Friday, March 2, 2018


When I walk through a museum, I look for drawings. I would rather look at them then the completed works of a painter. In the drawings, I can see the thinking processes of the artist before a work is completed. I can also see the changes the artist makes as the images progresses from sketch to final draft.

From CLOWNS, a mixed media series about the circus

At Letters: California Style, I took a chalkboard lettering class from Cora Pearl * this year. I spent three and a half days with other people who love letters as much as I do. We worked for a couple of days just practicing drawing alphabets. We were doing hand lettering, not calligraphy. What is the difference?  Calligraphers write the letters. Hand letterers draw letters. There is a lot of crossover between the two techniques and the computer has brought another dimension to lettering arts as well.

After practicing for a couple of days, we proceeded to design words and phrases to put on black paper.

Finally, we worked on more elaborate designs, which would be our finished work from the class. As an artist and graphic designer, I am very familiar with the steps to create a design. I make a number of thumbnails, which are quick sketches of different ideas, similar to the brainstorming you might do in a business meeting.

Playing with words and phrases and how to represent them.

What's the best shape? How to show flight?

From those, I decided on a couple of ideas I thought would work and then drew more in-depth sketches. Then I played with what I had until I was satisfied with what I think would be a good design.

I decided to combine these two images into one poster.

My next step:  I will redraw the design to make it more symmetrical, and then work on the smaller decorative elements. Then I will enlarge the design to my desired size. I will transfer that design to black paper and pick up my white charcoal pencil to complete my poster. I will show you next time the finished result. 

* Check out Coral Pearl's website to see the variety of calligraphy and hand lettering that she offers:


  1. So
    it takes
    many steps
    to create a work
    of poster art
    You are a patient artist!
    I look forward to next week's post!

    1. Thank you Jan for this bit of poetry! Many steps just like composing music.

  2. You always add so much perspective to an idea or thought. Again, I really enjoyed your process. It always touches me.

    1. Thank you, Mary, for your kind thoughts! Hugs through the air!

  3. Thank you for opening my eyes to the richness and breadth of this art. I visited Cora Pearl's site and found her work to be magical. Artists like you bring beauty to the world and we really need that.

    1. Thank you, Pat. I'm glad you went to Cora Pearl's site too. Her work captures the imagination, doesn't it?


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