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Archive for the ‘Lettering & Calligraphy’ Category

Welcome Back

Today I’m going to share my research on alcohol markers. I have seen others get wonderful results with this kind of pen but when I tried to use them some years ago, the fumes from the alcohol gave me such bad headaches, that I gave up on them. The brand I had been using was Letraset Promarkers. That brand is now owned by Winsor and Newton. I have been drawing some chibi style charcters and its going so well that I wanted to give alcohol markers another try, so lets have a look at the options I was looking at.

Typo Markers

Given my poor results in the past I didn’t want to go for a large set straight off. I had an email from WHSmith with 3 for 2 type stuff and had a look at some markers there. Typo was one listed a set of 36 pens for £30. https://www.whsmith.co.uk/products/typo-artists-dual-nib-marker-pen-36-pack/9357067236486.html (correct at time of writing 2021) but no mention of what type of nibs they have so off I went to You Tube to find out more. The video I found was

Jasmin O’Grady’s Typo markers vs Copic markers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqkH8PBJWSY

Ohuhu Alcohol Markers

Makers site: Ohuhu https://www.ohuhu.com/ USA site but for the most up to date info check here first. Looks like on their own site there are now individual markers available and a colourless blender.

Buying hints, at the time of writing I found sets of Ohuhu on Amazon UK, not individual pens. (keep an eye on the description on your set of choice, there are different nib options so check carefully to get the nib combination you really want. Some sets are BRUSH and CHISEL others are Fine and chisel.

Review, this video is by DrawingWiffWaffles, called A big bucket of 120 Ohuhu Brush markers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCAG3ctMxKg its a good one as it also has a review of a sketch book by the same brand. Keep an eye on the dates listed on the videos, information correct at time of creation but over time, the range available has changed and what nib types and the makers site in 2021 lists individual pens as now available.

Review, The Fruigal Crafter Lindsay Weirich has a video form 2019 called New Ohuhu Brush tip alcohol Marker and she also describes how to refil them with ink from other brands https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMgfJ2KZIvk

Tutorial for how to blend alcohol markers by Lucid Neema https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UbZQFRE8wCk

Alcohol marker comparison, Kasey Golden shows 10 brands of alcohol markers compaired here. title Which alcohol marker is the best, testing 10 brands. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4OG8RNbUt8c Useful comparison for price, colour (number of colours available) brush nib, refillable, single, availability, swatch, smudge, layer, blend. Products compaired Ohuhu Markers Arrtx Markers Illo Hue Markers Spectrum Noir Markers Artist’s Loft Markers Spectra AD Markers Prismacolor Markers Master’s Touch Markers Winsor & Newton Promarkers Copic Markers Strathmore® Marker Paper.

Copic markers

I didn’t research this in depth, due to the cost, but Im aware that these are loved by many alcohol marker users, so I have included some information here.

Copic official site in Japan https://copic.jp/en/

Where to buy Though they are available in many high street retailers and online art stores too. I link to MAIN makers site as information on blogs n forums and review videos can date and no longer be the current information, so going direct to a makers site, will allow you to find out what is currently true whenever you read this.

ALL about Copic, Here is a 2014 video from Pop Sketcher visiting the Copic marker stand at Comicon. Lots of useful info about choosing paper type based on what you are creating and your style and so much more. MUST SEE Copic markers mega product tour by Pop Sketcher https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xgMhTvuSLNo This really was a well titled and well made video. Id definately recommend you start here, and then research out from there for what is available in your price budget once you understand all this a little better.

Wow really learnt a lot from that video by Pop Sketcher, I like that Copic’s are from Japan, coz Japan KNOWS ink and paper. I’m gonna have to try these at some point. Ciao are same ink, same nibs as the sketch but just smaller barrels so they are a little cheaper to try out, but the smaller size means you will need to refill them more often. but so much to learn on here. If ur brand new to markers even if you don’t go with this brand, this video is amazing for all the technical info to help you choose and understand the products n numbering system.

Which did I go for?

I have tried Spectrum Noir products before and personally I didn’t love the material used on the nibs, I don’t have the funds for Copics, though Im not ruling out trying a few if I get on ok with others. The cautious within me was very tempted by the Typo but not sure on the nibs on those and felt I would be repeating the not enough colours to blend so well. The ohuhu is very tempting and my inner magpie wants ALL the colours, but sensible me also not wanting a million pens; cost plus storage issues, plus not having tried them before to know how intense the smell will be with these.

So after watching a lot of videos I went back to Amazon for another look round. Then I found a brand I hadn’t remebered as somewhere that did markers, Sationary Island. https://stationeryisland.com/ Now if you read this blog a lot you will know I LOVE their journals, I have lots of their dot grid ones and a plain paper one too. The quality has been amazing.

I had a look on You Tube and the only video review I found on the Stationary Island Alcohol Markers, was from Coby Coxen Marker from April 2020 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7AkCumNz9sY

Why did I choose them, firstly as I just said the fantastic quality of their journals, leads me to believe they aren’t gonna put their name on a rubbish product. Also the price, as someone wanting to try this kind of marker out they have just 11 greys for £7.99 and you can really customise which colours you are interested in, with the smaller sets, just skin tones, just the brighter colours, or go all in for the 96. Wish I’d waited till morning. I bought on amazon for £42.99 but on their own site is £34.99 and free delivery over £5. Well there u go, that’s what happens when u research late at night instead of waiting till morning!

Another reason for choosing them is that on Amazon reviews they said they were less smelly than other alcohol marker than the review had from other brands, and for me thats a real big selling point too as I get headaches from the ones I had from Letraset. DOn’t think there is a blender pen in the set so I ordered a Tombow blender pen for alcohol markers and a Ohuhu sketch pad for the paper, because if I have learnt anything with crafting over the years, sometimes its YOU and you need to practice and learn a new skill but it CAN also be about using the right product with the right surface for it.

One last thing, if you are going to use alcohol markers protect the surface UNDER the paper you are working on, Im going to use the teflon sheet that I use for ink blending, its thin and will catch any bleed through to stop it going on the table or the next page on the book. Just know its gonna bleed through to the back of the page you are working on pretty much whatever you do, so if that is gonna bother you, either choose different markers to be ready to paste the next journal page to it to hide that, or glue in some other ‘thing’ to hide it. If you have a look at my video ‘how to make alcoholic baubles, the Ranger Alcohol blending solution will clean up marker residue from glass surface and off the craft sheet. I got my non stick sheet from Lakeland as its same stuff and cheaper on a roll than the art branded ones.

Lakeland magic liner sheet, its non stick so stuff wipes off it and perfect when using alcohol ink place a piece of this under your project to stop the ink bleed through going on your table or the next page in your book. I also use this for papercraft for ink blending with foam with ink applicators works a treatwith this. The one available now is 33cm x 100 cm for 10.99. https://www.lakeland.co.uk/5571/Magic-Reusable-Non-Stick-Baking-Tray-Liner-Sheet-33-x-100cm so you can cut it to any size you need. Its heat resistant so great to use under projects like heat embossing and triple embossing but because HEAT will go THROUGH it, you will want to protect from the heat from your heat gun. When you want to store it either leave it FLAT or ROLL it, don’t fold it or you will break the fibers within it.

Alcoholic Baubles https://billiescraftroom.wordpress.com/2010/11/19/video-tutorial-alcoholic-baubles/

Links

You Tube channel shout outs for videos I’ve linked to in this post.

If you want to know my fave places to buy art supplies check out my

Art tab https://billiescraftroom.wordpress.com/art/

Look for art supplies and retailers https://billiescraftroom.wordpress.com/art/art-supplies-manufacturers/

best wishes and thanks for reading, sorry for lack of pictures but my new markers haven’t arrived yet. So I’ll pop a picture in after they arrive.

Stay safe and make art, or what ever makes you feel softer and safer in times of challenge

Billie.

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Welcome Back

Today is World Calligraphy day, I used to letter before my hands got too sore but Amy Latta has a fab book which helps me make regular writting look like brush lettering. Thanks to Amy’s book; Hand lettering for Relaxation and an Anna Griffin stamp, and Tim Holtz stamp press, I was able to create this card.

Hand lettered card

My first lettered card.

Better than a thousand words card, inside

Inside of my first hand lettered card

Back of the card; Better than a thousand words

Here is the back of the card, Anna Griffin Rose

Base Card: Creative World of Crafts: The essential collection Kraft brown card 280gsm

White card: is WHSmith Sketch pad 135 gsm, its super smooth n lovely for lettering, but it not a fan of water 😉

Lettering: by me (Thanks Amy)

Stamp: Anna Griffin a clear stamp from a collection on QVC years ago.

Fabulous Flowers n Leaves

As well as Amy’s book I am also really enjoying Botanical Line Drawing by Peggy Dean, which has doodle style of flowers and leaves and is a perfect companion to Amy’s book. I seem to remember seeing excepts from this book in magazines and the book is really brilliant, rather then buying LOADS of stamps I look forward to a bit of free hand drawing once I’ve had more practice.

Lovely lettering

Expect reviews of these books when I’ve had them a bit longer but so far LOVE THEM, go buy them. If you can hold a pen n write your name then you are totally qualified to give these books a go, for SO long I’ve wanted to be one of those ppl who can pick up a pen n a book n just create, the stamping and inking was a way in, Jane Davenport classes have helped massivly but these two books don’t need lots of supplies, you can use what you have but also give me a reason to get some of those lovely pens I have out of the cupboard n play.

I struggle with high levels of pain n low levels of dexterity so needed a diversion n something that didn’t need me to get lots of stuff out. These books have been wonderful. I highly recommend them. Especially for everyone who loves that whimsical style of flowers n all that lovely brush lettering that is around but doesn’t have the dexterity, the video Amy made and her book, will let you turn your own handwritting into something magical.

Links

  • Here’s how to create lettering like this from your reguar handwritting, this video is by Amy Latta: Faux Calligraphy
  • Amy Latta Blog: Amy Latta Creations
  • Amy Latta book Hand Lettering for Relaxation on Amazon UK
  • Peggy Dean book; Botanical Line Drawing 2018 edition, on Amazon UK This version has the names of the plants you are illustrating, earlier version of the book doesn’t have those names included.
  • Peggy Dean blog The Pigeon Letters
  • WHSmith sketch pad A4 wire bound and A4 glue bound. There are other sizes A5 and A6 so choose what suits you. I have both kinds. If you are quick with it being summer holidays n all, there is an offer on these, see online for details. I’ve loved these for lettering with microns. Best for pencil n dry media but ok for just lettering if you don’t have super juicy pens, don’t dawdle tho of the ink might soak through too far.

These books are for everyone who wants some time away from screens, with minimal supplies and to create something beautiful, or just fun, just for themselves with just a pen or pencil and a journal.

Best wishes and thanks for reading

Billie

 

 

 

 

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Welcome Back

Are you new to journalling, want to give bujo a go? Here are my fave places to shop for supplies. I have been getting into journalling this year. As ever when I get a new hobby, I want to find suppliers n then share them all with you, so we don’t all have to spend forever searching for suppliers. Hope to create a new page for this topic, but a quick post today to share my fave sites. Here too are my most used Filofaxes of 2019.

Filofax Collection 2019

Filofax Joy

Hey Little Magpie

LOVE this shop, it has journals of different kinds, so if you are into Travellers Journals or prfer binder styles there is plenty of choice, lots of stamps to hep you decorate and create planner pages. See link below.

Cult Pens

Ohh as a stationary junkie, I love this place, so many pens, pencils, refills, journals and so much choice. I could loose days to this place. Do pop over for a look, bring a cuppa, you might be there a while. They too have bullet journals. I’m in love with the Pentel #touch pens they have for lettering.

Kuretake

Ohh how I love my Zig Art & Graphic pens by Kuretake. If anyone sees a full set available in the UK, please can you give me the heads up. The link below is makers site not a shop. But some are available from Amazon, Jacksons Art supplies (see my art supplies tab) and also at Cult pens listed in this post.

Filofax

Oh boy do I love these planners, I was no Yuppie in the 80s but you can keep your smart tech, I’m sticking to filofax, it doesn’t need charging, the only updated needed are new diary inserts and there are loads of ways to make your own if you are handy with tech and printing or have a look on Etsy.

Dear Filofax have even started offereing dotted paper for commited Bujo fans 🙂 what’s not to love? SO many options for siz, colour design, some also include pockets for tablets or smart phones if you are committed to your tech as well 😉

My faves Malden (lovely supple leather in beautiful colours) Finsbury is my fave for firmer covers, and for non leather I have a Domino soft in Pale blue for on the desk day to day bjujo stuff which I just got n its so pretty. (don’t judge me, its a planner thing, either you are a stationary junky n are nodding away, or this ain’t for you) 😉

I love Filofax because of the quality of the products, they are well made and if you take care of them last a long time, I love them as planners as I can swap things around and take pages out that don’t work for me. Their own branded paper is also lush and takes a variety of mediums well, I just used Zig Art & Graphic pens on them and when used gently didn’t bleed through! They have different diary styles for the various sizes of planner too so there is so much choice n customisation. (Frequently on offer at WH Smith) and if you sign up to Filofax newsletter you will get heads up on offers too.

I also like ringbinder format of Filofax as it means if I want to decorate a page, I can remove it from the binder to be able to stamp or decorate right up to the edges using my Tim Holtz stamping platform as my hands aren’t up to blocks much these days.

Create and Craft

They have an excluse range of journalling stamps by a brand called Jotters Point. Great if you are looking at A5, A6 Journal suitable stamps, the stamp sheets so far were at A6 size (quarter of A4 sheet) which are great as card wise that’s my fave size but means they will work on Travellers size journals if you like those as well as the larger formats. Clear stamps but they stamped well and unlike some were actually easy to remove from the carrier sheets. 🙂 Handy when your hands aren’t up to much.

Washi Tape

Ohhh I so get it now! For years I’ve gone ‘pah’ to washi tape, thinking you were all nuts but then I recived some as part of a kit and wow, its kinda like scotch tape but so much softer n nicer with its patterns, great for holding notes with more secuirty than just post it note sticky but so pretty. I get it now. 😉

Links

Right, I’m off to hunt down those Zig Art n Graphics. Hope you enjoy these links, n if you like planners and stationary too, please link me up with your blog or your fave supplies shops with your comments.

Thanks for reading

 

Billie 🙂

 

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Welcome Back

Ohh sign me up, I love a bit of lettering when my hands allow, do you? I pounced on Lou Collins Brush Lettering set on C&C yesterday and have found more inspiration about this on You Tube n Twitter, so here are some brush lettering artists and links for us to enjoy.

Lou Collins

Ohh I got so excited seeing her brush lettering on C&C yesterday, and went for the big kit, which was a bit daft for me, only in that being dyslexic, means that if letters change too much from how I expect to see them, then I can’t read the words BUT she said once the method has been learnt, then you can apply it to whatever style you like. So I’m in and very excited.

Here are a few places you can find Lou’s lettering.

At the time of writing Create and Craft was the only place where you can purchase her product line.

Extra supplies

I have Tombow Art and Graphic pens and other brush markers by Kuretake Zig to play with, like Clean Color Real Brush pens to do this longer term and watercolours so for once, I’ve got half the kit needed to progress. I hadn’t got on too well in the past when I tried brush lettering because like Lou said on the show, I had also used lots of papers practicing and not getting far because the pens and papers I was using weren’t compatible. I like how her practice sheets are wipe clean so you can practice as much as you like without hitting the trees too hard. I love the watercolour backgrounds and would love to use my watercolours and Lou’s markers to create pieces or journal pages with words or phrases that mean something to me. In later show’s she said her markers are pigment ink so you can emboss them if you wish, it also means once dry, they won’t move so I can add watercolour ‘backgrounds’ after I’ve done lettering 🙂 versatile n great for mixed media pieces then. This is going to be fun. I also invested in the smooth cardstock they had on the show for this and so I can see if it will play nicely with getting back to a little Ranger inky action.

Can’t wait to have a play with this brush lettering idea. I can see me putting a sheet of clear acetate over a calligraphy book I have, to learn more alphabet styles this way too.

The lettering style Lou was showing yesterday reminded me of a stylised version of copperplate which gives the thin thick strokes like this. Lou’s pens look easy to use too, less scary than a bottle of ink and a nib you are scared might snap if you press too hard. The other great thing is that you can do this with minimal supplies so if you want to do this when out and about then a small notebook and a pencil case and you are good to go.

Kelly Creates

Kelly Creates Kelly Klapstein is a Canadian artist, can’t tell you more only just found her and want to investigate this too. but sounds like Art from the heart is where you can soon get her products. Ohh yes just had a quick look, bullet journalling and brush lettering this will be a website that will have me reading for hours. Wish I had ink for the printer. Quick tip, if you want to save money on lamination sheets, lay a sheet of acetate over your print outs so you can reuse them. Don’t have acetate, how about those pockets sold for ringbinders 🙂 long as you are using pigment or waterbased pens they will wash off ok. Kelly has You Tube channel too

Best wishes and thanks for reading

Billie

 

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