stiobhard 1:04am, 14 September 2006
anyone have a suggestion for ink that globs after you dip? for drawing tips you can usually smooth it by dipping in water or making some marks on scratch paper but neither technique seems to do the trick with the speedball c series tips im using. the ink im using is higgins waterproof engrossing ink, and my paper is a fairly smooth card stock.

i thought this might be a place to get some advice. ive done a lot of drawing with ink but i am not as familiar with traditional lettering.
milesent 15 years ago
Not sure what you mean by 'glob'; if you mean that more ink comes off the nib than you want... maybe try using less ink? Also I usually apply the ink to a metal nib using an eyedropper so I can drop just a little drop of ink into the resevoir rather than dipping the whole nib into the ink bottle (which results in a bunch of ink on the other surfaces of the nib and invairably more danger of blobbing or globbing).

Another thought might be trying a differnet ink, (I myself am not fond of higgins, but that's a personal preference, nothing against them as an ink maker) or maybe thining/thickening the ink? I wonder what a little gum arabic would do to a higgins ink. *ponder*

Hope this helps!
stiobhard 15 years ago
speedball wrote that i should use a very small amount
a few drops ... of distilled water mixed with the ink. i guess its diff from just dipping in tap water.
i think the c nib captures more ink than is the case on a drawing nib so thats part of it.

thanks for your advice!
stiobhard 15 years ago
a calligrapher told me she wipes the top side of the pen clean with a paper towl after she dips... this little hint seems to do wonders... so i thought id pass that along.
stiobhard 15 years ago
ok here is another one.

i am having a difficult time executing a hairline bracketed serif. such as a capital A M N or E in a roman face. i can do slab serifs alright and unbracketed serifs arent too much of a problem. can someone point me to some information online on how to pull this off gracefully or do you have your own suggestions? thanks.
milesent 15 years ago
Not sure if this is helpful or not; but I would probably do the basic letter form with my calligraphy nib and then go back to the letter with a smaller nib or a drawing nib to add the serif. Just a thought. Hope this is helpful.
stiobhard 15 years ago
someone suggested to me that this may historically be what was done. i find this hard to fathom but it is easier than trying to manipulate the pen like that
dave_mustein 15 years ago
Hollo, I uploaded my calligraphy photo to Flickr. Shall we look at my works?
stiobhard 15 years ago
i dont really feel able to comment on far eastern japanese? calligraphy. but it seems really well done. i would at some point like to learn to do lettering with a brush. maybe you could say more about your work, or if you have specific questions.
KatarinaPeregrine 15 years ago
Stiobhard, did you get the hang of the hairlines yet? I was taught to do the major parts of the letter, and then to drag the corner of the pen LIGHTLY pull out the hairline from the main body of the letter. It takes practice, and helps if you don't have too much caffeine in your system :-)
Arabic calligraphy 14 years ago

I am a Calligrapher from Egypt

I hope to see my galleries at my 2 web sites :
Sela Gershuni 14 years ago
stiobhard, youve been tought well.
some faces are easily drawn with a single nib and very few strokes.
the more elaborate the letter is (capital gothics are a good example for complex letters) the more strokes youll need.
some faces are litteraly drawn onto the paper using several strokes per line.
troublesome serifs might require no other solution.
keep up the good work - practice a lot!
Ian the Green 14 years ago
Extra ink on the nib is always going to happen. The best way that I have come to deal with it is a dual layered approach.

One - Hold the flat underside of the nib agains the inside of the lip of the jar. This draws the extra ink out and has the added bonus of putting the excess in back into the ink jar.

Two - I use a seperate sheet of paper as an ink blotter. I simply draw lines on that blotter until I get the crisp clear lines I would want.

Hairlines in lettering.

You've been given two very good answers.

One - Write the "regular" sized parts of the letter and then come back later and put the fine lines in with a crow quill or line quill.

Two - Learn to carefully and lightly draw the hairlines in with the corner of the nib you are using. This works but only with practice. I only have it down sorta but when you do get it right you'll be chearing yourself. :-)

Late but I hope useful.
Pretty08 12 years ago
I have learn basic calligraphy , and would like to learn more.Please tel lme where i can learn calligraphy in Mumbai-Churchgate
Pretty08 12 years ago
anyone to sugest me which is the best pen for a learner.
MICHIGAKU 11 years ago
Ivan the Green has the general approach to overloading the nib but you should also keep in mind that you should never fill the complete reservoir. Ink can react the same way soap bubbles are made and that's why copperplate pens can even do without a reservoir using only a well hole. Thus a bubble can form in the reservoir of an edge pen or the grippers of a holder and when it silently pops you get a mess. As for the the self defeating delusion of making serifs to imitate inscriptions and typeset you fail to realize the oxymoron. The most difficult form of Western Chancery is a complex of scripts called the Rotunda by the Spanish and in Blackletter form the Italic Formata all evolving from a script called the Antiqua. British Calligraphy schools in the past century called this form the Humanist hand but as I have already suggested the whole idea of making nice little perfect geometric forms is naive. This is also why Kanji has a kinship to swordsmanship because really understanding the natural human hands dynamics is slashing, sloping, swashing, brandishing and striking. That's why the Romanesque hand you love so much was called the Antiqua , because it was antiquated by it's very inception.
Even in Roman times the Quadrata never lasted a hundred years precisely because it is un-natural and cumbersome, and even the Roman Rustic was eventually found inferior to the Uncial as a natural pen form. To solve you quest for the holy grail I agree it is possible to pen good romanesque serifs but rather than learning how to spend several days writing a single page, better to typeset, drawing the letter form and coloring it in or at least alternate pens using an edge pen for the basic form and a copperplate pointed or round pen to retouch.
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