Tuesday, February 28, 2012

hello from Jacky ...

Thanks so much Fiona for letting me join the group.  I'm a late starter..... but catching up quickly!  This past week or so I have stitched the letters below. 
I have used a lovely soft white linen cloth which I have torn (I love those frayed edges)  for my backing and thread beads to stitch the letter.  The thread beads ( a la Jude Hill)  are my take on the 'dot' theme for one of the alphabets.  The letters are all hand drawn, so not perfectly even or uniform.

I love stitching and painting... living in East Gippsland, a very beautiful part of Australia I am constantly inspired  by my environment in my art/creativity.  I am married and have two gorgeous grown up sons.  We live on a farm with lots of cattle, horses, dogs, cats .... and beautiful native birds and animal life.

Jacky xox

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Fiona's four for February

I have found a bit of time to keep on making my little letters.  I love the pin prick outlines and love the gentleness of them. They feel like snowflakes falling or something when I hold them in my hand.

So here are February's four - E, F, G and H. I like the contrast against the black; but won't be using black in the finished piece.

Here is where I have gotten to so far - the first eight letters sitting on a table in the shed.

A couple of close-ups of them nestled together - I like them close up to each other for some reason.

And an update on the backing sheet that is turning out to be so interesting!

I posted this same post over at my blog. We are away for work-work again, so I just need to find ways to stay online, on the road...

Saturday, February 25, 2012


I keep going the way I started and think about a way of connecting them together.

It's so much fun working with shellac and wax.

I really like the rust of the letters.

And the added split-pins make it more dotti I hope.

Another layer of shellac on the rust glues it on well.

Friday, February 24, 2012

circle alphabet - next next ones

and here come G and H. I'm not so fond of my G looking like a snail (but in a way, snails are some gastronomic speciality here !)

I'm so happy to be part of this project and see all the wonderful ideas emerging this year !


Hello friends, I hope all is well with you. Below is a continuation of the first alphabet for 2012: Dots.
For 'e' I chose a monochromatic palette of reddish-brown with large, texturized dots.

 'f' makes up for the mono-chromatic with lots of bright color and smaller dots. More texture, of course. LOL
 'g' is similar to f but the color is more subtle and dots are more prominent.
 For 'h' I went with a more 'clean' approach: various sizes of dots all white or nearly white to look somewhat 'bubbly'. Hmmm . . . it makes me wish for champagne . . . .
Thank you for visiting!

Gone Dotty - ok not for the first time

am a little behind as it is nearly the last Wednesday in the month... but as I have gone dotty, all is self explanatory. I also missed the words about the square and went totally with the circle for everything, especially when I discovered the diameter of my found fabric from an box of old coasters was the right dimension. I get easily excited when I find these old things at my favourite "shop". So now I present my "clayton" square dotty alphabet beginnings. Christine

February - Terrie

My continued alphabet......I made a tiny change and decided to back each square with a colored paper to pick up the spatter color.  I like it much better because it seems to really enhance the colors.

It's fun and challenging to sometimes try to incorporate the spatters and sometimes to ignore them.  I also sometimes have the zentangle overflow or bridge to the adjoining square, and sometimes not.....  I'm having SO much fun with this and with seeing everyone else's projects.  So much creativity!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Letters for February - Deb

Here are my next four letters. These little linen sachets are very fiddly to make and very hard to get square! I do like stitching on the linen though and it irons beautifully.

Monday, February 20, 2012

rObfOs Jan/Feb braille alphabet offerings

Herewith my dotty letter offerings for Jan/Feb 2012:
- Braille Alphabet -

As predicted in my first post about my braille alphabet,
I am finding it difficult to pace myself. 

My format is very simple and
I just can't limit myself to cutting out one piece of metal.  
For continuity's sake, I want to do them all at once.
Since the whole concept of the alphabet is tactile, it is hard
to make them look exciting in photographic form
(I have been having fun running my fingers over them, but oh, the fingerprints!) 

 I shall have to spend my time thinking of some very clever way of 
displaying them as a whole to make them more appealing.

Curving the metal plates around something cylindrical is
going around in my mind at the moment
and of course making sure the sharp edges are contained so that
nobody ends up with cut fingers.

Also thinking about adding to the sensory side of things 
with the noise the plates might make if they were to jingle together.

E, F, G, H - Jo

Surprise!  I'm on track this year and have completed February's letters.  Mind you, Photoshop is one of my favourite pastimes and I can spend hours manipulaing images to my satisfaction.

Hope these pass muster...

Of course they are the 'dotty' ones and probably will lend themselves to a 'waterfall' book in the final arrangement.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

The paper dot letters continue and I'm really enjoying playing with the circle and triangle shapes to see how I can piece the letters together.

I didn't realize until after I had already decided my palette that my 'e' would be yellow. Remind you of any 80s video game characters??

I'm still so impressed with all of the creative ideas I've been seeing here. Wonderful jobs fellow ALAWers!!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Here are my February letters, I've now run out of the beautiful handmade paper with the confetti type spots going through it. I got it a couple of years ago so I'm hoping my paper supply shop will still have it.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Nearly up to date! Have been a little slow as I had not completed last years letters into a book form That's now done and was posted in ALAW 2011 yeasterday. Valerie
In December I decided after two years that I would not continue, however the dots and circles appealed so here I am for another year! I found some of my hand marbled paper that has a multitude of bubble type images that would be a nice background, went looking for an alphabet into which I could incorporate dots and circles. I have chosen a 15th century Italian style chunky Roman letter which suits my 'rising bubbles' very nicely.

Judith's first few letters

Here are my next letters.

I based them on the Neuland hand but with more movement and then they came alive :)


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valerie's Introduction

I am Valerie Keevers born in Kent, England…. yonks ago. My Grandfather introduced me to Heraldry and Calligraphy as a small child, taking me into old churches and museums, also telling me the tales of knights of old and their adventures. War broke out and all these adventures stopped, except for the books I could read about Dragons, Unicorns and The Crusaders etc. My heritage is Scottish and Welsh, so I also have a great love of the Tartans and the Gaelic arts which came to the fore many years later when I became a calligrapher.

My family moved to Australia where I finished my schooling and four years at East Sydney Tafe, becoming a two year bonded teacher of Fashion, which had been my passion since I could first thread a needle. Teaching in Tamworth, I met a carpenter Brian whom I married the following year. We travelled back to England on honeymoon so that I could introduce Brian to my extended family and we stayed and obtained work experience for the next two years, Brian in the building industry and myself in fashion, becoming the manager of an ‘off the peg clothing’ manufacturer Armon Gowns.

Back in Australia we settled in Sydney, bought a house and had three children so the next years passed in a blur of rearing children and running a part time private business from home. The next major leap was to take a Tafe Computing Course, becoming a part time I.T. teacher for the next 22 years. It was during these early I.T. years that I closed my dressmaking business and looking for something to fill that gap I took a calligraphy course with Fran McKirdy and became hooked! Calligraphy filled the need in me for colour, art, design and re-opened the door to my love of the written word. From here I did the Calligraphy Certificate at St. George Tafe with Olivia Roberts, The Certificate Course with Margaret Layson at Chatswood Evening College, finishing with The Diploma Course in Western Calligraphy and became an accredited Vetab Teacher of Calligraphy.

I have taught Calligraphy over the years for the Eastern Suburbs Evening College and the Sutherland and St. George Community College as well as The Australia Calligraphers and Calligraphy Southscribes. Southscribes came into being 20 years ago to serve the potential calligraphers south of the Harbour as travel to the northside meant a lot of extra time added to a workshop at Primrose Park.
I am still a serving committee member and tutor of Southscribes which has given me a lot of pleasure and has enabled the meeting of many interstate and intra-state calligraphers who all help to widen the knowledge and enjoyment of calligraphy and the related arts.

I was very wary when I started with ‘A Letter A Week’ back in 2010, however found it fascinating to see via the Internet what creative designs were being posted and also found renewed enthusiasm for creating individual letters. Continued into 2011 and now have just committed myself for 2012. A big thank you to Fiona Dempster for her dedication To ALAW as it is bringing the love of lettering to a very wide community.

Valerie Keevers - finished book for alaw 2011  "black and white and a touch of..."

Monday, February 13, 2012

The Next Four

And here they are.

I have painted over each one with a starch paste

This time the paste consists of

Soy  milk powder and plain white spelt flour

Next will be some painting
I am having to be a bit ahead of schedule
as I will be away for half of April and May
Plus prep time of course.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Introduction - Deb

Hello, my name is Deb. I only discovered ALaW recently and was so inspired by all the brilliant and fascinating work. I really enjoyed looking back over the last two years.
I live in South Australia and have been quilting and stitching for thirty years. I like to mix machine and hand work.
I haven't done a lot of work with the alphabet apart from appliqueing white towels with new baby's names for all my daughters friends. These have been extremely popular. I think after making the major decision of naming your baby, to see the name in print (in any form) is very exciting.
I don't even know a lot about alphabets so I am looking forward to doing some research. I know all you calligraphers would have a vast knowledge! 
For my first alphabet I have made little linen and lawn sachets, turned them inside out, stitched around the edge and then appliqued a spotty letter on the front. I am then stitching a simple circle using hand dyed (by a friend) crochet cotton. The alphabet fabric is a multi-coloured piece of batik, so all the letters will be a different colour. 
Not quite sure how I am going to put these together yet but I have a few ideas.
The font I am using is Bookman Old Style from Microsoft Word.