try to keep my plotted points to a minimal, as this makes curving the letterforms much easier.)* The reasoning behind using lines going through the center of the letter instead of the outside is that I know I am going to use the width tool to add on the weight from that center line to the outside of each letterform. In picture 3 I have began using the width tool to add weight to each letter, and you can see the lettering is really coming together now. Note that I have also used guidelines so that my lettering is on the same slanted baseline. I also used slant lines, but took them out to not clog up the image. Finally in the last photo I have expanded the strokes and addjusted the tops of letters such as the t, a and u.

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