Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Ist day of letter-cutting course

So, Monday has arrived and I awoke early, mainly because of the squeaky floorboards above.
But.... a little yoga and a few bits of physio and almost ready for a lovely cooked breakfast.
Can't be bad ....eh?

Met the other three staying at the Brewery and Robbie downstairs, slight awkwardness as expected then, partly due to Lara, who is very open and lovely, we all got on fine. The other guys are Michael and Innes (who had been their tutor at Forth Valley).

Fab breakfast, real coffee - none of that instant stuff that I'm used to - and silly chat.

A wee walk up a fairly steep hill then a slow start as we got to know each other a little and sort out the stones and supports. The others (not staying at the Brewery) are Tim, Stephen, Allen and Jo - an older lady who had done no carving or lettering before but had done art.

We had a spiel then split into two groups of four. 4 downstairs with the stone and 4 upstairs with learning to draw the lettering. Me, I went for drawing first. Using Roman capitals because of the beautiful balance they have and, according to Robbie, they are also highly sophisticated.

Very basic rules and then we were left to get on with it. It was strange but it helped with the bonding. The idea behind this approach is so that we understand the font but also get a feel for it. Robbie corrected our tryouts and although difficult it did make the lettering come alive more.

There is no real formula for doing Roman Trajan lettering.

Then, a walk down the hill, back to the Brewery and more fabulous food by Gail and Kellianne. I can't keep on eating this much - too much for me and was feeling tired in afternoon. Just practising cuts after a small demo.

I seem to be better at at curves rather than straight lines but practise will help - Getting into all sorts of twisted shapes to get the angle of the cut correct. (45 degree angles)

Terminology learnt so far - 

Serifs / stem / bracket / counter / bowl / tail / x height / base line.

We're also using a mid-line. There is a correlation between the width of the stem and the height of the letter. 1-8 or 1-10 is supposed to be usual but we are using 1-9.

Confusing to begin with but does make sense. (I think?)

Pub for after and very lovely grub there too. A couple of pints and the talk was varied to say the least.
from stone letter-cutting to cannibalism - whew!
I left early, some work on the computer then bed and book.

The walk back to base had smelt of burning peat and log fires, something that brings me instant peace and tranquil thoughts.

The other side looked like this.


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