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===Strokes for different letters===
===Strokes for different letters===
For each alphabet style, practice strokes that are found commonly within the letters.
Practice some basic strokes. This example shows vertical, horizontal, angled, and curved strokes to practice.<BR>
[[image:Basic Strokes.jpg|450px|Basic Practice Strokes]]<BR><BR>
For each alphabet style, practice strokes that are found commonly within the letters.<BR>
[[image:Practice Strokes.jpg|450px|Practice Strokes]]<BR><BR>
[[Category:Adventist Youth Honors Answer Book|{{SUBPAGENAME}}]]
[[Category:Adventist Youth Honors Answer Book|{{SUBPAGENAME}}]]

Revision as of 18:26, 23 January 2009

Template:Honor header

1. Write from memory the complete lower case alphabet in two of the following: Gothic, Roman, or Italic.

"Lettering" is often used to have the same meaning as "Calligraphy". This is the case with this honor. The goal of this requirement is to have the student learn two lowercase alphabets for hand lettering or calligraphy that could be used in the creation of signs and posters.

The words Gothic, Roman, and Italic in this case do not apply to the fonts familiar to us on the computers, (although they are related), but more specifically to the type of letters that could be formed with a calligraphy pen, or with any wedge tipped felt marker. Felt markers are particularly useful for poster and sign making.


The Gothic script (also known as Black Letter) was in common use during the Middle Ages in Western Europe. Because Gothic Script looks antique, it is often chosen to write on certificates, quotes from scripture, or holiday cards.
Wiki Article on Gothic Script
How to form Gothic Script

Sample Gothic script
A Gothic Script


The italic script is called italic because it was developed in Italy during the early Renaissance period. It was adopted for use by Pope Nicholas V.

Wiki Article on Italic Script
How to form Italic Script

Sample Italic Script
An Italic Script


Roman letters were inscribed in stone in ancient Rome, and were only capital letters. All modern styles have descended from Roman Capitals. Lower case Roman styles were developed later by Italian scholars. These lower case forms are also known as bookhand, due to it's popularity in English language printed materials.

Shown here is a version of Roman, known as Single Stroke Roman. It is called this because unlike some of the more complicated Roman letters, each letter can be created without going over any of the strokes more than one time. This makes Single Stroke Roman very useful for poster making and signs. For most letters the nib is held flat so it is parallel with the baseline. For "s,v,w,x,y,z, and parts of i, j, and k" the pen is angled, somewhere near 30 degrees.

The following example shows the direction to make the strokes, as well as pen or brush angle for this letter type.

Lower Case Roman

Wiki article on Roman Capitals


Another good alphabet to learn is called "foundational".

Here are links to a nice site with animations showing how to form this alphabet.
Lower Case and Upper Case

2. Demonstrate when the different sizes and types of pens are to be used.

Types of Pens

There are three basic types of pens used in writing calligraphy.

  • Dip Pens

Calligraphy Dip Pen

Dip pens are simply a metal nib that fits into a solid handle. The nib of the pen must be dipped into an ink bottle as you write.

  • Precise interchangeable nibs
  • Highest quality of pens available
  • can be expensive
  • difficult to use
  • delicate nibs can bend
  • nibs can snag paper
  • ink can be messy
  • must be cleaned after each use
  • Fountain Pens

Calligraphy Fountain Pen

Fountain pens have an ink cartridge in the handle, which supplies ink to the nib. As long as there is ink in the cartridge, you do not have to stop and dip the pen in a bottle.

  • Better quality than felt tip pens
  • Easier to use than dip pens
  • Don't require dipping in ink bottle
  • not as precise as dip pens
  • sometimes the ink can stop flowing on a push stroke
  • changing the ink cartridge can be messy and requires cleaning the nib
  • Felt Tip Pens

Felt tipped pens are complete with a felt nib, and ink in the handle. Most cannot be refilled, but some of the more expensive art pens can now be refilled, and have the felt tips replaced.
Calligraphy Felt Pens

This set of pens are double ended, with a 3.5mm tip on one end, and a 2mm tip on the other.
Calligraphy Felt Pen

  • Least expensive
  • Easiest to use
  • Don't leak
  • Require no maintenance
  • Least precise of the three types
  • Most (but not all) are not refillable
  • Can dry out
  • Quality of the line decreases as the felt tip wears (some can have the tip replaced)

Nib Width

Pens Come with nibs of varying width. The width of the pens nib, usually measured in millimeters, will effect or determine the size of the lettering. When writing calligraphy, most lettering types are measured in "Nib Widths". Italic script lower case, can be specified as five nib widths in height. The ascender and descender height is also measured as three or four Nib Widths (or N.W.).

In this example, you can see how the size of the lettering changes when a 3.5mm nib is used, versus when a 2.0mm nib is used.

Nib Width Measuring

Lettering with Pencils

One of the best ways to make lettering for posters is actually with pencils. By placing two regular pencils beside each other and joining with tape, or elastic bands, you can sketch the letters onto a poster, and then use felt markers, paint, or crayons to finish the letters. This is a safe way to make posters, because you can erase any mistakes and redo that spot, while in the sketching phase. If you are making very large letters, you can use 3 or even 4 pencils, with the middle pencils simply used as spacers.

First step is to use the two pencils to sketch the lettering.
Two Pencil Method

Second step is to fill the lettering in using the method of choice. Here the letters are painted in, but other choices could be felt pens, crayons, etc.
Two Pencil Method

Here is a complete sign. Normally I'd not recommend mixing two fill styles like this on the same poster. It's shown here as an example of possible ways to fill in the letters. A common mistake, since computers have become such a popular tool, is to place too many types of lettering or typefaces on the same piece. Best practice is to limit your typefaces to as few as possible. You should have a good reason to use more types, and they should add to the look, not detract from it.
Two Pencil Method

Here you can see the steps. The two pencils are used to sketch the letter, then a black marker is used to make the letter solid, and finally the pencil marks are erased.
Two Pencil Method

In this example, two pencils were used to sketch the letters first. The first two have been filled in with marker, and the third letter started shading with pencil. You can still see the pencil marks here because they have not yet been erased.
Two Pencil Method

The second example shows how you could create outline letters, by sketching with the two pencil method, and then tracing the lines with a felt marker and erasing the original pencil marks.
Two Pencil Method

3. State at least four principles in making a poster attractive and distinctive. Know how to make correct margins for the size of paper you are using.


Margins will vary for different styles and shapes of posters, but there is a way to lay out an standard portrait page that can be helpful.
This involves 3 steps.

  1. Side margins are calculated at 1/8th of the page width. You can multiply by .125 (12.5%) to find this number. For my example, I'm going to use A4 (210mm X 297mm) paper, This size is close enough to 8.5" X 11" to be considered the same, for this example. Since the page is 21cm wide, we can find the side margins are 2.6cm. We can round this down to 2.5cm for easy calculating. For the 8.5" calculation, we can simply round the page to 8" wide, and calculate 1/8th of that as 1".
  2. The top margin is then calculated at 80% of the side margins. For the metric folks, 80% of 2.5cm = 2cm. For the imperial measure, .8" is pretty close to .75" so 3/4 of an inch would be good to use.
  3. The bottom margin is simply twice the top. 4cm or 1.5 inches.

Paper Margin Layout

On the left is the standard margins as calculated above. On the right is a page where all four sides are equal. This creates the illusion that that he text appears to be lower than center on the page.
Paper Margin Example 01

Non-standard paper sizes

If you have a page wider than it is tall, it is best to leave more margin on the sides than the top and bottom.
Paper Margin Example 02

If your page is tall and narrow, better to leave more margin at the top and bottom.
Paper Margin Example 03

Attractive Posters

  • Case

Use upper and lower case lettering appropriately. All capital letters is usually difficult to read.

  • Contrast

Contrast is an important concept when making posters. The most attractive and attention getting posters have high contrast. Black lettering on a white or nearly white background is considered the highest level of contrast.

  • Creativity

Be creative when making posters. Experiment with lettering to create a desired effect. Just be careful to make sure that the creativity does not make the message hard to read. This example shows a design with custom lettering. It is still easily readable.
Impact Sign

  • Colour
  • Decorations
  • Layout
  • Simplify

4. Make three posters in a variety of sizes to be used by any of the following groups: Sabbath School, church, school, Pathfinder Club, or AYSociety. Use at least two different types of lettering in these posters.

One suggestion is to complete one poster of the Pathfinder Pledge, Law, Aim, or Motto. You could complete the requirement for your level in the section on Personal Growth - Commitment. A poster like this would be considered an art project.

  • Explorer - Pathfinder Pledge
  • Ranger - Pathfinder Law
  • Voyager - Pathfinder Aim
  • Guide - Pathfinder Motto

Pathfinder Motto

Other suggestions might be posters for;

  • song lyrics
  • school projects (science fair etc)
  • advertising posters for Pathfinder events
  • summer Bible school poster
  • memory text poster
  • find raising chart poster

Remember that this requirement is to make posters in a variety of sizes. You do not have to make every poster with large poster boards. Perhaps one can be legal or even letter size. Be creative.

5. Make five additional posters on topics of your own choice. These posters will be judged for acceptance on the following three conditions:

Some suggestions for topics: Some of these ideas will help you with other Pathfinder honors.

  • decorative poster for your room
  • get well poster for someone in the hospital
  • motivational message for at home
  • list of goals for your next year
  • emergency phone numbers posted near the phone
  • home fire escape plan
  • bicycling safety and rules
  • lettering on a knot board
  • any information learned in a Pathfinder honor class.

a. Arrangement

b. Neatness

c. Selection in type of lettering used.

6. Practice all strokes until they can be done smoothly and accurately.

Making a practice sheet

It is a good idea to create a practice sheet for each of the different alphabets you are learning.

  1. Draw a horizontal line which will be the base of your lettering.
  2. Holding your pen at a 90° angle to this base line draw the number of squares that you are planning for your descenders.
  3. Draw a second horizontal line at the top of these squares.
  4. Now use your pen to make more sqaures. The number squares you plan for the x-height (main body) of your letters.
  5. Draw a third horizontal line at the top of these squares.
  6. Add the number of squares you need for your ascenders next.
  7. Draw a fourth horizontal line at the top of these squares.
  8. Repeat this a few times to fill the page with practice lines. You can either photocopy this sheet for practicing on, or use it as a guide under tracing paper.

Creating Practice Sheets

You can also find sheets like this on the internet available for download and print them, but they may not be exactly the right height for the pen you are using.

Follow the stroke guides

Follow the arrows and numbers shown on lettering stroke guides. If you deviate from these guides and try to draw the letters based on their appearance alone, you’ll have trouble forming the letters properly and will likely develop bad habits.
Following strokes

Trace letters to learn

It's not a bad thing to trace from a guide when first learning. Don't forget to follow the arrows and numbers in order even when tracing, to avoid forming bad habits.

Strokes for different letters

Practice some basic strokes. This example shows vertical, horizontal, angled, and curved strokes to practice.
Basic Practice Strokes

For each alphabet style, practice strokes that are found commonly within the letters.
Practice Strokes