Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Heart and Home

Happy April dear friends. I hope you are keeping well. This is indeed a strange and stressful time, unlike anything we have experienced before. These days I find myself being so grateful for things that I used to take for granted. My routine has changed and I am getting used to a "new normal" as I am sure you are too. I find myself visiting my home library much more often and appreciating what is on the shelf. Over the years, I seem to have collected not only art supplies, papers, inks and paints but an abundance of books. Each one served a particular purpose when I purchased it but it is time to revisit the pages and wisdom on the shelf. There is so much to glean from each page. I encourage you to visit your home library and revisit an old friend on the shelf. Right now, we have the time and the effect can be such a welcome pause during this unique time.

A couple of weeks ago, I shared a Spring wreath tutorial with you and had so many thankful emails. I am so glad you enjoyed the tutorial. I have added a few more images here of the same idea, but expanded to a heart design. You begin the same way with a simple heart outline. Bear in mind that your pencil outline will need to be erased so keep the line light and delicate. If you use a B pencil it really helps to deliver a very faint line on the paper. When I want to incorporate some calligraphy in the flourish, the lettering is always done first. When writing a single word I often use a pencil line for the baseline and the x-height.

When I begin a heart flourish, I usually turn the heart shape so the point is facing away from body. I then begin to flourish along the right hand side of the heart with the small cartouche strokes and floral clusters. Before doing the left hand side of the heart, I make sure that the right side is dry. You don't want to accidentally brush your hand through wet ink.
Proceed the same way as outlined in the wreath flourish tutorial. This flourish was painted with watercolour and embellished with finetec gold and the Sakura Clear Stardust Gelly Roll Pen. I used McCaffery brown ink on Strathmore Bristol Vellum Paper. 
The same method applies to any shape and size. The layout method is a bit different for something as large as the oval design pictured, but the flourishing technique is the same. 
The final image is a group of flourishes I completed for The European Pointed Pen Collective Envelope exchange. The floral flourishes are painted freely in watercolour rather than the Victorian Line and Wash method but the flourishing method is similar.
Whatever you decide to try, I am here to answer any questions.  You can email me at  Remember that you do not need to use the same supplies that I use. I encourage you to start with what you have and try your hand at this peaceful and meditative art form. With my travel schedule being altered at the moment, I have more time for online private sessions. If you are interested in more details about The Artful Flourish course, The Enchanted Meadow, The Enchanted Letter, Italian Hand or any of my other workshops please contact me and I will be happy to send you info. Keep calm and Flourish On dear friends. We are in this together.

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