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Learning Is A Must

This lettering thing is just way too addictive. Everything about it is just really fun.

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More and more I find myself picking up one of my now many sketchbooks. I have more sketchbooks now than I had when I was in art school for painting. How weird is that? I find these days that drawing is just more immediate and I like that. I don’t have anymore excuses since all it really requires is a pencil and a piece of paper. Who knows where it could go from there? Case in point…

I had no idea what to draw recently. I wanted to do another scripture, but I just didn’t know how to really draw it effectively. I liked my last two pieces. They’re my first and it was an accomplishment just to get them digitized at all. Now that I have accomplished that, I’d like to take the drawing and the concept behind making them a little further. But where to start? It was bogging me down. So, I just decided to draw whatever…

I doodled in my sketchbook during professional development seminars…I started a possible illustration for a local organization…I played with some parallel pens (I will keep playing with parallel pens!!)…I even sketch noted some of my notes from church (still working on that…). ¬†And when I wasn’t doing any of that, I just drew in my sketchbook whatever came to mind…

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I suppose this would be considered freehand lettering. Honestly, I don’t feel I know enough about letterforms to be doing that. But, you have to start somewhere sometimes. What I do know is that buzz words surrounding lettering tend to be consistency, balance, and thicks and thins and where to place them. Can’t say that I have all that down with lettering, but I’m working on it. This series of drawings shows me going through all that. In this first one, it was just play. But I noticed it felt ultra-wonky and I wanted to figure that out before just leaving it.

I copied it so that I could see more of the flaws. Not sure how copying is supposed to do that, but I know when I take a photo of it and post it, then I see all the flaws I didn’t while I was working on it! After I looked it over, I came up with this one below.

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I really didn’t like the jagged looking bar over the J, so I smoothed that out. I also tried to thicken up some of the areas I thought should have been thick and thinned some of the areas that should’ve been thinned. I felt that it immediately made the drawing look better. I kept doing that until I felt like I got it close enough to what I would want. I’m sure I could’ve gotten even closer to something more polished. But, at this stage, sometimes it’s just best to stop and move on with what you’ve picked up.

But before that…you can have a little fun!

Illustrator is just so much fun. I digitized and vectored the drawing and when I was finished, I used some textures (and “Screen”) to make some of these¬†more colorful iterations.

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At some point, I thought it might be nice to totally get rid of that bar over the J. Kinda stuck as to which one I like more now.

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Honestly, I think they are on the more citrusy side. But, I’m so glad it’s summer, I don’t mind.

Then, I worked with the gradient tool and a recipe for a background I found on the web. That made it really pop! My son liked the look so much he asked me for a t-shirt with this on it (and he doesn’t even like drawing!). You can find the directions for making this background on this wonderful blog.

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There you go. Time to go draw something else.

Drawing any conclusions?

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