So I was working on an AJ page and when I got to the “title” part I considered and discarded a number or ideas – stamps, printed text, a lettering stencil, magazine letters. I tried a few lettering options on scraps, to see if I would be happy with just writing it, and I really wasn’t.
I have one handwritten letter stencil and I really like it, but it is someone else’s handwriting.
Much as I hate my own, I am TRYING to get more comfortable with it. I had a bit of a flash and thought, well, why can’t I make one from my OWN handwriting? and of course the answer was, I CAN. And so can YOU LOL!
The first thing I did was write the phrase I had in mind on white paper. I used three different types of pens: a fat Sharpie, a brush tip Pitt pen, and a chisel tip marker.
I scanned that. No reason to scan it at a supper-high resolution. Frankly you don’t WANT every little stray brush mark. I did 150 DPI but I suspect 72 dpi is fine.
Once I had that, I cropped the scan to create three .jpgs, one for each version. I imported each one into SCAL and used the TRACE option. Once I had traced it I selected the BLACKOUT option – the effect is pretty much the same in the end, but there is no need to cut both the letter and the opening as cutting makes all the letters that have an enclosed white area (like the O, the a, the l, etc.) end up as just an opening, like the stencil.
Why cut both when it’s just going to fall out anyway?
I was being lazy so I lined up all three so I could cut them from one sheet
I can just mask off the ones I don’t want to use. It’s heavy card, covered both sides with contact paper and it wipes clean (but I wouldn’t try to wash it LOL!)
Cool! I tested them with spray ink and paint with a stencil brush.
Not bad – it’s more my technique that needs work – I never press the stencil flat to the page, and I never move my hand back and forth like I should. And with the paint I used paint that was perhaps a little too liquid. A thicker, more heavy bodied paint and a sponge and I think it would have been crisper. But the real win for me was using my homemade modelling paste! That worked out perfectly.
You can sort of see the commercial stencil sample I showed when I did the post. My handwriting is not so lovely but my STENCIL works equally as well. So then it’s just a matter of deciding what phrases are worth doing, or, like the original, just writing out the alphabet in my own hand. COOL!