Some L monograms

©Angela Porter 2018

Three variations on a theme! All hand lettered and hand drawn on Daler-Rowney Bristol board (A4 in size).

For each I used black 08 Uniball Unipin and 04 Sakura Pigma Sensei pens. Here’s the other media I used for each monogram:

  • Top – Copic markers, Herbin Copper ink with a glass pen.
  • Bottom left – Copic Markers for the base colour, Chameleon color tone pencils for added depth of colour, gold metallic Sakura Gelly Roll pen.
  • Bottom right – Chameleon color tone pencils for the colour and a silver Uniball Signo pen for the metallic highlights.

It’s taken me around 5 hours or so to complete the set of three. I’m still feeling my way with this style of hand lettering.

For the monograms coloured with Copic markers I started by drawing the letter with the Copic markers and then added the black line work before adding the metallic highlights and Chameleon pencil shadows. I love having a solid shape to embellish with line, pattern and metallics. However, white space is only possible by adding lines outside of the main shape. Which is fine. I could add white space inside the letters either by leaving some in the design before coloring, or using white ink to cover up the copic colours. These two letters look a lot more solid and heavy.

For the L coloured with the Chameleon pencils I drew the black line work first. The advantage of this is that I can leave white space within the letter. this gives a bit of a lighter, airier feel to the letter, which is helped with the less dense colour of the Chameleon coloured pencils.

I’m not sure if I like the metallic petals in the top monogram; the ink spilled over the black lines and I tried to add them back in to define the petals but it just seemed to sink beneath the metallic pigments.

Also, the glass pen with copper ink that I used to add the metallic highlights to the top monogram was a lot finer than the Sakura gelly roll so it was easy for me to add tiny patterns and shapes. The Uniball Signo silver pen gave a much finer line than the Sakura Gelly Roll so it was easier to add highlights to the bottom left monogram, but I knew I’d not be able to get as much fine details or patterning with it as with the glass pen.

Overall, I’m fairly pleased with the finished results. I’ve learned that I’d like to leave white space in my monograms when I’m hand lettering them in this way. Maybe if I want to use Copics in future I should use a pale colour to draw the shape of the letter and then use darker tones to add dimension and depth to the design, allowing the lighter colour to act a bit more like white space. Of course, I can always draw the design with black lines first and then add the colour. Each has it’s advantages and disadvantages.

I’m not sure which is my favourite. I rather like the one on the bottom right. As it’s smaller in size I’ve not quite managed to go over the top with the embellishment. I like the white space within the letter. I also like the more subtle colours I’ve used.

I think I’ll take my attention to a different letter now, another I’ve not done a monogram for before, well not outside of my soon to be released book ‘A Dangle A Day‘. Of course, the monograms in the book are all dangle designs too. It would be easy enough to add dangles to these designs for sure, well it would be if I’d left enough space for them!

However, my reason for doing these monograms is to add to my repertoire of hand lettering styles. These may not be entirely unique in the realms of hand lettering, but I do want to work with them and find my own way through this to something that people can look at and say ‘that’s Angela Porter’s work that is’ in the same way they do when they’re familiar with my coloring books and my style of drawing there.

Hand lettering all done!

©Angela Porter 2018

I finished this up this morning, now the migraine has lifted. I completed the embellishment of the letters. The next task was to scan the work in and remove the dot grid background in GiMP, as well as tidy up any smudges and so on.

Once I was happy with the result, I printed out the words so I could colour and add metallic highlights.

To colour, I used Chameleon Color Tone marker pens. For the metallic highlights (dots) I used a mixture of Uniball Signo glitter gel pens and metallic Sakura Gelly Roll pens.

Adding colour really helps with the read-ability of the letters. I chose to add simple color gradations and kept to one colour for each day of the week.

I really enjoyed doing this – it started as a sketch and I’ve ended up with some hand lettering that looks quite nice.

I will, at some point, do a sampler of this hand lettering style. That would be a great reference for myself, but perhaps a source of inspiration for others.

I’ve mentioned it before, but I really want to create a dangle design monogram for at least one of this style of lettering. I think that’s the next thing on my list of ‘to do’s’ on a day where I’m taking it all a bit easy; although the migraine has lifted I still feel a tad ‘fragile’.

Hand lettering and monograms are an integral part of my style of dangle designs. Although lettering as complex as this isn’t covered in ‘A Dangle A Day’, I still offer suggestions and step by step instructions for creating dangle designs. 

A Dangle A Day is published on 8th January 2019.