8 LETTERING ARTISTS TO FOLLOW ON INSTAGRAM

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

Instagram has been an important part of my journey in calligraphy and lettering. I’d say I’m quite a visual person — I get inspired by the things I see. The lettering and calligraphy community on Insta is like one big happy family, and when one is stuck in a rut, there’s always someone out there who’s ready to help. I’ve personally met some really inspiring people over there (if you’re reading this, hi!) and it was awesome.

For those of you looking for inspiration on social media, look no further. Here, I’ve compiled 8 up-and-coming lettering artists from different parts of the globe to inspire the handlettering lover in you!

Indonesia
@anggiivee

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

Spain
@gartz_

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

Russia
@oh_letters

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

Australia
@letterhstudio

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

USA
@jaekimdesigns

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

USA
@artbyhal

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

elarus
@dimaphew

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

United Kingdom
@yourgrayce

Lettering Artist to Follow on Instagram via Happy Hands Project

6 Brush Pens For Lettering Beginners

Brush Pens For Beginners via Happy Hands Project

Are you just starting to hand-letter using a brush pen? Or are you interested in creating brush lettering pieces but don’t know where to start? Well, I’ve been there. About 3 years ago I wanted to hand-letter using a brush but was totally lost. I tried using a small brush and some paint but found it extremely tough.

After some research, I stumbled upon the first ever brush pen in my collection — the Tombow Dual Brush. Oh, I didn’t traipse into brush lettering wonderland right then, but it was a good start. For beginners in brush lettering, let me share with you 6 brush pens that you can start with. My advise is try 1 or 2 of these and practice, practice, practice. You’ll get better I promise!

Kuretake via Happy Hands Project

Kuretake Fudebiyori Pocket Color Brush Pens

I love this pen. If I will be asked to bring just one tool for lettering, this is what I will most likely bring. This nifty brush pen has the perfect bristles for lettering and will give you a good variation of thick and thin strokes. I say it’s perfect because there are brush pens that are either too soft or too stiff, but the Kuretake pen has just the right flexibility.

Tombow via Happy Hands Project

Tombow Dual Brush Pen

Aah, the pen that started it all. For me, at least. The Tombow dual brush has a great tip and is slightly softer than the Kuretake. As the name suggests, each pen has a brush tip on one end and a fine tip on the opposite end. Some letterers use this pen for blending with other colours and they work great. The ink colours are a little less saturated and will not be so vibrant especially when used on coated paper, but I don’t mind this one bit because these are really great for practice and these pens have served me well during my learning journey in brush lettering.

Pentel Touch via Happy Hands Project

Pentel Fude Touch Sign Pen

The Pentel Touch has a small brush tip, and is pretty stiff. It’s great for writing small letters and is easy to use. It won’t give you drastic line variations like the first 2 pens mentioned above because if its small brush tip but if you want to practice writing small letters and strokes, this works great. It’s a small pen that can fit in your pocket, and has bright colours to choose from.

Copic Ciao via Happy Hands Project

Copic Ciao Marker

Honestly? The Copic Ciao marker is on this list mainly because of its availability here in Singapore — Art Friend has a bazillion colours of the Copic Ciao that it’s so difficult to walk away with just one. It has a thick body which gives the writer a good grip. The brush tip is on one end and a broad edge tip is on the other end. It has great colours as well, and is refillable! That’s awesome, don’t you think?

Lyra Aqua Duo via Happy Hands Project

Lyra Aqua Brush Duo

This pen is very much similar to the Tombow with a slightly smaller brush tip. This will give you good line variation, and it also has 2 tips — one with a brush and another with a fine tip. Here’s the first time I tried it, and I fell in love with it instantly! It’s very comfortable to write with and I highly recommend this for beginners.

Pentel Aquash via Happy Hands Project

Pentel Aquash Waterbrush

Now this one’s different from the rest, and slightly more challenging to use than the rest of the pens on this list. The water brush from Pentel is super convenient to use, has lettering-friendly bristles, and is lightweight. This practically replaces your jar of water when doing watercolour lettering or painting because the water will be in the pen itself, and you just give the pen a little squeeze to make the water come out. Talk about convenience! The Aquash also has a variety of brush sizes, and my favourite is the fine tip. It gives me a lot of flexibility and lets me blend colours nicely so obviously, that one’s my absolute favourite.

Where to Buy in Singapore?

Tombow Dual Brush: Overjoyed | Pentel Touch: Tokyu Hands | Copic Ciao: Art Friend | Lyra Aqua Brush: Overjoyed | Pentel Aquash: Art Friend

Unfortunately I haven’t seen the Kuretake Fudebiyori pen in any of the shops here in Singapore, but Overjoyed has several kinds worth checking out as well.

So there you have it, 6 brush pens that beginners in lettering can try. I know I’ve left out some pens that are really popular to letterers, but I guess some of those pens don’t really work for me. Do you have a favourite brush pen? Lemme know in the comments!

Free Brush Lettering Photoshop Brushes

Brush Lettering Photoshop Brushes via Happy Hands Project

I’m back with free Photoshop brushes! The last time I gave away some was 2 years ago, I cannot believe this. This is a fun brush lettering  set that you can use for note cards and greeting cards. I saved it in a very raw setting — meaning it’s organic, and the different colour hues have been retained for a realistic hand-lettered look.

Here’s a quick way to load your Photoshop brushes. According to this tutorial :

Put the brush presets you have downloaded into the folder Photoshop\Presets\Brushes in the Adobe folder in Program Files if you use Windows or in Applications if you use Macintosh. The original brush presets that come with Adobe Photoshop are kept in this folder. The brush presets should have an .abr ending.

When you open a new file in Photoshop, select the brush tool and you will be able to view the new brushes from the fly-out panel. Just a tip on using these lettering brushes — the opacity is a bit light. One click of the brush and you’ll get a pretty translucent effect. If you want a richer, bolder colour, click 2-3 times to reach 100% opacity. That’s what I did in the sample above.

Download your brush lettering pack here and start creating! Looking for calligraphy brushes to add to your collection? The ‘hello’ set can be downloaded here.

Freebie: Printable Holiday Confetti Gift Tags

Confetti Gift Tags via Happy Hands Project

The holidays are coming! I’m very excited for this year’s Christmas because my family’s coming and right now I’m busy putting together our Christmas menu. I have 3 types of dessert on my list now, nothing else.

I know we’re all busy with Christmas shopping, but we should not neglect the art of gift wrapping! I’ve put together some gift tags for you to download and print on card stock. I’ll be using these myself and will be pairing the with some kraft paper-covered gifts. I felt like sprinkling confetti all around me because of the excitement, so here are some confetti-inspired tags to complete your presents. These will look great on gold wrapping paper, too, if you’re into some glam!

You can get your free printable gift tags here. Share the love!

Season’s Greetings Clear Stamps from Mama Elephant

I learned from the ladies of Mama Elephant that it’s never too early for Christmas. Just recently, they posted the ‘First Looks’ of the soon-to-be-released Christmas stamps with my brush lettering. How exciting! It’s still hard for me to believe that my hand-lettering has been transformed into these clear stamps. I think it’s really awesome.

I may not have a knack for designing greeting cards using Mama Elephant stamps yet, but I need to take the plunge soon. One of the things I’m going to work on before the year ends! Here are a couple of ‘First Looks’ from their blog, and you can read the full post over here.

Mama Elephant Christmas Stamps via Happy Hands Project

They ship these goodies internationally, too!

Lettering Without Thinking

Have you ever tried holding your brush or pen and just writing whichever way you want? With all the ‘rules’ we need to remember when writing with a pointed pen, not thinking about writing at all can be liberating. I always say that it’s better to ‘not think, just write’, and that you’ll get a good result nevertheless.

Lettering Without Thinking via Happy Hands Project-

But how about just scrawling large words onto paper and not caring what the outcome is? I’ve coined a term for it – ok, not really, but still – I call it Lettering Without Thinking. So it’s not that clever, but it makes you want to try it, right? Just whip out your brush, dip it in paint and write – no holds barred.

Lettering Without Thinking via Happy Hands Project-

Gather all your materials – copy paper, watercolour or acrylic paint, brush pens, Sharpies, paintbrushes, the sky’s the limit. Experiment with different brushes and pigments and see how your works turn out. It’s like Jackson Pollock writing letters. It’s messy, it’s invigorating, and who knows, you might actually come up with something frame-worthy.

Lettering Without Thinking via Happy Hands Project

It’s a breath of fresh air after doing Copperplate drills or trying to figure out a certain flex nib. And you know what? I somewhat feel that I will be doing this more often.

‘Make A Wish’ Stamp Set Winner

First off, thank you to everyone who joined the giveaway. You were all amazing! Your kind and welcoming words were very heartwarming and I enjoyed reading through all your wishes. I just realised how cold it probably is on the other side of the planet – a lot of you were wishing for Spring! Just a week ago we were wishing for rain here in Singapore. It has become so dry, grass is turning brown, and forests were burning. We got our wish eventually and I’m sure all of us heaved a sigh of relief when the first drops of rain fell.

Now for the giveaway, I have chosen a winner! Making the decision was really tough because there were really quite a lot of touching and profound wishes. If only I could play Santa! So, drumroll please… congratulations Jenny Renee! Here’s the wish that will win your hearts:

 

“If I could have one wish today it would be to be given a complete day off from both of my jobs so that I can spend time with my kids. Being the sole provider can be tough and involves sacrifices, like not spending as much time with them as I would like.”

 

Jenny Renee, please send your full name and mailing address to pauline (at) happyhandsproject.com for your ‘Make A Wish‘ stamp set from Mama ElephantCurious as to what the ‘Make A Wish‘ stamp set looks like on handmade cards? I scoured 2 wonderful blogs and here are my favourites:

Happy Birthday Card via Happy Hands Project
Go On Celebrate Card via Happy Hands Project

Make A Wish Card via Happy Hands Project

 

I can’t thank you enough for all your responses. Another hand-lettered stamp set will be released soon so drop by soon for another update! You can also like The Happy Hands Project page on Facebook so you’ll be kept in the loop.