Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Custom Calligraphy

Custom Calligraphy. What fun . What a process. Recently, a very  nice client  hired me to write out her own poem  in  calligraphy. She had seen  and purchased my calligraphy before, so she knew my capabilities.  I was only given final  dimensions for the finished work, which came to me  via the computer. There was quite a bit of writing.
 There is always that element of surprise in custom work. What is told about the job and what it actually entails are often somewhat different.  Once I saw the poetry,  my mind started imagining  about how best to go about this. Which alphabet would work the best?  Not a lot of room for flourishes. The Uncial style is a good alphabet for a lot of words in a small space, with all the letters in one line.  I had been given free reign on what to do, so that gives excitement, but also a sense of responsibility. Of course I want the client to be happy.
We had originally talked about black and white, but I was thinking  color. Black and white often looks like merely a copy, and I wanted to show off the originality of this work. Being  asked to do reproductions of this work, matted as above,  I liked the idea of color to add depth to the work. Dark blue or green was her request.
I chose a very dark blue watercolor to write out the letters. Due to the very nature of watercolor, there are hues within each stroke. When I first dip my pen, it comes out dark and opaque. As I write on, the color gets  lighter, then dark again as I dip my pen into my palette. I always like to leave plenty of space, so that the words stand out.
I would like to say I nailed it on the first try, but that would be a lie. I had  trial and errors; changes while visualizing and actually writing; and  lot of breaths before this calligrapher  could lay down her pen and say. " It is complete. I am satisfied."

1 comment:

  1. Lovely. I liked the ending about trial and error and then knowing when it's done.