I’ve always wanted to learn how to hand letter and I actually follow quite a few hand lettering artists on Instagram. One of my favorite hand lettering artists I follow is Erin from @GoFontYourself and I’m excited to have her as a guest poster to tell you all about how to get started with hand lettering and the best hand lettering supplies for beginners. After reading Erin’s post, I’m definitely ready to start hand lettering myself.
Hi Friends! I’m Erin from Go Font Yourself. I’m so excited to work with Sam from Color Made Happy to give you some insight into the tools I used to get started on my hand lettering adventure.
People ask all the time how I got my start hand lettering. Although I feel like I have been doing it forever, it was actually only 6 months ago I tried lettering for the first time. I have been absolutely obsessed ever since! It has brought an incredible amount joy and purpose to my life, not to mention I’ve connected with some absolutely amazing individuals.
For me, lettering seemed like a way I could be artistic and express my thoughts in a creative way. I started out with just trying to copy works that appealed to me, but I quickly found out that was not a great strategy. I was only learning how to imitate other work, but wasn’t creating my own style, which is the best part!
HAND LETTERING BEGINNERS
The key to lettering is to really know and practice the flow of light pressure on the upstrokes and more pressure on the downstrokes to create the thin/thick effect. You can get the hang of this and start creating muscle memory by using cost efficient supplies. Believe me, while you are learning you can ruin expensive materials easily and I learned the hard way!
BEST MARKERS FOR HAND LETTERING BEGINNERS (affiliate links are included for your convenience)
Crayola markers are still one of one of my favorite hand lettering tools, and they are incredibly low priced! For some helpful tutorials on how to use Crayola markers for hand lettering, check out Chelle from The Lemonade Store. She has great advice for angling the marker and how to get the right thickness on the lettering. I watched her videos over and over while I was learning and it helped so much.
BEST BRUSH PEN ART MARKERS FOR HAND LETTERING
After learning the basics of pressure, I graduated to brush pens. There are so many great brush markers to try, but I prefer the Tombow Dual Brush Pens and Ecoline Liquid Watercolor Brush Pens. The Tombow dual brush pens are really my go-to because I love the set of 96 Tombow Pens they have available. I also love the Tombow Colorless Blender to create all kinds of color combos. So many color possibilities.
After learning the ins and outs of Tombow Brush Pens, I started using Ecoline Brush Pens. They are more like water brushes because there’s more water flow through the tip and the the brush tip is broader. They have great pigment and you can easily blend the colors. The Ecoline Brush Pens are also great to use with mixed media paper and they always turn out so vibrant!
ADDING DETAILS TO YOUR HAND LETTERING DESIGNS
Adding details like a soft shadow or a white bubble effect to your hand lettering gives it such a WOW factor. I love adding little extras to make the piece really pop. My favorite tools for doing this are definitely any gray shade of Tombow Brush Pens and the Uni-Ball Signo White Gel Pen.
BEST PAPER FOR PRACTICING HANDLETTERING
I always practice my hand lettering on marker paper or or HP LaserJet 32lb – both are really smooth and easy on your brushes. If you practice on rough paper, your brush pens can fray and it’s difficult to create smooth lines when the tips are damaged.
I hope you have enjoyed a few of my favorite hand lettering supplies and tips. If you want to see more, follow me on Instagram at @GoFontYourself.