Classes & Workshops

** Our classes are necessarily small and often sell out quickly. If a class is filled to capacity, please sign our Waiting List: we will try to accommodate everyone — and if possible, we may add another session. To receive an email when new seasons are posted, sign up for our Newsletter. Please read our Registration Policy at the bottom of this page. **


Italic - Intensive (July) — (Elinor Holland) Saturday/Sunday: July 8 & 9, 2017
Copperplate - Intensive (July) — (Marcy Robinson) Saturday/Sunday: July 22 & 23, 2017


Brush Lettering Basics for Beginners — (Debra Dick) Saturday, June 24, 2017
NEW! Designing Extraordinary Letters — (Liesbet Boudens) Saturday/Sunday, July 15 & 16, 2017
RE-SCHEDULED! Spencerian Script — (Harvest Crittenden) Saturday/Sunday: August 5 & 6, 2017 --or-- Monday/Tuesday: August 7 & 8, 2017

Italic - Intensive (July)

Elinor Holland

Saturday/Sunday: July 8 & 9, 2017
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
$160 members and non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues)
The Italic hand is a Renaissance development that combines grace and versatility. Flexible enough to be used for almost any calligraphic need, its subtle letterforms engage every eye. From invitations to signage, envelopes to love letters, Italic can be plain or dressed up with flourishes. Starting with miniscules we will study the basic underlying forms and structure that give Italic its distinctive look. We will add the capitals that are based on Romans and begin to develop in this elegant script. Practice is encouraged!

This is an intensive 2-day course, with an even smaller class-size than our usually-small introductory classes. Students will be given much individual attention.
Materials List

Straight pen holder
At least one of the following 3mm broad-edged nibs:
Speedball C-2, Brause – 3mm, or Mitchell – 1
Higgins Eternal Ink
Lightweight layout paper such as Boris Layout Paper (9x12 or 11x14)
Ruler or T-square


Elinor Holland works in both Latin and Arabic scripts. She teaches hands-on workshops in both types of script as well as lectures on Islamic Calligraphy. Her calligraphic work scans the range from invitation design to fine art commissions. She continually works toward refinement in her work through study and practice. Clients include Smithsonian Institute, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York Public Library and the Linearis Institute.

Copperplate - Intensive (July)

Marcy Robinson

Saturday/Sunday: July 22 & 23, 2017
10:00 am - 4:30 pm
$175 members and non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues) Room 702A
This elegant and graceful script is written with a pointed pen by means of a pressure and release movement. Today this hand is used mostly for invitations, envelopes, and place cards. The upper and lower case alphabet will be introduced and analyzed with an emphasis on basic forms. All levels of experience are welcomed.

This is an intensive 2-day course, with an even smaller class-size than our usually-small introductory classes. Students will be given much individual attention.
Materials List

* Brause EF 66 or similar nib such as Gillot 303, 404, Hunt 22, etc.
* Oblique pen holder (or straight holder for lefties)
* Black ink (non-waterproof, sumi ink in green bottle)
* Bond paper (Borden & Riley Cotton Comp, slight tooth to paper, 9" by 12")
* Dinky dip or empty bottle cap (an inch in depth)
* ruler
* pencil and pad for note taking


Marcy Robinson is an award-winning lettering artist residing in New Jersey. She has studied with Julian and Sheila Waters and has taken workshops with many other calligraphic artists. Her work may be seen in Brides Magazine, the Calligraphy Engagement Calendars, Letter Arts Review and other calligraphic publications. Marcy was on the faculty of several calligraphy conferences. In addition, two pieces of her work were purchased by the Richard Harrison Collection of the San Francisco Library. She was one of 12 lettering artists featured in the "Alphabet" - the Journal of the Friends of Calligraphy, Spring 2011 issue. She also did the logo for "Alphabet."

Card-Making for Calligraphers: Pop-Ups & Decorative Folds

Eleanor Winters

Saturday, June 24, 2017
9:30 am to 2:30 pm
$50 members/$60 non-members ($10 materials fee)
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels.
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street, Room 702A
Hand-made greeting cards are one of the popular--and beautiful--ways we can showcase our calligraphy. In this workshop we will learn some easy pop-ups and folded cards. Professional skills of cutting, folding, and gluing will be emphasized in order to make one-of-a-kind examples that are elegant and well-constructed. This workshop is open to beginners and those with no calligraphic experience as well as more advanced students. (Please note: Some of the cards we made at the SoS Spring Fling may be repeated, but with more detail.)

You can see a few of Eleanor's cards in action here.
Materials List

Cutting mat
Bone folder (or tea spoon)
Glue Stick or PVA Bookbinder's Glue
Metal Ruler (12" is big enough)
Cutting tool such as Xacto knife or single-edge razor blade
Tracing paper
Paper & pen for note-taking

Note: Paper and cards will be provided; if you have any origami paper or other decorative papers (small pieces), feel free to bring some.


Eleanor Winters Author of Italic and Copperplate Calligraphy: the Basics and Beyond (Dover Publishing, 2011),1-2-3 Calligraphy! (Sterling Publishing, 2006), Calligraphy for Kids (Sterling, 2004), Mastering Copperplate Calligraphy (Dover, 3rd Edition, 2000), Calligraphy in 10 Easy Lessons (Dover, 2nd Edition, 2002), Professor of Art, Long Island University (1992-2010), Director of the Calligraphy Workshop, New School University (1985-1998), Workshops & Lectures in US, Europe, Asia, Exhibitions in Museums and Galleries, US and Europe, Master of Arts, New York University.

Brush Lettering Basics for Beginners

Debra Dick

Saturday, June 24, 2017
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
$80 members/$100 non-members ($6 materials fee)
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Steet (between 2nd/3rd Avenues) Room 702A

This workshop is currently filled, but if you would like to be put on the waiting list please continue with enrollment. You will only be charged if a spot opens up.

Brush lettering is super-popular right now, and let’s face it; this is a cool, versatile writing style that will serve you well. In this workshop you’ll get a thorough introduction to the basics. We’ll begin with individual strokes, and then build upon them to make rhythmic patterns and to form both the upper and lower-case alphabets. In the morning, we’ll focus on laying a strong foundation and becoming familiar with the unique aspects of writing with a pointed brush. As the day progresses, we’ll move from black ink to playing with color; from single letters to dynamic, brush-lettered words, then on to phrases and short quotes.

This is a good class for beginning calligraphers, students of pointed pen calligraphy, hobbyists, and handwriting enthusiasts. No previous lettering experience necessary.
Materials List

There are many different brush lettering tools and materials available. Since you are just beginning your journey on the brush lettering path you may want to start with these relatively inexpensive options. Most are available from your local art or craft supply stores or online at:;;;;;

BRUSH MARKERS: (nylon-tipped); one black, one gray, plus one or more additional colors of your choice. Choose from:
• Tombow Dual Brush Pen: blendable, water-based ink; nylon tip artist loft (available in individual colors or in sets)
• Artist’s Loft Watercolor Dual Tip Marker: nylon tip; water-based; blendable (come as a set; includes black and gray)

WATERCOLOR: inexpensive tubes or pan set, such as:
• Prang Professional Semi-Moist Watercolor Pan (8 colors)
• Artist’s Loft Watercolor Pan (36 colors)
• Artist’s Loft Fundamentals Watercolor Paint (tubes;12 colors)

MARKER LAYOUT PAD: 9X12” or larger, such as:
• Borden & Riley Marker Layout
• Bienfang 360 Graphics Pad

GRIDDED PAPER PAD: 9 x 12” or larger, such as:
• Paper & Ink Large Grid Pad, 11x17”
• Canson Foundation Graph Pad

Ruler; Pencil; White Eraser; Brush Cleaner; Paper Towels; 6-well plastic paint palette; small mixing brush; plastic container for holding water (such as a butter/yogurt container); removable tape (such as Scotch or 3M brand)

• Gel Pens such as Sakura Gelly Roll (these are the best I’ve used)
• Uni-ball Signo UM 153 white gel pen (wonderful opacity)
• Winsor & Newton Water Colour Marker (not W&N Brush Markers!)
• Water Brush (round, medium size suggested), such as Sakura Koi 9 ml Water Brush; Aquastroke Watercolor Brush Pen; or, Kuretake Niji Waterbrush (Note: Instructor will have a few on hand to try.)

Materials Fee: $6.00 (for brushes, additional paper and miscellaneous materials for mini-project and media experiments) payable at registration.


Debra Dick became a freelance lettering artist/graphic designer in the early 1990's. Her commissions have included logos, t-shirt designs, corporate resolutions and one-of-a-kind calligraphic art on paper and canvas. Her work has been published in Letter Arts Review and the Calligraphers’ Engagement Calendar. In 2004, Paper Kite Press invited her to illustrate Zoo Haiku, a book of poetry and broad-pen drawings.

Debra became a roster artist with the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts in 2000, and has since conducted numerous calligraphy-related arts residencies in schools, libraries and museums. In addition to traditional calligraphy pieces, she also incorporates beautiful writing into paintings, drawings, and hand-made books.

NEW! Designing Extraordinary Letters

Liesbet Boudens

Saturday/Sunday, July 15 & 16, 2017
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
$160 members/$200 non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street, Room 703A
Our aim is to create powerful work using a chosen poem, phrase or sentence. We will start with Romans as a basis for built-up lettering and create small pencil sketches. Liesbet will use examples of her own pieces to take us through the initial design process. Using a copier to substantially enlarge our text we will refine and rework the letters. At several stages we will be talking as a group about the work of each student. As we develop our own style of drawn letters, each with unique character, we will study the meaning of our individual texts to suggest the shape and color of the lettering. Our goal will be to create a finished, expressive piece, with a very personal flavor for our words, painted in gouache or watercolor.
Materials List

■ 0,3 automatic pencil w/ refills
■ HB 2 pencil
■ 9B graphite pencil (I will bring some myself )
■ Eraser
■ Break-away-type knife
■ Scissor
■ Tape (artists)
■ Glue stick
■ Container for rinsing brushes
■ Rag for cleanup
■ Layout or marker paper (A3 if possible)
■ Plastic triangle
■ Clear plastic measuring ruler (40 cm x 60 cm)
■ Old toothbrush and old brush for mixing gouache colours
■ Pointed brushes (choose a smaller and a bigger within the range of 00-2)
■ Palettes (any type)
■ Gouache (any type)
■ Watercolour
■ Colored pencils, soft and chalky (I will bring some myself )
■ Speedball pens (C2 / C3 / C4 / C5)
■ Small pieces of cold press paper for exercises
■ Cold press paper (I mostly use Waterford 300 gr, rough. Fabriano Roma -- though expensive! -- is also good for gouache)


Liesbet Boudens was born 1957 in Bruges, Belgium. She specialized in art from age sixteen and trained as an art teacher. She studied painting with Dan Van Severen at Sint-Lucas Art Institute in Ghent. Liesbet currently teaches art in a secondary school in Bruges and teaches workshops in Belgium and abroad. Her web address is

RE-SCHEDULED! Spencerian Script

Harvest Crittenden

Saturday/Sunday: August 5 & 6, 2017 --or-- Monday/Tuesday: August 7 & 8, 2017
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
$160 members/$200 non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 3rd/2nd Avenues) Room 702A
This workshop is designed to explore the beautiful lettering style of Spencerian Script, the only lettering style that is uniquely American. Designed by Platt Roger Spencer in the 1800’s, we will explore the gracefulness of nature’s forms that inspired Mr. Spencer. The workshop will include study of the lower case, the upper case, simple off-hand flourishing and using letterforms as borders. This system of writing is still very relevant today. Brides frequently request elegant and graceful, Spencerian Script.

Spencerian script is a pointed pen alphabet built on 4 simple principals and 7 stroke forms. We will start with pencil and work our way up to pen and ink. We will cover all the basic letterforms and play a little with capital variations that make this lettering style so unique. This class is designed for all skill levels. It is most frequently written with an oblique penholder but experience with an oblique penholder is not necessary. If left-handed you may prefer to use a straight penholder.

The Sat/Sun session is sold out; to be placed on wait list, click here.
To register for the Mon/Tue session, click here.
Materials List

-Nikko G or Zebra G nibs are recommended for beginners. More advanced students may prefer to use a more flexible nib.
-An oblique penholder is recommended. If left-handed you may prefer to use a straight penholder depending on the amount of hook when you write.
-McCaffery’s black ink OR walnut ink OR Iron Gall ink OR black ink of your choice.
-Good quality translucent layout paper, Borden & Riley or Canson.
-a mechanical pencil .5 with extra lead
-a kneaded eraser
-Something to keep your nibs clean


Harvest Crittenden is a Master Penman, and has been a professional lettering artist for more than 30 years. Past owner of The Gold Leaf and founder of Acorn Arts, Harvest specializes in calligraphy, illumination, and engrossing. Harvest is a past winner of the Marjorie Pavelich Calligraphy Grant, and past president of The Michigan Association of Calligraphers. She has studied illumination and lettering in the United States and Italy and has served on the faculties of numerous regional, national and international conferences. Harvest has taught workshops to calligraphy guilds and other organizations for over 20 years. Harvest specializes in online classes and also teaches for The Sacred Art Institute, The Religious Sisters of Mercy, The Poor Handmaids, and offers workshops internationally.

In 2010 Harvest was inducted as a Master Penman by IAMPETH at their annual convention. IAMPETH is an international, non-profit association dedicated to practicing and preserving the beautiful arts of calligraphy, engrossing and fine penmanship. IAMPETH is one of the oldest lettering arts associations in America. In 2013 Harvest became the director of the Spencerian Saga, a very special series of 2 week-long workshops held each year at Geneva on the Lake, Ohio, where Platt Rogers Spencer is from. Spencerian lettering remains one of her most popular workshops. Her work can be seen in museums, galleries and private collections throughout the United States and Europe. She has been published in numerous publications worldwide.

More of her work and a client list can be seen on her website at