The hand lettering renaissance.
Hand lettering is the process of designing and drawing typography by hand. Examples of it are everywhere you look: Restaurant menus, tattoo parlors, and corporate websites are all ripe with custom lettering. “Hand lettering is your opportunity to create your own style and your own interpretation of writing,” lettering artist Jacob Obermiller explains.
You can start your journey into hand lettering by exploring different styles and approaches. One popular approach is calligraphy. While calligraphy is a style of hand lettering, not all hand lettering is calligraphic. In calligraphy, artists use specific marks, like compound and overturn strokes, to form letters and numbers. Fewer rules govern general hand lettering. While each letter is carefully thought out, the upstrokes, downstrokes, and shapes of letters can vary depending on the artist’s needs or vision. This leads to a wide variety of styles to explore.
Check out the hand lettering process.
Plan your project.
If you’re creating a hand lettering piece for a friend or client, it’s important to understand what they want. “I want to know what they like,” lettering artist Brooke Benjamin says. “I want to connect with them and get a feel for who they are. I’m making this for them, and the more I can connect with someone, the better I can create for them.” If you offer lettering as a design service, these initial meetings can help you determine the general style your client is looking for. Whether it’s a wedding invitation, a sign for a restaurant, or a corporate logo, understanding the client’s parameters will always work in your favor.