Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Handlettering 101: From a Beginner's Perspective

I POSTED A PICTURE TO INSTAGRAM THIS PAST WEEK OF A PRETTY HANDLETTERING I FOUND VIA PINTEREST THAT SAID "GOAL DIGGER". MY CAPTION WAS ABOUT HOW I AM AN "ENTJ" THROUGH AND THROUGH ACCORDING TO THE MYERS-BRIGGS PERSONALITY TYPE TEST. I WROTE THAT ENTJ'S ENJOY LONG-TERM PLANNING AND GOAL SETTING, WHICH EXPLAINS A LOT WITH ME. =) BEFORE I POSTED THIS PICTURE I QUICKLY LOOKED OVER WHAT AN ENTJ IS TO REMIND MYSELF OF HOW COOL I AM, HAHA. JUST KIDDING BUT NOT REALLY.. OH COME ON, YOU KNOW YOU ALL READ THOSE PERSONALITY TYPES THAT FIT YOU AND ARE LIKE, OHHHH YEAH THAT'S ME ALL THE WAY- I'M SO COOL! HAHA. ANYWAYS, AS I WAS READING IT, I READ SOMETHING I DON'T REMEMBER LEARNING ABOUT ENTJ'S BEFORE. ENTJ'S LOVE TO SHARE AND PASS THEIR KNOWLEDGE ABOUT ANYTHING TO OTHER PEOPLE. THIS ALSO MAKES COMPLETE SENSE FOR ME! IF YOU WERE TO TELL ME YOU LIKED MY SHIRT, I WOULD INSTANTLY RESPOND WITH A THANK YOU AND THEN PROCEED TO TELL YOU, WHEN I GOT IT, WHERE I GOT IT, HOW MUCH I PAID FOR IT AND IF I RECOMMENDED YOU BUYING IT AS WELL, WHETHER YOU CARED ABOUT ANY OF THAT INFO OR NOT! ON THE OTHER HAND, IF YOU WERE TO TELL MY HUSBAND THAT YOU LIKED HIS SHIRT HE WOULD JUST SAY "THANKS" AND LEAVE IT AT THAT. I THINK THIS MIGHT BE WHY I LIKE TO BLOG AND INSTAGRAM SO MUCH. BECAUSE IT CERTAINLY ISN'T BECAUSE I LIKE TO WRITE. IN FACT, I HATE WRITING SO I APOLOGIZE RIGHT NOW FOR THE GRAMMATICALLY INCORRECT SENTENCES! (I MAKE MY HUSBAND PROOFREAD MOST OF MY BLOGS THOUGH- YOU'RE WELCOME!) ANYWAYS, BACK TO ENTJ'S AND HOW THEY LIKE TO SHARE INFORMATION WITH PEOPLE ALL AROUND THEM. I TOTALLY RELATE TO THIS! I LOVE TELLING PEOPLE THE THINGS I AM DOING, MAKING, COOKING, LEARNING, ETC, EVEN IF IT'S SOMETHING YOU MIGHT ALREADY KNOW OR ISN'T EVEN THAT INTERESTING OR HELPFUL! I JUST NEED TO GET IT OUT I GUESS! HAHA.

SO, ALL THAT BEING SAID, I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH YOU (AS A BEGINNER IN THIS FIELD) ALL THAT I KNOW ABOUT HANDLETTERING WHICH IS NOT MUCH, HAHA. RECENTLY, I HAVE HAD A HANDFUL OF PEOPLE ASK ME TO TEACH THEM HOW TO HANDLETTER, SO THAT'S MORE THAN A GOOD REASON FOR ME TO BLOG ABOUT IT AND SHARE ALL I KNOW! =) ALL THROUGHOUT THE POST ARE PICTURES OF DIFFERENT LETTERINGS I HAVE DONE SINCE I STARTED IN DEC OF 2013. MOST OF THEM ARE DONE WITH A PEN OR A SHARPIE BUT SOME WITH PAINT. 

BUT BEFORE I BEGIN, I WILL TELL YOU THE STORY OF HOW MY HANDLETTERING JOURNEY BEGAN AS A WEE LITTLE CHILD. IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL FROM K-6TH GRADE (I KID YOU NOT) I WAS AWARDED THE BEST HANDWRITING AWARD EVERY.SINGLE.YEAR. I TOOK PRIDE IN THAT AWARD.  I DO REALIZE NOW THAT I SUCKED AT SCIENCE AND MATH AND NEVER COULD WIN ANY OTHER AWARDS BUT HEY, MY HANDWRITING KICKED BUTT SO THAT WAS COOL. WHEN I WAS IN MIDDLE SCHOOL I HAD AN OBSESSION WITH WRITING MY NAME. I WOULD GO TO THE CHALKBOARD AND LITERALLY WRITE MY FIRST, MIDDLE AND LAST NAME IN CURSIVE HUNDREDS OF TIMES UNTIL THE WHOLE CHALKBOARD WAS COVERED. THE WEIRD THING WAS THAT I WASN'T EVEN IN DETENTION! IT WOULD USUALLY BE DURING LUNCH OR A STUDY HALL. WAS I MESSED UP OR WHAT!? MY FRIENDS ALL MADE FUN OF ME FOR IT CONSTANTLY. HERE'S A FUN FACT; MY SISTER, AMY, STILL CALLS ME KIMBERLY LOU BECAUSE OF HOW I WOULD WRITE MY NAME OVER AND OVER AGAIN. LET ME EXPLAIN. I HATED HOW CURSIVE LOWER CASE R'S LOOKED WITH THAT WEIRD SWOOP IN THE MIDDLE (STRANGELY I LOVE THEM NOW). BUT BECAUSE I HATED THE SWOOP, I WOULD SKIP OVER IT AND NOT ADD IT IN SO MY "R" AND "I" IN MY MIDDLE NAME WHICH IS LORI LOOKED LIKE A "U" SO IT READ AS KIMBERLY LOU INSTEAD OF KIMBERLY LORI. I HATED THAT NICKNAME FOR A LONG TIME BUT NOW I EMBRACE IT. IT REMINDS ME OF HOW FAR I HAVE COME IN THE HANDWRITING WORLD, HAHA.

ANYWAYS, FAST FORWARD TO A FEW YEARS AGO WHEN I WAS STARTING TO REALLY TAKE INTEREST IN INSTAGRAM, PINTEREST AND THE BLOGGING WORLD AND NOTICED HOW HAVING GOOD HANDWRITING WAS AN ACTUAL THING THAT COULD BE TURNED INTO BEAUTIFUL ART (MORE THAN JUST PRETTY CALLIGRAPHY ON A WEDDING INVITE). I STARTED FINDING PEOPLE TO FOLLOW ON SOCIAL MEDIA WHO ACTUALLY DO LETTERING AS THEIR PROFESSION! I WAS INSTANTLY INSPIRED (HOWEVER NOT INSTANTLY GOOD AT IT, AND I'M STILL A BEGINNER, BUT I'M EAGER TO CONTINUE LEARNING AND GETTING BETTER!) HERE'S A LOOK INTO HOW TO START HANDLETTERING AS A BEGINNER.
A GREAT TIME TO PRACTICE LETTERING IS IN THE WINTER! ;)

HANDLETTERING 101:

1. GET INSPIRED! FOLLOW DESIGNERS ON SOCIAL MEDIA WEBSITES!

LIKE I SAID BEFORE: I FOUND PROFESSIONAL HANDLETTERERS VIA SOCIAL MEDIA AND STARTED FOLLOWING THEM AND LOOKED AT HOW THEY ARE DOING AND WHAT THEY ARE DOING. HERE IS A SHORT LIST OF A FEW PEOPLE I LOVE TO FOLLOW TO SEE WHAT LETTERING CREATIONS THEY COME UP WITH.

DANA TANAMACHI: INCREDIBLE DESIGNER AND LETTERER. SHE IS SPECIFICALLY KNOWN FOR HER CHALKLETTERING.

KAL BARTESKI: SHE WRITES PRIMARILY WITH PAINT AND IT'S ABSOLUTELY PERFECT!

I STARTED DESIGNING STATIONERY A COUPLE YEARS AGO THROUGH AN AWESOME STATIONERY WEBSITE CALLED, MINTED. ONCE I JOINED MINTED, I FOUND OUT ABOUT THEIR AMAZING COMMUNITY OF DESIGNERS. WE HAVE A CLOSED FACEBOOK GROUP WHERE WE ASK EACH OTHER ADVICE FROM ANYTHING HAVING TO WITH THE MINTED DESIGN CHALLENGES, TO TALKING ABOUT FAVORITE FONTS WE FIND ON THE WEB, TO SHARING HOW EACH OTHER'S SMALL BUSINESSES ARE GOING, AND EVEN TO JUST ASK FOR NAME IDEAS FOR PUPPIES! HAHA, THIS LITERALLY HAPPENED ONE TIME AND I THOUGHT IT WAS SO AWESOME HOW MNAY DESIGNERS GAVE THIS WOMAN SUCH GREAT NAMES FOR HER NEW PUPPY. BUT THAT'S BESIDES THE POINT, IT'S REALLY AN AWESOME FAMILY OF DESIGNERS AND THROUGH THIS I FOUND OUT ABOUT A GREAT GROUP OF HANDLETTERERS. WELL PRETTY MUCH MOST OF THESE AWESOME DESIGNERS ARE INCREDIBLE LETTERERS BUT HERE ARE JUST A FEW TO NAME:




ANOTHER PERSON WHO HAS INSPIRED ME A TON IS AN AWESOME WOMAN NAMED, ANDREA BURKE. I STUMBLED ACROSS HER BLOG THROUGH MUTUAL FRIENDS AND FOUND OUT SHE IS AN INCREDIBLE LETTERER, GRAPHIC DESIGNER, PICTURE TAKER, STORY TELLER, AND ALL AROUND AMAZING ARTIST! IT'S A PLUS TOO BECAUSE SHE IS A CHRISTIAN IN THE MOST HONEST AND REAL WAY! I TOTALLY RECOMMEND FOLLOWING HER ON IG. YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED! =)

THERE ARE SO MANY OTHER AMAZING LETTERERS OUT THERE TOO! ONE THING I DO IS LOOK AT WHO MY FAVORITE LETTERERS ARE FOLLOWING ON PINTEREST, INSTAGRAM, ETC. AND MORE THAN LIKELY THEY WILL BE FOLLOWING OTHER INCREDIBLE ARTISTS THAT YOU CAN THEN FOLLOW TOO! 


THIS IS WHEN I WAS BRAINSTORMING FOR MY BLOG'S NEW DESIGN.

THIS WAS FOR AN ART SHOW THROUGH MY JOB. I SPRAYED WHITE PAPER WITH CHALKBOARD PAINT SO I COULD DO SOME CHALK LETTERING ON TOP.

2.TAKE CLASSES, READ BOOKS, AND WATCH YOUTUBE TUTORIALS:

THIS IS SOMETHING I NEED TO REMIND MYSELF TO DO. MY AUNT GAVE ME A BOOK ON CALLIGRAPHY I STILL HAVE YET TO READ! IT NEEDS TO HAPPEN THIS YEAR! THERE IS ALSO AN INCREDIBLE WEBSITE CALLED SKILLSHARE THAT MY FAVORITE FREELANCER COUSIN, JENI, TOLD ME ABOUT. IT'S PRETTY AMAZING. THEY HAVE TONS AND TONS OF CLASSES FOR ANY KIND OF ARTISTS TO LEARN PRETTY MUCH ANYTHING THEY WANT TO LEARN. I HAVE ONLY HAD TIME TO TAKE A COUPLE SO FAR BUT I PLAN ON TAKING MORE ONCE I CONVINCE RYAN TO LET ME UPGRADE TO A PREMIUM ACCOUNT SUBSCRIPTION. YES, THAT'S THE DOWNSIDE. IT COSTS MONEY, BUT NOT A TON, AND THERE IS A 14-DAY FREE TRIAL, SO BABY, USE THAT FREE TRIAL AS MUCH AS YOU CAN! THE CLASS I TOOK WHERE I LEARNED A LOT ABOUT HANDLETTERING WAS THE FIRST STEPS TO LETTERING. CHECK IT OUT SOMETIME. MARYKATE MCDEVITT IS A GREAT TEACHER AND SUCH A TALENTED LETTERER! SHE EXPLAINS A LOT AND GOES THROUGH THE TOOLS YOU NEED (WHICH I TOUCH ON BRIEFLY BELOW) AS WELL AS DISTINGUISHES THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CALLIGRAPHY AND LETTERING (TWO DIFFERENT THINGS!) IT REALLY IS INFORMATIVE. I HIGHLY SUGGEST IT!
LETTERING IS DEFINITELY A PROCESS. WHEN I AM CREATING SOMETHING FOR SOMEONE ELSE, I ALWAYS DO SEVERAL ROUGH DRAFTS.


MY ALL TIME FAVORITE PEN! THE UNI-BALL VISION FINE POINT PEN!

3. USE THE RIGHT TOOLS FOR YOU:

I TYPICALLY ALWAYS SKETCH WHAT I AM LETTERING OUT IN PENCIL FIRST. SOMETIMES IF I AM JUST DOING SOMETHING QUICK FOR JUST MYSELF THEN I DON'T. WHEN I DO, I USE MECHANICAL PENCILS FOR THE MOST PART JUST BECAUSE THEY ARE EASY BUT A REGULAR 2B PENCIL IS PERFECT. JUST MAKE SURE YOU SKETCH IT OUT LIGHTLY! SO WHEN I FIRST STARTED OFF LETTERING I MAINLY JUST USED SHARPIES. IT WAS BEFORE I REALLY KNEW MUCH THOUGH. I MEAN, DON'T GET ME WRONG I LOVE SHARPIES- ESPECIALLY THE GOLD ONES ON BLACK POSTERBOARD! AND THE SHARPIE ULTRA FINE TIP PENS WILL ALWAYS BE A FAVE! BUT I NEVER KNEW ABOUT ALL THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF PENS UNTIL I STARTED RESEARCHING. HONESTLY I STILL DON'T KNOW A TON IN THIS AREA AND HOPE TO LEARN MORE SO I DEFINITELY RECOMMEND YOU TAKING A SKILLSHARE CLASS OR RESEARCHING IT FOR YOURSELF. MOST PEOPLE SAY THAT PIGMA MICRONS ARE THE BEST BUT I REMEMBER USING THOSE IN MY 2D DESIGN CLASS IN COLLEGE AND IT JUST BRINGS BACK BAD MEMORIES, HAHA. NO, BUT HONESTLY I HAVE FOUND THAT MY FAVORITE PEN IS THE UNI-BALL VISION FINE POINT PEN. IT'S AMAZING! AND YOU CAN FIND IT AT WALMART OR TARGET, NOT JUST AT ART STORES OR ONLINE WHICH IS A DEFINITE PLUS ESPECIALLY FOR ME. I HAVE A PROBLEM WITH LOSING THINGS. DID YOU WATCH THAT EPISODE OF PARKS AND REC A COUPLE WEEKS AGO WHERE JERRY/LARRY/GARY DROPS HIS WEDDING RING DOWN A SEWER AND DONNA HELPS HIM GET IT OUT AND SHE ENDS UP FINDING THAT HE HAD LOST SEVERAL WEDDING RINGS PLUS SEVERAL CAR KEYS AND OTHER THINGS DOWN THAT VERY SAME DRAIN? THAT'S GOING TO BE ME IN HEAVEN WHEN GOD SHOWS ME HOW MANY BURTS BEES LIP BALMS, RINGS, EARRINGS, DRIVER'S LICENSES, AND UNIBALL PENS THAT I LOST. I KIND OF CAN'T WAIT TO SEE HOW BIG THE PILE WILL BE, HAHA. AT ANY RATE, GO TO YOUR LOCAL ART STORE AND JUST BUY A FEW DIFFERENT TYPES OF PENS AND SEE WHAT IS MOST COMFORTABLE FOR YOU! 



THESE ARE TWO PIECES I LITERALLY JUST COPIED OFF VIA PINTEREST. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH COPYING OTHER WORK IN ORDER TO LEARN AND PRACTICE! ALWAYS GIVE CREDIT THOUGH ;)

4. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE!


ONCE YOU ARE INSPIRED BY ALL THESE AMAZING ARTISTS AND YOU HAVE THE TOOLS YOU NEED, THEN START CREATING FOR YOURSELF! HECK, LITERALLY JUST COPY SOMETHING THAT ONE OF THESE ARTISTS DID (ALWAYS GIVE CREDIT OF COURSE!) AND PRACTICE IT OVER AND OVER AGAIN! THIS IS HONESTLY HOW I STARTED. I WOULD FIND HAND LETTERED PIECES FROM A DESIGNER OR ON PINTEREST AND JUST COPY IT. KELLY MCNEILL (AN AWESOME LADY I FOLLOW ON IG) IS GOING THROUGH A 365 DAY HANDLETTERING JOURNEY AND SHE IS LETTERING ONE WORD MULTIPLE TIMES EVERY SINGLE DAY. IT'S PRETTY COOL TO SEE HER ON HER JOURNEY. I AM THINKING I MIGHT DO THAT SOMEDAY TOO! IT'S DEFINITELY A GREAT WAY TO PRACTICE YOUR LETTERING SKILLS!

SO I THINK THAT IS IT FOR WHAT I HAVE TO SHARE WITH YOU. I HOPE YOU LEARNED SOMETHING, MAYBE... IF ANYTHING JUST REMEMBER THE HARDEST PART IS STARTING SO GET GOING BECAUSE ONCE YOU DO, IT WILL GET EASIER. TRUST ME! GOOD LUCK ON YOUR LETTERING JOURNEY AND HAVE FUN!


HAPPY HANDLETTERING!

XOXO -KIMMY




ONCE YOU GET USE TO LETTERING ON PAPER AND CANVASES, START LETTERING ON OTHER THINGS LIKE MUGS, PILLOW CASES, ETC.! THEY MAKE FOR GREAT GIFTS! =)



Friday, February 13, 2015

Healthy Banana Pancakes

WHAT BETTER WAY TO CELEBRATE VALENTINE'S DAY THIS SATURDAY MORNING WITH SOME DELICIOUS AND HEALTHY PANCAKES!?! 

WHEN I SAW THIS RECIPE ON ALYSSA QUILALA'S FITNESS INSTAGRAM, I KNEW I HAD TO TRY IT. MY HUSBAND ABSOLUTELY LOVES PANCAKES SO EVERY SATURDAY WHEN WE DON'T HAVE ANYTHING MAJOR GOING ON I TRY TO MAKE HIM A YUMMY BREAKFAST. LATELY I HAVE BEEN TRYING TO NOT EAT ANY STARCHY CARBS OR SUGAR SO IT HAS BEEN REALLY HARD RESISTING A GOOD OLD FASHIONED PANCAKE WHEN I MAKE THEM FOR HIM.  SO WHEN I FOUND THIS RECIPE FOR HEALTHY BANANA PANCAKES THAT HAS NO SUGAR AND NO FLOUR, IT WAS THEE PERFECT SOLUTION! OF COURSE RYAN HATES THEM BUT AT LEAST WHEN I MAKE HIM PANCAKES I AM NO LONGER TEMPTED TO EAT HIS BECAUSE I HAVE MY OWN! :)

IT REALLY IS SUPER EASY AND ONLY HAS 5 INGREDIENTS! SCROLL BELOW FOR THE RECIPE AND BE SURE TO FOLLOW FITMAMAQ FOR MORE HEALTHY RECIPES!








BELOW ARE THE PANCAKES THAT I MADE FOR RYAN. IT'S PROBABLY BETTER TO POUR PANCAKE BATTER INTO A METAL HEART COOKIE CUTTER THAT IS ON THE GRIDDLE SO YOU COOK IT AS A HEART INSTEAD OF ACTUALLY CUTTING OUT A HEART SHAPE AFTER THE FACT, BUT I ONLY HAVE PLASTIC COOKIE CUTTERS SO I IMPROVISED :)



INGREDIENTS

2 EGGS
1 BANANA
1 TBLSP FLAX OR CHIA SEEDS (I USED FLAX)
1/2 TSP PURE VANILLA EXTRACT
1/4 TSP BAKING SODA
PINCH OF SALT

DIRECTIONS

1) SMASH THE BANANA AND BEAT THE EGGS AND COMBINE

2) ADD THE FLAX OR CHIA SEEDS, BAKING SODA AND VANILLA AND MIX TOGETHER

3) SPRAY HEATED PAN OR GRIDDLE WITH COOKING SPRAY

4) POUR A LITTLE LESS THAN 1/4 CUP ONTO GRIDDLE (YOU DO NOT WANT THEM TOO BIG BECAUSE THEY ARE KIND OF HARD TO FLIP)

5) LET SIT FOR A WHILE AND THEN A LITTLE BIT LONGER THAN YOU THINK AND THEN FLIP. TRUST ME, THEY DO GET MUCH BROWNER THAN YOU THINK THEY ARE GOING TO GET BUT THEY AREN'T BURNT! IT REALLY IS HARD TO FLIP THEM WHEN THEY AREN'T DONE ENOUGH.

6) SERVE WITH YOUR CHOICE OF FRESH BERRIES AND PURE/ORGANIC LOCAL MAPLE SYRUP! I USED MAPLE SYRUP FROM NONE OTHER THAN THE FINEST COUNTRY HOME AND GARDEN STORE IN THE AREA, SWEET MEADOWS. I ALSO DON'T USUALLY PUT BUTTER ON THEM BECAUSE THEY DON'T NEED IT. I DID IT MORE OR LESS FOR THE PICTURE. :P BUT ONCE I TRIED PEANUT BUTTER ON THEM AND THEY WERE HEAVENLY! THE POSSIBILITY OF TOPPINGS ARE ENDLESS! IT'S UP TO YOU!

7) ENJOY!