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November 21, 2015

TUTORIAL: HAND LETTERING & FAUX CALLIGRAPHY (pt1)

Hi everyone! I’m really sorry if I’m not able to post entries lately, I can’t find time because of an eventful week and the APEC weekend. But as promised, here’s a tutorial entry to show you the techniques I use for my hand lettering and faux calligraphy fix.
I know that almost everyone of us are enticed with this kind art and I know that some don’t have the courage to do it because they think that it’s hard. Well, it isn’t. So here I am, doing this blog post to share to you how I do it so you can do it too. :)
I’m dividing the tutorial to three parts. The first one is this, the FAUX CALLIGRAPHY tutorial. The second is, HAND LETTERING BASICS. And the third, BRUSH PEN HAND LETTERING. I have recently ordered nibs and inks to practice legit calligraphy but I’m still working on that so I’ll post about it once I’m confident enough to show it to you.
Faux Calligraphy is the term used for writing calligraphic script without using a dip pen. This is more time consuming and would take time to perfect but I assure you that when you get used to this, you could use other material just fine.
Let’s start with the basic materials:

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  1. Paper - I use a Canson Sketch Pad because it only costs around PHP 50 but has a very good quality
  2. Pencil - I use Stabilo 3B 
  3. Eraser - Faber Castell 
  4. Calligraphy Pen - Pilot Drawing Pen / ZIG Calligraphy Pen / Artline Calligraphy Pen
In the photo above, I have shown the materials that could easily be found in bookstores. But since it’s somehow cheating calligraphy, you could basically use any pen or marker around. 

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It does not matter how well your penmanship is, just go and write your quotes or phrases in cursive with a pencil. I needed to do this when I was just starting out because I had so many errors but as time went by, I got used to doing faux calligraphy that I already do it directly with a pen.

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You put lines on the down strokes to know which part of the letters are needed to be thick and what is needed to remain thin. I’ve attached a simple reference I found in Google for you to know which part of the letters are defined as down strokes. 

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Trace the pencil written words and lines with your chosen markers or pens then erase the pencil marks afterwards. For the photo above, I used the Pilot Drawing Pen.

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After steps 1, 2, and 3, you can now shade the spaces between the lines you draw beside the down strokes and the letters itself. After that, just complete the I’s and the T’s and you’re done!
When finished, this is how it’ll look like:

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SEE! It’s as easy as that!
For reference, I wrote the phrase in simple script using the calligraphy pens mentioned earlier.

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I know that I’m still not that good of a “typographer” compared to others who really do well, but I just really want to share with you the techniques I have discovered during the process of learning. I used the phrase “PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT” because it really is what gets me through all the frustrations every time I do lettering. Cursive or not, always remember the down strokes should be thick and the opposite for the upstrokes.
** I intentionally captured the photos up close and not “Instagram worthy” since I want you guys to see how it really looks like.
I have some Calligraphy Practice Pads and worksheets with me so leave me a message if you want a copy! :) thank you so much! Can’t wait to post PART 2: HAND LETTERING BASICS since I know that we will all have fun playing around with colors and different fonts.
Let’s all learn how to do this together. There really are times when I’m on the verge of giving up, but I would just take look on my Instagram photos and see the progress that I’ve made. I know that eventually, this will just be as easy as I first thought it was for me and as attractive as all the others that we see. I practice everyday and I also watch YouTube clips for more tips and techniques. Reeeaaalllyyyy hoping and praying that you learned something with my post. I tried my best! :) ‘Til my next post, cheers! 

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