Awesome Sauce – A Real Time Lettering Video

So, I’ve been working on making better videos for my YouTube channel.

I’ve made a new one that I hope is easier to watch. 🙂

In this video I sketched and lettered the quote “Awesome Sauce” for the #togetherweletter lettering challenge on Instagram.

Enjoy!

Chrystal

 

Aurora – Hand Lettering & Watercolor

Here’s another real time video for another lettering challenge. 🙂 This was for the #letteringwithtombow lettering challenge that I’m doing on Instagram.

Aurora is another word for dawn, so I thought I’d do a watercolor wash for the background that kind of resembled dawn.

Please let me know if there is anything particular you’d like to see me do regarding lettering in the near future. 🙂

-Chrystal

 

The Days Are Long – Hand Lettering Video

I’m so excited to announce that I will be adding real-time videos of my lettering processes on my new YouTube channel! I have quite a few people that have asked about my process and I finally got a tripod (YAY!) so I can now make some videos to show you. Please let me know if you have any questions. 🙂

Here’s the first video, available now!

There’s no talking or sound because I’m shy and I also forgot to add some music. 🙂

Let me know if there’s anything particular you’d like to see me do lettering-wise in the near future.

-Chrystal

Little Fox Watercolor Painting [Process from Start to Finish]

I have been slacking as usual when it comes to getting a new blog post up. I initially had to take a break because I smashed my finger in our van door and couldn’t use it for a while. Then I just procrastinated because I’m really really good at that. 🙂

Anyway, here is a painting I recently did of a little fox. I’ve been doing a lot of lettering lately and felt the need to do something a little different.

Materials Used (including links to where I purchased them):

Winsor & Newton – Cotman Water Colors Sketcher’s Pocket Box

Pentel Aquash Water Brush – Fine

Canson XL Watercolor Paper – 140lb / 300gr

Uni-Ball Signo Broad UM-153 Gel Pen – White Ink

White 2 Deleter Manga Ink

Pilot Color Eno Neox Mechanical Pencil Lead – .7 mm – Soft Blue

Prismacolor Scholar Colored Pencils (Regular cheap colored pencils are perfect too.)

 

I started here by sketching a little fox on a little hill using my soft blue lead. I just purchased this lead for the first time and love the way it erases so easily when I need it to.

Little Fox Painting by chrystalizabeth - Including process from start to finish with photos.

I gave the area around the fox a quick wash of light blue watercolor.

Little Fox Painting by chrystalizabeth - Including process from start to finish with photos.

Then added a couple layers of darker blue watercolor. Getting darker and closer to the edges with each layer. Also a wash of green on the little hill.

SAM_8652

I added some light-ish brown on the fox, making sure not to get the areas that I will keep white and the eyes which will end up being a nice purple color.

Little Fox Painting by chrystalizabeth - Including process from start to finish with photos.

One more darker layer of blue around the edges and a darker layer of green. Also a little more brown on the little fox.

SAM_8661

Now for some detail. I added some green texture on the hill using a green colored pencil. I also added some shading with a lavender pencil on the little fox and hill, but then decided to use a purple watercolor. I also added some little plants around the hill which I covered up earlier and, with that, decided to not add back the little plants that were going to be on the hill in the middle area. Lastly I added the purple eyes, a purple nose and mouth, and purple on the tips of the ears. With the eyes I made them darker towards the top and lighter on the bottom areas.

Little Fox Painting by chrystalizabeth - Including process from start to finish with photos.

For finishing touches I added some spattered stars using the Deleter ink and some that I added individually with the the white gel pen. Also, using the gel pen, I whitened the white areas on the fox and added some shine in the eyes and on the nose.

Little Fox Painting by chrystalizabeth - Including process from start to finish with photos.

Here’s the finished painting. I edited the colors using GIMP to make it more vivid. You might also notice, I fixed the hill under the butt/tail area. 🙂

Little Fox Painting by chrystalizabeth - Including process from start to finish with photos.

This is available in both my Society6 and Redbubble shops.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner)

Previously, I shared 3 brush lettering styles you could try out. And today I wanted to go over some fun techniques I use when I letter.

My posts are mainly for beginners, so some of you may already do these or know of these.

I just know that I searched for *all the tips* when I started out and want to contribute to possibly helping others out in this situation.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrystalizabeth

Tip #1: Space It Out

I love the look of letters when they are spaced out. Not just the space between words and letters, but the space within the letters! I think I noticed it most when I was studying modern calligraphy. I love how fancy and fluid the letters look.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrystalizabeth

Tip #2: Large & Whimsical

Have fun with large loops and flourishes. Whenever you’re lettering, take a look and see if it’s fitting to make a loop bigger than it should be. And when you have random space that looks empty and a letter can’t quite fill it up, add a fun flourish.

It’s not easy, I know, but with practice you’ll get better. You’ll notice that mine still aren’t perfect. But, one thing that helps me (and might help you too) is to try to not let your hand and arm rest on the table/desk you’re lettering at. Then you should have better movement.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrystalizabeth

Tip #3: Dry It Out

First, if you’re brush pen is running out of ink, go with it!! The texture is so great and adds to your lettering. I did this with my Tombow Fudenosuke brush pen and I loved it. I even still use the pen now by dipping it in ink. (If you try this, do so at your own discretion because I believe I’m ruining my brush pen 🙂 )

I could have probably, maybe, tried to take the end off and add more ink, but I don’t have the right tools and will most likely make a huge unnecessary mess. I also know that I’m finally able to get some new supplies! Yay! So I’m not stressing about it at the moment.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrystalizabeth

But back to the tip, just go with it. It’s fun! And if you’re using a brush, just use a little less ink than normal and let it run out.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrystalizabeth

Tip #4: Pencil It Out

When I was beginning, the best thing I did was pencil everything out first. This way I wasn’t running out of ink (because I’m super frugal) and I was able to erase and rearrange words/letters/flourishes until I was happy with the results. Or just make a bunch of different styles of the same quote to see what style you like best.

I don’t have a light box so I would eventually just ink over one that I was happy with and erase the pencil. This won’t work if you use the color brush markers (like the Tombow markers) or watercolor, because you’ll see the pencil underneath. (The darker colors might be ok. I’ll have to try that.) And in that case, if you don’t have a lightbox either, you can use your window. 🙂 Just tape everything up there. I use painters tape so it doesn’t stick too much. Washi tape would probably work great too.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrysta

Tip #5 (Last One!) Practice Practice Practice Forever!!

The tip everyone talks about. Practice! It’s so important that’s why everyone recommends it. 🙂 I practice by constantly lettering quotes, the alphabet, and pangrams. They’re super fun. But, remember, even if you don’t see improvement now, or even days from now, you are improving and it will show. It totally didn’t start out this way and I’ve been practicing my lettering for just over a year now.

5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrystalizabeth5 Tips for Brush Lettering (Beginner) | chrystalizabeth

If you have any questions or want to see something particular in the future blog posts, please let me know in the comments, and I’ll do my best. 🙂

~Chrystal

 

Three Different Brush Lettering Styles To Try

Three Different Styles of Brush Lettering To Try | chrystalizabeth.wordpress.com

When I was first getting into brush lettering, I had no idea where to start.

There are some wonderful brush lettering tutorials that are free that you can check out that are really helpful:

Surely Simple

The Postman’s Knock

Dawn Nicole Designs

They have a lot of tips and even practice worksheets you can use. I was thinking of doing the same thing, but these are so great, I totally recommend checking them out.

Now, the purpose of this blog post is to look at three particular brush lettering styles that I personally enjoy that are fun and *easy* (depending on where you are on your brush lettering journey).

Three Different Styles of Brush Lettering To Try | chrystalizabeth.wordpress.com

Brush Lettering Items Used:

Speedball Black India Ink

Daler Rowney Size 3 Watercolor Brush

Tombow Fudenosuke Brush Pen – Soft Tip

Pilot Pocket Brush Pen – Soft Tip

White Copy Paper

 

Brush Lettering Techniques:

1. Big & Chunky (aka Big & Fun!)

Three Different Styles of Brush Lettering To Try | chrystalizabeth.wordpress.com

Some examples from previous lettering I’ve done:

 

This was the first style of brush lettering I tried with a size 3 brush I got a while back at Michaels (I think?) that was intended just for watercolor. I love the freedom of doing this technique of brush lettering. You really can’t go wrong.

Normally the rule is to keep the down strokes as the thick strokes, but as you can see here, I didn’t exactly do that. With this technique, you want to do thick and thin anywhere and don’t worry about it all being uniform and the same. You want it to look spontaneous.

I also tend to add some water to my brush and then the ink so that I could get the light and dark texture. Something I did out of necessity in the beginning when I kept running out of ink.

And to add a little finishing touch to it, you can splatter some ink on the page. 🙂 I love it.

 

2. Brush Calligraphy

Three Different Styles of Brush Lettering To Try | chrystalizabeth.wordpress.com

With this technique, you basically write calligraphy, but with your brush pen. You want to keep it pretty uniform, keeping the down strokes thick and the up strokes thin. And if it helps you feel more comfortable, you can also do faux calligrpahy instead. 🙂 I’m still getting used to this pen, so my lettering is a little wiggly. And I was going to add some examples, but I realized I tend to do other styles more than this particular one so I don’t have any to share at the moment.

 

3. Mix And Match

Three Different Styles of Brush Lettering To Try | chrystalizabeth.wordpress.com

Some examples using this technique:

 

This is my favorite technique at the moment. This is one where you take your brush pen and switch up your lettering. Add some script to your print and some upper case with your lower case. Some short, some tall. Try the same quote a few different ways. I pencil my quote out before hand and switch the way the letters are until I’m happy, then ink.

You might notice my letters look a little strange. They shouldn’t be so saturated with ink, but I ran out of ink with this pen and instead of trying to open it up to add more, I just dip the tip of the pen in ink and use it. Not sure if that’s ok, but It’s what I’m doing and I like the results. 🙂

Also with this, when penciling my rough drafts, I like to squish and really fit my words as awkwardly as possible. If that makes sense. I love how it looks that way. I’ve been practicing doing this more and more often.

I hope you have some fun with these! Let me know if you’ve tried these are decide to in the future. I’d love to know!

 

~Chrystal