Learn Crayligraphy with Colin Tierney

Yesterday experienced lettering artist Colin Tierney launched ‘Crayligraphy’, a place to learn ‘Crazy Crayola Calligraphy’. Those of you that are familiar with Colin’s work will already know that he’s been experimenting with Crayola pens as a lettering tool for some time now, and has been getting some pretty great results within his work.

What You Will Learn

Over the coming weeks Colin will approach new topics helping you to learn some of the core skills required to become a versatile lettering artist. Some of the things he states that you will learn are:

· Basic fundamentals of calligraphy and how to emulate brush strokes without the aid of a soft flexible tip.
· How to create letterforms utilizing cohesive techniques from writing and drawing to manipulate various styles of calligraphy and hand lettering.
· How to turn your work into silky smooth vectors using specific tools and applications.

IMAGE © COLIN TIERNEY

‘Crayligraphy’ Advantages

‘Crayligraphy’ is taught by Colin who is very experienced at using Crayola pens, and this alone is a great reason to invest some time in learning this method of lettering. Another huge advantage of learning this method of lettering is that the tools are very cheap and easy to access. There is also a lot less confusion involved when selecting the right tools to use.

Colin describes ‘Crayligraphy’ as an easier learning curve on a journey towards brush lettering with a brush pen. When choosing a brush pen as a new lettering artist it can be overwhelming, there are many options, many brands, and many different types of pen tips. Getting to the right brush pen can be a long and expensive journey, however when working with Crayola pens there are just a few different varieties to choose from. More often than not they can be bought from a local stationary shop or toy store at a reasonable price, unlike some types of brush pen which can be very hard to track down or expensive to get a hold of.

I caught up with Colin a few months ago to interview him as part of the ‘Lettering Legend’ series, and in his interview at the time when I asked him about ‘Crayligraphy’ he thought that it was harder to master than brush lettering.

The learning curve from a brush pen to a Crayola marker is fairly steep. A brush is easier to write with because it allows for an easier thick-to-thin transition based on the applied pressure between up and down strokes. Conversely, a marker is more difficult to write with because the nib isn’t flexible which demands more hand and wrist movement. To emulate a brush stroke using a Crayola marker, one has to compensate for the stiffness by loosening the wrist.

I had another conversation with Colin more recently and he had a new insight on this, after more experimenting and teaching some workshops he realised that ‘Crayligraphy’ is actually more suited to beginners than he first thought.

The less flex in a brush — the more resistance between the tip and paper — the better control — the easier to write.
For this reason, a Crayola marker will soon be your best friend and go-to resource when practicing calligraphy. Since Crayolas are not brush pens, by default, they have a firmer nib with a subtle flex, allowing you to create thin lines and broad strokes with ease.

Colin’s change in mindset is a good example of showing that even very experienced lettering artists can still learn new things, and find new ways to carry out a process. If you have a healthy amount of curiosity and explore often you will always keep learning something new, which can benefit you in so many ways.

IMAGE © COLIN TIERNEY

Free ‘Crayligraphy’ Reference Guide

By subscribing to the ‘Crayligraphy’ newsletter you will get a free reference guide which will help you to learn some of the very basics needed to get started. You’ll also get updates on when new ‘Crayligraphy’ lessons are available.

Tam writes and creates for Lettering Tutorial, she loves all things lettering and typography. If you would like to hear more from Tam and Lettering Tutorial including updates and news click / tap HERE to join the free Lettering Tutorial weekly Newsletter.

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