Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Review: Hand Lettering for Everyone: a creative workbook

I've always been a sucker for a good creative book and this lovely piece by Cristina Vanko is no exception. Behold - Hand-lettering for Everyone!:

Heck - even the cover art has me sold. Could you imagine being able to make your own beautiful letters and sayings with your own two hands (well more likely with one hand since very few of us are ambidextrous)? I certainly have high pen pal aspirations for myself and although the extent of my hand lettering at the moment is attempting to print legibly I have been dabbling with more exaggerated handwriting that I stitch up with my embroidery hoops and it is all sorts of fun.  Why not take that lettering to a new level and take a peek at a whole publication dedicated to helping you hone your own pen written style?    

I really like how the pages in this book flow and (as you may know about me and my themed book reviews) I do enjoy a creative workbook.  Cristina starts off this book with the basics and moves over to more sketchbook journal type exercises - all with interesting fonts and images to draw you in, just look at that contents page:

I really enjoy the contrast and use of black and white that helps the beautiful hand written text pop and stand out for its form.  How gorgeous does this round and loop-y page look?

I may be bias for that tea reference - but you can decide what you think for yourself.

Throughout my self-taught designing years I have picked up quite a bit about the history and fundamentals of print and font but it's nice to see it all spelled out for you without being too dry or repetitive. 

I especially enjoy how the author takes each element of lettering styles and shows you how to change up little details to make your own personal font style - like she does here with the serif's:

She even throws in loads of examples and interesting facts to keep you going:

According to this I am an open, visionary, relaxed and artistic type! Oh my! Flattery clearly makes me like this book even more. Haha.

Throw all the information together and in no time you'll be lettering like the best of them!

I totally want to start using these creative techniques and inspirations in my embroidery work and will be sure to keep you posted if I come up with anything amazing (here's hoping anyways).

So my verdict? This book rocks.  It covers enough background and factual information to give you a good design basis and leads you through loads of exercises to stretch your creative bones. Good on you Cristina Vanko! 

So what about you? Do you have your own hand-lettering style? Ready to dabble into more creative font making? 

1 comment:

  1. Oooo, that looks really cool! I had a kid's book on creative lettering when I was little which I *loved*, so I think I would also totally love a more grown up version! Can't wait to see some of your creations ^____^