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Letterwork revisited

April 8, 2017

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Yikes, calligraphy. Here’s me about 10 years ago, (looking a lot younger than I do now 🙂  ), doing some heebie jeebie work for a friend of ours’ church.  I’m including it and a certificate done for the same person to show basically what my commissioned work was for 40 years or more. Precise, traditional, nerve racking a lot of the time. If you make a mistake you can start all over.

hugo's diplomaB

It took years to free myself up from the calligraphic, graphic design, and typographic training I had, to begin to find my own voice. Evert van Dijk, a dear friend of ours and fine calligrapher/artist was instrumental in helping me to get away from obsessive perfectionism and to find my own writing styles and rhythms. Also, the work I did with master typographer and calligrapher Jovica Veljovic helped me to allow small imperfections to appear in the work. He taught me that, if executed with knowledge and experience of spacing, letter weight, etc, the overall impression would be of competence and the little glitches wouldn’t be noticeable.

Well, I’ve recently had a chance to do some lettering again. And Jovica’s tip really came in handy. Rende and I made some signs for our local edible garden. I wanted them to be nice, but since there is a fair chance of them getting stolen or damaged, I didn’t want to spend hours and hours on them. So without lines, no sketches, no preparation except 3 layers of varnish, I just took a loaded brush and lettered them freehand. You will see that they are not perfect by any means, but (especially because they are read vertically) they make a convincing impression of good lettering.

bord peulvruchten

finished wood moestuin signs

The signs are to label the beds for crop rotation, which happens over a period of 4 years. The idea is the first season, to plant the vegetables (like potatoes) which take the most nutrients out of the soil in one bed, and the next season to plant much less demanding plants in that bed, moving the potatoes to a new bed. The translation of the Dutch is:

Vaste planten= perennials
Aardappels= literally Earth apples  or potatoes
Peulvruchten= legumes like peas, beans, snowpeas, sugar snaps
Koolgewassen= cabbage-like veg, broccolie, brussels sprouts etc
Bladgewassen= lettuces and other leafy greens including squashes
Wortel & knol= root veg, like carrots, onions, celeriac

And now for something entirely different. I was inspired by a friend’s book of poetry and photographs to pick up my pens and brushes again for some freehand calligraphic art.  Here are some of the results. And here is Jörg’s website (German language).

take me across1

take me across copy

The style used here is inspired by my piece, ‘Wage Peace’ which you can see and read about here.

ceropegia

ceropegia

Rende (my husband) has been making some beautiful photos lately. This latest one is of a favourite house plant of mine, ‘Ceropegia woodi’. The flower you see is in reality only about 1/2″/12mm long.

For Rende’s portfolio go to his site on ephotozine .

Fox terrier tales

June 28, 2012

Warning, high cuteness factor.

Some mysterious animal has been raiding our strawberries.

Bigger than a slug for sure, (and smart enough to find the ones under the netting and chomp them right through it). Check her out caught in the act.

Notice her going straight for the ripe red one

She also helps with the gardening, so I guess she thinks it is a fair trade off.

She had an early affinity with gardening as you can see from this photo from 5 years ago, of both of us looking younger.

Lucie helping

Recently she has been finding me very thick. Through clear signals she lets me know what we need to do next, and for some reason according to her, I just don’t seem to get it!

I’ll just put it in here where she can see it

So, come on it is gardening time! Lucie style.

Boy is she ever dumb, maybe she’ll get it now.

And finally, because she is so beautiful and such a wonderful companion, and we love her so much, here is a portrait Rende made of her during one of their favorite walks in an old apple orchard.

Lucida Bright

For a much cuter post than this one about dog love, go over and see Dottie Angel as she tries to quit photographing her beautiful little dog – cold turkey!