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. **

Classes

Italic I — (Anna Pinto) 5 Saturdays: October 5, 12, 19; November 2 & 9, 2019
Copperplate I — (Elinor Holland) 4 Sundays: October 20, 27; November 3 & 10, 2019

Workshops

Introduction to Watercolor Washes — (Ann Shoshkes) Sunday, October 6, 2019
Carolingian — (Marcy Robinson) Saturday, October 12, 2019
Uncial — (Marcy Robinson) Sunday, October 13, 2019
Calligraforms — (Wissam Shawkat) Saturday/Sunday, October 19 & 20, 2019
Decorated Letters — (Kathy Milici) Sunday, November 17, 2019
The Art of Chalkboard Lettering — (Cora Pearl) Saturday/Sunday, March 21 & 22, 2020

Italic I

Anna Pinto

5 Saturdays: October 5, 12, 19; November 2 & 9, 2019
9:30 am - 2:00 pm
$260 members and non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues) Room 702A
Italic is the graceful, elegant handwriting of the Italian Renaissance.  Students use traditional tools — broad-edged dip pens and ink, rather than fountain pens or markers — in this beginner class which covers minuscule (small) and majuscule (capital) letters, numerals and punctuation. Letterform consistency and spacing are emphasized to help students develop their eye as well as their hand. By developing skill with the broad-edged pen, students will be ready to continue their study of Italic or try other calligraphic styles such as Blackletter (Gothic), Uncial, Carolingian and Foundational.

Note: this is a four hour class with a half hour lunch break (9:30-2:00), so please bring your lunch.
Materials List
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Higgins Eternal Ink OR small bottle of Walnut Drawing Ink
Penholder
Two pen nibs:
one Speedball C-2 and one of the following: Mitchell 2½ and a reservoir, Brause 1½, or, as a last resort, Speedball C-4. If you are left-handed, get left-handed nibs.
9” x 12” or 11"x 14" Borden & Riley #37 Boris Marker Layout pad,
or Boris Cotton Comp pad
Masking tape, paper towel or rag

Calligraphy mail order suppliers have everything and are reliable and fast:
Paper & Ink Arts (800) 736.7772 www.paperinkarts.com
or John Neal Books (800) 369.9598 www.johnnealbooks.com

Basic supplies can be found locally at Dick Blick & Da Vinci.

Instructor

Anna Pinto divides her time between all sorts of freelance work — from envelopes to awards to props for the film industry — and teaching. Her work is included in The World Encyclopedia of Calligraphy by Christopher Calderhead and Holly Cohen, and Italic and Copperplate Calligraphy: the Basics and Beyond, by Eleanor Winters, and is in the collections of the San Francisco Public Library, and libraries at Rutgers and Yale.

Copperplate I

Elinor Holland

4 Sundays: October 20, 27; November 3 & 10, 2019
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
$290 members and non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues) Room 702A
Copperplate is an elegant hand developed during the age of the great writing masters. This script is used extensively for invitations and formal events. We will introduce the use of the flexible pointed nib and learn the basic letter forms for minuscules and majuscules with emphasis on learning to see the underlying basic forms of this hand.

Note: This class runs 5.5-hours each Sunday with a half hour for lunch.
Materials List
(more...)

Calligraphy supplies can be difficult to find...
John Neal has created an "Elinor Holland" package with all supplies on one page, here:
http://www.johnnealbooks.com/prod_detail_list/880

Higgins Eternal Ink,
Pad of Canson Marker Layout paper (size 9x12),
Dinky Dip,
Oblique (elbow) Penholder for right-handed students,
Straight Penholder for left-handed students,
Nibs: Nikko G, Gillot 303, 404, or Hunt 22
Pencil,
Drafting tape.

Materials fee: $1 to $10 (payable to instructor) for purchase of additional nibs

Instructor

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.

Introduction to Watercolor Washes

Ann Shoshkes

Sunday, October 6, 2019
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
$40 members/$50 non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues), Room 701A
If you are attracted to the beauty of the transparency and the spontaneity of watercolor, then this workshop is for you. The wash is the most useful and universal of all watercolor techniques. In this hands-on workshop we will explore the four basic wash techniques: Flat, Gradated, Wet-into-Wet, and Streaked. Each example will be demonstrated step by step to help you master this technique. Once you understand the process of how to execute these washes, we will discuss where and how they best can be used.
Materials List
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• Paper - 140 lb cold-pressed Arches cut into twelve 6” x 9” rectangles.
• Paint - Professional quality tubes of Winsor and Newton watercolor paint is preferred. For this workshop select at least three colors or more of your own choosing. Suggestions are Raw Sienna, Permanent Rose, Cobalt Blue, Burnt Umber, New Gamboge, French Ultramarine Blue.
• Brushes - Flat brushes are required - I like the 2” Polar Flo flat brush for applying water and a 1” flat of your choosing for applying the wash. Bring a few round brushes too of various sizes.

Other Supplies:
• Pencil
• 2 large water containers for cleaning your brushes
• Paper towels
• Masking or Painters tape
• Palette and/or several containers (with lids) to mix up your washes in
• Cardboard or stronger Boards - at least three - larger than 6” x 9”. All of our samples will be taped to boards. I use the back of my layout pads for boards.

Instructor

Ann Shoshkes holds a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. Ann currently teaches Watercolor at the Florham Institute for LifeLong Learning and is a freelance Calligrapher.

Carolingian

Marcy Robinson

Saturday, October 12, 2019
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
$80 members/$100 non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues), Room 703A
The Carolingian minuscule (8th to 12th century) is considered to be the first fully developed minuscule (lower case) alphabet with legible, uniform, round, bouncy, branching shapes accompanied by capitals, word spacing, and punctuation. The minuscule was the precursor to other cursive alphabets: Italic, Foundational, Roman book hands, Blackletter, and modern typefaces which evolved in later centuries.

Emperor Charlemagne, although not completely literate, realized the need for literacy through a better form of handwriting to unify the ecclesiastical books for a cleaner means of communication in order to spread Christianity throughout his empire. Under the tutelage of Alcuin of York, an advisor to Charlemagne, this objective was achieved through the standardization of existing scripts. Simple Roman Capitals, Uncials, and Half Uncials work well with this script.

The alphabet to be taught is the Carolingian minuscule adapted by Sheila Waters for her manuscript Under Milk Wood, commissioned by Edward Hornby and completed in 1978. For further historical study of this beautiful script, please read Foundations of Calligraphy by Sheila Waters and Historical Scripts by Stan Knight.
Materials List
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1. Borden & Riley Paper or Gilbert Bond Paper - 11” by 14”.
2. Mitchell broad Edge Nibs - sizes 0, 1, 1.5 or equivalent in Speedball or Brause with reservoir and Pen Holder. You may also bring smaller
sizes 2 and 2.5.
3. Higgins Eternal non-water proof ink or equivalent like Yasutomo Black Sumi ink.
4. Ruler, Eraser, Pencil.
5. Notebook.

Instructor

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 lettering and design artists. She was one of 12 professional artists featured in the “Alphabet”, Spring 2011 issue - The Journal of The Friends of Calligraphy. She also designed the “Alphabet” logo. She participated in “Conversations in Calligraphies” exhibitions in 2017 and 2018. Her work may be seen in “100 New York Calligraphers”/Cynthia Dantzic; “Manuale Calligraphicum”/Jerry Kelly; and “Morphing Monograms”/Barry Morentz and Marcia Friedman.

Uncial

Marcy Robinson

Sunday, October 13, 2019
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
$80 members/$100 non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues), Room 703A
Due to its popularity, the Uncial alphabet, a majuscule script (Capital Letters), appears in various versions, in the Byzantine, African, Italian, French, Spanish and English cultures, developing during the Fourth through the Eighth centuries from simple to more complex alphabets.

We will examine a simple alphabet in this one day class. The script is not as formal as Roman capitals. It is written faster, simpler and more free flowing, perhaps deriving from a roman cursive. There is very little pen manipulation or multiple pen angle adjustments. Uncials work well with Italic, Carolingian and Blackletter alphabets.
Materials List
(more...)

1. Borden & Riley Paper or Gilbert Bond Paper - 11” by 14”.
2. Mitchell broad Edge Nibs - sizes 0, 1, 1.5 or equivalent in Speedball or Brause with reservoir and Pen Holder. You may also bring smaller sizes 2 and 2.5.
3. Higgins Eternal non-water proof ink or equivalent like Yasutomo Black Sumi ink.
4. Ruler, Eraser, Pencil.
5. Notebook.

Instructor

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 lettering and design artists. She was one of 12 professional artists featured in the “Alphabet”, Spring 2011 issue - The Journal of The Friends of Calligraphy. She also designed the “Alphabet” logo. She participated in “Conversations in Calligraphies” exhibitions in 2017 and 2018. Her work may be seen in “100 New York Calligraphers”/Cynthia Dantzic; “Manuale Calligraphicum”/Jerry Kelly; and “Morphing Monograms”/Barry Morentz and Marcia Friedman.

Calligraforms

Wissam Shawkat

Saturday/Sunday, October 19 & 20, 2019
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
$180 members/$220 non-members ($5 materials fee)
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues), Room 703A
Arabic calligraphy now is widely practiced and appreciated for its timeless beauty, a dedication, and patience required to be a master calligrapher. There has been a movement by contemporary artists, introducing styles that are more contemporary, abstract. These styles encompass the rich heritage of calligraphy and infuse it with modern elements, but a knowledge in historic styles is very important.

In recent years many artists both in the East and the West, use calligraphy in their work, painters, decorators, graphic designers, graffiti and tattoo artists and fashion designers. Why we need understanding in calligraphy? Because we have a great wealth of calligraphic styles, which make it quite easy to come up with styles that are contemporary and at the same time based on traditional models. The basic architecture or structure of the letterforms and the many calligraphic variations on the common styles, make it easy to create something new.

Participants will be introduced to Calligraforms, a name I called to the new body of work I produce which is based on appreciating the graphic qualities of letter forms in the world of calligraphy.

I take special care to work on a contrast between an overall calligraphic statement and the very small details of it, which needs to be looked at as the true quality of individual letters, illustrating its beauty and character. I am in constant dialogue with the shapes generated by the spaces, shadows and silhouettes inside and around the letters. As calligraphers who train in classical scripts, we spend years upon years working towards the mastery of the letters’ forms. We also master the space around them—the positive and negative space, the black and white, the inside and outside of the letters.” —Wissam Shawkat

This workshop will be a combination of theoretical presentations and practical experience; it will start with a presentation lecture about the approach to Calligraforms and how it all started and its influences from other art schools. The practical part will be producing an artwork based on calligraphic letterforms, by drawing, painting or collage.

No previous knowledge in Arabic or calligraphy is required here as participants will purely approach letter forms as an abstract shapes.
Materials List
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• 3 mat boards size 11x17 or A3
• various colored papers like canson. black, red, yellow, blue, green (we will
be cutting them and working on them directly; we will share colors with each
other, so don’t worry if you don’t have them all)
• 3 sheets 11x17 beige or tan hand made paper, ideally with hairs and/or
particles
• acrylic colors and acrylic inks (black, red, yellow, blue, green - we will share
so bring what you have)
• black ink
• brushes
• scissors
• x-acto
• pencil & eraser
• ruler
• paper glue or glue stick
• paper towels or wipes
• 11x17 or A3 tracing paper
• any supplies you love to have
• 10mm and 15mm Poster pens (if only a few students have, that’s
fine - we will share)

Instructor

Wissam Shawkat was born in Basra, Iraq in 1974. For Shawkat, it was the form of four letters from the Arabic alphabet written across a school blackboard that started him on a journey that has shaped him both in early years and adulthood. He recalls finding peace and patience writing and repeating calligraphic letters on the dusty tiles of a makeshift shelter during a heavy aerial bombardment during the Iraq-Iran war and, spurred on by supportive parents, he became his own tutor. His teen summers were spent lettering for a local sign shop before he began studying for a degree in Civil Engineering at Basra University, graduating in 1996. The life as a Civil Engineer, though, was not his destiny and the point where his affinity for letterforms would wait no longer. In recent years, Shawkat has become known for a new calligraphic style named after him which references several traditional scripts bringing them together with modern design.

He is largely self-taught in the rigorous medium, attaining mastery through book research, visits to various masters, museum and library collections throughout the region. Since 2003 he has been working on a new script named after him (Al Wissam Style) which has become very wide spread and popular among calligraphers and designers in the Arab world.
Letters of Love, his 2011 solo exhibition at Reed Space in New York, introduced a global audience to a series of contemporary compositions. With Monumental 11/11, a 2015 solo exhibition and Inside/Outside, a solo show in 2017, Shawkat visually announced his break with traditional calligraphy and his commitment to instead use letters as a foundation for works of dynamic abstraction. He started “Calligraforms,” an art movement that merges the graphic qualities founded in classic letterforms and the western Abstraction and Cubism.

Wissam Shawkat is based in Dubai, where he is engaged full time as an artist, designer, and Arabic type designer. His work is regularly featured in books on Arabic calligraphy and typography, included in museum exhibitions, and acquired by private collectors.

Prototyping Letterforms with Unconventional Tools

Lynne Yun

Saturday, November 2, 2019
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
$85 members/$105 non-members
Level of difficulty: Intermediate
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues), Room 703A
Ever been stuck while trying to come up with letterform ideas? Often the best way to get unstuck from a creative block is to start experimenting with ink and paper. In this workshop, we will examine the principles of calligraphy and explore how we can use them to rapidly generate ideas for letterforms. Using both conventional and unconventional writing tools, we will use analog methods to spark creative ideas and discuss how we can construct visual rhythm.
Materials List
(more...)

• Grid paper
• Pads of paper larger than 9x12 inches (Student-grade watercolor paper recommended, but layout paper is ok also.)
• Ruler
• Pencil
• Tape (artist’s or masking)
• Non-waterproof ink (e.g. Higgins Eternal, black, walnut, or other dark color)
• Shallow dish or bowl for ink

Instructor

Lynne Yun is a Brooklyn-based type designer, calligrapher, lettering artist, and graphic designer. She holds a BFA from the School of Visual Arts and a postgraduate certificate in typeface design from the Type@Cooper Extended Program. She currently works as a full-time type designer at Monotype and previously held positions at Apple, Publicis, and Deutsch. She serves as Scholarship Co-Chair on the Board of Governors of Society of Scribes. Lynne’s work has been featured in Letter Arts Review, Print Magazine, and various other publications. She has been recognized by the Type Directors Club, Art Directors Club, and AIGA. Her work was included in the Grolier Club’s “The Calligraphy Revival: 1906–2016” exhibition.
www.lynneyun.com

Decorated Letters

Kathy Milici

Sunday, November 17, 2019
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
$85 members/$105 non-members
Level of difficulty: Beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues) , Room 703A
The illuminated letter has been used to highlight and enhance handwritten texts throughout history.

In this one-day workshop, you will be guided through the process of designing, drawing, painting simple Roman and Versal capital letters based on a system of historic techniques. You’ll learn, step-by-step, how to create beautifully decorated initial(s), both modern and traditional, with applied gold paint. From basic outlining to detailed, colored embellishments, these detailed methods are easy to learn and have many creative applications, from simple greeting cards to more formal documents.

* Please note: This is a drawing and design class. A basic knowledge of calligraphy is helpful, but not necessary.
Materials List
(more...)

Dr. Martin’s Black Star Ink (matte, truly waterproof)
Dr. Martin’s Bleedproof White
Straight pen holder and nibs (like Nikko G)

12” Clear plastic ruler, Pencil, Kneaded Eraser
Micron Pigma pen, black .005mm, .05mm and .03 mm
Gold gel pen, Sakura Gelly Roll (or other)
Uniball Signo White gel pen, (Or Sakura Gelly Roll white)

Any watercolor set (not tubes)
Recommended: Gansai Tanbi, Koi, Prang
Fine Tec Gold Palette, or just the Arabic Gold color (sold separately)

Paintbrushes, very small (#1, 00, 000)
Dinky Dip
Dropper bottle

Any Hot Press watercolor paper, 4 sheets, 8 ½” X 11” size is ok
(I will provide some too) pads are ok, cut into small pieces
Tracing paper, a few sheets

6- hole plastic palette
Small plastic water container
Paper Towels

OPTIONAL:
Small light pad (bring extension cord)
Colored Pencils, a few colors
Scotch Removable Tape
Notepad and pen

Instructor

Kathy Milici is a nationally known calligrapher, designer, instructor and mentor. She happily admits to being obsessed with letters since early childhood. Owner of Kathy Milici Creative in Newton, New Jersey, her work has been seen in national magazines and on television. A very popular instructor at the IAMPETH calligraphy conferences (her workshops sell out!), Kathy travels the country, lecturing and teaching calligraphy and the related arts. The originator of Gratitude Script, a modern typeface, she also mentors fellow artists and art students in how to create a living and maintain a viable business as a working artist. After almost 40 years as a professional calligrapher and teacher, Kathy is still enjoying her lifelong passion for “everything calligraphy.” See more at kathymilicicreative.com.

Dancing in the Night: The Romance of Writing on Dark Paper

Barry Morentz

Saturday, December 7, 2019
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
$85 members/$105 non-members
Level of difficulty: Intermediate
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues) Room 703A
Writing on black, dark brown, and navy blue paper can be intimidating, but once you are comfortable with the mediums it is lush and visually exciting. We shall write with various white and pastel and metallic colors, while considering the opacity of gouache and the transparency of inks. Beginning with solid colors, we will move on to color blending, wet-on-wet techniques, the use of salt, alcohol and gold powders to create dazzling backgrounds for writing text. We will learn to control our palettes by the incremental addition of white to dark colors. Practical tips for effortless writing on black envelopes will be demonstrated.
Materials List
(more...)

• favorite dip pens, including a few large and small nibs
• several tubes of gouache: including white, gold, silver and however many colors you wish to bring
• several colors of transparent inks (such as Dr. Martin’s)
• a few cheap mixing brushes
• palette
• few small sheets black paper (such as Canson, Arches, Cranford)
• ruler
• HB pencil
• Micron Pigma pen size 01
• brief quote

Instructor

Barry Morentz owns and operates his Manhattan studio where he creates calligraphic works and hand-made books, boxes, and portfolios. He holds an MA in Medieval History, but abandoned pursuit of a doctorate in favor of an even less likely career in calligraphy. Initially self-taught, he began his formal calligraphic studies, primarily with Sheila Waters, in 1977, and eventually with almost every internationally recognized master. A seminal experience was participation in the Hermann Zapf Master Class at Rochester Institute of Technology in 1985, and subsequent paleographic studies in Rome and the Vatican Library. He has taught numerous workshops throughout the US, Canada, Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore, and at five international Calligraphy Conferences.

In his midtown studio he ministers to the needs of The New York Public Library, Estee Lauder Companies, Cartier, Columbia University, and The Museum of Modern Art, where he has been The Living Anachronism since 1986. His day-to-day work includes Illuminated Resolutions and Awards Design, Publications Headings, Book and Portfolio Design, and the application of fine lettering in a range of areas. A life-long love for Shakespeare informs and inspires his personal work, which can be seen in numerous publications. In 2002 he realized a long-time goal of studying classical mosaics in Ravenna, Italy, where he learned to execute letters in an ancient format.

After more than 34 years, he remains inspired by the visual and emotional power of letterforms to communicate on a deeply-felt level and to challenge the viewer to discover and interpret the layers of meaning within a text.

The Art of Chalkboard Lettering

Cora Pearl

Saturday/Sunday, March 21 & 22, 2020
10:00 am to 4:30 pm
$160 members/$200 non-members
Level of difficulty: Advanced beginner and all levels
Location: SVA Annex, 214 E. 21st Street (between 2nd/3rd Avenues), Room 703A
Chalkboard lettering has become very popular in recent years. In this workshop, students will learn several different styles of hand drawn lettering as well as other design elements (such as flourishes, borders, and ribbons) and we will combine these components to create chalkboard style pieces of artwork. We will explore the essential elements of chalkboard design and layout and will work in both black on white and white on black. Students will create a sketch for one complex chalkboard layout and we will do several smaller designs, all working on paper. We will also touch on working large scale on chalkboard surfaces. This class is ideal for students who want to better understand this style of lettering, for students wanting to learn more about layout and design in lettering art, for students who want to explore the art of hand drawn lettering, and for students who want a new area of lettering to explore.
Materials List
(more...)

• 1 General’s White Charcoal Pencil
• 1 General’s Black Charcoal Pencil
• Canson Pro Layout Marker Paper 9” x 12”
• Micron Pen in size .05 (and any other sizes you may already have)
• Faber Castell Dust Free Eraser or any similar dustless eraser you may already have
• Factis Black Eraser
• 12” or 18” T-square Ruler
• A few sheets of Graph Paper
• 12” Ruler
• Pentel Graphgear 500 size .05 Mechanical Pencil or any mechanical pencil in .05 that you have
• Scissors
• Pencil Sharpener (any kind)
• 2 Sheets of Canson Mi-Teintes Paper in black (19” x 22”)
• $12 Materials Fee (payable to instructor)

Optional (but helpful):
• Fons & Porter Fabric Pencil - It is a little pricey at $14 so if you don’t feel like spending that much on one tool, you will be fine without it (Can be found at JoAnn’s Fabrics)
• Dividers (Blick sells Alvin dividers for about $10)

Instructor

Cora Pearl started studying calligraphy at age 11 and has been doing calligraphy and hand lettering ever since. She has a BA in Art and Art History from Oberlin College. Cora works as a full-time calligrapher and teacher of lettering arts. She teaches full credit calligraphy and hand lettering courses at Portland Community College and teaches independent workshops, classes and private sessions, including year-long courses in Design for Lettering Art. She has taught at several calligraphy conferences including Letters of Joy, IAMPETH, Letterfest, Typecon, the International Calligraphy Conference, and Letters California Style. Cora also does calligraphy commissions in addition to her teaching. Cora is passionate about teaching and values a holistic approach to learning based on building trust and safety in the classroom environment.