That wise old Dr Seuss (2 week challenge)

Excited to be part of the two-week challenge! I've chosen a sweet little Dr Seuss quote to calligraph:

"Why fit in when you were born to stand out?" - Dr Seuss

The quote is special to me because I recently came across it in a journal that my sister gave me as a birthday gift earlier this year. She had hand-written a series of quotes at random places inside the journal, which I only discovered as I started writing my way through the book! I came across this quote on a day when I really needed to hear this affirmation :)

I hope I can do it justice!


Just for fun I've included the results of the warm-up exercise (would love to see some other people posting theirs too!)

I'm looking forward to trying at my hand at some "real" calligraphy in the week ahead...




UPDATE: 23/09/2015

Had a lot of fun this week getting to know my new Zebra G Nib J

Things were a little scratchy and messy in the beginning, but after a few pages of practise I could already see (and feel) an improvement, which certainly inspired me to keep going! After many many many more practise pages and doodles I feel like my confidence with the nib is growing, and I am starting to get some results that I’m pretty happy with (for a newbie anyway!). There is something very addictive about working with pen and ink!

I had some ink flow issues in the beginning: the ink would flow really heavily for the first few characters, then it would be perfect for 2-3 characters, and then the nib would run dry! So frustrating! I struggled with this even after cleaning the nib, and tapping off the excess ink like Bryn demonstrates in the videos. Eventually, I found that the following worked for me:

  1. I passed the nib through a flame to burn off any greasy residue (this did help a bit).
  2. Tried a different, slightly thicker paper. This actually seemed to make a big difference, which I didn’t really expect. I thought the issue was with me and my handling of the nib, but the ink flow does seem to be more consistent and predictable on certain types of papers compared to others – or it could just be me… ;)

Below is a shot of my practise sheets – in all their messy glory!




I also started playing around with some different styles – just getting a feel for the pen on the page:




Finally, I started playing around with possible layouts for the phrase I want to calligraph. Below are the two options I like the most at the moment. I like the direction these are taking, but I'm not totally happy with the sketches yet (too frilly?) - so I will probably play around a bit more and try some other options before I get to the final inking.

And and all comments are welcome! :)





UPDATE: 28/09/2015

After one failed attempt (smudged the wet ink - darn!) here is the final calligraphed piece:


And here is a close up:


Some of my strokes are a bit shaky - which I think is because I am probably writing a bit too slowly. I need to practise a bit more to build up my confidence and control with the nib, so that I can produce more fluid strokes (but practising shouldn't be a problem because it's so much fun, and quite addictive!).

My final piece is far from perfect, but I am happy with how much I have improved from my first attempts with the nib at the start of the class.There is something about working with ink on crisp white paper that is so satisfying ;) Onward and upward from here!


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