4 Hand-Lettering Ideas from Top Artists

Hand lettering is one of my very favorite things to do, and I know I am not alone in that. I am always looking for new ideas and new materials and techniques to enhance what I already know and do. This Ultimate Lettering Collection has everything you need from some of our favorite artists.

hand lettering

Joanne Sharpe is a master of letters. Whether you’re new to lettering or have been creating letter art for some time, Joanne has so many tips, tricks, and great ideas in her books and videos you’ll never run out of inspiration.

In her Inspirational Art Journals video, Joanne has all kinds of tips for adding hand lettering to a journal. One of my favorites: (I call) trace and transfer. If your hand-lettering confidence is not what it should be, not to worry. Joanne suggests tracing a letter or word you like, then turn the paper over and scribble with pencil over the lines of the traced letters. Flip the paper back over, place it over the paper you’re creating on, then trace the letters again, transferring the letters to your paper. Easy peasy.

You can create all kinds of hand-lettering projects with confidence using this neat trick.

Joanne’s Alphabet Soup video is chockfull of great ideas and colorful combinations that, mixed together, create a lettering feast. Basic cursive and printed letters are transformed in innumerable ways. You’ll learn lettering styles and techniques to mix things up and add real flavor to your hand lettering. Not to mention you’ll have lots of fun putting your own spin on these techniques.

Who knew that simple dots could create a new style font?
Just sketch basic letters over and over. Add a little color and you have another fun font to add to your hand-lettering repertoire.
Joanne’s Coloring Book font adds doodling and drawing fun to hand lettering.

A hand-lettering collection wouldn’t be complete without Danielle Donaldson’s beautiful watercolor techniques. Danielle adds her signature colors and style to unique hand lettering in her Creative Girl Workshop: Watercolor Words video. She works magic with a paintbrush, and you will, too, once you learn these techniques.

Loose, flowing watercolor letters fill this page with color and interest.

Sometimes you want a little something more, or maybe you need to cover or re-do letters that didn’t turn out quite the way you’d hoped. Danielle uses collage papers cut from her stunning watercolor castoffs, and collages them onto paintings for a layered look that adds great texture. Another tip: Add book text to your painting if the letters don’t turn out just right.

A hand-lettered word, cut from painted paper, is collaged and stitched in place, adding tons of texture and interest, while also covering letters that miss the mark.

Another resource you don’t want to miss: Jen Wagner’s book, Happy Hand Lettering. Jen will help you take your basic hand lettering to the next level. Learn to work with lines, add all kinds of flourishes, create letters with a paintbrush, personalize everyday objects with hand lettering, and much more. Jen’s mantra: “Imperfection is a beautiful thing.” Don’t expect your letters to look like anyone else’s. Create your style and own it.

Add flourishes to individual letters or decorate the page. Flourishes dress up hand lettering in all kinds of ways.

Of course, I had to have some hand-lettering fun, so here it is.  Joanne Sharpe’s Coloring Book Font offers plenty of creative opportunities. I drew hearts in a variety of sizes to fit the letters, and then added color with colored pencils.

Just draw the letter shape, outline it to thicken the available space, and draw or doodle to fill the space. Erase the pencil lines, and you’re done. So much fun. Even if you think you can’t draw, you could definitely fill the space with doodles.

This is just a sampling of what the Ultimate Lettering Collection has to offer. In addition you’ll find two books and one eBook from Joanne Sharpe: Doodle Art and Lettering with Joanne Sharpe, Artful Alphabets, and The Art of Whimsical Lettering; two more video downloads from Joanne: Whimsical Words and Art Lettering Workshop; and the Cloth Paper Scissors Lettering Lesson Compilation 2016–2017.

If hand lettering is something you have been waiting to try, wait no longer. The Ultimate Lettering Collection is not to be missed.


Art Journaling and Lettering, Blog, Mixed-Media Techniques


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.