This week I practiced hand lettering and typography. It’s a big topic, so here is Part 1. 🙂
This is Week 10 of my 6-month kawaii drawings challenge.
A picture is worth a thousand words. But better yet is a picture + words!
Drawings and doodles can benefit greatly from a few whimsical letters and words. They can communicate the message of the artwork, or they can become beautiful images in themselves.
Below are examples of gorgeous lettering designs, along with a book that will teach you how to create lettering designs yourself.
12 Gorgeous Examples of Hand Lettering
Lettering has always been a difficult area of design for me. Even scary! Whenever I go to sign a card, I just end up using same handwriting style I use in every day life. But for kawaii illustrations we need to use words and letters that are really expressive and that add to the picture.
Since I didn’t know where to start, I went to the one place an artist goes for inspiration 😉 – Pinterest. Here is what I found!
Click any image below to zoom
Many of the images I saved on Pinterest looked like they were done by the same artist and in the same style. A trend was emerging, so I decided to look deeper into it.
That’s how I discovered hand lettering on chalk board. And that’s how I discovered Valerie McKeehan.
Best Hand Lettering Book
Here it is: The Complete Book of Chalk Lettering by Valerie McKeehan (this is an affiliate like, which means if you buy using my link, I will get a small commission at no cost to you).
So far I am very happy with a book. Valerie starts out by going through the basics of lettering and typography. She then shows examples of lettering effects (3D, texturing, shading), followed by a few typefaces to practice.
The section I found most helpful is where Valerie demonstrates places to add flourishes and decorations. For example, the tails of letters F and T are an ideal place to add a few swirls.
There is not much text in the book, which can be good or bad depending on the type of learner you are. I prefer to see pictures, so it works for me. The book covers a pretty basic set of skills for hand lettering. It’s not exactly your in-depth guide. But again, what I am aiming to learn right now is introduction to lettering. This book came at an ideal time, and I am very happy with my drawing results.
Here are a few examples of drawings I made from the book:
Next week I will continue to practice lettering by exploring lettering styles and fonts. I also plan to create at least one “original” lettering design to practice what I’ve learned. Check it next Monday, Jan 30th!
Materials Used This Week
- Micron graphic pen, black, brush and size 1
- A5 sketch pad
- Pencil, eraser
- The Complete Book of Chalk Lettering book by Valerie McKeehan
- Lily and Val website
- My Fonts website
- Pinterest website
- Photos of lettering designs I saw at cafes and stores
Drawing Time Diary
Monday, Jan 16: no drawing
Tuesday, Jan 17: one session, 20 mins
Wednesday, Jan 18: two sessions, 1 hr, 20 mins
Thursday, Jan 19: one session, 1.5 hr
Friday, Jan 20: one session, 1 hr 20 mins
Saturday, Jan 21: no drawing
Sunday, Jan 22: no drawing
Total drawing time: 4 hr 30 mins
Read all about my 6-month masterplan and track my drawing progress week by week.