View Full Version : views on Copperplate

07-31-2008, 03:24 AM
What are your views on 'Copperplate'? Is it calligraphy or fancy letter drawing.
Would you post your copperplate in this forum?

07-31-2008, 10:54 AM
I don't strictly consider it calligraphy, rather a form of pointed pen lettering.

I'm not very good at copperplate, (in fact I stink at it) but here is an example of a piece I did this week as an example for a project I am working on for a client. He chose an italic form instead. Smart choice, IMO.

(What a fun project; the guy has ordered a bookmark with the words "Will you marry me?" on it. He plans to attach a beautiful brooch to the ribbon as an engagement present and tuck it into a book of love poems. Isn't that fun?)


(the join between the o and the u of you is very poor, but, as I told him, I would have re-lettered it until I got it right if he had wanted that hand. . .)

08-03-2008, 08:22 AM
What a lovely romatic gesture. The reason I asked about copperlate is that I have been practising it over the past couple of months. I find it harder than the calligraphy 'hands'. Even though your angle is guided by the lines you still seem to 'veer off' and end up too upright :D
Heres where I am up to now.

Japanese Ink, Gillott 404 dip nib.

[403098with guide lines 403097 with guide lines erased.

08-03-2008, 12:15 PM
Over the centuries there has always been 2 paths that the written word has taken,
everyday use commercial, home. etc copperplate is the commercial hand of GB traders used across the world. The path also often often takes the form of drawing letters...this can be very rewarding area to study.

The second is fine lettering with a broad edge tool where the shape of the tool makes the letter. The method and tools used where lost for centuries until Edward Johnston researched into the old manuscripts and painstakingly rediscovered the methods and tools that must have been used.

In this day and age we should be combining and pushing the boundaries to many letterers are stuck with the an imagined past of Celts who really should be Picts !

08-04-2008, 05:34 AM
Copperplate was prevalent in the 18c and was also known as 'English Roundhand' and 'Italian'.
The first was used mostly for business and the latter which was more finer and delicate
was classed as 'ladies' hand.
There are some lovely examples of copperplate script found in old ships manifests, crew lists, logs, maps etc.
Our house deeds were also written in scrolled copperplate.
I think it is a very elegant hand.