Web Design project

We're starting an interesting project in my web design class. Groups of 4 people get together and agree on a basic narrative story and then each contribute 5 images that connect to the story. Then each person creates a website using the narrative and at least 1 image from each person in the group.

Our group narrative includes the following elements:

  • going to sleep;
  • a forest setting;
  • a fish named Lord Elric and a turtle named Sam, recurring characters;
  • being sent on a quest;
  • eat something, get special powers;
  • a monster or impossible situation;
  • wake up, write dream down, link to other narratives.

Here are 4 of the images I'm sharing. I have no idea what the others will contribute; I hope these will work. The lettering looks so much better than it would have before I'd worked with lettering in Illustrator. I'm pleased with it.

This last image is my very first attempt (well, 2nd, but I had to trash the first one because of a basic minunderstanding about paths) to make a drawing in Adobe Illustrator. I've done quite a lot now with type and converted images, but had never started from scratch to make an image in Illustrator. It's a weird result, but I'm pleased that I was actually able to accomplish it.
As usual, click on the thumbnails for a closer view.

January 31 — camera-ready invitation

Well, this is work, but it's also creative. I've been working on this camera-ready invitation for awhile now, and the time had come to finish it up, call it done, and send it in. So I did. And I'm much happier with it than I thought I'd be when I was working on it. I don't have a lot of confidence in my pointed pen work, and swashes are for the very experienced penman only. Well, I'm experienced. And when I compare this to some of the swashed pointed pen invitations I see, I'm brilliant. And then I compare this to the work of our present-day master penman, and ... well, that's the way of the world now, isn't it?

In today's global village it isn't possible fool oneself into thinking one is the best. On the other hand, we all have instant access to the very best models, which wasn't possible until the Internet.

January 29 – Thoreau redux

All right, here it is with the missing word and comma, and the last word corrected. (As usual, you can click on the thumbnail for a closer look.) I like it much better than yesterday's attempt. I tightened the line spacing in the main text area, which made the quotation block hang together better and allowed more space for the bottom text to sit in its own space. I also did the names at the bottom smaller (which you can't see, since I blurred them) and more condensed to make a more identifiable contrast between that and the quotation. And then I changed the flower to grow from the second half of the text rather than the first, so that each watercolor block is now connected to a block of text, rather than having both watercolor blocks connected to the first half of the text, and the second half of the text connected to ... nothing. And besides the fact the flowers now able to grow more vertically, the main flower points back into the text rather than pointing out of the frame. Now all I've got to do is find a place to write the attribution (maybe in the grass?) and pop it in the mat.

January 28 — Thoreau quotation

This Thoreau quotation was commissioned as a wedding gift. So I've blurred out the names and date. I like the quote, and I think I like what I've done with it. I'll have to look at it awhile before I'm sure. The paper is Arches 70# hot-pressed watercolor paper. I don't know why the scan resulted in seemingly gray paper behind the bottom half of the quotation. And now I realize that I'm going to have to re-do it. The last word should be "wonders", not miracles. Oh well, it's a good first draft. I have a few things I want to change anyway.

January 24 — Handwriting, continued

On January 24, I continued my survey of handwriting, this time a survey of my current handwriting with variations in spacing and writing utensils.

I've currently got two large chunks of work -- 450 certificates, 400 wedding invitations -- and this little divertissement was just what the doctor ordered.

January 23 – National Handwriting Day

In honor of National Handwriting Day, I've gone through various boxes of memorabilia to create a survey of my handwriting throughout the various stages of my life. I'm amused.

I like to say that I got into calligraphy out of sheer stubbornness: In elementary school the only subject in which I couldn't get an A was ... handwriting. I've been working on it ever since.

If you click on the thumbnail at left you'll see my handwriting at 5-1/2, 11, 16, 24, and 42. The big gap in there could possibly be filled only by locating the children's artwork with my explanatory labels on it; the years of rearing young children evidently didn't provide much free time for longhand.

Journal – January 22

I've got so much work at present, it's a pleasure to sit down and mix paints and doodle in my journal. I'm into the second signature of the journal. When I get a sufficient number of signatures done, I'll bind them. I'm looking forward to it.

Schmincke Calligraphy Gouaches are a real pleasure to letter with. These are three of the six colors I most often work with: vermilion red, ultramarine deep, and lemon yellow.

January 20 — more than a Sunday drive

This weekend I hosted five high-school boys plus our own for a four-day meeting. I have been driving and driving and driving. And cooking. I am pleased to have done something creative every day during it all.
I got out some exemplars and worked on some new capitals before I started addressing the invitations ... there are 400 invitations to this wedding, so I'll be doing a lot of pointed pen work during the next couple of weeks. The x-height of these letters is about 1/8".

January 10 – Pointed Pen Script

One day a year is inadequate for World Literary Day, so I'm continuing the theme today.

Pointed pen is not my first tool of choice in lettering. I've never had a class in pointed pen scripts -- copperplate, engrossing, Spencerian, business hand, etc. -- so what I know I've mostly picked up on my own ... and mostly from the folks in Ornamental Penmanship discussion group at Yahoo. The resources available there are simply incredible.

Broad-edged pens are more familiar to me. But I've just finished addressing 450 double-envelope wedding invitations in my own brand of pointed pen script, and it's starting to feel a little more comfortable than usual. The shoulder, now, that's not so comfortable at the moment ...