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The Meisterstück 149 Calligraphy Appreciation Thread


fpupulin

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On 4/11/2022 at 2:46 PM, como said:

By the way, could you please tell me which fonts are good to try with pointed nibs, besides Spencerian, Copperplate and Avalon? I am thinking of trying something new. Also, somehow I think that MB would eventually come up with a truncated nib in this series of "Calligraphy" nibs, as there are so many scripts that are written with a truncated nib. Or have they already launched something? The only thing I remember is that Fritz-Schimpf collaborated with MB and had an Italic Expressive 149 nib and a stub 146.

 

My dear friend, sorry if I answer your request late, but I took the opportunity to start collecting some of the scripts that I think fit to be done with a flexible pointed nib - and I strictly wrote them with the 149 Calligraphy.


Today I will start with some handwriting classically designed for this type of nib, but I also add some others that could be done with the truncated nib (as they were born that way), but that can be "bent" to the needs of the pointed flexible nib.


In the next few days I will continue to publish the images of new script styles made with the 149 Calligraphy, and in the end I will collect them all together in another post, with a more suitable title to be recognized and found when someone is looking for it.


Re-examining the scripts suitable for the pointed nib, it is not surprising that there are not many and that, above all, they are all rather recent spellings: the pointed nib, and moreover flexible, is only an invention of the last century ...


Among the examples, however, I have written some that are more ancient and that, simply, offer a different interpretation of the letters (and sometimes of the ductus) to be performed with a nib that did not exist at the time of their creation. Some of them you will probably recognized, as I posted them before here and there. Others were written expressly for this thread.

 

As to a truncated version of the Expression nib for the 149, I also feel quite confident that Montblanc will offer one before or later. For some reason, the launch of the "curved nib", which was already made to hit the boutiques, has been postponed, and I have no idea if - before the truncated nib - Montblanc still has the idea to launch the curved nib again. I am not particularly interested in the fude de manne nib, so I would most probably pass, waiting for the next in the series.  


A warm greeting.

 

---

 

So, here is the classic English cursive, or Copperplate. First in the splendid interpretation by Claude Mediavilla:

 

large.609608563_Montblanc149CalligraphyMediavillasEnglishCursiveFP.jpg.8d6f4a92b669644973fe18da0ed11096.jpg

 

Then, the same script by Italian calligrapher Percossi:

 

large.439372151_Montblanc149CalligraphyPercossisCorsoivaIngleseFP.jpg.b0455351a65dd29599eabb4bd4b56092.jpg

 

Here is a version of "Italian Copperplate", which I found in a booklet by David Harris:

 

large.1582243422_Montblanc149CalligraphyItalianCopperplateFP.jpg.a992b708fbecbd68373f504f549795cf.jpg

 

Then, always by Percossi's hand, a scrip† that he calls Italico corsivo. This is obviously not designed for the pointed nib, but can be done. Not easy, bu not impossible:

 

large.848720940_Montblanc149CalligraphyPercossisCorsivaItalianaFP.jpg.d9849ce5d5b032119fc40a531c512bb4.jpg

 

And a couple of modern scripts. Elegant Script (already a classic):

 

large.659988115_Montblanc149CalligraphyElegantScriptFP.jpg.1cc12df273d6b095570a1c247beb895e.jpg

 

And one of the many "Gestuale" scripts:

 

large.1824959732_Montblanc149CalligraphyGestualeFP.jpg.c6e3ce9740fc1f83f02dd37403b1f131.jpg

 

More will follow...

 

 

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Do you have a link to any resources for elegant script?  Google not helping, perhaps theres a more specific name because everyone calls their script elegant 

 

btw, my 149 works great if i start at the baseline and push the nib.  This is perfect for spencerian like. If I have to pull like printing or romans from top down i get a lot of skips.  I do a little hitch to start a downward stroke to avoid the skip. Seems to be a lefty thing as my wife doesnt have that issue printing. Is the elegant script written top down w pull strokes or pushing?

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1 hour ago, dftr said:

Do you have a link to any resources for elegant script?  Google not helping, perhaps theres a more specific name because everyone calls their script elegant 

 

btw, my 149 works great if i start at the baseline and push the nib.  This is perfect for spencerian like. If I have to pull like printing or romans from top down i get a lot of skips.  I do a little hitch to start a downward stroke to avoid the skip. Seems to be a lefty thing as my wife doesnt have that issue printing. Is the elegant script written top down w pull strokes or pushing?

 

Here I am copying a page from David Harris' Enciclopedia della Calligrafia, showing the kind of ductus he suggests for the execution of the Elegant Script. Consider that he is using a truncated nib.

 

Ductus.thumb.jpg.0d326831725e4b3c7f78893142d93e38.jpg

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@fpupulin Dear Franco, thank you very much for showing various scripts that can be done with a pointed nib such as the 149C. It’s interesting to see the various and beautiful versions of the Copperplate/Cursive scripts, Italian vs. English. I find the Elegant and Gestuale scripts very fun and possible to try without too much discipline:-) Is it easier to learn the calligraphy types achieved with a pointed nib? For some reason, I find using truncated nib rather difficult. Probably I lack patience and discipline? 🙂 Thank you so much for showing us. It’s a great place to start my learning!

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12 hours ago, como said:

@fpupulin Dear Franco, thank you very much for showing various scripts that can be done with a pointed nib such as the 149C. It’s interesting to see the various and beautiful versions of the Copperplate/Cursive scripts, Italian vs. English. I find the Elegant and Gestuale scripts very fun and possible to try without too much discipline:-) Is it easier to learn the calligraphy types achieved with a pointed nib? For some reason, I find using truncated nib rather difficult. Probably I lack patience and discipline? 🙂 Thank you so much for showing us. It’s a great place to start my learning!

 

Dear como, I absolutely agree with you about the "less discipline" that many of the modern scripts require, compared to classic Copperplate or Spencerian, to give just a couple of examples. 

 

In the Copperplate, for example, you need to maintain rhythm, inclination, height of the letters, shape of the ovals and the curves, and controlled engrossing of the descendants, all at the same time. Failure in any of these aspects will result in a poor script, and this made this kind of script difficult and often de-motivating.

 

Contemporary scripts are much more free and forgiving in several of these aspects. I would say that, once you will be able to maintain rhythm and an approximately consistent inclination of the letters, you are done!

 

I sometimes experiment with some of the modern scripts as a modified "everyday writing", and I have a lot of fun. In the following pic you may see the Gestuale used to take notes, and you will surely note that it can be written with both semi-firm and flexible nibs (Montblanc Bohéme and Calligraphy, respectively), even though a flexible nib has obviously a margin in expressive writing.

 

large.51658581_Montblanc149calligraphygestualeinactionFP.jpg.ca5c0fc1c92d6988868d0bca99a3b00b.jpg

 

And here, you may see the same script used a bit more formally and written with the BB nib of one of my 149s:

 

large.1661311763_Penninodella149.jpg.2e274bebb7dad8c2c762d6166e8dc43e.jpg

 

Contemporary scripts are a joy to use, and they add a lot of variation and fun to everyday writing.

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Following with the scripts that can be satisfactorily written with the 149 Calligraphy, I add two more.

 

The first is a style I use frequently and I find rather easy to write. It is one of the many, many variants of the contemporary cursive. This, in particular, is called Running Brush, and can be done with a variety of instruments and different nibs. I like writing it with the flexible, pointed nib.

 

large.2128943852_Montblanc149CalligraphyRunningBrush.jpg.14b9c0ae5346ba2e639b256666f71ed0.jpg

 

And here is a script I have never used in writing a text, but I find it in David Harris' Enciclopedia della Calligrafia, and it seems an interesting style. It is obviously a derivate from the Caroline, and Harris calls it Free Modern Caroline:

 

large.2126184529_Montblanc149CalligraphyCarolingiaLiberaModerna.jpg.bb659bb6acfadc349e2ee29924716045.jpg

 

For some of the curves and the serifs, it requires that the pen is held with the nib facing left, so that gentle pressure may be applied toward the right side. As it is someway typical of a script born for the truncate nib, many of the curves have to be done in two separate strokes.

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@fpupulin Thank you very much for showing these scripts. They are great to try. I picked one, the “Elegant” script. While I much admire Gothic etc scripts, I really enjoy trying to write this chubby yet elegant script. While I can’t claim to achieve its designed elegance, it’s definitely another fun script suitable for 149C. Note I only started with 149C in the middle of the second line. The first one and half line was written with a B Stub of my Hakase Rosewood. It seems that one can use different types of nibs for this script, but I really prefer the 149C for its non-uniformed line variations.

large.73D0D707-A5F9-4269-A08A-FC7FC6631AE0.jpeg.3657f53acd1e2c2f1ce6e76b9c7052a9.jpeg

Paper: Brause Calligraphy Premium Pad A5 size

Ink: Parker Quink Black

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On 4/22/2022 at 6:10 AM, como said:

@fpupulin Thank you very much for showing these scripts. They are great to try. I picked one, the “Elegant” script. While I much admire Gothic etc scripts, I really enjoy trying to write this chubby yet elegant script. While I can’t claim to achieve its designed elegance, it’s definitely another fun script suitable for 149C. Note I only started with 149C in the middle of the second line. The first one and half line was written with a B Stub of my Hakase Rosewood. It seems that one can use different types of nibs for this script, but I really prefer the 149C for its non-uniformed line variations.

large.73D0D707-A5F9-4269-A08A-FC7FC6631AE0.jpeg.3657f53acd1e2c2f1ce6e76b9c7052a9.jpeg

Paper: Brause Calligraphy Premium Pad A5 size

Ink: Parker Quink Black


large.7E3F00F6-AF6F-417D-AEFD-AC40EE9C4098.jpeg.d6bce583848aecdc09173869670eae7f.jpeg

 

This was written on a unnamed laid paper. Ink is Diamine Ancient Copper.

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@fpupulin Ah, so that’s what this script looks like in action, beautiful! So much better than my doodles! I think I can really stick with this Elegant script. It’s playful, fresh and elegant. Thank you for the note and demonstration!
 

Looking at photos from various calligraphy books, I am amazed that a big majority of the scripts is done with truncated nibs. Not only discipline in practicing is a challenge, I find that achieving seamless change of line variation in truncated nibs is so difficult! Perhaps one day the right pen will inspire and encourage me. I hope so.

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3 hours ago, como said:

I find that achieving seamless change of line variation in truncated nibs is so difficult!

That may be if you use smaller stub nibs. Anything less than 1.5mm gives (in my eyes) too little variation (even the 1.1) just because the nib is not a blade but a (round-cornered) rectangle. Finding italic nibs is not that easy, and good italic nibs (that do not cut into and stick in the paper) even less, and they require mastering the hand. I do prefer, actually to grind my own ones.

 

But with a calligraphy nib, it should be easier to do. I'm not much into these scripts.  I guess that you may need to rotate the paper or the pen to achieve some of the line variations. @fpupulin , can you confirm if it is so?

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33 minutes ago, txomsy said:

That may be if you use smaller stub nibs. Anything less than 1.5mm gives (in my eyes) too little variation (even the 1.1) just because the nib is not a blade but a (round-cornered) rectangle. Finding italic nibs is not that easy, and good italic nibs (that do not cut into and stick in the paper) even less, and they require mastering the hand. I do prefer, actually to grind my own ones.

 

But with a calligraphy nib, it should be easier to do. I'm not much into these scripts.  I guess that you may need to rotate the paper or the pen to achieve some of the line variations. @fpupulin , can you confirm if it is so?

@txomsy I think you are right, not only logically, not also from my own experience. The number one reason of course, is that I am simply not trained to use a truncated nib for writing calligraphy scripts. I have a Lamy Joy 1.5 somewhere, but I think it's not sharp enough (again, I don't really know how to use it). I have a 1.1 Stub on a Stipula, great for daily writing, but forget calligraphy (for me). An Omas M ground to an Italic, rather sharp but still pleasant. When I am finally trained, this can be an interesting one (meanwhile it's a beautiful nib to write anything with). I agree with you on grinding own nibs. I already sharpened my Lamy 1.5. It's better, but I don't love that pen. The Lamy Joy may be great to write calligraphy if you have a capable hand, but it gives me no joy to use it. Probably I've become a pen snob of some sort, but who cares. I keep my negative pen judgement of others to myself, so I hope that others will be gentle too. 😀

 

I thought of getting an MB 149 from the 70s and nip the nib and grind it to an Italic, but after seeing the bespoke Music nib from MB, I knew that I could never look at my self-made one in the same light again 😀. So I hope that one day Montblanc will make a very Italic nib in this serie that is also forgiving to use, with the kind of softness as the 149C nib, still at a sensible price.

 

I would love to hear Franco's @fpupulin opinions on this. Interesting topic, and your post, @txomsy!

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It would be sweet to have a flexible nib w/ an italic tipping!  

The larger nibs and larger handwriting make it easier to see and correct mistakes; but having a crisp italic medium or broad can be used for normal writing in journals (may have to compress the ascenders/descenders).  

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My experience reflects that of como. I have several truncated nibs, of different widths and very different quality, but none of them give me real pleasure in calligraphic work.

 

My best italic is that of the WE Alexandre Dumas, an originally medium nib that Mike Masuyama transformed into an almost formal 6mm italic. It is a nib with a certain elasticity, also due to its generous dimensions (equivalent in size to that of a Meisterstück 149), and for this reason rather pleasant for the hand. The 6 mm line makes it not particularly suitable for actual calligraphic work, despite its considerable variation in stroke, and the "sharp" edges of the formal italic nib shape do not make it a pleasant tool for everyday writing.

 

The steel nibs of my "calligraphy sets" (I own three, of different brands, with the same gradations of 1.1, 1.9 and 2.4), as well as those of my Lamy Al-stars, are simply nails. Zero pleasure. I make an exception for the Kaweco Sport Brass stub-italic 1.1 nib, which has an unusual and pleasant elasticity. But, as txomsy rightly noted, it is a truncated point of insufficient width to appreciate it in real calligraphic tests.

 

None of my "Italic" pens comes close, even slightly, to the quality and pleasantness of writing that many of my round and pointed nibs provide. For this reason I too, as well as como, have the hope that one of the next nibs of the Expressive Series by Montblanc can be an italic of quality comparable to the flexible of the same series. As we have repeated ad nauseam, a nib that is not perfect, but of really appreciable quality.

 

The alternative - but we are in really expensive territories - are the custom nibs that Montblanc makes for the 149, the Italic and the Signature. I include here a unique photograph, originally published by Bryant on his Chatterley's website, where you can see these two extraordinary nibs side by side; the Signature on the left and the Italic on the right. I confess that today I don't know which of the two to choose ...

 

large.L1060143-001.jpg.13fe8edc32978f17d407da08db3705b6.jpg

 

I have high hopes for the launch by Montblanc of some special pen - special for historical simplicity - to celebrate the anniversary of the Meisterstück line in 2024, an event for which, while waiting, I am saving $ 100 a month. Finally, if the celebrative pens weren't those of my tastes, which I unfortunately consider probable, perhaps I would have set aside almost sufficient funds to embark on the adventure of a bespoke nib for cut nib calligraphy.

 

Who knows, as como suggests, this would finally be the pen with the right inspiration to made me more seriously, and more pleasantly, play with the splendid gothic scripts. After all, before calligraphy, and more than calligraphy, I am a fan of pens ...

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On 4/24/2022 at 3:12 AM, txomsy said:

[...] I'm not much into these scripts.  I guess that you may need to rotate the paper or the pen to achieve some of the line variations. @fpupulin , can you confirm if it is so?

 

large.2040294578_txomsyletter.jpg.5acc46570dabc252d22f74df10d989f7.jpg

 

Here it is, one of the many similar samples of Brush scripts:

 

large.1088039596_Montblanc149CalligraphyIlpiacerediscrivereFP.jpg.3bffafa9b7352a3125b8931218d39be9.jpg

 

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Perhaps some of you will remember that, pages back in this same thread, I posted some images in which I had used a version of the Roman Capital script obtained with the use of the pointed pen, and where I had copied an alphabet of this. Here I propose a new image, in which you can observe the Roman capital in action, written with the nib of the 149 Calligraphy.

 

large.1811729782_Montblanc149CalligraphyRomanacapitaleinactionFP.jpg.1811f9a1ca144a45bbe9337ef79a824c.jpg

 

Now, in Harris' Encyclopaedia I have also found a minuscule version of the Roman script. It is obviously a modern invention, because this writing did not exist at the same time as the lapidary capital, but it seemed interesting to me for some uses and can also be done with a pointed nib:

 

large.121269614_Montblanc149CalligraphyRomanacapitaleeminuscolaFP.jpg.42fc4888b16ba966dfc5873041231cdd.jpg

 

And here is still a modern writing, which is usually referred to as "Tiralinee", a scratchy, incisive and irregular writing that is originally done with a ruling pen, somehow "scratching" the sheet. Here I propose it in its "pointed" version, where the nib of the 149 Calligraphy replaces the ruling pen. Capital letters are performed by passing and going over numerous lines to reconstruct the approximate shape of the letter.

 

large.1164915489_Montblanc149CalligraphyTiralinee.jpg.d6b63e2c1be0f97dfc534494b3cde188.jpg

 

I've never used this script for any text, but I suppose for a short, punchy text it may have a reason.

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@fpupulin Thank you for showing us the very creative ways the Calligraphy pen can be used, amazing! By now I am convinced that you can do almost anything with this pen😀! One problem I have with trying to write a different script is that somehow I am mentally locked in the scripts that I know (Spencerian and Copperplate) so the characteristics of these scripts creep into the new script. Do you find yourself mentally having to "prepare for" a new script before you lay down ink on paper?

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On 4/28/2022 at 10:53 AM, como said:

[...] One problem I have with trying to write a different script is that somehow I am mentally locked in the scripts that I know (Spencerian and Copperplate) so the characteristics of these scripts creep into the new script. Do you find yourself mentally having to "prepare for" a new script before you lay down ink on paper?

 

large.1684896849_Gestualmemory.jpg.364aa546763ca822aefd98bb0b718d94.jpg

 

Ah, and one thing more... I use (I waste) a lot of paper, just writing letters without any order, to memorize the gesture required to execute them. This helps me freeing the hand from an excess of previous "memories" and made it ready for writing a new script.

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One more script you can do with the pointed nib of the Calligraphy. This is just one among the hundreds variations of the Italian Cancelleresca, which I found relatively simple to write wit the pointed nib instead of the canonic truncate nib that is normally used for this kind of script.  

 

This particular "style" is taken from Harris' Encyclopaedia. I just made the ovals of the letters "a" "d", "g", and "q" a bit more rhombic, as in Harris' sample they are almost perfectly elliptic, but I prefer the rhombic shape for the Cancelleresca.

 

 

 

 

large.1232252786_Montblanc149CalligraphyCancellerescacorsivaFP.jpg.86e2bb86cb2d9971f704df4d53f82fdf.jpg

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On 4/30/2022 at 4:26 PM, fpupulin said:

 

large.1684896849_Gestualmemory.jpg.364aa546763ca822aefd98bb0b718d94.jpg

 

Ah, and one thing more... I use (I waste) a lot of paper, just writing letters without any order, to memorize the gesture required to execute them. This helps me freeing the hand from an excess of previous "memories" and made it ready for writing a new script.

 

On 5/8/2022 at 12:40 AM, fpupulin said:

One more script you can do with the pointed nib of the Calligraphy. This is just one among the hundreds variations of the Italian Cancelleresca, which I found relatively simple to write wit the pointed nib instead of the canonic truncate nib that is normally used for this kind of script.  

 

This particular "style" is taken from Harris' Encyclopaedia. I just made the ovals of the letters "a" "d", "g", and "q" a bit more rhombic, as in Harris' sample they are almost perfectly elliptic, but I prefer the rhombic shape for the Cancelleresca.

 

 

 

 

large.1232252786_Montblanc149CalligraphyCancellerescacorsivaFP.jpg.86e2bb86cb2d9971f704df4d53f82fdf.jpg

 

@fpupulin

Your work is very impressive.

I love how you handle all type of writing styles.

I am wondering how long you practice/ Waste pen and ink and papers before you think you are ready to get into a  last results?

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