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Learning Italic


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#21 Ken Fraser

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 15:41

I have neglected italic for a while because I have been trying to get a better faster writing style for work and italic seemed to really suffer if I try to rush.

 

You may be interested in this experiment in writing at a gradually increasing speed. This was written by the late Tom Gourdie in 2 minutes. It's interesting to note the gradual widening of the script as speed increases.

The object of the exercise was to demonstrate how well Italic stands up to being written fast. The original writing was slightly larger than seen here.

 

Gourd337.jpg

This thread has made an excellent start. Hopefully, this will prove to be as successful as the Copperplate and Spencerian topics.

 

Ken


Edited by caliken, 16 November 2013 - 15:44.


#22 dickydotcom

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 16:37

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#23 Mickey

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 17:04

This thread is especially timely for me, having just returned to italic after a 2 year pointed pen hiatus. I continue writing Spencerian monoline and practice OP almost daily, but a small edged pen (c. .5mm L-oblique) has crept back into my pocket as the principal carry pen. After a short period of reacquaintance, I find I can write both hands with equal speed and can change pen type pretty much at will. As Ken's post above suggests, italic's appearance does hold up well for me with speed (better than Spencerian), right up to the point where it falls apart completely. My italic can be pushed more gracefully, but won't be pushed as far.

 

As with pointed pen, I'm more interested in italic as handwriting, not as calligraphy, and, after 2 years writing Spencer almost exclusively, I find my revenant italic has a distinct Spencerian bent. Considering the italic tropes in my Spencerian, this shouldn't have been a surprise: I seem to lack the neuro-muscular bandwidth to main two separate, distinct hands. (Ken, you'll have no competition from me.) I'll probably post an example sometime in the coming weeks.


Edited by Mickey, 16 November 2013 - 17:06.

The liberty of the press is indeed essential to the nature of a free state; but this consists in laying no previous restraints upon publications, and not in freedom from censure for criminal matter when published. Every freeman has an undoubted right to lay what sentiments he pleases before the public; to forbid this, is to destroy the freedom of the press; but if he publishes what is improper, mischievous or illegal, he must take the consequence of his own temerity. (4 Bl. Com. 151, 152.) Blackstone's Commentaries


#24 cellmatrix

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 17:18

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#25 dms525

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 17:23

Salman,

 

Thank you for the compliment!

 

What I posted above was written with a lined page under the writing page. I often practice without guidelines, but I have a tendency for my lines to slope upwards without guidelines. Even with guidelines, maintaining an even baseline is difficult for me, as I'm sure you can see.

 

More practice, eh?

 

David



#26 cellmatrix

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 18:18

I started out working on my penmanship with chancery italic last year, and then switched to Spencerian. I still use italic more for daily handwriting (it's more compact). I haven't however, been practising it formally for a while. This is something I jotted down (at normal writing speed) a couple of weeks ago. Sorry about the craptastic picture quality.

 

EU452id.jpg

your handwriting rocks!



#27 cellmatrix

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 18:19

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you too David, nice work! I studied at OHSU near Reed College and love the area there, a beautiful albeit wet place to live.



#28 Randal6393

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 19:04

Agree, David. I started out with Platignum pens and have not found any better. Somehow, never got into the Osmiroids although many calligraphers of the '70's thought the world of the pens. Now I own many pens, most of which I have ground into italic tips myself. Even the italic nibs that came that way required somewhat of a tune-up to perform at their best. But have never found a pen that writes better than my early Platignums. I know Ken Fraser uses many pens and has a special place in his heart for his Manuscript pen set. I guess it's not so much the tool as the craftsman.

 

Enjoy,


Yours,
Randal

From a person's actions, we may infer attitudes, beliefs, --- and values. We do not know these characteristics outright. The human dichotomies of trust and distrust, honor and duplicity, love and hate --- all depend on internal states we cannot directly experience. Isn't this what adds zest to our life?
 


#29 mvarela

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 20:57

your handwriting rocks!

Thanks! It's usually less flourished, this was just for fun (if you can read Spanish, you'll immediately get that it's not serious! :)), so I decorated it a bit :)



#30 Ken Fraser

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 23:11

As with pointed pen, I'm more interested in italic as handwriting, not as calligraphy, and, after 2 years writing Spencer almost exclusively, I find my revenant italic has a distinct Spencerian bent. Considering the italic tropes in my Spencerian, this shouldn't have been a surprise: I seem to lack the neuro-muscular bandwidth to main two separate, distinct hands. (Ken, you'll have no competition from me.) I'll probably post an example sometime in the coming weeks.

IMHO this is probably no bad thing, as your handwriting will reflect more personality as a result of the mix, than mine ever could!

Over the years, I've become so accustomed to isolating the various writing styles, that I doubt if I could produce a 'mix' without a great deal of effort.

 

I look forward to seeing your 'new' handwriting.

 

Ken


Edited by caliken, 16 November 2013 - 23:14.


#31 Mickey

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 22:55



IMHO this is probably no bad thing, as your handwriting will reflect more personality as a result of the mix, than mine ever could!

Over the years, I've become so accustomed to isolating the various writing styles, that I doubt if I could produce a 'mix' without a great deal of effort.

 

I look forward to seeing your 'new' handwriting.

 

Ken

 

As threatened / promised, here is a short sample of my handwriting du jour in the Italian mode. Like most of my scribbling, it is idiosyncratic and subtle, i.e., mongrelized and not displaying much line variation. The pen is a Nakaya with a flexible (modified) fine left oblique (c. .4mm wide), which shows almost no variation expect with IG inks on hard finished papers, like Clairefontaine. (The sample was written on Classic Crest.) None the less, this is a pleasant pen to write with and these days it lives in my pocket. Probably the most authentically Italian aspect of the sample below is the ink, Stipula Verde Muschiato. (For those curious, the x-height is about 2mm. The sample was written at normal speed, not as calligraphy.)

 

 

fpn_1384814372__newjerusalem.jpg


Edited by Mickey, 18 November 2013 - 22:57.

The liberty of the press is indeed essential to the nature of a free state; but this consists in laying no previous restraints upon publications, and not in freedom from censure for criminal matter when published. Every freeman has an undoubted right to lay what sentiments he pleases before the public; to forbid this, is to destroy the freedom of the press; but if he publishes what is improper, mischievous or illegal, he must take the consequence of his own temerity. (4 Bl. Com. 151, 152.) Blackstone's Commentaries


#32 ruben50

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 07:10

So here is my first attempt at italics. I grabbed this out of a book I have lying around the house and since it was 1 AM when I did this I guess it's decent. I'll definitely try my hand at the one you posted on the first page Ken. That one seems a bit easier than the one i was using. 

 

I wrote this using a 1.1 mm nib but I think I should try it with my 1.9 mm nib next. What do you usually prefer when working with italics?

 

Scan%2520Nov%252019%252C%25202013%252C%2


Edited by ruben50, 19 November 2013 - 14:59.

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#33 Ken Fraser

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 10:38

 

As threatened / promised, here is a short sample of my handwriting du jour in the Italian mode. Like most of my scribbling, it is idiosyncratic and subtle, i.e., mongrelized and not displaying much line variation. The pen is a Nakaya with a flexible (modified) fine left oblique (c. .4mm wide), which shows almost no variation expect with IG inks on hard finished papers, like Clairefontaine. (The sample was written on Classic Crest.) None the less, this is a pleasant pen to write with and these days it lives in my pocket. Probably the most authentically Italian aspect of the sample below is the ink, Stipula Verde Muschiato. (For those curious, the x-height is about 2mm. The sample was written at normal speed, not as calligraphy.)

 

 

 

Mickey :

 

This look to me like straightforward personalised Italic. The basic ingredients which make Italic what it is, are there - specifically, the characteristic wedge shape and the lack of loops. As far as I know, the linking from the centre of the minuscule e to the following letter is pure Italicism...but I may be wrong.  There may be a Spencerian influence but it must be very minor. - interesting.  Thanks for posting.

 

Ken



#34 Mickey

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 14:38

Mickey :

 

This look to me like straightforward personalised Italic. The basic ingredients which make Italic what it is, are there - specifically, the characteristic wedge shape and the lack of loops. As far as I know, the linking from the centre of the minuscule e to the following letter is pure Italicism...but I may be wrong.  There may be a Spencerian influence but it must be very minor. - interesting.  Thanks for posting.

 

Ken

As a linguist might say, it's more an accent than a dialect or register. The main difference from my pre-Spencerian handwriting is a tendency towards being a bit more angular, and, when not writing for public consumption, adoption the Spencer terminal 't' and 'd'. It's also fun to let a some uncial shapes leak in on, for example on a terminal 'm' or 'n' or initial 'w.' As my italic writing is now almost exclusively for my own consumption, I don't need to concern myself with stylistic consistency. It's also something of a hand in progress, primarily because of the pen, which shows to better advantage at around x=3mm with the present width and minimal slant. This puts the l-oblique's thin strokes where they belong, on the join angle and wedge diagonal. All I need to do is I use up my present paper stock and make a template for printing x=3mm Seyes paper.

 

BTW, this nib is a real sweet-heart, a piece of custom work from John Mottishaw, a flex-modified OF, cut from a soft medium. The idea was to get something nearly quill soft, not blatantly flexible. It's close.  Though not part of the specification, when inverted the pen is a perfectly usable crisp r-oblique.


The liberty of the press is indeed essential to the nature of a free state; but this consists in laying no previous restraints upon publications, and not in freedom from censure for criminal matter when published. Every freeman has an undoubted right to lay what sentiments he pleases before the public; to forbid this, is to destroy the freedom of the press; but if he publishes what is improper, mischievous or illegal, he must take the consequence of his own temerity. (4 Bl. Com. 151, 152.) Blackstone's Commentaries


#35 fiberdrunk

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 16:08

This was done with calligraphy markers, with a bit of Joanne Fink inspiration.

 

10946330746_b3a9eca4fb_b.jpg


Find my homemade ink recipes on my Flickr page here.

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#36 mboschm

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 16:20

This could be the rules for my everyday italic handwriting.

 

DSC_0584_zpsea1246bf.jpg


Edited by mboschm, 19 November 2013 - 16:21.

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#37 akustyk

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 16:31

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#38 mvarela

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 16:34

IMG_7762_zps457c3343.jpg

 

I wish I could have written like that after only a few months, or even after a year, for that matter!

That's simply outstanding!

 

Cheers,

  Martín



#39 mboschm

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 17:18

Your hybrid writing is really beautiful. Keep on with it!


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#40 dms525

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Posted 20 November 2013 - 00:19

IMG_7762_zps457c3343.jpg

 

I think your italic hand is exceptional, considering you have only been learning it for a few months. I envy your consistent letter size, slope and spacing and your level lines.

 

David






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