What’s the angle?

Thank you for your comments and questions, your voice is my inspiration. I welcome all the feed back you are willing to share. It will help me to be clear and concise, so again thank you for participating.

Any broad edge tool should help you to get a clear understanding of weight distribution. I grew up on a fountain pen with interchangeable nibs, we always started out with the broadest nib so that the thin stroke was an extreme contrast to the thick stroke.

planting the point:

1. Read directions on your packaging, it is important that the cartridge of a fountain pen is attached to the nib, so that the ink can flow through to the tip. If it is sluggish try dipping the tip of the nib in a small amount of water, this is a sure way to pull the ink to the tip.

2. If you are dipping or feeding the nib with a brush, test the ink flow of the nib on a scrap

piece of paper, if the flow is too fast, less ink, if the flow is too slow dip the very tip into water for pull of ink to the tip.

3. When you are ready to write, it is helpful to get in the habit of using a guard sheet under your hand, this keeps the paper from collecting oils from your hand, so that the surface of your paper stays consistant.

4. Finding the write pressure, when we put our nib to paper, the penhold should be comfortable, as well as the pressure we put on the paper, if you press too hard you will get a distorted width of the nib, if you press too light you will get ragged edges.

5. Finding your feel, there is a place where all is well, flow and slow, conscious and clear,very crisp lines thick or thin, the nib is making sharp edged strokes, you are in the zone, be patient with yourself and know there is growth at every effort.

6. Place nib horizontally to the writing line (this is a zero degree nib angle), make a vertical downward stroke holding the nib flat to the paper, you will see the full width of your nib as you pull toward your body, this pen angle makes the thickest downstroke. If you pull the nib horizontally across the page from left to right, you will see the thinnest horizontal srtoke. now make boxes , the vertical downstrokes will be thick and the horizontal strokes will be thin, this is getting to know your weights.

7. Now place your nib parallel to the vertical line (this is a ninety degree pen angle), when you pull downward toward your body, you should get your thinnest downstroke, when you pull the nib horizontally across the page from left to right you will see your thickest horizontal stroke, again make boxes, the downstroke will be thin and the horizontal stroke will be thick, this is understanding your pen angles to the writing line.

8. Remember the forty-five degree pen angle is half way between 0 and 90, if you cut a right angle in half , place you nib parallel to that diagonal line, if you pull the nib down towards your body, the weight of this line will be equal to the weight of your horizontal line, that you pull from left to right, now make your boxes, both horizontal and vertical lines will be equal in weight.

9. You are ready to make diagonal upstrokes (thin) vertical downstrokes (thick), staying conscious of your 45 degree nib angle to the writing line. practice a sawtooth pattern, lifting your pen every third stroke, give yourself margins, and try to complete a full page with this exercise, no more than 8 by 10 in size, date this page for your record of intention.

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30 Responses to What’s the angle?

  1. John says:

    Well explained. Students; once you get this down, you are well on your way to controlling the pen. Joyce has taught thousands of people (from children to seniors) and she has never had anything but happy students.

  2. John says:

    PS: There is no book out there that teaches beginners better…

  3. Catanea says:

    I’m a little surprised. I thought one said “edge angle” for the angle of the broad edge of the edged nib to the writing line. So as to avoic confusion with the actual angle of the PEN to the writing SURFACE which is also important. Is this not current practice on your coast?

  4. Denis Brown says:

    Great advice here for all beginners and beyond. Yet beyond the great advice, what you don’t yet know is that Joyce is fantastically crazy in only the best way and will devote her passion to yours, and simply love you if you love her. I am a proud beneficiary along with many many others! I dare you to provoke Joyce with a question, on any level- she will respond with heart! You are searching for an answer- and so are we all… but lucky us- since this blog-owner, Joyce, is searching for questions! Engage and be engaged as I do!

  5. Sandy says:

    Bravo Joyce! Keep going. There’s a wonderful need for good beginning teaching and you are an instructor with a heart. And what Denis says too :-)

    • admin says:

      Thank you Sandy for your comment, and your inspiration, see Sandra R Wagner blog, wonderful artist and Cheerio participant.

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