July 12, 2014

I'm a better cook because I letter

As I've mentioned quite a few times here, I'm enjoying a Sketchbookery class. This week, beyond making a sketchbook or two, we had demonstrations and lots of ideas around lettering. Pam Garrison showed some calligraphy methods. Here's a look at one of her fun designs:

Pam Garrison's wonderful art.
You can find more of her work around the net. But I say, start here.  

The lettering she demoed was similar to this style: 

To see the real lettering you're just going to have to take the class. Take the class!
It's a simple direction. Light on the upstroke, press down on the down stroke. Simple. And so confusing. Especially if you're trying to write in a lettering font style the same way you actually write. I find that I get ahead of myself and the simple instruction confuzzles me rather dramatically. 
So, I stopped. 
And looked at the video again and noticed that she was going slow. Slow. Enjoying the practice of getting the letters onto the paper. (For us to learn.)

I don't know if she goes slow when she's home alone in her art studio. But she demonstrated slow for us chimps in class and I had one of two rather brilliant AH HA! experiences today: Slow allows space for creating. It invites time to just be time which we can take to do what we truly love or want to learn or practice, etcetera, etcetera.

I slowed down and even decided to break the pattern of "trying" and zipping through. (Oh my gosh I know this so well. Why did I forget? When I was seriously working out violin passages all those days ago I went slow, slow, slow before I ever went fast. I know this in my bones.)

I made myself create the upstrokes and downstrokes separately -- breaking the writing pattern and they looked much closer to the demo.

Muscle memory is good. 
I remembered slow. 
And applied it. 
It was fun.

Then I returned to my comfortable artistic home, cooking, and made my kiddos their favorite Saturday Apple Dumplings. 
Taking time. 
Enjoying slow. 
And they really were more lovely than ever. 

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