When I first started lettering, I examined my work and kept thinking to myself “Something doesn’t look right!” I couldn’t quite pin point the reasons at first, but after much thought and self-study, I realized that it came down to a few minor things that made a world of difference!
Error #1 - Rough Edges
The Fix - When I first started lettering, my hand tensed up which resulted in rough edges. The tenseness restricted my mobility and prevented me from being consistent with the pressure I put on the brush pen. If you’ve encountered the same problem, remember to relax the hand and make sure that you are writing with the forearm, not just with the hand and wrist! As you write, your arm should be moving along the paper as well, while also using the side of your hand on the stabilizer on your writing surface.
Error #2 - Messy transitions in between strokes
The Fix - You may find that your transitions from down strokes to up strokes are not clearly defined. You can fix this by gradually releasing pressure from the pen as you approach the point where you’re going to switch strokes, and then simply lift the pen to “reset” the brain before you start the next stroke! Lettering takes patience and attention to detail — don’t rush it.
Error #3 - Inconsistent thickness of your down strokes
The Fix - Inconsistent thickness in your down strokes can be unappealing to the eye. Make sure that the angle at which you are holding the pen is consistent, as well as the pressure that you put on the pen as you write! Be sure to warm up with your basic strokes before a project to ensure consistency!
Error #4 - In-cohesive letters
The Fix - To make your letters look aesthetically pleasing, EVERYTHING must be consistent. This means the general shape, thickness, angle, size, etc. of your strokes and letters should be the same throughout your piece. When I look at my rough drafts (done on tracing paper), I go back and circle the spots where there are inconsistencies. Then I grab another sheet of tracing paper and go over it again — fixing my mistakes.
I would love to hear your thoughts and if this was helpful to you! Let me know by commenting below!