View Full Version : Very Dumb Signature Question

Anna Marie
01-26-2003, 06:17 AM
Well you were warned and yet you still read it.
OK its like this. When I finish a painting I like to sign it and am never happy with my signature. The pastel is quite thick and if I sign it with a piece of pastel it looks like a 5 year old has done it if I sign it with a pastel pencil it just digs a hole in it and if I use a pen the ink clogs.

I would like some bright ideas plus the other thing is I dont like my signature because it doesnt look artistic.


01-26-2003, 06:30 AM
Sorry cannot help with the "artistic" element (tho personally I really do notthink that matters) but just to let you know that I always sign my paintings with a soft lead pencil. It doesn't "dig" into the paper; it sits on top of the pastel, and the good thing about pencil as opposed to ink is that it won't fade.

If you do not like your signature, you could always just use your initials.


01-26-2003, 08:26 AM
Its really a matter of prefrence, but I like to sign back and front of pic for that reason. I too use pencil , and sometimes pastel pencils. I was always told to Incorporate your signature as part of your pic, verses just signing the bottom, so its really up to you!!
Sorry not much help:)

01-26-2003, 08:35 AM
I understand Ann's question quite well. MY handwriting is atrousous. Funny how you can draw but you can't write. I tried practicing writing my whole life and it never improved. I sign my oil paintings with an gold oil pen. Found it isn't that noticeable sometimes blends in real well with the painting otherwise it kind of disappears unless you catch the light just right. But on my pastels So far I've only tried pastel pencil. Graphite might work better. Thanks for the question. I may try a pencil next time on my pastels. *S*

Anna Marie
01-26-2003, 09:09 AM
Thank you ladies I shall have a bash I never thought of the humble pencil!

01-26-2003, 01:38 PM
I take one of my harder Nupastels and sharpen it to a point with an xacto knife. I then use this to sign...it works pretty well for me.

01-26-2003, 01:43 PM
The signature has always been part of my problem when finishing a painting also. I think I spend way to much time trying to decide which color, which side and how big. I was told once that signing on the left or right had two different meanings but I haven't been able to find out what they are. I am going to try the soft pencil thing too. Maybe it will take a little of the stress off.

Katherine J
01-26-2003, 02:53 PM
This is not anywhere near a dumb questions, obviously! And I personally am really glad you asked it because I've had the very same problem and just never got around to posting this query. Pencil sounds like a brilliant and simple solution to me - gonna try that. I've never been able to get my Nupastel fine enough even with an exacto knife. And I sure know what you mean about not liking your signature - me too, but that's a problem I might be able to solve using pencil. Thanks, Anna Marie.


01-26-2003, 07:44 PM
Hi Anna Marie

I think most if not everyone has problems with signatures be it getting the length, height, color or the style right etc....Here is what I do, I sharpen a Faber Castell hard pastel the same as KarenU only I sharpen my pastel with a flat file. You lay the file flat and rub the pastel on the file at the angle you want the point to be, this angle can be very acute, it may take a bit of practice to get it as fine as you want it.

Then I will write my signature on a piece of paper in lead pencil to see if it will be the right size and length to suit the painting, I then draw a very delicate line across my pastel painting with a light color pastel. I also very lightly draw my signature onto my painting with the light pastel the same size and length as the sample as a guide. This can be rubbed into the background with a tortillon or some background color after you finish the signature without changing the color of your artwork. I take my time applying my signature as I do not want to remove it or mistakes too much, If I make a small mistake I can just touch up that area with a sharpened piece of the background pastel.

This is how I do it and I do not suggest that anyone or everyone does it the same, but this works for me. To me a nice clean and legible signature design is very important. I have seen signatures that you can not understand, rough, messy or they are that big all you see is the signature. If you do not like your signature I suggest that you practice many different signatures on a piece of paper or get your friends, husband etc to help you find a nice one.

seeya Gaka

01-26-2003, 10:03 PM
It is funny that my best handwriting is done in pencil... I must try my signature in pencil on my next painting! Thanks for the tip! :)

Mikki Petersen
01-27-2003, 12:20 AM
I do my signatures with a pastel pencil that has been sharpened to a fine point by rubbing on a sandpaper block. I have always only signed my first name "Mikki" and the year under that. Being a woman, I feel my surname is less significant. I anso always sign in the lower left corner in a color that is slightly contradictory to the colors in the painting in that area so it will be readable but not glaring. That's what I was taught too many years ago to think about.

As for how your signature looks, I've known people who actually design a signature like a small logo or design. If your signature is not "artisitc" to you, that is an option. However, remember that handwriting is unique to an individual, and by using your normal "hand", you are further identifying your work.

01-27-2003, 02:24 AM
I never sign mine, since I'm never done messing with them...:rolleyes:

My greatest fear is having a nice painting done, then mis-spelling my name (oh, and like I'm the only person that's ever done that) or something stupid like that.

I wonder (haven't tried it yet) if it's possible to sign it in charcoal. Does that sit on top of pastel well? I would think it wouldn't have the problems that pastels have when you've worked a few layers getting to the paper.

Only drawback is that you might have a black sig detracting from the painting.

- Greg ( <--- checked it, I spelled it right).

01-27-2003, 02:41 AM
I use a watercolour pencil coz it's the only set of coloured pencils I own and I thought I'd better use them for something!! LOL

I re-designed my signature as it would be illegible if I didn't.


BTW . . NOT a dumb question at all

01-27-2003, 03:59 AM
Originally posted by rd2ruin
I never sign mine, since I'm never done messing with them...:rolleyes:

My greatest fear is having a nice painting done, then mis-spelling my name (oh, and like I'm the only person that's ever done that) or something stupid like that.

- Greg ( <--- checked it, I spelled it right).


Ok Im off the floor now lol ...... some good comments and suggestions here ...... yup am sure some artists design their signatures.... they look as lovely as the paintings sometimes

..... hey perhaps do a project.... design your own signature :)

Anna Marie
01-27-2003, 06:18 AM
Oh my Gosh.
This now reads to me like we need a signatures forum on the site.
Spookily I tried the pencil and my signature does look better. I think its because its soft and flows.
I think I shall have to print off this thread and have a lets play signatures day!