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Calligraphy Tip no. 2….and 3

It is summer 2003, it is hot, the birds are tweeting outside my window and I am sitting at my desk sucking on the end of my Osmiroid fountain pen. I am perplexed. I am trying to add thin flourishes to personalise my Gothic lettering and I don’t know how. I have read somewhere that I should skate the ink with the corner of my nib. So far I have failed miserably. I then have a brain wave; the end result is this….


Made in 2003…

And this is how I formed each word…


hello without a flourish

I wrote each word without attempting the flourish and then….


Adding the flourishes with a uni pin pen….

I added the flourishes with a marker pen… it may have just been a stray felt tip pen I had handy 🙂

Anyhow, back in 2003 I was quietly pleased with my cheat… and I also felt a little bit naughty. Had I read one of the many books I owned at the time I would have discovered that my ‘cheat’ was not a cheat at all, and the Gothic style script I had been attempting was produced by using two different nibs.
In The Calligraphy Source Book, Miriam Stribley writes:-

’18th Century Gothic-style script is of a light-weight, even texture on which flourishes are grafted with the ornamental line of copperplate writing.’

‘Grafted’ being the operative word!

So today I have two calligraphy tips, the first is that it’s okay to use more than one nib to produce individual letters, but best to do it in moderation! A couple of years ago I also did it here….


We are all in the gutter…

‘We are all’, ‘But’, and ‘at the stars’ were all constructed with a Mitchell split nib and a Brause 361 Steno nib, simply because it gave me more of the look I wanted.

My second tip today is that it’s worth reading the writing bits in calligraphy books as well as looking at the pictures.

It is now spring 2014, it is warmish, the birds are tweeting outside my window and I am happy to report that I can now skate ink with the corner of a broad edged nib… but if it all goes tits up I can always rely on my trusty Uni pin pen.