sojoey: Brush Lettering 101

Welcome to this brush lettering guide! Here I will share my tips for mastering a new skill in brush lettering. With any new skill, it doesn't come easily and you will need to practice lots to get comfortable using the brush pens.

There are so many different brush pens that you could use but my favourites are Tombow Dual Brush, Faber Castell Pitt Artist Brush, Pentel Sign Brush, Artline Stix Brush and Zig Cocoiro Brush. You can find some or all of these at most art stores but my favourite place to buy them is (Free Delivery on orders over £10!) With the brush pens there are varying width. The Tombow and Artline are good for big writing and the Pentel Sign and Zig Cocoiro are great for smaller writing like in your planners.

You can use any paper to practice on but I have found that the Rhodia Paper Pads are excellent quality and have minimal ghosting with any of the pens above and with fountain pens. They are my favourite papers to use for practicing. When the pen glides on the paper, it makes life so much easier! They come in lots of different sizes and are available in dot grid, grid, plain and lined.

I would also recommend getting your hands on some tracing paper. There are so many resources out there that you could use to master lettering. Replication is a great way to learn if you're struggling with letter forms. By tracing over them, you commit them to memory and it will be easier for you practice doing them. Using tracing paper also lets you reuse any of the guides or pages that you're using.

Now that we've got supplies down, let us get on to the actual lettering. The basic idea is that brush lettering is made up of varying thickness of lines in all of your letters. To get a thicker line, you will need to hold your pen at a lower angle (closer to the paper) and apply a heavier pressure. If you want a thinner line, you will need to increase the angle and decrease the pen pressure. Typically, thicker lines are used for all the downstrokes and thin lines are use for all the upstrokes.

There are so many way to create letters. You have to remember that everyone writes differently and holds the pen differently so please don't be discouraged if you don't get it the first time around or if yours looks different to someone elses. These tips and guidelines are here to help you to develop your own style in brush lettering.

I created this small guide which will soon be a full guide. You can find some practice sheets to download and print to help you to practice some drills and master the strokes. More sheets will be available for this guide soon. It is a work in progress! Please click here to download a PDF of the initial practice sheets.

Happy lettering and as always, please feel free to contact me if you need any help with lettering.

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