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Group One
In & Out of Studio 3D
Tuesday, 26 February 2019
Continuing Homework for Drawing 101 Class
Topic: Drawing

I've moved on to lesson 6 in my Drawing 101 class (artclasses.com) and it was on light and shadow.

I used toned paper and drew with graphite pencil and white pastel (for samplers), white colored pencil (for still life) and white gel pen (highlighted edges on still life)

Our first assignment was to take some items we had drawn in lesson one and use shading to make them dimensional. I did a few cubes spheres and cones on my first sheet:

Then a few cylinders and combined shapes on the second sheet. These sheets are both cut off as my paper was larger than the bed of my scanner.

The final project for lesson 6 was to draw an assigned still life from a photo supplied to us. I used a grid system to transfer the outlines.

I didn't like the fugitive nature of my white pastel pencil on the samplers so I switched to a white from my set of colored pencils.

After I had drawn and shaded the outline remained and I did not like it along the highlighted areas. So, I used a white gel pen over the pencil lines, smudging with my finger where it was too stark.

I guess that makes it 'mixed media'!


Posted by studio3d@ccgmail.net at 12:34 PM PST
Friday, 22 February 2019
Continuation of Block Lettering Versions
Topic: Lettering

Hope you're not tired of this series yet because we have a l-o-o-o-g way to go yet. I promise it will be worthwhile, though.

1,2,3 JOHN: Day 1 – Block Serifs – Introduction


We had so much fun with serifs on the basic round print several weeks ago that I wanted to repeat those options on the basic block print.

Since we are covering three books this week, we have three words on which we can get a taste of each of the three serif styles.

Start by writing out the words (and numbers) in the basic block print. To the first line add triangle serifs.

To the second line add basic serifs, which come in the form of blocks. When we drew the letters with lines, the serifs were lines. Now with the letters as blocks the serifs are blocks as well.

On the third line of text we turn the edge of the block serifs to the ‘flying bird’ form and, voila, you get ‘western’ letters.

1,2,3 JOHN: Day 2 – Chisel Serif Block Print – Alphabet


To create the chisel serif block print, begin by writing out the full alphabet of the basic block print in pencil. Pencil in triangle serifs as indicated. Note that some of these are half-serifs and some are full serifs, depending where on the letter they fall (see the difference in the tops of the H and the M and in the bottoms of the E and the T as well as the two separate feet of the N.)

Trace the letters along with the outline of the serifs using ink and then erase the pencil. You can decide at this stage if you want to leave the letters open or ink then in or fill them with color.

I like to leave my sample alphabets open as I can then clearly see the structure of the letters. When I am using them in a project, I can finish them off in any way I choose.


1,2,3, JOHN: Day 3 – Blocky Block Serifs – Alphabet


We discussed on day one this week the guideline for these blocky serifs – if the letter is lines then the plain serif is a line; if the letter is blocks then the serif is blocks.

One thing that was not pointed out is that the blocky serifs should be the same width as the elements of the letters. You will note that this sample sheet does NOT follow that rule. I tried to create the serifs digitally in paint software and I have much less control when drawing with the mouse!

This is the style of writing you will often see on athletic wear (sports jerseys).

Begin by writing out the basic block alphabet in pencil. Then pencil in the block serifs (doing a much neater job than me). Ink the outline of the letter, encompassing the serif, and then erase the pencil.

Again, you can choose to fill your letters like these or leave them open. Many sports letters are outlined in one color and filled with another (representing the team).

1,2,3, JOHN: Day 4 – Western Serifs – Alphabet


The western serif is an easy transition from the blocky serif, simply indent the block serifs with the flying bird shape.

You will begin by drawing out the basic block letters in pencil. Then add the block serifs and, finally, add the indentations. (Again, mine were done digitally so they lack finesse. Yours will, of course, be shining examples of what I should have done.)

When you have completed all your wing shapes, outline the letters in ink and erase the pencil. Then fill with ink or color.


1,2,3 JOHN: Day 5 – Block Print Serifs – Bible Page


Every week we complete the lesson plan by using the new lettering style in our Bible. We have three choices this week from the various versions of serifs on block lettering. Use any of these options to write out a scripture from 1st, 2nd or 3rd John.

On your page, sketch out the letters lightly in pencil, correct until they are exactly as you want them, trace over the pencil with pen and then, when the ink is dry, erase the pencil.

I made my block print more casual and added the basic block serifs. After inking them in solid ink, I used a gold glitter gel pen to draw a single vertical line through each letter. This adds a further element of creativity and demonstrates how you can make this lettering your own.

Done with another week!




Posted by studio3d@ccgmail.net at 12:16 PM PST
Friday, 15 February 2019
Progression of Lettering Styles
Topic: Lettering

We are, this week, tackling week 7 of building on lettering styles.

DEUTERONOMY: Day 1 – Enhanced Blocks – Intro

This week we will learn three ways to adapt the basic block lettering to create other creative styles for our Bible journaling.

The sample word below is a taste of day three – making stencil letters.

Start with all of the word written out in pencil using the basic block letters we learned last week. Then draw in a little break where the letter parts change direction.

Ink in the letter and erase your pencil outlines. You may choose to leave the letters open as they show here or fill them in solidly with ink or color.

DEUTERONOMY: Day 2 – Rounded Blocks – Alphabet

The first full alphabet we will cover this week is the rounded block.


Use pencil to write out basic block letters in both upper- and lower-case letters. I have done the sample with narrower elements that the alphabet we learned on last week. Work still for a consistent line width. The next step is to draw a circle at the end of every line ending. Keep the circle contained inside the line so it does not make the letter taller than the original pencil marks. Then trace around the letter, in ink, using the rounded ends instead of the squared off ones. Erase pencil and fill in solid.





DEUTERONOMY: Day 3 – Stencils – Alphabet

The stencil alphabet goes back to being an all-caps lettering style. We got a taste of this on day one.


Start with all of the alphabet written out in pencil using the basic block letters we learned in week 6. Then draw in a little break where the letter parts change direction. Note that the H only has one break in my sample. You can choose to add a second break on the right side. Also note that the Q does not break at the tail, even though it is a direction change.


Ink the outline of the letters and erase your pencil outlines. You may choose to leave the letters open or fill them in solidly with ink or color as shown.


DEUTERONOMY: Day 4 – Solid Rock – Alphabet

This is similar to a novelty style that was taught here in July 2018.


Begin by drawing out your basic block lettering alphabet in pencil. Convert your smooth outlines to lumpy, bumpy ones and draw in a few ‘cracks’ extending inward from a few of the dips. It is okay if your letters look a bit misshapen. Trace the outlines and cracks in ink and erase your pencil marks.


·         These make great letters to write stacked words by starting your text at the bottom and making sure all the words above rest directly on the letters below

·         Shading these darker along the bottom of each element and a little in the cracks give a great look of dimension

·         You can also draw a lumpy shadow under and to one side of all the elements to make them look more solid

·         Drawing the letters so they touch each other, and even overlapping a bit, will seal them together as words better



DEUTERONOMY: Day 5 – Fancy Blocks – In Your Bible

The ‘Solid Rock’ version of the block letters was used sparingly on this page in Deuteronomy.


Your assignment is to use one of the enhanced block styles learned this week on a scripture in your Bible in Deuteronomy.

That's it for another week




Posted by studio3d@ccgmail.net at 12:06 PM PST
Friday, 8 February 2019
Numbers of Lettering Styles
Topic: Lettering

Continuing on with my series on progressive lettering development, I have a set of lessons based in the book of Numbers in the Bible.

Day 1 – Block Letters – Introduction

We are moving now into an entirely new letter form – the basic block. We will only be working with an upper-case.


Note that all of the letter parts are the same width, whether they are verticals, horizontals or angled and whether they are straight or curved. On the sample I made these elements one unit wide which works well with a letter height of four units. The letter widths will vary as you can see with the M below.


Be sure you are working in pencil throughout the design and layout stages and only ink your letters after they are exactly the way you want them.


Just as we did with the basic round letters, we will be exploring a variety of ways to customize this basic style over the next few weeks. So, work now to develop good form so you have a good base from which to branch out.

Day 2 – Block Letters – Alphabet


This is the full alphabet for the basic block letters (capitals only).  Just as with yesterday’s sample this is a four-unit letter height with one-unit elements.


Strive for consistency in your letter forms. The hardest letter to achieve is the S with its double curves, though that seems to be a common problem with most alphabets. This is one of the reasons it is important to start with pencil and only ink after everything looks like you want.


You do still have some leeway in the basic forms. I think I may have gotten the W a bit too wide and I note that the Q is the only letter that has a non-blunted end. Try correcting these in your own alphabet, or offer them as options on your page so you can choose between forms if you like when using the alphabet for a project.


This afternoon, we have a bonus page for you! Since you may wish to write your scripture reference in the same block lettering as the rest of your project, you’ll need to have the numbers in the block style.


I have provided 1-9 and 0 for you in the basic block. Write these up as a reference and then, as we go through the lessons on enhancements, edits and embellishments you can apply the same rules to the numbers as we do to the letters.


If you don’t like the exact style these are drawn, please feel to edit your set to suit yourself.

Day 3 – Shadowed Blocks – Alphabet

Here we are with our first option. Today, write up a full set of block letters, ink them and either leave them open as this shows or fill them in solid (your choice).


Once you’ve done that, use a highlighter to make a drop-shadow on the right and bottom of all letter parts These marks should be about ½ the width of the letter elements as it will make your letters look like they are standing up off the page. If you have a hard time visualizing these shadow placements try this: take two identical copies of your alphabet and hold them layered together up to a window. Slide the top copy to the left and up (1/2 the width of the letter elements). The lower layer will show up from behind indicating where the shadow lines should be, just trace them onto the top copy!


Sorry that my scanner did not like highlighter so it washed it out a lot. In reality the shadows are day-glow orange!


NOTE: before you begin, test your pens and highlighter together to make sure the inks are compatible. You don’t want to get all solid letters and then have the highlighter smear your ink. Eeeek!



Day 4 – Shaped Block Letters – Word Art

Today, I want you to take a short phrase and create word art with it. This is similar to what we did in week 5 with the words contained in hearts but the result will look more free-form.


Start by creating shaped boxes where the words will go. For instance, I penciled in the first wedge shaped box with a curved bottom going upward as it went to the right. I used block letters to write in the word ‘the’, letting the edges and ends of the letters follow the curve of the box.


Below that I drew a second box with an arched top and a flat bottom. The outline of the box has an offset from the previous one so the letters don’t touch. The next word was lettered inside this box. The same was done for boxes three and four, changing the curves to create interest. See how the top of the U even echoes the curve on the bottom of the S.


Where I had vacant spaces, I filled in with illustrations. Then I filled in my letters with a gradient of colored pencils.


I hope you will try out this technique.

Day 5 – Shaped Blocks – In Your Bible

Today we will use the shaped block letter technique studied yesterday and create word art in our Bibles.


I combined my block letters with some basic round letters from earlier lessons as well as some handwriting script and other styles learned over time. You can use as many or as few styles as you wish, although the block and the basic round should be among them. Note that I adapted the ‘styling’ of the basic block capitals to create some words in lower case!


Look at how much text you can include without it looking cluttered or messy. Keeping some things consistent will help in this realm: a) repeat your styles in more than one place, b) color repeated styles consistently, c) nest shapes and letters together, d) vary the size of words.


In my sample, I combined this scripture with the sunflower from this week’s Drawing Room.

So in 6 weeks we have learned a total of 11 versions of lettering. SO much more to come: 1, 2 and 3 alphabets per week. Hope you are enjoying the journey.




Posted by studio3d@ccgmail.net at 9:01 AM PST
Friday, 1 February 2019
Hymnal Art
Topic: Hymnal Art

Because I didn't have enough artwork going on around here... haa haa haa... I decided to do some art journaling in an old hymnal I had here. I'm not sure what future jrojects may look like but I really was pleased with how this one turned out.

I wanted to do a very familiar hymn, but when I turned to it's page it only filled the bottom of the sheet. I covered the chorus of the previous song with scrapbook paper and used it to make a new title for the hymn in brush lettering. I used a dry rummer adhesive to hold the paper down.

I drew in three flowers with leaves and colored them with markers. Then I added a butterfly to the lettering and a black thick outline around the outside edge of the scrapbook paper.

There will be more of this going on!



Posted by studio3d@ccgmail.net at 2:36 PM PST
Lettering Series - Week 5
Topic: Lettering

Can you believe it? In just 4 weeks we have learned 7 basic and enhanced lettering styles! This week we will actually learn 3 more. And since it is all done in a progressive manner - one little step at a time - the process is easy and stress-free.

Now on to week 5

Day 1 – Adding to the Round Print – Introduction

This week we are going to make more changes to the basic round print to create three new alphabets.

Start by writing the book name ‘Jude’ in the basic round print learned in week 1. On one set, add a single line off to the right side and the bottom of all lines. We are calling this the offset line.

On the next set, widen the main downstroke (just on one side) and fill in with dark ink.

Then make another set like the second and add simple serifs like we learned in week 3.

Just do the single word in all three styles for today. Tomorrow we will begin to see how these look in full alphabets.

Day 2 – Offset Line Print – Alphabet

Here’s alphabet one for the week. Write out the basic round alphabet we learned in week 1 and then add a single offset line on the right and bottom of all lines. Notice that the ends of the lines to not overlap nor do they touch.

Watch for where you can put tiny lines like under the bottom curve of the a, d, u and at the upper left of the m and n.



Day 3a – Thick Single Line – Alphabet

There will be two alphabets today! First, write up the basic round print from week 1. Add a thickened line to one of the verticals on each letter. If that thickened line has a curve, taper so the curve ends up skinny, not wide.

Remember, there is only ONE thickened line on each letter.

Day 3b – Thick Single Line with Serif – Alphabet

How similar this looks to the previous alphabet, right. Well, it certainly starts out that way. So, draw up the basic round print, thicken one vertical line like we did yesterday and then, add serifs like we learned to do in week 3.

See how easy it is to make new lettering styles? 

Day 4 – Shaping Words to Forms – Word Art

Our lettering does not always have to be lined up in neat rows across the page. Are you ready to bust out?

We are going to use the three versions of lettering that we learned this week and fit them into shapes. I decided to reference Jude 1:2 – “Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance.” The natural shape for me was the heart.

I drew three hearts in pencil, overlapping them a bit. Then I drew the words in pencil, using the basic round print while stretching and shaping them to echo the outlines of the hearts. Then I inked the letters and, finally, added the variants from this week’s lessons: offset lines, thickened lines and serifs.

The last step was to outline the hearts and erase the pencil.

You can do this with all sorts of shapes (houses, clouds, flowers, leaves)



Day 5 – In Your Bible

Despite the teaser on word shaping yesterday, when I used this week’s lettering in my Bible, I went to the simplest form and lined it right up on the straight sidebar. HA!

But this seemed to suit the simple message of the scripture which I combined with the dove from the Drawing Room and some stick people, lifting one another up.

Use any of the alphabets and/or techniques we studied this week to add journaling to your Bible in the book of Jude.


End of Week 5



Posted by studio3d@ccgmail.net at 2:23 PM PST
Friday, 25 January 2019
Lettering Series - Week 4
Topic: Lettering

Week 4 of the progressive lettering lessons