Gemma Black

Tasmania, Australia

B200 Calligraphy: Essence and Flow

Two and a Half Day Class

Have you ever wondered why your texts lack a real essence and flow or why your work just does not “sing”? Try this radical new approach to your work where you will be introduced to a new structure of writing. We will not be re-inventing the wheel here but we will be re-aligning the spokes from our current use. Using medieval and renaissance scribes’ text blocks as scaffolds or lining systems will allow your work to come alive, to sing and to breathe off the page. We will apply this old and new way to twenty-first century contemporary work, compiling a series of examples to use as future models for our calligraphic texts. Both minuscule and majuscule text blocks will be studied and you will be delighted with your new results.

Supply List
  • A full set of broad-edged nibs in sizes 3/4 mm – 5 mm in width (preferred brands: Brause, Speedball or William Mitchell)
  • Optional: ruling pen
  • Optional: pointed nibs

  • Layout, marker or practice paper pad
  • 2 full sheets of fine-art paper (Arches, BFK Rives etc.), cut in quarters for travel: 180 gsm – 250 gsm
  • 4 – 5 sheets of tracing paper

  • Black stick ink and/or walnut ink only

  • Ruler
  • Eraser
  • Pencil
  • Bone folder
  • Scoring tool
  • Calligraphy creature comforts: dividers (only if you have a pair); compass (only if you have a pair)

Gemma is a calligrapher from Tasmania, Australia where she operates her studio-based practice. In 1991 she received a Winston Churchill Fellowship to study in Europe. She is also a Fellow of the Calligraphy & Lettering Arts Society, UK. Gemma teaches for art, calligraphy, bookbinding and craft organizations across Australia and she has also joined the faculty at international lettering art conferences in Italy, Germany, Spain, the U.S., Canada and the UK. Currently her teaching via zoom and other online platforms due to the pandemic, is keeping her very busy and active. Her work is housed in private and public collections, including the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, UK; the European Parliament; Letterform Archive San Francisco; and Parliament House Canberra. Gemma enjoys teaching very much and delivers her programs with a pure love for letterforms.