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  1. My friend, an events planner, is about to lose her calligrapher to retirement! She is in need of an EXPERT calligrapher located in Chicago who can approximate several fonts (to match wedding invitations, etc.). She does a LOT of events so this could be a good gig for the right person. Pam Spitzner
  2. Does one exist??? I have been searching for months for a fountain pen with a calligraphy nib. I am a Persian linguist and love to write my text with a calligraphy pen. The only pens I can find are plastic and that is not acceptable. I did find one for $350, but that is not possible. Every pen I find that is long and heavy and says calligraphy ...is a regular fountain pen nib. I am hoping there is a pen expert or two here that can help me solve this dilemma. Thank you! Charlee
  3. For your interest: An exhibition on Calligraphy and Islam is currently displayed in the Cooley Gallery at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. Later in the Month, there will be two associated lectures and a special scriptorium conducted by Dr. Hamidreza Ghelichkhan. For more information, click on this link to the Cooley Art Gallery David
  4. Hi all, I just bough a new fountain pen, a Lamy Safari. I purchased a converter for the ink, and two nibs. (A fine nib, and a 1.1 italic nib) I have been using the Safari for about two weeks now, and have gotten used to writing with it. However, I want to have handwriting that is neat and consistent, but I don't know which font to choose, and where to find the alphabet so that I can practice using it. So my question(s) are... 1. What are some good fonts to follow and learn? How should I go about mastering this font so that it is neat and consistent? 2. What are some good calligraphy alphabets for me to start learning with the italic nib? I want to use the fine nib for schoolwork and such, and the italic for calligraphy. Please include links to where I might find the alphabet of a font that I can follow, or share a picture with your own penmanship so that I can get a general idea of what I like. Thanks in advance, mountainrider
  5. Hello Well, my name is Gabriel and I am new to this community, which as far as I have seen I like very much. Notice that I am spanish so if i misspell words or have grammar mistakes, well, I am sorry! So, I started to use fountain pens a couple of moths ago when my father gave me what i think is a Waterman Hemisphere for my birthday, and since that day I just love them. Weeks passed and I commented to my mother that I loved writing with fountain pens and surprise, she told me she had a bunch of fountain pens she didn't use anymore and told me I could have them! As you can see, there I was with a bunch of really cool fountain pens, ( i will include a picture of them), but I just felt that they were a bit too scratchy so I decided to buy a Lamy Safari, because of all the great critics I had heard from it. Well, turns out that it really is as great as they say, at least from my opinion, it was waay smoother than my other fountain pens. Whit my Lamy Safari I also bought a 1.1 nib, and, for my surprise, my handwriting was incredibly better!! That is something i have had a lot of trouble in my life, I have horrible a handwriting and teachers almost couldn't read what I wrote. Now I am studying Aerospace Engineering and it turns out I start to care about my handwriting when the tests are choose-a-option type ( I don't know what you call them ) so nobody was going to read what a i wrote. Well, the fine nib my Lamy safari came with is great for me when it comes to writing in a test in order to choose the right option, because i can write really fasta and smooth, but, for writing things that I am actually going to study from the 1.1 nib is just fantastic BUT, a bit too scratchy, so, here goes the question. Which fountain pen do you recommend me for writing, with a 1.1 nib or something like that. I thought about the Art Pen by Rotring, but I have also considered an oblique nib, even tough i have never tried one! What do you think? So, this are some of the pens i have, form left to right, ( or up to down) I think they are : Sheaffer, whit a 14k gold nib, ( ni idea which model), Waterman (Thats all I have discovered form this one hahaha), Waterman Hemisphere, Inoxcrom ( no idea which model either). Even tough they are not bad it jus fells that they should be smoother, i dont know, maybe their nib is broken or something like that, and i say this because the lamy safari writes waaay better that the sheaffer with 14k gold . http://i883.photobucket.com/albums/ac39/Gabrieljauma/20140109_131850_zps9e25c5b3.jpg[/url] These are some of my other fountain pens, the las three i made them myself!! http://i883.photobucket.com/albums/ac39/Gabrieljauma/20140109_130245_zpsb0d7d52a.jpg[/url] And finally a writing sample of how bad a i write hahaha! http://i883.photobucket.com/albums/ac39/Gabrieljauma/20140109_131627_zpsd02bfd4f.jpg[/url] Thanks for reading!!!
  6. Bradv123

    Dip Pen Help

    I wasn't really sure where I should post this, so I apologize if it's in the wrong section. I'm looking into getting a dip pen for more Spencerian or Copperplate writing rather than Gothic or Italic. My question is where do I start? Like what are some good (preferably cheap) products to get started with. I have read that Gillot 303 and 404 nibs are good, What makes them so good? What type of ink should I be using? What type of holders are good? Will all nibs fit in all holders? What website can I get all of this stuff from? Thank you very much!
  7. So I'm looking for a wet noodle, or a fountain pen with a great deal of flex. I will be using it for calligraphy, as well as an everyday pen. I want one that is under $100 and will ship to CANADA. I have recently bought a vintage waterman 518?, or something similar that claimed to have a flex nib. I think it's more of a semi-flex. I have attached 2 files, small writing samples of my namiki falcon, and one of my waterman. I would like to know what these would be classified as in terms of flexibility. As well as where I could find a wet noodle. Lastly, I'm 13 and use fountain pens only. Is this normal?
  8. "We are at one of those turning points, for the written word, that come only rarely in human history. We are witnessing the introduction of new writing tools and media. It has only happened twice before as far as the Roman alphabet is concerned – once in a process that was several centuries long when papyrus scrolls gave way to vellum books in late antiquity, and again when Gutenberg invented printing using movable type and change swept over Europe in the course of just one generation […]. Changing times now mean that for a brief period many of the conventions that surround the written word appear fluid; we are free to re-imagine the quality of the relationship we will make with writing, and shape new technologies. How will our choices be informed - how much do we know about the medium's past? What work does writing do for us? What writing tools do we need? Perhaps the first step towards answering these questions is to learn something of how writing got to be the way it is." I am quoting here the introduction to a book I am very much looking forward to read: "The golden thread" by Ewan Clayton. It sounds so promising and interesting, just about two things I hold very dear - (the history of) reading and writing, written from the perspective of both a calligrapher and designer. So far I just managed to read about 40 pages and it is packed with information and ideas. You can find a short review here on the website of the FT http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/c36c371e-3006-11e3-9eec-00144feab7de.html#axzz2hsO9lNXP and more about the author here http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/4240f110-1a04-11e3-93e8-00144feab7de.html#slide0 I thought maybe some of you may be interested as well. Stefanie (I hope this is the right forum, I wasn't sure. But I didn't put it in the book section because it is not "only" about calligraphy – but if it should be moved there I am totally ok with that )
  9. Hi, I just found a Jean Pierre Lepine calligraphy box set and as luck has it, I cannot find any information on it. The set consists of 10 nibs, 1 wooden spiral grooved nib holder, 4 bottles of Herbin ink with what appears retro styling. All in a stained red hardwood box with a glass top. The box has the inscription"Jean Pierre Lepine, Paris on the front. I was hoping someone could share their information with me and the board? Please find a few pictures attached (not up to the usual standard on this board ;-( ) Thanks sxl2004
  10. Another amazing book I just aquired. It covers not only a lot of contemporary takes on calligraphy / lettering as well as script-style font design but also some chapters about current developments in non-latin writing systems such as arabic, indian and japanese. Some of the examples are totally applied and practical, others completely free and more veering towards art. There are some very insightful interviews with great typographers / calligraphers for example with Brody Neuenschwander (who did some famous movie projects with Peter Greenaway). Apart from that it is a very beautiful book, a joy to browse in and a great source for inspiration! Here are some more reviews – http://www.amazon.com/Hand-Type-Scripts-Hand-Lettering-Calligraphy/product-reviews/3899554493/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?showViewpoints=1 http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/3899554493/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1 Besides the book contains one of my favourite quotes about calligraphy: "The one hard thing about calligraphy is that is does take a hell of a lot of practice" - said mexican designer Mr. Gabriel Martínez Meave. So true! Stefanie
  11. Hi all, I always though the Reforms are a bit elastic as per se. This is just a sample of what can be achieved with a bit of patience. The pen is very wet and the nib has been re-grinded to add flexibility. There is some rail-roading but considering the size of the letters, I think is acceptable. Thanks for wathcing!
  12. Hey, guys, I thought I'd maybe start a thread for some of my calligraphy and illumination. I'm a member of the SCA (society for creative anachronism) and I do a lot of scribal work there. Gothic Blackletter practice: http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7431/9602616378_d88cb6d696.jpg http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2860/9608435937_961d27f9e1.jpg http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3716/9633544926_e69cfd139b.jpg http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5528/9647959342_790d413f6f.jpg
  13. Its a tradition in my school to hang around posters for a person's birthday. "H" will be on one sheet of leeter-sized paper, "A" on another, "P", "P", and so on... So you can imagine that the letters are really large. I want to do the same, but with calligraphy. The problem is, I don't have a big enough nib for such a project. And suggestions for me fpn?
  14. BBC Radio 4 Midweek programme on at 9.00am UK (BST) time includes an interview with Calligrapher Ewan Clayton. Sorry for short notice but should be available on iPlayer later. Edited post broadcast: Well that was really interesting. I'm now tempted to buy his book (reviewed here) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/historybookreviews/10304108/The-Golden-Thread-the-Story-of-Writing-by-Ewan-Clayton-review.html
  15. We are having an event for our 5th anniversary on September 20-21, at our store in Cambridge, Ontario. 1. Our Penmanship Instructor, Heather Held will visit the store for 2 hours on both days to offer the following complimentary sessions: A Demonstration and History of Ornamental Offhand Flourishing. A Demonstration on The Decorated Name (with samples for as many visitors as we can!) 2. Visits and some demonstrations by some of our pen reps. They will be available for any questions or queries you may have about their brands. 3. A pencil giveaway to the first 50 visitors to the store each day (in honour of this being our 'wood' anniversary). 4. An anniversary sale - 30% off all in-store merchandise, excluding RIMOWA. 5. Prize draws. We hope you will join us, in celebration!
  16. ThePenPiper


    Hello All, I recently read an article about a man who completed a handwritten copy of the bible, which he was going to ceremoniously present to a local church. Understanding that within the last few hundred years, copying by hand was required if one wished to replicate a written work - are there people that still do this? As I dwelve into the land of FPs, calligraphy and penmanship I've considered copying books as a way to entertain me while I practice my writing. Unfortunately I get bored doing repetitive exercises (yes, I know that exercises are important too....) so I'm looking for something more exciting to fill my time practicing. If people still do this, any tips?
  17. Just an amateur calligrapher from NY. I'm 15 and restless. Other hobbies include drawing, gaming, playing TCGs, and reading. If you're interested in what I do: I use Speedball Nibs, but I also own a Lamy Safari and a Sheaffer Calligraphy F point Feel free to share your works too! I'm interested in seeing them!
  18. Shahab Mirza

    How Is My Handwriting?

    How is my handwriting, in this post you all good people will tell me that is my handwriting good or not and help me choose my final handwriting and by time to time you guys will give me tips on improving my handwriting. Thanks. See the file attached below in which there is one of my handwriting style.
  19. Hello FPN, I'm posting on here because I really have no idea where to start - some of you are SO knowledgeable I'm hoping you can help! Perhaps this post can also be a reference for other people like me who are just getting started. The Background: I'm currently completing an internship / studying abroad in the United Kingdom, and will most likely be in Germany next summer for another internship. Being here has provided me with access to materials related to FPs that I have never experienced before. With that being said I'm originally from the North-eastern part of the United States, which is where I'm attending University studying Financial Economics with the intention to study medicine for my post-graduate studies. I received my first FP as a gift from my German friends when I was no older than 12 - at that time my FP hardly received any use at all. I always knew that I had it, but never used it because I was afraid kids at school would steal it, and I would be ridiculed for being different (both of those being highly likely). Coupled with my inability to easily procure ink cartridges in the U.S. and my complete lack of knowledge about converters, I also didn't want to "waste" my meagre ink cartridge supply. Regarding penmanship, I think I'm the only one of my friends that learned to write in cursive before learning to print! The first school I attended didn't teach "print" until the fifth grade. Naturally, as that was the first way I learned to write, and I find it quicker, I have always tended to write in cursive. My cursive however is dreadful, and it's something I've wanted to improve. Fast forward a few years to my recent past: After spending time in Germany last summer, the introduction to converters and, resulting from long hours during the school year, the means to procure what I wish - I'm now on a mission to expand my palate and understanding of the FP world. What I have: Pens - currently all of the pens I have are LAMY, because frankly I think (in my obviously biased opinion) that they are decent pens and if they happened to get lost I would not be worse for the wear. I have a LAMY: Studio, Al-star F, Al-Star 1,5, Safari B, My least favorite pen is the studio, for some reason I've never really liked it besides the day I bought it, and my favorite pen which I use constantly is the Blue Al-Star with an F nib Penmanship - a 5 book set off of Amazon that is supposed to teach me Spenserian. Paper Goods: only moleskin and basic writing paper. Ink - LAMY Black well ink, Noodler's Bulletproof ink What I'm looking for: Someone to point me in the right direction (hence the title). I would really like to improve my handwriting, and learn new fonts. I've read enough posts to understand that this is not a timeless task, and is probably something I will spend the rest of my life learning - which I'm fine with. To me it is something that is invaluable, especially in this digital world. With that being said, where does one start? Is it better to try and attend a class (are there even such things??) to learn the basics? Are there exercises people do? I'm also looking for someone to point me in the right direction for pens - I love my LAMY Al-star, but I think I'm ready to branch away from LAMY (or get a new one...) and begin understanding more about fountain pens. Clearly there are many old pens, new pens, weird, old pen makers and everyone on this network seems to have a ridiculously passionate opinion about everything they prefer about their pens. Nibs. Flexible nibs? Are certain nibs for certain papers? inks? pens? Are there nib guidelines? Do certain fonts require certain nibs? Are there nib-makers in this world? I'm not even sure what to ask for here because the extent of my knowledge about nibs is that they write differently and I like my LAMY F better than my LAMY B - and my LAMY 1,5 writes "cool". Inks - clearly my parents failed to educate me because until I started reading posts on here I thought there were ballpoint inks, gel pen inks, and the ink I had in my cartridges. Whoops. Does ink matter? Are there preferred inks for different things? How does one know what ink they like? I've noticed that all papers are not created equally. I will also admit that I was somewhat shocked when I learned that Moleskin had a horrible reputation amongst FP users. I now understand why (many of the reasons people seem to dislike their product are reasons I too have encountered - and ignorantly dismissed) people have definite opinions, but I frankly had no exposure to various types of paper where I lived in the States. What paper does one use for different things? Is there a standard weight that below which I should not ever buy? What about daily diaries, in both the European and American sense of the word? I've read things about Clairefontane (spelling?), are they the gold standard? So, if people would be willing to comment and tell me/show me where to find what I'm after I would be much obliged. I know that I have much to learn but I haven't found a thread yet that seems to address my questions and I'm tired of looking around and only getting a titbit here and a tad there. One last thing - I love getting letters, and that is where most of my time writing is spent. I often joke with my friends and family that I'm unloved if I check my mailbox and I don't have letters or that I am loved by so-and-so if they have sent me a letter. I'm not sure if that will help people answer my questions in a way that is more directed to me, but it might provide a little insight into my young mind.
  20. In the 1980s, I used to do calligraphy for Ketubot (Jewish wedding contracts); Hebrew characters; about 30 lines per Ketubah. I always used an Osmiroid fountain pen, with Broad Straight nib. I cannot recall which ink I used; it was good, but I was never thrilled with it being jet black. Still, it flowed well and looked good at the time. I have seen several of the pieces in recent years, and the ink still looks good on most of them. But, as I mentioned, I cannot recall which ink I was using . . . all this, 1980 through 1990. 25 years later, I am writing another Ketubah, and here is the situation. I have found or cleaned up a couple of the Osmiroid pens with the Broad Straight nibs, and they seem to be working properly. It seems that the best ink that I have found in a local store (Atlanta) is Higgins Eternal (which says on the box that it works in fountain pens). Yesterday, I tried out the Higgins Eternal / Osmiroid combination and it seems to have been flowing well / looking good. I have been very careful to clean the pen after every sitting. So here are my questions: -- Any recommendations on using this combination? The entire document should take about 6 or 8 hours to write, so if I can keep the pen working properly for that duration, I will be happy. I can clean and reload the pen every few minutes / hours, if recommended. -- Can I expect this ink to hold up well over the years? I am not worried about water, but wonder about fading / exposure to daylight. -- Is there any other ink that the experts recommend, to use in the Osmiroid pen with Broad Straight nib? Hopefully, something that I could get quickly through eBay or an online seller. Thanks for this great forum!! Jeff
  21. Hi, I found the handwriting on the superimposed recipe cards in this image particularly elegant and pleasant to read. What is its provenance? What is this style called? Are examples of this style available in sources that come to mind? What are some similar handwriting styles? I'm really glad there's a community of experts here to offer insight. Thanks!
  22. I walk past this building from time to time and the sign outside this otherwise nice building always bothers me. Here it is: I would like to pose this as a friendly challenge/activity. How would you fix this? There is one glaring flaw but are there others? Would you rather do it in another style? Remember, the sign is supposed to convey an air of sophistication and class. I'll be looking forward to the contributions. Salman
  23. Hello FPN! Long time lurker, finally decided to join up. Well, I currently work as an Emergency Medical Technician in the Greater LA, and surrounding areas, mainly as a Medical Taxi, as the inside joke goes. I can either drive or attend, but my current permanent partner prefers too drive, so I took up the clipboard and pen and took over the Attendant's spot. Back in December of 2012, I picked up cheapy calligraphy set from a Staple's. I don't recall the manufacturer, but it was pretty terrible, no ink flow, constant leaking, et cetera. I came across a Manuscript Italic Nib set; while cheap, was a remarkable improvement over the other. Given that the nature of our job involves gobs of time just sitting around and waiting, and I had fairly horrible handwriting, I decided to start doing runs in calligraphy. While I was certainly not perfect in the beginning, I noticed how easily I seemed to be picking it up. As in I could dissect the letters from the exemplars without the "1,2,3" guides. In discussing it with my Mother on Facebook Chat one day, she said she wasn't surprised, and mentioned that I did calligraphy for a sprint when I was a bit younger, with one of her older sets. I honestly did not recall it, as I had several dozen 'creative' interests when I was a kid. Dropping one, only to move on too the next. I suppose the basic fundamentals stuck with me on some level, and I moved forward with my self-improvement project. The first runs I turned in were done in 'Olde English' or 'Blackletter' style. The looks and stunned expressions I received were amusing, and each supervisor; while impressed, were uncertain if the runs could actually be turned in, as we sent them too Medicare. I offered to rewrite it in normal hand, and the response was: "No, let's turn it in, and see what they say." I guess each step up the pyramid resulted in each superior saying the same thing. Eventually the biller took notice, contacted them directly, and the only rules were: Black Ink, and Legible. Anything else was just a different handwriting style and individual preference. As such, I was 'approved' in my project and have continued it ever since, and am more or less addicted to it now. I still have my Manuscripts, in varying nib sizes, and have expanded to include; in no particular order: *Speedball Dip Pens: Oblique for Engraver's Script, 'Normal' Nib Holder, and the Hawk Quill Holder, a much smaller one intended for inkers in drawing, but has become my favorite for personal home use. *Noodler's Flex Nib. Not the Ahab, but the smaller one that has the plunger refill system. I like it, but I can't seem to get the nib and feed 'just right' to get the thick/thin script I want to learn. *Pilot Pluminix. Basically just a modified Italic Nib Pen, but I prefer the grip that keeps the hand in a specific angle, and the Pilot Ink just works better for runs and everyday use. Though I do alternate between this one and my Manuscript. And yes, much of this is the 'cheapy' versions of the many higher quality versions. It's a compromise between not necessarily having the funds for them, and not being set back terribly through the potential loss of damaging and losing them out in the field. I've been by these forums several times for inspiration in different hands, and have practiced about a dozen different hands up to this point. I look forward to future sharing of our mutual passions.
  24. Today, I would like to share with you a work in progress. I was working on an idea I had in my head for some time for a banner for my website (which is to be developed in the near future...) when I was struck by a variation which appears at the top. This reminded me of a quote by Edmund Bacon: "Its in the doing that the idea comes." I have had this idea in my head for weeks but haven't had the time to work on it - and when I started I got another one withing half an hour, one with more promise IMO. I wonder how many opportunities I have lost by not 'doing' and waiting for inspiration. So - I invite you to start developing whatever is rolling around in your head without wasting another moment. It would be doubly great if you would share it with us - it might provide inspiration for the lazy ones like me :-) Salman

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