I drew this lettering as a warm-up for a number of workshops that I'm leading at Cooper Union this Fall.
The letter style riffs off on an exaggerated 19th-century American ornamental penmanship hand, which was later popularized during the 1970s and 80s by legends like Tony DiSpigna and Tom Carnese. Click the photo on my site to see a larger image:
7 months ago
Love this letters & swash
Wow, what a beautiful drawing! The detail is incredibly crisp. How large is the canvas, if you don't mind me asking?
It's quite interesting to me how the pseudo-Spencerian has evolved, from an American hand to forms that could never been created with a pen! One question, it's pretty far removed from the original but would Neil Summerour's Positype logo still be considered a sort of Spencerian? It's almost an extrapolation on the Carnase/DiSpigna style, which is an extrapolation on the original penmanship style.
Thanks for the kind words, @Veronique Zayas and @RaitG
@Sebastian Boros : I drew the lettering on a 9" x 12" pad of Bienfang Graphics 360 marker paper.
Great stuff; and done in one of my favorite styles!
Nicely done @Ken!!! Very nice reflection of Tony's and Tom's work.
Thank you, @Ken, I'm always curious about the tools&techniques more enlightened people use.
You already know how I feel about this style. :)
Great work again, Ken
@Joseph Alessio : My understanding is that the lettering drawn by American penman on legal documents was known as "engrosser's script". Although built-up (and therefore not technically written), the letters were nonetheless derived from Spencerian and ornamental script. Since the letters were drawn, penmen could take liberties with their shapes, exaggerating details commonly found in written models—thus the connection to Spencerian. With that in mind, I suppose Neil's Positype lettering could be classified similarly.
@Ken Barber Thanks for the explanation! As far as I understand it engrosser's script and roundhand are virtually the same hand (as well as copperplate being a more colloquial name for it), whereas the traditional Spencerian uses a finer line and less pressure with the weight primarily used in capitals and flourishes, would this be more or less correct?
(example: this certificate image from the IAMPETH site is written in roundhand, but the signature in the lower left is Spencerian)
I wish I could go to the workshop, but I just can't afford it right now... Hoping there will be more in the future! @Ken Barber
@Joseph Alessio I think the most significant difference between the two categories is the production method: engrosser's script is lettered, while Spencerian, business hand and ornamental penmanship are written.
@Samm McAlear No worries. With any luck, I'll be doing more workshops soon enough.
@Ryan Hamrick Thanks, Ryan. Yes, we share a mutual admiration for the style. :)
Thanks for posting, we shared the shot in this week's Replay.
@Susanna Baird Cool—thanks Susanna!
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