Painting for calligraphers workshop

It has been a busy few weeks to the start 2014. As always the most exciting fortnight is the McGregor summer school held at the University of Southern Queensland. This year it was 8 - 18 January and I flew home to a good commission for the National Gallery of Australia (see post coming soon).

The Painting for Calligraphers workshop was designed for people who had some lettering skills and who wanted to explore more common painting techniques that a calligrapher would encounter in every day projects.

We did not re-invent the wheel but rather took samples of painting styles throughout (calligraphic) history and recreated them by completing contemporary exercises leading on to modern projects.

I am very pleased the class results was fruitful and the participants went away with new skills, learnt in a very enjoyable atmosphere.

The following are in-class simple drawing and painting exercises.
I have designed these specifically for the
Painting for Calligraphers workshop as all these exercises lead on to projects.

The first painting exercises were:

Painting the Primaries both opaque and extended.

Painting the Primaries with their Secondaries, again opaque and extended.

Painting the Primaries with their Secondaries and their Tertiaries

A treat: painting the Secondary colours mixed with each other

Keeping swatches for every exercise!
Very quickly the class learnt the meaning of the word swatch!

And it wasn't always in colour.
This here is 4B water soluble graphite, drawn and painted with water using a painting to the line procedure.

How to draw a shield was the closing exercise for day one.

As the days went by ee learnt how to recreate a colour from nature,
ie. what to add/subtract to match a colour
and in which order to mix the colours, darks into lights etc.
And keeping in mind the drying effect being a tone darker.

We experimented with drawing and painting scrolls of all sorts.
What results are got from using waterproof and non-waterproof inks and paints.
Taking notes at every opportunity.

Painting logos.
The class had the opportunity to choose a logo, any logo and paint it trying to colour match perfectly.

Painting a Coats of Arms or Crest.
Again the participants either chose an armorial bearing or chose to create their own ... for the painting experience thereof.

Detail of painting underway.

Drawing, pen outlining and painting compound letters. In this case letters based on a Gothic Uncial.

Painting in the Aldolf Bernd style. Participants were encouraged to study and create a drawing and subsequent painting using Bernd's method of "painting to the line" but not touching it. Giving extraordinary results. Just stunning. An exercise everyone loved very much.


Detail of painting to the line

Folios of a particular style were made and decorated for each participants work and opened for show at the McGregor Schools show and tell on the final day.

In the classroom Edward Johnston was no too far away. And he kept popping up in various places.

On the day of the show Susan & Margaret manning the calligraphy table.

And the calligraphy team from left to right:

Margaret, Susan, (me standing), Liz, Cilla & Gloria.
Our gentleman team member Jim was missing in action. En route to the NSW Blue Mountains.

T H E  W O R K S







Self designed coat of arms by Margaret.
Every element of this armorial bearing has a meaning. 
Brilliant work ... and on vellum!

Susan's Bradshaw arms ... on vellum.

And if one wasn't enough ...

... there is one for each son!

Look at those wonderful swatches!!!

The participants worked hard, and I went that extra mile so needed a little treat at the end of it all:

A well-earned food massage after ten day on my feet in and out of the classroom!
With thanks to Satsha!

A marvellous effort with thanks to all!


Annabel said…
What an awesome workshop, Gemma!
Gemma Black said…
Thank you Annabel, these techniques are great fun.
Cari said…
Gemma, thanks for this wonderful, detailed report on your amazing workshop. Truly stellar everything that was covered - your students were very lucky to have you as their tutor!
Gemma Black said…
Thank you Cari, what a lovely comment! We all had a good time painting and drawing. It is a good workshop for both tutor and participants! x g
Unknown said…
A couple colors you can’t go wrong with this year are the deep and rich greens as well as the putty creams and grays. Throw on a green headband or a putty colored necklace and you’ll be perfectly finished off.visit:Fashion Jewellery
Gemma Black said…
Thank you for your comment Jennifer ... although a little cheeky. I like the support Sistaco gives to Awaken Mozambique.

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