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Learning Italic



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Hi, avt.

 

Welcome to FPN and the Penmanship forum!

 

I would say that your italic practice looks very good, if you have only been at it for a couple months. Your letter size and slope is consistent, as are your counter shapes. Nice work! How you manage it while lying on your side is amazing!

 

I don't know that there is an answer to the question, "How much practice is enough?" I think there is the issue of "reflective" and "critical" practice. As in so many things, it's the quality not the quantity that counts. If the pages you uploaded are representative of your practice, I would say start spending more time writing out whole narratives - your random thoughts, poems, quotations, snippets of text from things you are reading, etc.

 

There are recommendations in this topic for resources, for example, the Lloyd Reynolds videos on youtube.com and his Handbook, which you can download for free from the Reed College "Heritage of Calligraphy" web site. There are several other topics that address instructional books and a pinned topic in the Penmanship forum topic list.

 

It looks like you are using a round nibbed pen. If you expect to continue working on italic writing, you may want to acquire an edged pen and begin to work with that.

 

Happy writing!

 

David

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There are recommendations in this topic for resources, for example, the Lloyd Reynolds videos on youtube.com and his Handbook, which you can download for free from the Reed College "Heritage of Calligraphy" web site. There are several other topics that address instructional books and a pinned topic in the Penmanship forum topic list.

 

 

Thanks for the heads up for Reynold's italic book. I found the link here.

Find my homemade ink recipes on my Flickr page here.

 

"I don't wait for inspiration; inspiration waits for me." --Akiane Kramarik

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Thanks for the heads up for Reynold's italic book. I found the link here.

 

Hey, Fibredrunk, great to hear from you again.

 

The Exercise Book you linked to it is great. Most of the pages were kept by Mr. Reynolds in the later books on italics that he wrote. This book is short on the directions for italic and critique of writing that he explains so well in his videos.

 

One way to use this book is to have it printed out, then follow along with the appropriate videos for each plate. Take lots of notes, then have the whole bound to provide a detailed writing guide.

 

Best of luck,

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?

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Hi, avt,

 

One of the best books -- with follow-along exercises -- is Fred Eager's The Italic Way to Beautiful Handwriting. Another excellent book is Lloyd Reynold's Italic Calligraphy and Handwriting. For exemplars on the italic hand, don't overlook Ken Fraser's book on Italic Variants. There are many, many more -- Google italic hand and see what you get.

 

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?

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Doug,

...

Have you seen the 2005 Master's Thesis from West Virginia University analyzing the transition in Michelangelo's handwriting from gothic mercantile to humanistic cursive between 1497 and 1502? It provides one example, albeit an extraordinarily interesting one.

 

Would love to see that! Is it on web?

 

Doug

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Hey, Fibredrunk, great to hear from you again.

 

The Exercise Book you linked to it is great. Most of the pages were kept by Mr. Reynolds in the later books on italics that he wrote. This book is short on the directions for italic and critique of writing that he explains so well in his videos.

 

One way to use this book is to have it printed out, then follow along with the appropriate videos for each plate. Take lots of notes, then have the whole bound to provide a detailed writing guide.

 

Best of luck,

Oooh, great tip! Thanks for the idea! :thumbup:

Which book of his contained more of the instructions?

Find my homemade ink recipes on my Flickr page here.

 

"I don't wait for inspiration; inspiration waits for me." --Akiane Kramarik

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Those of us who are serious about learning or developing the Italic Hand, and are not familiar with "The Society for Italic Handwriting" should give consideration to joining.

 

The Society was founded in 1952 and has had loyal, enthusiastic membership ever since. It should be stressed that their interest is in Italic Handwriting and not necessarily in the formal, more calligraphic version. Membership costs are very modest and there is a quarterly magazine with many handwritten examples and articles. Apart from being a member and having contributed examples myself from time to time, I have no direct connection with the Society but consider it well worth while.

 

Handwritten examples are always welcome and there is an annual handwriting competition. The current, annual subscription rates are UK £15 or US $ 25.

 

Secretary : Nicholas Caulkin, 203 Dyas Avenue, Great Barr, Birmingham B42 1HN, United Kingdom.

and the website is www.italic-handwriting.org.uk

 

If you live elsewhere, don't be put off by the fact that this Society is based in England. I have been a member of the American based IAMPETH for some time without problem, and I live in the UK. Also I buy most of my supplies from the US.

 

 

Ken

 

 

http://i226.photobucket.com/albums/dd289/caliken_2007/writingmatters500.jpg

Edited by caliken
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@fibredrunk:

 

Italic Calligraphy and Handwriting is the short version of his video classes. Pretty much matches up to the plates and is used as a template for his teaching. Mr. Reynolds is a very methodical individual and says many things in his lectures that are not (AFAIK) in his books. Usually, his comments are expansions on and interpretations of his cryptic remarks found in his book.

 

I did a quick search on Amazon.com. The book is available in several editions, published from 1969 to 1981, and can be had for from $2.45 to $25.61. (Collectible version averaged $15.00.) Me, I am tempted by the $ 2.45 one -- never know what notes are written in an old, well-used text. My 1969 version has notes all over it, even added a few stickies to get more writing room.

 

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?

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@ Dick D.:

 

DMS+to+FPN+11-22-13.jpeg

 

David

David :

 

IMO this is strong, personalised Italic handwriting - very positive and easy to read.

 

Although from the purist point of view there are inconsistencies, when viewed overall, there is consistency in the inconsistencies, and this leads to an attractive page of writing.

 

Ken

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Just beautiful, Ken -- perfect eye candy. I think it could be very effective transcribing poetry or young children's prose -- or a custom birthday card.

 

Each line seems to be a different color -- do you have that many colors, or did you create mixes, or ...?

 

-- Constance

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David :

 

IMO this is strong, personalised Italic handwriting - very positive and easy to read.

 

Although from the purist point of view there are inconsistencies, when viewed overall, there is consistency in the inconsistencies, and this leads to an attractive page of writing.

 

Ken

 

Ken,

 

Thank you for your comments and kind words.

 

They do leave me curious though, since I do not have the expertise to see what you are seeing. I would sincerely appreciate an elaboration on the inconsistencies, including the consistent ones, you see in my hand.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

David

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@fibredrunk:

 

Italic Calligraphy and Handwriting is the short version of his video classes. Pretty much matches up to the plates and is used as a template for his teaching. Mr. Reynolds is a very methodical individual and says many things in his lectures that are not (AFAIK) in his books. Usually, his comments are expansions on and interpretations of his cryptic remarks found in his book.

 

I did a quick search on Amazon.com. The book is available in several editions, published from 1969 to 1981, and can be had for from $2.45 to $25.61. (Collectible version averaged $15.00.) Me, I am tempted by the $ 2.45 one -- never know what notes are written in an old, well-used text. My 1969 version has notes all over it, even added a few stickies to get more writing room.

 

Enjoy,

 

Thanks! I'll take your advice and write my own notes from the video into the printed-off copy. Thanks for the idea!

Find my homemade ink recipes on my Flickr page here.

 

"I don't wait for inspiration; inspiration waits for me." --Akiane Kramarik

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I thought others might find this handy (sizes are approximate and don't always match up perfectly from brand to brand, but this should get you in the ballpark.).

 

eta: I originally posted this last year in this thread. There's more information in that thread posted by others about various nib sizes that are helpful, too.

 

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8039/8005199291_5fc536b00b_c.jpg

Edited by fiberdrunk

Find my homemade ink recipes on my Flickr page here.

 

"I don't wait for inspiration; inspiration waits for me." --Akiane Kramarik

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dms525, GClef

 

Thank you for your comments.

 

Sorry about the picture orientatation. I was trying to fix it but my Internet went out. I live way up in the north of Canada (-30 C today) and my Internet is not always reliable. I also only get 15GB a month so I have to be careful. I have started watching the Lloyd Reynolds videos but I have to space them out over a few months because of my bandwidth issues.

 

I got a couple italic nibs for my Al-Stars a few weeks ago and I love them! A few things on that sample page were written with them, the others were either with B or M nibs. I only just started moving onto writing actual sentences and I found my letter form and spacing to be much poorer than when I just do letter studies or write out the alphabet, so that has now become my focus.

 

I'm going to look into some of the books that have been suggested even though I spend too much on this hobby already. In the few months I've been at this I've bought 7 Lamy Al-Stars, a Vista, a bunch of inks and I got a Lamy 2000 for my birthday. Then again, you need a good hobby to get through these long northern winters.

 

A

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Ken,

 

Thank you for your comments and kind words.

 

They do leave me curious though, since I do not have the expertise to see what you are seeing. I would sincerely appreciate an elaboration on the inconsistencies, including the consistent ones, you see in my hand.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

David

David :

 

Please don't be offended by any of the following - it's meant to be constructive.

 

I think that your handwriting is consistently inconsistent. Let me explain what I mean.

 

In this little extract from your writing, there is no consistency in the slope line e.g the d in 'ascenders' and the l in 'formal'.

 

There are differences in the formation of the same letter e.g. the e in 'especially' and the e in 'flourishes'

 

There is variaion in the x height of minuscules e.g. the second e in 'especially' and the e in 'cursive'.

 

The lettering doesn't sit evenly on the baseline, but wanders.

 

"The letter is less important than the word, the word is less important than the sentence and the sentence is less important than the page"

 

You are consistent in your inconsistency. In other words, the variations I mentioned above, occur evenly throughout the page. If you had written the occasional line of exemplary Italic (in conventional terms) the effect would be to heighten awareness of the variations in the rest of the page.

 

You are consistent and this leads to an attractive page of handwriting IMO which is very easy to read at speed. It is strong and positive and is very personal to yourself. Unless you are interested in studying and developing Formal Italic, I wouldn't change a thing.

 

Many examples of handwriting are difficulty to read, and I'm sure that this has contributed greatly to it's lack of usage. I'm sure that receiving a letter from you, written in your very personal handwriting, would give a lot of pleasure to the recipient, copmpared tio the usual mechanised missive.

 

Ken

 

http://i226.photobucket.com/albums/dd289/caliken_2007/Untitled-sample600.jpg

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